If you have stumbled across this page searching for a good crypto exchange, you can’t really go wrong with Bitstamp. As one of the oldest and most respected cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, this platform is rock solid and has become a cornerstone for the crypto industry. We will be unpacking everything it has to offer crypto traders in this Bitstamp review.
Bitstamp TL; DR
Bitstamp is one of the best options for beginners, institutions, or pros looking to buy, trade, and sell crypto. Its strength is in its simplicity and mastering the process of creating a reliable platform for those interested in only buying, selling, and trading the major cryptocurrencies, and who are not interested in other features or complex trading instruments.
Bitstamp key features at a glance:
- Buy, sell, and trade 75+ pairs
- Regulated exchange
- Purchase crypto with card or bank transfer, great fiat on and off-ramp
- Strong security
- Two types of insurance protection for customer funds
If you are on a search to find the perfect crypto exchange, be sure to check out our article where we break down and compare the Top Crypto Exchanges.
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|Regulation:||Europe- Luxembourg Financial Regulator: The Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF)
Italy- Registered as a Virtual Asset Service Provider
United States- Virtual Currency License/BitLicense: New York Department of Financial Services
|Spot Cryptocurrencies Listed:||75+|
|Maker/Taker Fees:||Lowest: 0.0%
|Fiat Currency Support:||USD, EUR, GBP|
|Deposit/Withdraw Methods:||Buy Crypto: Debit/Credit card
Deposit: Debit/Credit card, bank transfer
Withdraw: Bank Transfer
Review: What is Bitstamp
On the first day, many moons ago, a wise person once said, “let there be Bitcoin,” and thus, Bitcoin was born and rose from the ashes of the 2008 financial crisis.
On the second day, Laszlo Hanyecz made the first ever recorded purchase with Bitcoin, starting the widely celebrated and cherished Bitcoin Pizza Day.
On the third day, two wise men Damian Merlak and Nejc Kodrič said “let there be a crypto exchange in Europe,” and it was done, Bitstamp was born.
Okay, so it didn’t quite happen that way. The picture that I am trying to paint here, poetic dramatics aside, is that Bitstamp is old. Not in a bad way, more like a nice, aged cheddar or an old wise wizard.
Founded in 2011, it was the first crypto exchange in Europe and is nearly as old as Bitcoin itself. Bitstamp is a serious “OG” veteran in the crypto space and is held in high respect by both old school and new crypto traders alike.
Bitstamp was created as an alternative to the once-dominant exchange Mt. Gox, which, as you may or may not know, has a tragic history that gave crypto one of its deepest shades of black eye in history. After the collapse of the troubled exchange, Bitstamp went on to be one of the only remaining exchanges still standing from the early days of crypto.
After founding and running the company, eventually, both Damian and Nejc placed the company into the hands of a competent executive team that has many years of experience across various traditional financial, tech, and blockchain companies. The company is now run by some pretty prestigious members on board with decades of history, who held some high-ranking positions across various sectors. You can learn more about them on the Bitstamp About Us page.
Bitstamp is beloved by traders all over the world who, rightly so, like to place trust and confidence in platforms that have been thoroughly battle-tested and withstood the test of time, and no exchange holds this title as well as Bitstamp. In a sea of crypto companies that come and go, starting and failing faster than the coyote devises new plans to catch that pesky road runner, Bitstamp is often considered a safe haven exchange by users looking for the safest place to trade.
Traders not only trust and depend on Bitstamp thanks to their track record and “staying-power,” but also because they are fully licensed and regulated in the EU and US, they operate legally in every country in which they are supported, which is nearly everywhere. The platform also undergoes regular audits by some of the largest accounting firms in the world.
Bitstamp is a Luxembourg-based crypto exchange suitable for global traders, including those based in the US. The platform offers over 75 tradable assets and is currently ranked as the 13th largest exchange in the world by trading volume according to CoinMarketCap.
The platform has over 5 million users globally, including both retail and institutional, and is great for beginners as they offer a no-frills, no bs, no “glitter and glam” place to simply buy and trade crypto.
