Bitcoin enthusiasts living in the British Isles had a hard time using the cryptocurrency in the past. This can be blamed on the fact that UK banks were apprehensive of the new Bitcoin phenomenon. This has led to financial institutions in the region refusing Bitcoin service and the EU-based banks receiving the bulk of the British transactions. This also resulted in higher fees, which are caused by slower processing and the SEPA initiative.
Fortunately, the UK Bitcoin community has progressed from the bad old days and people can now expect to have an easier time using Bitcoin. The British government is making progress toward Bitcoin acceptance as it foresees a more cryptocurrency-friendly environment.
Available Bitcoin exchanges
A good sign that Bitcoin is becoming more accepted is the presence of a local Bitcoin exchange. This means people will be able to buy and sell bitcoins with ease, stimulating local Bitcoin usage. Right now, there are several UK Bitcoin exchanges where people can buy, sell, and trade bitcoins.
First, there is Coinfloor. Based out of London and launched in 2012, this exchange focuses on the security of the accounts entrusted into its care. This is ensured by the use of offline storage to store the Bitcoin accounts so that no data breach would result in their being compromised. Another point in its favor is that it is a Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs-approved bureau of exchange, meaning that it has passed several tests to guarantee that everything is above board. It currently charges £5 to deposit and £10 to withdraw from your account.
CoinCorner is another Bitcoin exchange that services the British Isles. Based in the Isle of Man, this particular exchange deals more than just Bitcoin. Accounts with the exchange are also able to buy other cryptocurrencies like Litecoin. Although the deposits are free, there is a £5 fee for withdrawals. It also has a mobile app wallet available.
Third, Coinbase, one of the world’s largest Bitcoin wallet services providers, started operating its online Bitcoin exchange in the UK last year. A lot of people will most likely put their trust in an established brand like this one, especially with its track record in servicing the US and the international markets. Providing much of the same services it offers in the US, Coinbase assures its UK customers of top-notch and secure services.
To start buying from these exchanges, UK residents will still have to go through some hoops. First, registering with these exchanges is needed. This will require proofs of residency and identity, usually a utility bill and a company ID.
Next, a bank payment needs to be done to add money to the account. It would be best to avoid any mention of Bitcoin in the statement since some banks are still a bit leery of the cryptocurrency, but there should not be any problem for individual bitcoiners to make deposits and withdrawals to and from their accounts on these Bitcoin exchanges.
Trading the British pound for Bitcoin and vice versa entails ample knowledge in stock trading, but newer exchanges have created a user-friendly platform using the innovative tools that help ensure ease and convenience in using Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, if supported.
As the UK continues to recognize the potential of Bitcoin in delivering an alternative and viable means for payments, the market for Bitcoin and altcoins is expected to thrive in the years to come.