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Coinbase Review | 2024

Coinbase is one of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world with unparalleled trading volume and a long-standing reputation for industry-leading security.

It’s simply one of the best ways to buy Bitcoin and numerous other cryptocurrencies. Based in the United States — San Francisco to be specific — Coinbase has been in operation since 2012 making them one of the earliest adopters and providers of various cryptocurrency-related products. It’s one of the most regulated exchanges in the world and was the first exchange to IPO in early 2021.

Over the years the company has entered into partnerships with a variety of mainstream companies such as Dell, Overstock, Time Inc, which helped solidify them as one of the most trusted organizations in the cryptocurrency community.

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Coinbase Overview

Coinbase makes buying & selling crypto simple.

Earn $200 in crypto for getting started on Coinbase. Terms apply.

Disclaimer: After you make your first cryptocurrency purchase, BTC will be added to your portfolio. Limited time offer. U.S. only (excluding Hawaii). Offer available to new users who have not previously created an account. See Terms and Conditions.

Coinbase logo new


  • Beginner-friendly UI make it easy to make quick buys
  • One of the oldest and most reliable exchanges
  • Earn $200 in free crypto after completing sign-up process. Terms apply.
  • Variety of products including exchange, staking, wallet
  • Advanced Trading options for experienced traders
Funding Methods Debit & Credit Bank, PayPal, ACH, Bank Transfer, e-Transfer
Cryptocurrencies 100+
Countries 100+


  • New users can earn free crypto through

  • User friendly design with simple buy/sell buttons with clearly indicated prices

  • Diverse and consistently updated choice of coins

  • A strong line-up of products including an exchange, wallet and staking services


  • Fees are right in the middle of industry standards

  • Some complaints about customer service

  • Significant identity verification required

Setting up a Coinbase Exchange Account

Coinbase Exchange Homepage

Step 1: Create Your Coinbase Account

The first step is to create a Coinbase account by providing basic identity information:

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Email Account
  • Creating a secure password
  • Confirming you are 18 years of age or older

Step 2: Verifying Your Email Address

Coinbase will send an email to your account and require email verification.

Step 3: Add a Phone Number

You must add a phone number immediately after validating your email address.

Providing a phone number is required for a 2-step verification. Coinbase will text a 7 digit verification code to your mobile device.

Step 4: Providing Personal Information and Selecting a Payment Method

You must then provide basic information including payment address and your name. In addition, you’ll need to prove your identity by providing a scan of one of the following:

  • Passport
  • Driver’s License
  • Photo I.D.

There’s a little bit of processing time but you should be able to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies from Coinbase as soon as you complete the aforementioned steps.

Coinbase Software

The standard Coinbase offers support for desktop and mobile, which means that Windows, MacOS, iOS and Android users all get access to the site.

Interestingly Coinbase also offers an Advanced Trading dashboard, which is designed primarily for experienced traders but also has the benefit of lower fees. The company also offers a standalone wallet, which is available for mobile users. The Coinbase mobile app is very good (over a million reviews on the App Store with a 4.7 rating) and a great place for new crypto users to get started.

Coinbase App

Is Coinbase Safe?

Yes. Coinbase is one of the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world and has a sterling reputation for security. Perhaps most importantly the exchange keeps nearly 99% of its users’ digital assets in offline cold storage.

Coinbase also requires that you validate a phone number by entering a code they send you through a text message. After validating your phone number, it is recommended you set up a more secure 2FA (two-factor authentication) method. Direct text message 2FA is not as secure as they can be hijacked by hackers while your text is in transit.

Coinbase has mandatory two-factor authentication (2FA) on your account, to ensure that your account remains secure. There are other ways to further enhance your Coinbase account security. With security, more is typically better, so you may as well take advantage of all the security features that Coinbase offers.

Upon deleting your account, Coinbase has provided you with the ability to request the information you gave to them in the first place. You can also request that Coinbase deletes the information from their servers. With privacy being a large concern in the lives of individuals, Coinbase gets brownie points for properly handling, and discarding your personal information if that’s something you would like them to do.

Coinbase was the first US crypto exchange to successfully IPO (you can find Coinbase under the COIN ticker) and it’s therefore one of the most regulated exchanges in history.

Are Coinbase Fees High?

Coinbase is one of the biggest crypto on-ramps in the world thanks to it’s easy-to-understand UI and simple sign-up process. The downside is that its fees tend to be on the high side.

Coinbase uses a “flat + percent fee” structure on all of their operations.

 Coinbase has a rather dynamic fee structure depending on the operation taken on the site, ( Buys / Sells / Trades ). They’ve implemented tiered fees depending on the type and volume of the operation. In can seem a little confusing at first but basically Coinbase charges a flat fee for any transactions below $200 while a percentage-based fee for anything over that amount. Here’s a little more on the fee structure directly from Coinbase.

