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CoinMama Walkthrough Guide for Beginners: Buying BTC and ETH with USD/EUR Cards

CoinMama is used predominantly in the US and is ranked 36,176 in the US alone.

Let’s face it— the whole process of acquiring cryptocurrency can be complicated and confusing for some. One website called Coinmama appears to offer a solution by offering a simple user interface and allowing customers to buy cryptocurrency directly from them using their credit or debit cards.

How does it work? Is it safe? Is this a legitimate company? As with anything in the cryptocurrency world, some due diligence is in order. While there are a handful of reviews and user guides for Coinmama that have been published in the past, there have been some pretty significant changes to their service recently, and some of the information in those articles may be out of date.

That’s why we did some digging of our own to get all the latest information. After reading this quick guide, you will learn what Coinmama is, how to use it, as well as the pros and cons, and you’ll be able to decide if it is right for you.

What is Coinmama and How Does It Work?

Coinmama is a Slovakian website that was launched in 2013, and is owned by New Bit Ventures, Ltd, an Israel-based parent company. According to its homepage, Coinmama has served over 1 million customers since launching, and is currently available in 188 countries.

There are 2 main things that make Coinmama unique— or at least, there used to be two.

The first is that it is not an exchange in the same sense as Binance or Bittrex. You can only BUY cryptocurrency on Coinmama— you cannot sell it. You can’t trade hundreds of different coins with other uses on their website. Rather, it is simply an online cryptocurrency marketplace that allows you to purchase bitcoin, ethereum, or other cryptocurrencies directly from the company’s holdings using your credit card, debit card, or even with cash using Western Union.

Many exchanges do not (or cannot) accept credit card as a payment form, so this is certainly one unique advantage Coinmama has. As part of the purchasing process, you enter in the wallet address where you want your coins sent. This means you must have a fully functioning wallet set up before making a purchase on Coinmama.

The second thing that attracted people was their policy regarding customer privacy. Until very recently, users could purchase up to $150/ €150 without having to verify their accounts. THIS IS NO LONGER THE CASE. Coinmama now requires ALL accounts to be verified.

How much cryptocurrency you can buy depends on what level of verification your account has. There are 3 different verification tiers, each with increasing max purchase limits.

Level 1: Allows you to buy up to 7,500 USD/EUR.

Level 2: Allows you to buy up to 50,000 USD/EUR.

Level 3: Allows you to buy up to 1,000,000 USD/EUR.

However, these are total purchase limits over time. There are also daily and monthly limits of 5000 USD/EUR per day, and 20,000 USD/EUR per month, respectively. 

We’ll talk more about verification in the how-to guide below.

At the time of this writing, there are 7 different cryptocurrencies you can buy with Coinmama:

  • Bitcoin (BTC)
  • Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
  • Ethereum (ETH)
  • Ethereum Classic (ETC)
  • Litecoin (LTC)
  • Cardano (ADA)
  • Quantum (QTUM)

Ok— you now have a basic idea of what Coinmama is all about. Their goal is to make the process of acquiring cryptocurrency— which can be tedious and complicated— almost as simple as buying anything else online. Does it succeed in this regard? Let’s go through a step-by-step walkthrough for how to use this service to find out. At the end of this guide, we’ll lay out all the pros and cons so you can decide if using Coinmama is a good fit for you.

Alternatives?

You could use them directly on Changelly as well.

Otherwise, you could still use Over-the-Counter (OTC) sites like LocalBitcoins and buy them from people you trust with either Cash or PayPal.

How to Buy Cryptocurrency with Coinmama

(note: the website interface may have been updated slightly since these photos were taken, and cryptocurrency prices have probably changed as well.)

1) Go to CoinMama.com, and have a look around. 

When you visit the website, you will notice that everything is pretty straightforward. That is one thing Coinmama has going for it; it has a very user-friendly interface, which makes it a good choice for people who get frazzled dealing with the complex interfaces on exchanges.

Scroll down a bit, and you will notice they offer standard “packages” of each coin in different USD/EUR amounts. In this example, we’ll stick with BTC:

You can also buy specific amounts using the interface below. But before doing any of that, you’ll need to create your account.

2) Create your user account.

Click “Sign Up” in the upper right corner. You’ll need to enter in your email address, a password, first and last name, and your country of residence. As mentioned above, Coinmama is available to citizens of almost 200 countries. However, if you are a US citizen, things are a little more complicated.