Now that we know a bit about the exchange, let’s dive into the key features.
Bitstamp Exchange Key Features
As a cornerstone of the crypto industry, Bitstamp has a lot to offer both institutional and retail traders. So, what does Bitstamp offer that has allowed them to thrive for so long in this industry?
Bitstamp Spot Trading
Bitstamp has become one of the preferred places for whales and minnows alike to trade fiat for crypto, and crypto to crypto.
Trading on Bitstamp is easy, the intuitive interface, instant deposit options, and cash-out-to-bank account support makes the platform ideal for meeting the needs of traders with simple needs.
I say simple because Bitstamp does not offer the advanced features and comprehensive trading products like derivatives, leveraged tokens, and other tradeable markets and assets that are supported by exchanges like OKX and Binance. Bitstamp really is a no-frills exchange that takes things back to basics.
Aside from the platform basics, the actual trading interface does offer some advanced trading tools and a professional-grade trading engine that ensures reliable order execution and constant uptime. The platform also supports high-performance synchronization with FIX and HTTP APIs, and connection to WebSocket, making Bitstamp a good exchange for those looking to deploy algorithmic strategies, bots, and who need real-time data streaming.
As with most of the major exchanges, the charting screen itself is powered by the massively popular and powerful TradingView. This ensures that the Bitstamp interface is suitable for all levels of traders, including the most hardcore technical analysis traders. TradingView has become the industry gold standard for charting platforms, and supports nearly every function and feature under the sun.
If you are interested in learning how to trade, be sure to check out our article on How to Perform Technical Analysis, or if you prefer video format, Guy has put together a great three-part series where he teaches the craft. I will link part one below:
Bitstamp’s matching engine is provided by Nasdaq, which was built to deliver optimal trading experiences for some of the largest financial firms in the world. The engine is reliable in all market conditions and provides near instant execution, which is why it has become a favourite for institutions and professional traders.
Bitstamp offers several different types of orders for traders to use such as:
- Instant order– determine your buying/selling price in fiat.
- Market order– determine your buying/selling price in crypto.
- Limit order– determine both the price and the amount.
- Stop order-determine the exit or entry point.
- Trailing stop order– create a movable exit or entry point.
- Fill-or-Kill Order– a limit buy or sell order that has to be filled entirely, or is cancelled.
At the moment, Bitstamp does not offer margin trading or derivatives, spot markets are the only option.
Like most popular crypto exchanges, Bitstamp has a place for users to earn income on their hodl stash.
The choice of assets here is interesting, only Ethereum 2.0 staking and Algorand are supported, though the platform says more assets coming soon. It is very odd to see Algorand as the only alternative layer-1 asset available for earn, and not any other proof-of-stake assets. 🤔
This may have something to do with the fact that Algorand staking rewards used to be paid out automatically, so maybe this was simply the easiest asset to offer staking on.
Algorand was created by an MIT professor and has heavy ties to the United States. There are rumours of Algorand being a significant consideration for a future US-based CBDC. This is purely speculation and rumours, but you can learn more about this seriously impressive network in our Algorand review.
Anyway, back to Bitstamp. The Bitstamp Earn section is very underdeveloped compared to most exchanges and makes me wonder how they have dropped the ball so bad here. As they have been around for so long, they have had plenty of time to develop this feature, you would think that they would have realized the importance of an Earn platform, as this is one of the major attractions that many users look for in an exchange.
Though I can’t be too hard on them here as this all likely has something to do with the fact that Bitstamp plays friendly with US regulators. US-based and licensed exchanges can’t legally offer many earn products as the SEC likes to “protect” people from achieving financial freedom, and have been being heavily criticized recently and accused of really only protecting the banks.
I don’t know who said this first, I would like to give them credit as it is hilarious, but one of the funniest things I’ve read all year about the SEC’s “protection” was when someone said, “oh, protect me harder, Gary.” 😆
Bitstamp Institutional Solutions
Bitstamp has become an exchange of choice for brokers, banks, fintech companies, hedge funds, prop traders, family offices, aggregators and more, thanks to their institutional offerings and deep liquidity.
