There are a variety of different ways to get into the world of cryptocurrency. One way is to use a Bitcoin ATM for buying, selling, and exchanging Bitcoin. A Bitcoin ATM is a device that allows users to buy and sell with any local fiat currency (USD, AUD, JPY, and EURO). Unlike traditional banking ATMs which are connected to a bank, BATM is connected to an online cryptocurrency exchange or Bitcoin wallet through the internet. A bank ATM uses a debit card to withdraw, deposit, and transfer funds from one's account. On the other hand, a Bitcoin ATM uses a cash or Bitcoin wallet address to execute Blockchain transactions on the Bitcoin network. The first-ever BATM was installed in 2013 at a coffee shop in Canada. Currently, there are more than 16,000 such terminals operating all around the world. These are fairly new in the market and becoming more and more popular among traders for buying and selling Bitcoin on the go.
In this guide, I'll be discussing how to use a Bitcoin ATM in general, what are its major pros and cons, how to buy Bitcoin using BATM and cash out bitcoins to fiat through a nearby bitcoin machine.
How to use a Bitcoin ATM
Before heading over to use a Bitcoin ATM for trading cryptocurrencies, you'll need to set up a wallet to receive the purchased Bitcoin. If you're intended to turn your bitcoins into cash using a bitcoin automated teller machine (BATM), then you'll already have one. The good news is that some BATMs create an online or a bitcoin paper wallet on the go if you don't have one. After that, you'll need to locate a Bitcoin ATM and physically travel to the machine. Once a BATM is found, all you need to do is follow the simple instructions shown on the monitor screen. These ATMs offer options similar to traditional ATMs, such as generating printed receipts for buying and selling, or generating digital receipts that the user can store virtually. Now you can either buy or sell your bitcoins for cash.
The whole process can be broken down into two simple steps
- Verify your identity.
- Decide whether to buy or sell bitcoin
- Different machines have different requirements
There are two types of Bitcoin ATMs. Over 30% of total ATMs allow both operations - meaning they can dispense cash in exchange for BTC and they can also send Bitcoin for cash. On the contrary, some BTC terminals only allow users to purchase cryptocurrencies. Now let's walk through the steps required to use the Bitcoin ATM for crypto withdrawal and purchase via them.
How to buy Bitcoin with Bitcoin ATM
Bitcoin ATMs are owned and operated by companies. Each company model works differently and may require more than just a wallet address. However, the process to buy from them is similar. Here’s the general process at most Bitcoin ATMs.
- Search and choose the option 'Buy Bitcoin' on the monitor screen of Bitcoin ATM.
- Scan the QR code of your Bitcoin wallet address with the ATM scanner.
- You may require to verify your identity as per the ATM and location.
- Some machines may even require you to scan your ID card such as passport, driver’s license, etc.
- Enter your bitcoin address for the deposit of coins.
- Check wallet address shown by the terminal is the same as that displayed by your wallet app.
- The machines will ask you to deposit fiat money in.
- Enter the amount of Bitcoin you want to purchase.
- Insert your cash into the deposit slot of the ATM.
- Wait for a minute until the machine executes the transaction.
- Check your Bitcoin wallet for the transaction confirmation.
- Confirm the amount and complete your transaction.
- Take the receipt in case of any issues.
How to Cash Out Bitcoin Through Bitcoin ATM
The process of selling bitcoins for cash with Bitcoin ATM may differ from machine to machine. However, they are super easy to use and you just need to follow the instructions on the monitor screen. The reason BATM is getting popular among people who are new to the world of cryptocurrency. Note that not all ATMs allow users to buy and sell simultaneously. Therefore, it is important to locate a nearby terminal that offers both services. Sometimes, people have more than one wallet, you need to decide in advance which wallet and key you want to use to sell your Bitcoin. To sell Bitcoin, a user sends Bitcoin from their digital wallet to the QR code provided by the Bitcoin ATM. The whole process is simple and involves the following steps.
- Choose the 'Sell Bitcoin' option.
- Some machines may require you to create an account.
- Input the amount of cryptocurrency Bitcoin you want to sell.
- Now, send the Bitcoin to the address displayed on the ATM screen.
- Once the transaction is done, cash will be dispensed right away.
- Collect fiat cash.
How to send cash to someone via Bitcoin ATM
The best thing about these Bitcoin ATMs is that you can also send Bitcoin to anyone. All you need to do is sell your bitcoins and send them to the address of the person. However, if you want to send cash to someone then you will need to insert cash into the ATM. It will then convert cash to Bitcoin and send the corresponding amount in BTC to the recipient's account.
Pros of Bitcoin ATM
- The fastest way to buy and sell bitcoins.
- It is way more anonymous.
- No bank account is required.
- Convenient for newbies.
- A few even don't require any sort of KYC verification to get started.
- It saves time for creating a lengthy account on a crypto exchange.
- Privacy and security.
Cons of Bitcoin ATM
- Unlike traditional bank ATMs, the Bitcoin ATM transaction fees are high.
- On average, you'll cost around 10 to 15% of the total transaction.
- Not good for exchanging a large number of bitcoins.
- Bitcoin ATMs are not available everywhere.
- Some machines don't allow users to buy and sell operations in one go.
- Most ATMs have deposit and withdrawal limits.
How to locate a Bitcoin ATM?
According to Blockchain reports, the current number of machines stands at 16,835. To make use of this super-intuitive service, you'll need to locate one at first. The easiest way to locate a Bitcoin ATM is by using a tracking service or tool that keeps the list of all bitcoin ATMs in their database. One of the most popular services is Coin ATM Radar. It allows you to spot the nearest Bitcoin ATMs using a searching map facility similar to that of Google Maps. On top of that, they also let you know quickly the information regarding each BATM such as fees, company, deposit and withdrawal limits, etc. No matter where you are, it will show you all the closest machines to your location in a simple way. You can also search on Google Maps, Apple Maps, and Bing Maps, to find bitcoin ATMs near you.
To use the services of Coin ATM Radar, follow these simple steps.
- Head over to the Coin ATM Radar site.
- Enable your current location by clicking on “Use my current location”.
- Select a “Bitcoin ATM” near your location to view details.
- Type in your address and click “enter.”
- Click “Get Directions” on Google maps.
Bitcoin ATMs are an easy way to exchange bitcoin with cash and vice versa. They become very handy for people who don't have a bank account or are new in the Blockchain industry. It refrains you from undergoing a cumbersome verification process and saves your time. However, you may want to consider the transaction fees as different machines charge differently. If you have any experience using a Bitcoin ATM, do share with me in the comments section.
Where is the cheapest bitcoin ATM near me?
The number of fees varies from machine to machine and is subject to many things like your location and regulations etc. If you live in an area where there are many Bitcoin ATMs, then you'll cost fewer transaction charges.
How Much Cash Can I Deposit at a Bitcoin ATM?
It depends on the operator as well as the location of your country. Some machines do have deposit and withdrawal limits between $1,000-$5000.
Can I buy Bitcoin with a credit card at a Bitcoin ATM?
Sadly, you can't buy Bitcoin with credit card using a Bitcoin ATM. You'll have to deposit cash into the machine to buy Bitcoin.
How long does a Bitcoin ATM transaction take?
Bitcoin ATMs are relatively faster than online exchanges because their transaction process takes a few minutes to complete. You don't need to create an account. However, when you sell Bitcoin using a BATM, the transaction needs to be confirmed on the Blockchain first. Therefore, it may be a little bit longer than purchase.
Is using a Bitcoin ATM safe?
Yes. Bitcoin ATMs work similarly to traditional bank ATMs. They're safe and secure for all kinds of transactions.