Bitcoin Buyers Guide: How to buy bitcoin safely in Nigeria
Buying bitcoin is easy, but at what cost are you doing that right now? The price of bitcoin tends to change within minutes, even seconds. You want to choose a platform where you can easily buy and sell bitcoin at the lowest cost possible, and before the price moves against you. Also, a platform that can respond to your requests and resolve issues within minutes.
This guide clarifies the steps to buy your very first bitcoin and for experienced bitcoin buyers, there is information about new exchanges with relatively low fees, user support and an easy-to-use platform.
Choosing a place to buy bitcoin
Bitcoin is a currency as well as an asset. Like every other asset/currency, it has a marketplace where buyers and sellers meet to transact. The digital marketplace for bitcoin buyers and sellers is called cryptocurrency exchange or bitcoin exchange.
There are lots of digital marketplaces on the internet, and it’s important to know the options and alternatives available.
10 bitcoin exchanges most Nigerians use
Here’s a list of 10 online exchanges where you can buy bitcoin and sell bitcoin in Nigeria. Five of them indigenous while the other five are international but render bitcoin exchange service in Nigeria.
Guava is an exchange based in Nigeria. Its mission is to help you invest in, learn about and manage your bitcoin in a safe and secure environment. The platform is simple and easy to use for the trading and storing of cryptocurrencies. There’s a Live Chat box with real people that attend to issues and questions within minutes.
Bank deposits on Guava are free. Receiving bitcoin in your Guava wallet is also free. The exchange's commission on all trades is just 0.5%.
This exchange has been around since 2013. The web platform is user-friendly and it provides an app for Android and iOS users. Luno accepts debit and credit cards for deposits and lots of other option depending on your country.
However, you'll have to pay between 1.50% and 1.58% as deposit fees depending on the fiat deposit option you use. To receive bitcoin in your Luno wallet will cost you 0.0002 btc.
This exchange was launched in 2018. Quidax supports buying of BTC using your debit card. Bank deposit is free but up to 1.4% charge for other methods of card payments provided by the platform.
Quidax takes 1% to buy and sell bitcoin instantly and charges 0.2% for those that use the trade engine to buy and sell bitcoin.
Remitano provides escrow services for bitcoin buyers and sellers. Present in 58 countries, Remitano’s platform provides a list of available sellers with their asking price and another directory of buyers with bidding prices.
The escrow system works in a way that when you request to buy bitcoin, the seller's bitcoin will be held by Remitano and would only be released to you once the seller can confirm receipt of your payment. Remitano charges you 1% as a "Taker" on the platform. (A "Taker" places market order to immediately buy orders sitting on the books.)
This exchange is similar to Remitano, as it provides escrow services too. The difference is Paxful supports over 300 payment methods, including Amazon and iTunes gift card.
Paxful charges 1% to the seller while 5% for payment with iTunes gift card.
Another peer-to-peer exchange with an escrow system. This bitcoin exchange has a presence in over 200 countries.
LocalBitcoins implements a 1% fee for takers just like Remitano.
Located in Abeokuta, Ogun state, Nairaex is one of the oldest exchange in Nigeria. It doesn’t connect bitcoin buyers and sellers, but instead operates a broker system where it buys and sells to you at a pre-fixed exchange rate it chooses.
Located in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, NGexchange is one of the local exchanges that provides a platform where you can buy and sell bitcoin. This exchange operates the same broker model as NairaEx.
Coindirect is located in South Africa. The exchange operates the Paxful and Remitano model where it connects local bitcoin buyers and sellers, and the Guava Exchange model where bitcoin traders have the flexibility of creating market and limit orders.
CoinDirect implements a 0.4% taker fee on its exchange but charges 1% on both sides of trades on its peer-to-peer marketplace.
Bitkoin Africa is a local exchange that adopts the peer to peer model of LocalBitcoins and Remitano. It has an app available for Android and iOS users. Bitkoin Africa takes 4% for processing payments.
Which exchange should I use?
It could be overwhelming choosing an exchange with this many options.
Aside from comparing deposit and trading fees, we identified two critical things to look out for when you are choosing an exchange.
We are talking about money here, so safety should always be your priority. Do some research to find out whether the exchange you intend to use has been previously hacked or not. Check bitcoin community groups on Reddit and BitcoinTalk to see what other users have said concerning that particular exchange.
Also, ensure the exchange has a system that authenticates users before each login. That is to ensure you are the only one who can log in to use your account.
Customer service is a challenge for most exchanges. However, this is an essential factor. An exchange must be able to resolve its customers’ issues within the shortest possible time.
If you attempt to contact the customer service unit of an exchange, and the only available option is through their FAQ page, without providing phone numbers and email, then that is a red flag. It’s even preferable if they have a Live Support, you can get your requests treated immediately.
Now that you have chosen an exchange, it’s time to start using the platform. Some exchanges have guides to help you get started, but a few don’t. The process of signing up and buying bitcoin is quite similar on most exchanges.
Here is the typical process:
Create an account
Sign up would require you to fill a form and go through a simple verification process. Make sure you have a phone number and an email address that you can easily access to go through this process successfully.
Verify your identity
To prevent identity theft or fraud, you’ll need to verify your phone number to make sure it’s you. Though, some exchanges require other documents like international passport or national identity card.
You can pay with a credit card, debit card or do a bank transfer from all banks in Nigeria.
You don’t have to buy a whole bitcoin - 1 bitcoin is divided into 100,000,000 Satoshi. You can buy as low as 1,000 Naira worth of bitcoin.
What can you do with your bitcoin?
A lot of people hold bitcoin because they believe in the fundamentals of the technology and that the price would rise significantly in the future. Indeed, since 2009, the price of bitcoin has increased by more than 3,000 per cent.
You can read this complete guide on investing in bitcoin to help you understand the value of the Bitcoin network.
Trading bitcoin is buying and selling bitcoin with the motive of making a profit in the short term. In this case, you monitor the upward and downward movement of price rather than just the fundamentals of the asset. There are many methods traders use to earn money in the market; we explained two common techniques traders use in this post.
You can convert bitcoin to ethereum, ripple, litecoin and other cryptoassets to diversify your risk.
You can send bitcoin to anyone in the world instantly without going through Western Union or banks.
Use your bitcoin to pay for items on the Microsoft store, buy gift cards, and more. Merchants that accept bitcoin is growing every day.
Buy bitcoin on Guava Exchange now.