Firms can offer their own crypto solutions on their platforms with Bitstamp running the back-end infrastructure. Many fintech companies are integrating crypto into their platforms via Bitstamp integration, and banks are partnering with Bitstamp to provide their clients with crypto services as well.
Here is a look at some of what Bitstamp has to offer various professional and institutional traders:
Firms can rely on Bitstamp to provide enterprise-level access to crypto markets, provide deep liquidity, reliable order execution, FIX, HTTP, and Websocket APIs, all with military-grade storage and security solutions which we will cover later in this article.
Bitstamp provides its clients with transparency and customer protection thanks to its strong operation of fiduciary, security and compliance controls, which has helped the platform establish licenses in the US and EU.
For companies who want to offer crypto to their customers, but have no idea where to start, Bitstamp has got you covered.
This service allows institutions to offer the option to their clients to buy and sell crypto, without them needing to sign up for an exchange or know the ins and outs of crypto trading.
The benefits here are two-fold, enabling companies to open new revenue streams, while growing their market share, all without high overheads.
Crypto-as-a-Service (CaaS) provides companies access to the full functionality of the Bitstamp exchange, but on their own existing apps and platforms. The benefits and offers here are:
- Reliable order matching and execution from a professional grade trading engine powered by Nasdaq technology.
- Advanced digital asset custody and insurance.
- Transaction monitoring and strong cybersecurity.
- 24/7 technical support and dedicated account managers.
- Leading banking and payment services.
Bitstamp Crypto Pulse
As one of the first cryptocurrency exchanges, Bitstamp knows better than anyone the ins and outs of the industry and has their finger on the crypto pulse. Many crypto users, including myself, who may not even use Bitstamp, rely heavily on their Global Crypto Survey for their crypto knowledge and investment decisions. Bitstamp’s Crypto Pulse Survey is the most comprehensive survey on crypto in the world.
The Bitstamp Crypto Pulse report covers why and how retail and institutional market participants are investing, what their concerns are, and many of the trends happening in crypto. The semi-annual survey provides information on investor sentiment from across 23 markets and covers views from 5,500 senior decision makers within institutions and 23,000 retail consumer investors.
The report provides excellent insights and graphics like these which can be found on their site:
And best of all, the report is free! Even if you have no interest in Bitstamp, I recommend signing up for the report, it really is one of the most comprehensive crypto reports available.
Bitstamp hosts regular CS:GO events where teams and players can compete and win prizes.
Events run every Wednesday at 8 pm CET. Players need to be at least 18 years old and be part of a team of at least 5 players.
Players do not need a Bitstamp account to play, but if they win trading fee coupons, they will need to have a Bitstamp account to use them. This is quite a clever way to entice users into signing up for Bitstamp, I must say. Well played.
As this just kicked off in December 2021, it looks like the start of Bitstamp’s foray into gaming. CS:GO is the only game available at the moment, but they are working on adding new gaming tournaments and functions here.
Bitstamp has partnered with Guild Esports PLC organization and the US-based professional Esports organization Immortals as part of their expansion in the gaming space. While this platform doesn’t look completely rolled out or fully functional yet, I expect to see Bitstamp make their push in a big way into Esports and gaming.
Bitstamp Mobile App
Bitstamp has developed a powerful mobile app for IOS and Android for those who like to take their trading on the go.
The app is highly intuitive and user-friendly, it has the same functionality as the web platform, and the layout and design are straightforward and functional.
There is nothing Earth-shattering or ground-breaking here. Just like the Bitstamp exchange itself, the app is just a very easy, dependable, simple place to buy, sell, and trade crypto. Most importantly, it just works, and it works well.
I found the app delivered exactly what it promises, a powerful trading exchange and seamless mobile experience. Looking at the reviews, it appears most users agree with my findings with an average rating of 4.0/5-star review on Google Play, and an impressive 4.8/5-star review on the App Store.
