How To Buy Bitcoin In Canada

How To Buy Bitcoin In Canada

Written by Caroline Macdonald
Fact-checked by Caitlin Wood
Last Updated May 12, 2022

Bitcoin is, by far, the most popular cryptocurrency available on the market as well as the first decentralized currency to exist. The coin uses public-key cryptography to record transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain; blockchain technology allows cryptocurrency to function without a central authority and it can operate on a peer-to-peer network.

What Is Bitcoin? 

Bitcoin, like all other cryptocurrencies, is a digital currency that can be used as cash. Bitcoin was launched in January of 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto (a pseudonym used by an anonymous programmer or group of programmers). Bitcoin operates on a peer-to-peer network and therefore requires no central authority as banks do.

How To Buy Bitcoin In Canada? 

There are several ways you can buy Bitcoin in Canada, depending on your preference one option may be more suited to you than others. 

  • Cryptocurrency Trading Platform – You can buy or sell Bitcoin using a cryptocurrency trading platform such as WealthSimple Crypto, Coinberry and Newtown among others. These platforms don’t allow you to trade with other people but rather act as an intermediary between you and the crypto markets. These platforms often have very competitive fees and are easy to sign up for. 
  • Online Crypto ExchangesOnline exchanges allow you to trade Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with other buyers and sellers based on the market prices. These platforms are mainly used to trade crypto including Bitcoin. 
  • Bitcoin ATMs – Bitcoin ATMs aren’t abundantly available in Canada, but if you happen to be near one, you can use these ATMs to buy Bitcoin via debit or credit. However, they often come with high fees and exchange rates. 

Best Crypto Exchanges And Trading Platforms For Bitcoin In Canada

In Canada, there are many crypto trading platforms and exchanges where Canadian traders can buy and sell Bitcoin. Below are some of the best and most popular options.

CoinSmart

CoinSmart is a crypto trading platform that is actually based in Canada. It is a publicly-traded company on the NEO Exchange and is known for its ease of use and features. With CoinSmart users can trade 16 different currencies, including popular ones like Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin. 

  • SameTrade – Rather than having to convert one coin to another to trade, you can simply choose which coins you want to trade, and CoinSmart will take care of the rest. 
  • Advanced Trade – If you’re an experienced user, you can use CoinSmart’s Advanced Trade feature to customize your orders, set up limit orders or stop loss. 

CoinSmart Fees 

CoinSmart boasts same-day deposits and minimal wait times, real-time trading activity tracking, and multiple funding methods including Interac, SEPA, wire transfers, and more.

FeeProcessingMinimumMaximum
Interac eTransfer0% on $2000+
1.5% on $100 – $1999
Same Day$100$10,000
Bank Wire0%Same Day$10,000$5,000,000
Bank Draft0%Same Day$500$5,000
Debit/Credit Up to 6%Instant Processing$100$5,000

Coinbase

Coinbase is a simplistic and stylish crypto platform where you can develop your crypto portfolio. Coinbase is available in over 100 countries and has over 73 million verified users. You can trade over 300+ crypto assets including Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Dogecoin and Cardano. 

  • Mobile App – Coinbase offers a mobile application where you can set up recurring buys and manage your portfolio.
  • Offline Storage – Coinbase offers secure, offline storage to ensure the protection of your crypto assets.  It also insures your crypto assets with FDIC insurance and covers up to $250,000. 

Coinbase Fees

Coinbase doesn’t charge any fees for transferring crypto from your Coinbase wallet to another wallet. However, depending on the transaction they may charge network and trading fees. Fees can range from 0.5% to 4.5%. 

NDAX

NDAX is a secure and easy-to-use platform that enables users to buy, sell, and trade crypto assets; it is a Canadian-based company but is available across the world. NDAX offers users the ability to experience world-class crypto trading and allows users to earn rewards from using the platform. Users can trade over 30 different types of crypto assets including major crypto coins like Bitcoin, Ether, XRP, Dogecoin and Cardano. 

  • NDAX Wealth – NDAX enables users to make large-scale trades through NDAX Wealth which provides a personal experience with no price slippage.
  • Referral Program – They have a referral program, so users can earn cash from getting friends to join NDAX, users can also gain rewards from their assets.

NDAX Fees 

Buying and selling fees are 0.20% per trade. Funding your account is free, however, withdrawing from your account has a flat rate of $4.99 CAD. 

Wealthsimple Crypto

Wealthsimple Crypto is one of the most reputable platforms to buy and trade crypto as their platform for stock trading is extremely popular around the world. In fact, the company is backed by some of the largest financial institutions with $380 million in investments. You can open a crypto account and start trading with as little cash as $1; it is Canada’s first regulated crypto trading platform. Your assets also are protected from theft through CoinCover and your coins are held by Gemini Trust Company LLC with $200 million worth of cold storage insurance coverage. 

  • Welathsimple AppWealthsimple operates as a convenient and safe app you can download on your device.
  • Limit Orders – It offers limit orders, which allows you to set your own trading prices.
  • Multiple Cryptocurrencies – Users can trade over 40 different coins using Wealthsimple Crypto, including BTC, DOT, ETH, and ADA.   

