There is not enough Bitcoin for every crypto enthusiast to hold one, but you will undoubtedly own a piece or more if you sign up for an exchange today. Going by Coinmarketcap figures, there are currently 476 cryptocurrency exchanges, and the numbers will keep rising.
Many choices are preferable, but it can be challenging to narrow down to the best cryptocurrency exchange for those looking to invest in some coins. Exchange platforms excel in different aspects, such as security, trading fees, user interface, supported coins, and bonuses.
To help you find the best cryptocurrency exchange platform for your needs, we reviewed the platforms based on our strict criteria to present you with the 7 best cryptocurrency exchanges in 2022.
Best Overall and Best User Interface: Coinbase
Best for Low Fees Trading: Binance.US
Best for Earning Interest: Gemini
Coinbase tops the list for its sleek and user-friendly platform that makes it ideal even for newbie traders. The exchange started in 2012 and has grown to over 89 million verified users in over 100 countries and more than 100 cryptocurrencies available for trade.
Although Coinbase has high fees and a complex fees structure, users benefit from its wide assortment of educational content. The platform will pay you for opening an account and consuming the Coinbase learning materials. You get $5 in BTC for opening an account with Coinbase and can make up to $7 worth of crypto by discovering how different coins work and earning a bit of each. Additionally, users get BTC by inviting friends to Coinbase and more when they start trading on the platform.
The fees on the standard account include a spread of 0.5% and a transaction fee ranging between $0.99 and $2.99, depending on the trade amount.
More experienced traders can switch to Coinbase’s lesser-beginner-friendly platform, Coinbase Pro. Coinbase Pro charges you less than you would pay for trades on standard Coinbase, plus you have access to advanced charts and trading tools, including an API for building trading bots. You can also use the Coinbase cryptocurrency exchange app for Android and iOS versions.
Notably, the US-based platform is fully licensed and regulated and still one of the safest cryptocurrency exchanges that have never experienced a hack. It uses a two-factor authentication procedure for all its versions and stores most of its customer deposits offline. Only less than 2% of the deposits are held online, and its deposits are covered by FDIC up to $250,000.
Lastly, Coinbase prides itself on having plenty of liquidity and provides users with loans of up to $100,000 at an interest rate of 8% APR.
Binance.US is a partner company of the world’s biggest crypto exchange, Binance. Binance cryptocurrency exchange was launched in China in 2017 by Changpeng Zhao but later shut down access to US users over regulatory concerns. However, Binance quickly announced its partnership with BAM Trading Services, which saw the birth of Binance.US.
Binance.US is a US-based version of the global Binance platform based in San Francisco and is one of the cheapest cryptocurrency exchanges. It has a limited number of cryptocurrencies and crypto-to-crypto pairs available for trading. It provides over 50 different coins selection, including top DeFi coins and cryptocurrencies, and novice traders can benefit from the Binance Academy educational resources.
Notably, Binance.US’ market offering is relatively low compared to its partner Binance with 350+ coins, although it still offers more than other cryptocurrency exchanges in the US.
The most appealing feature that sees Binance.US on this list is its cryptocurrency exchange fees. It’s among the exchanges that offer user discounts on holding certain assets, like its Binance Coin, and use them to offset their trading fees. The platform charges a flat spot trading fee of 0.1%, which is much lower than other cryptocurrency exchange sites like Coinbase’s 0.5%. Binance.US users can also enjoy an instant trading feature but at a higher fee of 0.5%.
Besides the Binance.US platform, users can trade using its android and iOS mobile versions. The Binance.US iOS mobile app is rated as the best cryptocurrency exchange app that allows users to automate recurring trades and live-track prices.
The platform deploys state-of-the-art storage technology and two-factor authentication, plus it keeps most of its user deposits in cold wallet storage. Users, however, have the option of storing their assets on third-party wallets like Trust Wallet, which partners with Binance.US.
Gemini is available in all 50 US states making it a top cryptocurrency exchange platform for anyone in the US. It was launched in 2014 by the Winklevoss twins and is headquartered in New York City. Gemini cryptocurrency exchange prides itself in its 100+ cryptocurrencies selection, but what sets the platform apart from competitors is the Gemini earning feature.
Users earn interest on their cryptocurrency holdings at high-interest rates of 8% on stablecoins such as Gemini dollar and 1.5% on Bitcoin. Traders can access Gemini trading features via a sleek desktop trading platform and automate recurring trades.
Also, Gemini offers a professional-grade trading platform, Gemini ActiveTrader, which is also accessible via a mobile app with high ratings on cryptocurrency exchange reviews. It comes with advanced trading charts and allows users to set multiple market or limit orders. You can also use the Gemini mobile app to pay for goods and services in over 30,000 retail outlets across the US.
Fees on Gemini vary based on the trade amount but typically range from $0.99 to $2.99 for trades up to $200. Trades more than $200 are charged 1.49% of the transaction value. You pay an extra 0.5% convenience fee if you use the mobile app. However, fees are lower on the Gemini ActiveTrader platform, ranging from 0% to 0.35% based on a 30-day trading volume.
The platform demonstrates a high commitment to security and compliance and has a SOC 2 certification. Deposits are also FDIC insured for up to $250,000 and additional digital asset insurance for deposits in Gemini’s hot wallet.
Uphold is among the few platforms that allow you to trade directly across different assets. Users can exchange cryptocurrency, fiat, and a couple of commodities and stocks on a straightforward and user-friendly platform.
