Bitvavo is a licensed and regulated cryptocurrency exchange that allows users within the EU to buy, sell, invest, and trade more than 170 cryptocurrencies. Bitvavo can boast more methods of deposit than most cryptocurrency exchanges and is regulated by two entities in The Netherlands, which adds to its strong reputation in the space.
As well as exchange and custody services, Bitvavo also has staking services, which include on-chain and off-chain staking options. At the time of this review, the exchange was doing $84 million in daily volume with four million website visits per day.
The history of Bitvavo
Jelle de Boer and Tim Baardse established Bitvavo B.V. in 2017, and the company began trading in 2018 with a focus on the European market. In March 2019, Bitvavo expanded its services from being a broker to becoming a fully-fledged exchange.
The company’s goal is to close the gap between fiat currency and cryptocurrency coins and tokens by providing a one-stop trading platform with low margins, accessible rates, and a continually diverse selection of cryptocurrencies.
Since its launch, Bitvavo has worked to increase the security of user funds, including insuring the funds it holds in cold storage and establishing the Bitvavo Payments Foundation, which handles user funds so that they are safe in the event of Bitvavo going bankrupt.
Step-by-step guide to buying crypto at Bitvavo
Step 1 – Register
Before you can buy cryptocurrencies on Bitvavo, you must be a registered user. Follow these steps to register an account:
- Load the Bitvavo website.
- Click on “Sign up” in the top-right corner of the screen
- Fill in the following details:
- Country of Residence (must be within the EU)
- First Name
- Last Name
- Email address
- Tick the boxes and click “Continue”.
- Open your email app or log in to your account to verify your email address.
- You will be required to fill in the following categories:
- Additional questions
- Address information
- Identity verification
- The identity verification process must be conducted on the phone – you will be given a secure link through which you can upload your ID on your phone.
- After submitting your ID, you will be asked to make a recording of yourself following instructions on the screen. The verification process is automated, so it should be completed in a short amount of time.
Step 2 – Buy Crypto
With an account registered and verified, you have full access to Bitvavo’s features. Follow these steps to buy crypto on Bitvavo:
- Log in to your Bitvavo account
- You will find the “Deposit” button under the “Total Portfolio” section
- Click the “Deposit” button and follow the prompts to verify your bank account, then make the deposit
- Return to your dashboard
- Scroll down to find the cryptocurrency you are interested in purchasing or search for it with the search bar
- Click on the cryptocurrency you want to buy
- On the currency’s details page, enter the amount you want to buy
- Click on “Buy”
- Follow the prompts to finalize the transaction
- The purchased coins will be deposited in your Bitvavo-hosted wallets
Sending cryptocurrency to your external wallet
Sending cryptocurrency to your Bitvavo account is a straightforward process:
- Log into your Bitvavo account.
- On the dashboard page, scroll down to search for the cryptocurrency you want to send.
- Click on the cryptocurrency you want to send.
- You will find an action menu under the header menu. Click on the “Withdraw” button.
- Enter the address to which you want to send the cryptocurrency.
- Enter the amount you want to send.
- Review the transaction details and click “Continue”.
- Confirm your order via email to finalize the transaction.
How to sell/swap cryptocurrency at Bitvavo.
Selling cryptocurrencies on Bitvavo is just as easy as buying:
- Log in to your Bitvavo account.
- On the dashboard, search for the cryptocurrency you want to sell using the search bar or by scrolling.
