A Short Guide on Bitcoin ATMs
- Bitcoin ATMs give us an opportunity to buy and sell Bitcoin for some cash.
- There are over 11700 Bitcoin ATM machines worldwide. 80% of them are located in the USA, 8% in Canada, and 10% in Europe.
- Bitcoin ATMs have certain perks: they allow you to work with crypto offline. Use them if you don’t have access to your bank account or simply don’t want to deal with banks. Also, a Bitcoin ATM is an easy start for crypto newcomers.
- However, these Bitcoin machines have a number of privacy and security issues as well as pretty high average fees (10%).
Since the beginning of 2020, the number of Bitcoin ATMs has doubled; 30 new Bitcoin ATM machines get installed every day. Okay, what makes them so popular? How do you buy Bitcoin with an ATM? How to find a Bitcoin ATM? You probably have a ton of questions making you feel like exploding!
How to Use a Bitcoin ATM?
Using a Bitcoin ATM is quite easy. First, click here to find a suitable Bitcoin ATM (if the search bar is temporarily unavailable, scroll down to find the map). Make sure your machine supports the operation you need — while all ATMs allow their users to buy Bitcoin, only 25% of them can help you with selling BTC.
After finding an ATM in your area, choose the operation of your interest and the currency (the most popular options are Ethereum, LTC, and some other cryptos). After that, provide your wallet address: you can do this with the help of a QR code retrieved from your app.
Don’t worry if you don’t have a wallet! ATMs can generate a paper wallet with 2 QR codes (one for the public key and the other for the private one). Still, it’s better to have your own pre-registered address to ensure full safety of your funds.
The final step is about inserting your money into the crypto ATM: you can use cash or a debit card. In most cases, it takes just a few minutes to convert the currencies.
The Reasons Behind Bitcoin ATMs’ Popularity
There are two sides to this question. Firstly, ATMs provide the traders with an opportunity to work with Bitcoin without having to use any online crypto service. Secondly, anyone can buy a Bitcoin ATM (for example, a Libertyx Bitcoin ATM) as an investment and get their own profit — according to statistics, the purchase will pay itself off in just 6-8 months. Moreover, the weekly income of a Bitcoin ATM business can grow up to $12k-20k per month!
Pros and Cons
Perks of Using a Bitcoin ATM
- With Bitcoin ATMs, you can live almost entirely on crypto. If you are a genuine crypto nomad or just don’t trust banks, these machines will help you to survive in this world.
- There’s now an offline way to deal with crypto. If your internet connection is unstable but you need to buy or sell some Bitcoin, ATMs are just for you.
- ATMs are helpful for those who have lost access to their bank accounts. Don’t waste time — you may still feel free to buy or sell some BTC.
- You’re not restricted to Bitcoin. Over a half of all ATMs support operations with Ethereum and Litecoin; Bitcoin Cash, Dash, Tether, and some other cryptos are also quite popular.
- U is for Usability. When using Bitcoin ATMs, you can just scan a QR code and avoid typing the address manually. If you don’t have a crypto wallet, an ATM can just create one for you!
- Wanna contribute to Bitcoin adoption? Bitcoin ATMs are definitely a step forward towards the world considering crypto an international currency.
Drawbacks of Using Bitcoin Machines
- High fees. Average Bitcoin ATM fees are about 10%, with two most common fees being 7% and… 25%. This is far beyond any online service would charge you.
- Privacy risks. ATMs usually ask for your cell phone number. However, some of them may ask you to scan your ID and… upload a selfie! For most crypto enthusiasts, it’s beyond where they’re ready to go.
- Security risks. According to the official paper wallet setup instructions, it’s better to switch off the internet while generating your keys to let no hackers get access to them. Obviously, a crypto ATM cannot guarantee that. Therefore, don’t forget to move all your purchased BTC to a different address as soon as you bought them.
- Scam risks. Whenever anyone asks you to send them some money via a cryptocurrency ATM — be careful! Here’s a real example: a woman received a call from some “tax authority”. The caller claimed she had an unpaid tax; she was asked to make a “verifying ATM payment” to prove she has nothing to hide. Surely, they promised to refund her after the test, but guess what!
- Low coverage. The number of ATMs is increasing pretty rapidly, but it’s still far from outgrowing that of popular bank machines. Also, almost 4 out of every 5 ATMs are based within the US.
Having a Bitcoin ATM just around the corner would undoubtedly be really great for almost all of us. Still, if you work with cryptocurrency pretty often, it’s better to use online services. They are also easy in use but far more secure. Most significantly, they offer many more crypto options than any ATM — just check ChangeNOW’s fiat-to-crypto exchange tool to see it for yourself!