The number one issue causing the negative reviews on Google were issues with users not being able to pass 2FA and getting stuck on the verification phase. I reached out to their support team about this, and they informed me this was a known issue a while ago, and it has since been resolved.
Even though the app is quite good and has great ratings, most traders, myself included, would not recommend using a mobile app as your primary trading tool. There is a reason professional traders work from a desk with multiple screens, and why you don’t see them trading while waiting in line at the grocery store from their phones. I go into further detail on why this isn’t recommended in my Coinbase Review for you to check out before you try and become a pro trader simply from a mobile app.
Bitstamp charges trading fees dependent on the 30-day trading volume of the trader. The highest fees are for traders who trade under 10k in a rolling 30-day period who will find fees of 0.5%, while institutions and whales who trade over 20 billion will have no fees.
Here is the tiered fee pricing for spot trading:
The trading fees on Bitstamp are on the high end of the scale, quite a bit higher than the fees found on exchanges like Binance, KuCoin, OKX and others, but it is a price that many are willing to pay to use such a reputable and safe exchange.
Bitstamp also charges a pretty hefty 15% fee for staking, which is pretty high. There is some reprieve from the high fees found in the fairly low fees required to deposit and withdraw funds, which is good to see.
Users can expect to encounter the following fees for bank transfers and purchases:
- Sepa– Deposits=free, withdrawal= 3 EUR
- ACH– Deposits=free, withdrawal=free
- Faster Payments-Deposit=free, withdrawal= 2 GBP
- Card Purchase= 5%
- International wire- Deposit= 0.05%, withdrawal= 0.1%
As far as depositing and withdrawing crypto, deposits are free, and withdrawals vary greatly depending on the asset and network. These fees can be found on the Bitstamp Fees Page.
Bitstamp KYC and Account Verification
When signing up for an exchange, be sure to use the same name that is reflected on your bank account as any bank transfers must come from an account under the same name, and use a real email address as you will need to verify it.
To sign up for a Bitstamp account, you will need to follow these steps:
- Register your account on the Bitstamp website, and complete the account registration form.
- Once your account has been created, choose “Personal account verification“.
- Then proceed with filling out the verification form and uploading the requested documents.
The documents will need to be a government-issued ID such as a driver’s license or passport and proof of residency.
Users will receive an email letting them know if their account has been verified which can take 24-48 hours.
Security is one area where Bitstamp grades quite well. After an unfortunate hack way back in 2015, which saw the loss of $5 million, the platform has upped its game and now has a rock-solid, secure platform. And in full transparency, the 2015 hack wasn’t even a cause of weak platform security, a Bitstamp employee simply fell for a malicious link that was sent in an email.
Bitstamp uses institutional grade custody solutions from custodian BitGo, and places 98% of user assets in a cold storage environment, away from the hands of hackers. BitGo also provides insurance for Bitstamp customers in the unfortunate case of a successful hack.
All customer data is encrypted, and transaction whitelisting is used for transactions. Bitstamp utilizes advanced security technology and has implemented Multi-Sig technology into their hot wallets.
Bitstamp boasts the following security accolades:
- Regulated by CSSF since 2016
- Regular audits by major accounting firms
- Cold wallet insurance provided by BitGo
- Crime insurance provided by Paragon International Insurance Brokers
- SOC2 Type 2 security certification
- ISO/IEC 27001 security certification
From the customer side, users can enable the following settings to keep their accounts safe:
- Strong password requirement
- E-mail confirmations
- Whitelisting addresses
Exchange hacks have become an unfortunate common occurrence in recent years. The fact that Bitstamp hasn’t been hacked since 2015, and it wasn’t even an official “hack,” is a big sign of confidence in my books.
Cryptocurrencies Available on Bitstamp
There are currently 75 assets available on Bitstamp. The majors such as Bitcoin and Ethereum are supported, along with many other popular layer 1’s like Cardano and Avalanche, and of course, stablecoins such as USDT, USDC and more.