- Click on the cryptocurrency you want to sell to load the details page
- On the details page, click on the “Sell” tab and enter the amount you want to sell
- Review the sale details and click the “Sell” button to finalize the sale
- The funds will be deposited in your verified bank account
Want to swap one crypto for another? Here’s what you need to do:
- On your dashboard, search for the cryptocurrency you want to own
- In the “Buy” tab on the cryptocurrency’s details page, click on the euro sign and change the currency in the “You pay” field to the cryptocurrency you want to swap out
- Input the amount of crypto you want to swap out
- Review the quantity of the other cryptocurrency you will receive
- Click “Buy” and follow the prompts to finalize the swap
How to stake cryptocurrency at Bitvavo
Bitvavo provides users with two staking services:
- Off-chain staking: earn rewards on available and idle account balances
- On-chain staking: actively participate in staking activities
To enable staking here are the steps you need to follow:
- Log into your Bitvavo account
- Hover the cursor over your name in the top-right corner to activate a drop-down menu
- Click on “Preferences”
- On the preferences page, scroll down to the “Account settings” section
- Enable staking
- All eligible coins will be staked automatically
What is the Bitvavo app?
Bitvavo’s mobile application allows you to trade, transfer, and monitor your crypto portfolio on the move. However, the app only offers basic features compared to what is available on the website, so the benefits of using the app are limited.
The Bitvavo app has a rating of 4.7/5 in the Apple App Store and 4.4 in the Google Play Store. The majority of reviews for the app itself are quite positive, with most complaints centering around technical problems with upgrades.
Does Bitvavo offer many cryptocurrencies?
Bitvavo supports 177 trading pairs across 170 cryptocurrencies, from well-known coins like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and XRP to lesser-known coins such as Aragon (ANT), Perpetual (PERP), and Akropolis (AKRO).
This means that users can pick up established coins that should form part of any crypto portfolio while at the same time taking more of a gamble on lesser-known coins that might bring a larger profit, all with the safety and security that Bitvavo offers.
Pros of Bitvavo
There are many things to like about Bitvavo, including:
- Low trading fees
- Large number of trading pairs
- High verification requirements
- Licensed and regulated by Dutch Central Bank and the Dutch Finance Ministry
- Bitvavo’s wallets are insured for up to $255 million
- Multifaceted security options
- Staking on up to 17 cryptocurrencies
- Smooth and easy operations
- Good customer support options
Cons of Bitvavo
Some considerations regarding Bitvavo include:
- Operations are limited to 27 countries in Europe
- Euro is the only fiat currency accepted
- Burdensome extended identity verification process to regulatory requirements
- Limited features compared to other exchanges
- Limited functionality on app
Is Bitvavo safe?
Bitvavo has put multiple security features in place to keep its users safe, making it one of the most robust and secure exchanges in the crypto space. The most prominent security features are as follows:
- 2-factor authentication (2FA)
- Device and IP management
- Insured cold wallets (offline)
- Multi-signature for storage
- Application SSL technology
- Whitelist management
Fees at Bitvavo
Bitvavo offers its users low fees. While some of its counterparts charge as much as 1% per transaction, Bitvavo’s fees range between 0.04%-0.25%.
There are also discounts for large transactions, but for users trading between €1-€100,000, taker fees are pegged at 0.25%, while maker fees are pegged at 0.15%. You can check the total fee chart here.
Bitvavo customer support
Bitvavo offers a live chat service, as well as email support. The company is also active on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook for a full customer service offering.
Bitvavi users can also use the extensive resources in the help center to solve any issues they encounter.
Users on TrustPilot rate Bitvavo 4.2/5 and commend it for fast and professional service.
Users of the Bitvavo platform will enjoy a smooth trading experience, with purchasing, selling, and conversion all very simple to conduct, making it a breeze for first-timers who may be nervous about how to go about it.
Staking is also very easy for Bitvavo users, with the on-chain and off-chain options offering a nice bit of variety.
Bitvavo’s platform is well-designed, easy to use, functional, and, most importantly, secure. However, it is not as feature-rich as its competitors and does not cater for non-EU citizens, which may help to explain why it is in danger of falling out of the top 100 exchanges by trading volume.
Bitvavo is a good option for EU citizens who want a simple and secure way of buying and storing their cryptocurrency, but the exchange’s limited functionality and inability to work for non-EU users will continue to see it hamstrung in terms of growth.