However, the main distinguishing feature that qualifies Uphold for this cryptocurrency exchange list is its transparent fees structure. Its fees structure does not include commissions, deposits, or maker and taker fees. Instead, it charges a spread between 0.8% and 1.2%. You can execute trades via its desktop or mobile apps, and the user interface is ideal for both beginner and professional traders.
The platform deploys industry-standard security measures, including two-factor authentication, a bug bounty program, and KYC verification requirements. Users are also provided with security best practices guidance, and a more significant percentage of their funds are held in offline wallets.
Like Binance.US, Kraken is a San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange launched in 2013. It has proven itself to be a secure and reliable cryptocurrency exchange that has never been hacked. The platform uses a two-factor authentication process for funding and trading and includes a Masterkey security level.
Kraken provides over 50 cryptocurrencies for traders in the US, although the exchange has more tradable coins in other countries. Users can trade fiat currencies directly for crypto coins, plus it allows margin and futures trading, which makes it the best exchange for cryptocurrency in the US. It also supports other fiat currencies like the Euro, Canadian Dollar, and GBP, and users can still exchange one crypto coin for another.
Kraken exchange offers two trading platforms, Kraken Basic and Kraken Pro. Novice traders can start with Kraken basic, can be linked to a bank account, and start trading seamlessly. Once you create your account and verify, you can start buying crypto coins directly from your bank account without funding your Kraken account first.
Kraken Pro is a more complex trading platform accessible via a web browser or cryptocurrency exchange software on a mobile device. Its user interface can be intimidating for beginner traders, but the more detailed asset information and trading tools make it worth learning.
Trading fees on Kraken vary based on the platform you use. The fee for Kraken Basic is 1.5% for most crypto coins and 0.9% for stablecoins. Kraken Pro trading fees, however, are much lower at 0.26% taker and 0.16% maker fees.
Finally, Kraken has an impressive staking feature that enables users to deposit their crypto assets for staking and receive interest of up to 23% depending on the coin staked.
For those who want the best cryptocurrency exchange platform for earning interest, BlockFi is an ideal cryptocurrency exchange that allows you to earn up to 8% interest on crypto balances. BlockFi allows users to earn interest by holding crypto assets in their BlockFi Interest Accounts. The New Jersey-based cryptocurrency exchange has a limited coins selection with only 13 digital coins. Still, it provides a host of other financial services, including credit card expenditure management using BlockFi credit card and loans using crypto as collateral.
You can trade top cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum using the BlockFi online dashboard or its mobile applications compatible with iOS and Android versions. All platforms provide a seamless trading experience. Users who have a BlockFi Interest Account can also set recurring trades to execute automatically every trading day, weekly, or the 1st and 15th day of each month.
The crypto exchange also follows a unique fee schedule that does not include trading fees. However, BlockFi will charge you for withdrawals, but users get a free withdrawal every month.
User accounts are protected using two-factor authentication, although it’s not mandatory. Also, deposits are held on cold wallet storage which provides an added layer of security.
eToro is one of the best cryptocurrency gateways for beginners. The platform launched in 2007 and has an intuitive user interface and provides a free demo account for new users. The platform integrates social and crypto trading tools, allowing you to trade cryptocurrencies and traditional investments.
eToro provides attractive promotions exclusive to US users, including lower minimum deposit requirements and cash bonuses for trading a specified amount in select assets. Users have over 40 different cryptocurrencies for trading, and they can copy the trades of professional traders.
Its fees schedule is based on spreads which range from 0.75% to 4.9% for crypto. The USD is its base currency, so users depositing in other currencies have to pay a conversion fee of 50 pips.
Cash deposits are FDIC insured, but the insurance does not cover cryptocurrencies. eToro also offers two-factor authentication for additional security on user accounts.
There are nearly 500 cryptocurrency exchanges active in the market, which makes selecting the best crypto platform to start your trading journey daunting. The platforms provide nearly the same services and products but deliver different user experiences stemming from their features, design, and individual trader needs.
Notably, Coinbase provides users with one of the best user experiences, making it top the list of the best cryptocurrency exchanges. Its trading fees are also competitive, with spreads starting at 0.5% and a maximum trading fee of $2.99.
On the other hand, Binance excels more in providing trades at low fees, while Gemini holds the mantle for the most attractive interest on crypto deposits. Uphold also adopts a unique fee schedule and does not charge any transaction fees, making it ideal for high-volume traders.
The above platforms are worth it for anyone looking to start crypto trading in the US. Traders can choose the exchanges to try out based on the more meaningful features. For those who value an intuitive user interface and a wide range of tradable assets, Coinbase is your best bet.
Frequently Asked Cryptocurrency Exchange Questions
What is a cryptocurrency exchange?
A cryptocurrency exchange is a platform that allows users to buy and sell digital assets like Bitcoin and Ethereum. They serve as marketplaces for digital assets, without which traders would have to find other people looking to trade and agree on a cryptocurrency exchange rate.
Can you exchange cryptocurrency for cash?
Yes. Cryptocurrency exchanges allow holders to sell their coin holdings for the cash equivalent. Users, however, have to agree on the cryptocurrency exchange rates set by the platform they use.
What is the best cryptocurrency exchange?
Cryptocurrency exchanges excel in different features, so it’s challenging to have a one-fits-all platform. However, Coinbase tops our list of the best cryptocurrency exchange in the USA.