You can find a full list of supported assets on the Bitstamp Supported Assets page.
Bitstamp Exchange Platform Design and Usability
Bitstamp offers a highly usable platform for crypto trading. The interface is intuitive and user/beginner friendly. I mentioned earlier in this review that Bitstamp is a no-frills, no bs exchange, resulting in the platform being incredibly simple and easy to use, and one that executes on its offerings flawlessly.
Unlike exchanges such as KuCoin and Binance, which offer nearly every feature and product you can think of, Bitstamp simply focuses on trading, making the platform so clean and easy to use, I almost feel like I could navigate it with my eyes closed.
Even though the platform is beginner-friendly, the fact that the trading interface is powered by TradingView means it is also suitable for advanced and experienced traders, as well as fits the needs of the professional and institutional clients that Bitstamp attracts.
Aside from the charting block itself, the trading interface is not customizable like some platforms. I like that there are advanced charting features, a live updated order book, depth chart, and trading forms, all seen on the same screen.
Another notable exclusion that may be a deal breaker for some is that there is no toggle between light or dark mode aside from the chart block, so traders are stuck in the dark on Bitstamp.
There is really nothing negative that can be said about the design and usability, Bitstamp delivers exactly what it advertises and offers.
Deposits and Withdrawals at Bitstamp
I generally only use cryptocurrency exchanges that natively support bank transfers and withdrawals, as Bitstamp does. Many exchanges only support crypto deposits and withdrawals, or deposits and purchases via third-party vendors. This results in extra steps as you need a secondary exchange as a fiat on and offramp, and those third-party vendors can come with hefty fees. Bitstamp doesn’t play that game and offers all the fiat on and off-ramp services directly, so they get a big thumbs up from me in that regard 👍
Of course, Bitstamp supports crypto deposits and withdrawals, but also supports incoming and outgoing bank transfers via SEPA, ACH, and Faster Payments, along with credit/debit card purchases, and customers can even link their bank account to their Bitstamp account, making the whole process smooth and simple.
Crypto deposits and withdrawals will be familiar to anyone who has ever done a crypto transaction before. To perform these actions, users will need to select the deposit/withdrawal option on the top right-hand side of the screen and from there they will see all the instructions and information they need for fiat and crypto deposits and withdrawals as shown below:
Bitstamp Customer Support
Time for the all-important dive into customer support. Many traders consider good support to be of minor importance, which is a big mistake in my opinion. The worst time to find out that an exchange has 💩 support is once something is going wrong when you have an open trade going with live funds on the line.
Good support can be the difference between losing a little or losing your entire account. Trust me, as I’ve personally experienced how access to quick support once saved my trading account when things started glitching and I had an open trade and had not had a chance to set a stop loss yet. Had I not been able to receive support within minutes I could have lost the entire account. Not all heroes wear capes, sometimes they are sat on the other end of a customer support phone line.
So, how does Bitstamp support measure up?
Pretty good, I am happy to say. When writing these reviews, I like to thoroughly test out the support team by contacting them multiple times over the span of a few days. I act like that annoying customer and reach out early morning, afternoon, and late at night with a series of “problems,” and questions to test the wait times and quality of support.
I am a bit torn on how to rate them in this category as Bitstamp offers phone support, which is amazing! You can actually phone them up and speak to a real human, and not just any human, a team that actually knows about crypto and understands the platform. That is rare these days. They can also be contacted via email, which is standard, but where I am torn is that they don’t offer chat support which is a bummer. Bonus points for phone support, minus points for no chat support.
Anyway, every time I called Bitstamp support I was very impressed that I was patched through to a live agent in under 2 minutes, which is very quick! Each agent I spoke to was not only friendly, but actually seemed quite knowledgeable about the platform and trading products in general. Email support also impressed me, as I received responses often in under an hour, so great job Bitstamp support team 🥳
If live support isn’t your thing, Bitstamp also has a handy self-help FAQ section which should be able to handle many of your questions. The FAQ section could be better, to be honest, more step-by-step guides and images would be helpful for new users.