Coinmama is only available to US customers in the following states:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Wisconsin

If you live in a different state, you will not be able to use Coinmama at this time. The company claims they are working towards making their service availabile in more states, but this is where things stand right now.

Choose the level of verification you want. Each level requires more information, but the more info you provide them, the more they will let you buy.

According to the website:

Level 1: Requires 1 valid government-issued ID. You must also provide selfie of you holding that ID, along with a written note that has today’s date and the word “Coinmama” written on it.

Acceptable IDs include:

  • A non-US international passport (double page)
  • A national ID card (both sides)
  • A driver’s license (both sides)

Level 2: In addition to the information required for Level 1, you need to submit a secondary ID. Apart from two of the above IDs, you’ll also need to upload a copy of a utility bill. You can use bank statements or credit card statements, property tax bill, or an electric, cable, gas, water bills (paper bill or internet bills are not accepted).

Level 3: In addition to all information required for levels 1 and 2, you’ll need to fill out an additional level 3 verification form, which you can get by sending an email to support[at]coinmama.com.

Why do they do all this? Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) regulations. It’s just the way of the world.

The good news however is that once you do submit your documents for verification, you will get approved VERY quickly— within a few hours. This is much faster than many other exchanges, some of which can take several days to approve new members.

You can also buy specific amounts using the interface below. But before doing any of that, you’ll need to create your account.

3) Now that your account is verified, go back to the home page and choose how much you want to buy.

Let’s say you want to buy $100 USD worth of BTC. Enter it in and click the buy button.

4) Select your payment method and make your purchase. In this example, we’ll go with Credit/Debit Card.

You’ll be asked to enter the address where you want the cryptocurrency to be delivered. Remember, Coinmama does NOT provide you with a wallet. You MUST have a wallet set up BEFORE buying with Coinmama.

RECOMMENDATION

Just Bought bitcoins on CoinMama? Can’t store them there!

Move them into a Bitcoin wallet that you control like the Ledger or the Trezor.

Make sure the wallet address is correct for the type of coin you are buying: if you are purchasing BTC, you must enter a BTC address; if you enter an LTC or ADA address by mistake, you will lose your funds.

After you enter the address, you’ll be asked to provide the credit/debit card information. Click the pay button when done.

Click “Return to Coinmama.

Under “My Orders”, you will see that your order is currently in progress. Your purchase will be delivered to the wallet address you provided shortly.

Pros and Cons of CoinMama

Pros

  • Debit and credit card purchases supported. Not an option on most exchanges.
  • Western Union support. You can literally buy BTC or ETH with cash using this option.
  • You get your coins quickly.
  • Fast user account verification.
  • Easy user interface makes it a good option for Beginners.
  • Trustworthy company
  • Good customer support:
  • Facebook page
  • Send an email
  • Submit a request

Cons

  • High fees. You pay a price for the convenience. Fees can be up to 5.5% percent.
  • Some banks will not allow debit cards to be used for buying cryptocurrency. This isn’t really Coinmama’s fault, but it is something you need to be aware of.
  • No support for wire transfers.
  • No mobile app; users can only use the Coinmama website to make purchases.
  • Only accepts MasterCard and VISA; does not accept Discover or American Express

What’s the Bottom Line?

Coinmama’s reputation in the cryptocurrency community is mixed; they are a trustworthy company. They are NOT going to steal your money or scam you. It is very easy to use, and allowing users to buy with debit/credit cards or Western Union is really cool.

However, the transaction fees are much higher than most other places, and there is the issue of functionality. You have to create your own wallet first before using Coinmama, and you can only BUY cryptocurrency, you cannot trade it for anything else or cash it out.

If you are someone looking to get into cryptocurrency for the first time, you are honestly just better off creating a Coinbase account if it as available in your country. It is just as easy to use, it gives you a wallet automatically, and it allows you to sell your holdings for fiat at any time.

If Coinbase is not an option, or you just want a simple way to quickly buy more cryptocurrency, CoinMama is a great site to use for fast, painless purchases at locked-in prices.

If you want to purchase in Any other countries: How to Buy Bitcoin In Different Countries 

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Winson Ng

I Started hearing about bitcoin only in November 2017. As a solo-preneur who has build around the Maverick Philosophy, I found bitcoin to be just the tip of the spear. I watched to see who was getting into it, some of the smartest entrepreneurs who has made their fortunes being the first movers allocated portions of their investment portfolios to Bitcoin. I studied and realized that if it worked, bitcoin was going to be the first global decentralized currency. And that has never existed before. Ever. I was Hooked!

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