Overall, Coinbase is transparent about their fee structures. It’s broken out with granular articulation which definitely increases the trust factor that we have for Coinbase. All in all, Coinbase runs a tight and exceptional service in the crypto industry—it’s not surprising why they are able to charge the fees that they do. Seasoned cryptocurrency traders may look for exchanges with lower fees but it’s hard to ignore the high amount of trust that Coinbase brings to the picture.

It should be noted that Coinbase Advanced Trade offers a more traditional fee structure with maker and taker fees for trades. The fees are much lower using this method.

Here’s how the flat fees breakdown on Coinbase (if you’re in the USA). These are simple flat fees for purchasing cryptocurrencies:

  • $10 or less = $.99
  • $10-$25 = $1.49
  • $25-$50 = $1.99
  • $50-$200 = $2.99


Our recommended exchange for buying Bitcoin

What Can You Buy on Coinbase?

Coinbase enables the purchase of many different cryptocurrencies, including all the majors such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple and Litecoin. Coinbase is not limited to just the biggest coins, however, and there are some underrated coins on the exchange such as Stellar, DAI, BAT and more. You can even purchase Apecoin on Coinbase. Here’s a look at some of the more notable coins available on Coinbase:

Coinbase Features

Coinbase offers a wealth of different products in addition to its stellar exchange.

If you’re looking to earn a yield on coins like Ethereum than you can take advantage of it’s powerful staking services. You can also borrow against your Bitcoin if you need cash.

The Advanced Trade dashboard also has all the features of the now-defunct Coinbase Pro including the ability to interact directly with the Coinbase order book and make spot and limit orders. You’ll also enjoy much lower fees compared to the normal broker model of buying crypto on Coinbase.

Coinbase also offers custodial services for high net-worth individuals and institutions if they can’t be trusted to secure their own crypto.

Finally on the opposite end of the spectrum Coinbase offers their own wallet app, which is non-custodial and lets users interact with DeFi.

Coinbase Advanced Trade dashboard

Coinbase Alternatives

Coinbase is a great crypto exchange but it’s not for everyone. If you’re curious about how it stacks up against other popular exchanges you might want to peruse our comparison articles:

Coinbase Frequently Asked Questions

You might have heard that cryptocurrency can be fairly volatile so you never know exactly how much Bitcoin is going to cost on any given day. Meanwhile Coinbase’s fee structure is in line with rest of the industry.

While most coins are technically “stored” on their blockchains, you can say that the coins you have on Coinbase are “stored” on the exchange until you transfer them to a wallet that you alone control. They own the private keys that represents true ownership.

That’s why we advise that you never keep more than you are willing to lose on an exchange—always transfer your coins to a secure wallet once you’ve made your purchase.

According to Coinbase’s insurance policy, they maintain commercial criminal insurance in an aggregate amount that is greater than the value of the digital currency they maintain in online storage. That means if someone hacks Coinbase and steals their coins, they are insured for the loss.

Coinbase makes all possible efforts to keep their digital currencies secure, but in the 21st century, nothing is completely, 100% secure from attack. To increase security, Coinbase stores 98% of customer funds offline where they are not accessible to remote attacks, they require two-factor authentication on all accounts, and all user information is encrypted.

To date, Coinbase has never been successfully hacked. While attackers have made several high-profile attempts to hack Coinbase’s security, there have been no successful breaches of Coinbase. For increased security, we still recommend that users always transfer their coins to digital wallets that they alone control instead of keeping their coins in their exchange accounts.

Coinbase is 100% legal in the United States. There are some states where Coinbase does not currently operate (Hawaii is the notable exception) but that doesn’t make it illegal. In addition Coinbase operates in 190+ countries worldwide.

Coinbase currently supports crypto buying and selling in over 100 countries, including:

  • United States
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • United Kingdom
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Finland
  • Greece
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Malta
  • Monaco
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Slovakia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland

If Coinbase does not support trading in your country at this time, you can likely still utilize many of their product offerings, including storing funds and sending & receiving funds.

Theoretically, you could invest in a cryptocurrency and its value could rise. You would make money in that case. The reality is that there is risk involved in all forms of investment and you should never risk what you can’t afford to lose.

No but you can use debit cards to buy crypto on Coinbase. You can also use Apple Pay or Google Pay.

Yes, Canadians can use Coinbase. Canadians are not restricted to only using exchanges that are Canadian. Coinbase is an American exchange, but Coinbase is a great option for Canadians looking to purchase Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Yes. Coinbase is one of the leaders in industrial-grade staking. For a small fee Coinbase will give users a yield on the following coins (updated frequently):

  • Ethereum
  • Cardano
  • Cosmos
  • Solana
  • Tezos

It was migrated into regular Coinbase through the Advanced Trade dashboard in late 2022.

It’s a win-win for users as beginners and experts alike benefit from a single Coinbase interface and account.

Arthur Crowson

About the Author

Arthur Crowson

Arthur Crowson is an award-winning writer and editor who hails from the Pacific Northwest. His career began in traditional news media but he transitioned to online media in the mid-2000s and has written extensively about the online poker boom and the rise of cryptocurrency.


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