I do like to highlight anytime a platform goes out of its way to provide fantastic crypto education. As crypto educators here at the Coin Bureau, we believe the key to mass adoption and safe crypto use is through education, and it is nice to see platforms that share our sentiment and support the broader crypto community.
Bitstamp has a fantastic blog that is a great resource that teaches general crypto knowledge, market insights, and helps anyone looking to brush up on their crypto knowledge. Thanks, Bitstamp, for spreading the word on crypto and fighting the good fight. Here is a look at the blog:
Despite no live chat support and the self-help section needing an overhaul, overall, I was quite impressed with Bitstamp support.
Bitstamp Top Benefits Reviewed
Bitstamp is a great, simple, and secure place to buy and sell cryptocurrencies for both institutions and retail customers. The simple layout and easy-to-use trading interface are great for those new to crypto or someone who enjoys simplicity and doesn’t want all the extra features that clutter many other crypto exchanges.
What can be Improved
Some may disagree and consider simplicity a strength, but I like to see more features in my crypto exchanges of choice. While Bitstamp is great for simple buying and selling crypto, there are no futures trading options, no margin trading options, no leveraged tokens, the Earn platform is very bare, there is no launchpad, and the token selection is very limited.
Adding these features to the platform could entice more customers and make the platform more usable for more than just buying and selling crypto.
The fees on Bitstamp are also quite a bit higher than those found on many other exchanges, so there is some room for improvement there.
Bitstamp Review Conclusion
Bitstamp’s greatest strength is its security and simplicity when it comes to buying and selling crypto. As the first crypto exchange in Europe, and one of the oldest exchanges around, it has truly become one of the most trusted and reputable exchanges in the world.
I don’t know if this was intended by design, or why the platform has done very little to expand its offerings, but instead of being a “Jack of all trades, master of none” and offering a plethora of products like Binance, KuCoin and OKX, Bitstamp has taken the opposite position and stuck with being the master of one, and that is simply offering the buying and trading of crypto.
Many exchanges have gone with a strategy of choosing a specific niche and perfecting it. For example, I don’t consider Gate.io the best exchange overall, but if you’re interested in copy trading, Gate.io does it the best. Interested in crypto wealth management? SwissBorg is the best there, derivatives traders will likely choose Bybit, and those who want to earn will probably opt for Binance. Similarly, it is tough to beat Bitstamp for those who are only into buying, selling, and spot trading the major cryptocurrencies, they offer that flawlessly.
To sum up, Bitstamp is simply a powerful, reliable, safe, and easy-to-use exchange. I would not hesitate to recommend Bitstamp to anyone who is looking for simplicity in an exchange.
Is Bitstamp Legit?
Yes, Bitstamp is one of the first cryptocurrency exchanges, trusted by millions of users, and regulated in both the US and Europe.
Is Bitstamp good for Beginners?
Yes, Bitstamp is one of the best exchanges for beginners as they provide a very simple user experience for simply buying, selling, and trading crypto without all the “noise.”
Can I use Bitstamp in the USA?
Yes, Bitstamp is regulated in the US and is popular among traders in the United States.
Is Bitstamp better than Binance?
As Binance is the #1 exchange in the world, Bitstamp is not better than Binance. Binance is the preferred platform by most traders due to its comprehensive, robust features and product offerings, and lower fees.
Bitstamp may be better suited for institutions and beginners not interested in comprehensive features and market offerings. You can learn more about Binance in our Binance review.
Is Bitstamp Better than Coinbase?
Both Coinbase and Bitstamp appeal to the same customer base, providing a great service for institutions and beginner traders. While this comes down to personal preference, and these two have more similarities than differences, it is of my opinion that Coinbase is the slightly better exchange.
This is simply due to the fact that Coinbase supports more assets, has some extra features such as their own non-custodial wallet integration and NFT marketplace. You can learn more about Coinbase in our Coinbase review.
Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.