Wealthsimple Crypto Fees

There is a 1.5% – 2% operating fee on each transaction; this is the only fee applied by Wealthsimple.

BitBuy

BitBuy serves over 350,000 Canadians with over $4 billion dollars traded and is known to be a secure and trusted platform for cryptocurrency trading in Canada. They are approved by the Ontario Securities Commission as well as registered with FINTRAC as a money services business. BitBuy offers users 15 different coins to trade on their platform, including popular ones like Bitcoin, Ethereum, EOS and LINK. 

BitBuy
  • BitBuy Express –  which is tailored to first-time users for quick trades, but there is also BitBuy Pro – for more advanced traders as well as API for high frequency and automated trades. 
  • Big Trades – BitBuy also offers large-scale concierge services for big trades (over $50,000) with their OTC (over-the-counter) services.

BitBuy Fees

The fees for regular BitBuy customers are 0.20% on all buys and sells. API and BitBuy have 0.10% maker and 0.20% for taker fees. The deposit fees are 1.5% for Interac e-Transfer and 0.50% for bank wire. For withdrawals, the Interac fee is 1.5% and the bank wire fee is 1%.

Binance

Binance is the world’s largest crypto exchange and offers other services like crypto loans, a Binance Visa, and Binance Pay. They offer multiple ways to trade crypto, their most popular being Convert. Users can buy, sell or hold over 600 types of cryptocurrencies using Binance, including BTC, BNB, ETH, LUNA and ADA. 

  • Advanced Trading Tools – Binance offers extensive trading tools including crypto derivative instruments, their BNB Vault for rewards, Liquidity Farming, and more. Binance takes crypto investing a step further and offers users several tools to maximize their profits and understanding of the crypto market.
  • Auto-Invest – Binance Auto-Invest is a feature that allows users to automate their crypto investments while earning passive income

Binance Fees 

Binance fees vary heavily depending on your membership level, however, the spot trading fee is always 0.1%. 

Where Can I Store My Bitcoin?

In order to store cryptocurrency, a buyer can keep it on their trading platform (e.g. Binance, Wealthsimple Crypto, etc), however, once a buyer has accumulated a significant amount of crypto assets, it is highly recommended that they invest in a hot or cold wallet.

Software (Hot) Wallets

These wallets are stored online and are always connected to the internet. You can store, send, and receive tokens using this kind of wallet. They are connected to the internet and are therefore less secure and are more vulnerable to security breaches, however, they are a better alternative to keeping your crypto assets in a crypto exchange.

Hardware (Cold) Wallets

These wallets are more secure because they store your crypto assets offline, meaning they’re less susceptible to online security breaches and software attacks. A cold wallet is a physical wallet (like a USB drive)  that is used to protect your private keys (your password). While these are more secure against external threats, you can completely lose access to your cryptocurrencies if you lose your password (USB drive). 

Canadian Bitcoin Regulations

The Government of Canada has classified cryptocurrencies as commodities which means that you can purchase, trade, mine, and interact with them. It is important to note that they are not eligible to be a registered investment. In a sense, you can think about crypto the same way you think about gold and silver.

How Is Bitcoin Taxed In Canada?

If you specifically trying to earn a profit from selling and trading cryptocurrency in Canada, your earnings are considered capital gains or business income. This means that you will have to pay capital gains tax or income tax. 

When Do You Pay Capital Gains Tax On Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is just like any type of investment or property, when you sell it for a price higher than you purchased it, you’re receiving a capital gain. When this occurs, 50% of the gain will be added to your income and taxed accordingly.

When Do You Pay Income Tax On Bitcoin?

If you purchase and sell Bitcoin for a profit multiple times during the year, the CRA can choose to consider your income from this as business income. When this occurs, 100% of your profits from the sale of Bitcoin will be taxed as business income.

Bitcoin FAQs

Can I sell my Bitcoin? 

Yes. You can sell, trade, or buy more Bitcoin as you see fit.

Do Bitcoin ATMs exist in Canada?

Yes. The first Bitcoin ATM popped up in Vancouver, BC in 2013 with the second one popping up in 2014 in Toronto, Ontario.

Can I buy Bitcoin through my bank account?

There is currently no way to purchase cryptocurrency directly through your bank account with a debit or credit card; you must send money to your exchange of choice in order to purchase.

Can I use my credit card to buy Bitcoin? 

The majority of Canadian credit card companies have blocked the purchase of cryptocurrency.

Bottom Line

Bitcoin is a lucrative and interesting opportunity for all crypto investors; it is by far the most popular and well-known coin worldwide. There are multiple ways for an investor to purchase, sell, and trade Bitcoin and as we move forward into the future, perhaps we will see more Bitcoin to bank compatibility.

Caroline is a 4th year commerce student at Memorial University of Newfoundland pursuing a focus in finance. She is a member of Memorial University’s student managed investment fund and acts as a sector manager in the industrial and financial sectors. Caroline joined the Loans Canada team in 2021 and rediscovered her passion for writing and media creation. In her free time she enjoys spending time with friends and family and reading.

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