A Step-by-Step Beginner’s Guide
Buying cryptocurrency doesn’t have to be complicated!
Follow the steps below to get started investing in Monero (XMR).
Step 1: Buy Bitcoin (BTC)
Exchange your fiat currency for Bitcoin at a top exchange.
I use Coinbase because it is one of the longest running and most reputable places to buy Bitcoin. It also has a well designed and easy-to-use interface.
After signing up and ID verification, you can buy Bitcoin with major currencies (USD, EUR, GBP, etc.) via online bank transfer or with credit/debit card.
Other good places to buy Bitcoin are:
Step 2: Open an account with an exchange that trades Monero
Now that you have some Bitcoin, you need a place to trade it for XMR.
Here is a list of online exchanges where XMR can be bought and sold:
- Tux Exchange
Exchanges are listed in order of trade volume (descending).
This list is current as of January 2018.
Step 3: Get your Bitcoin address
After opening an account at one of the exchanges above, obtain your BTC wallet address.
The details for obtaining a wallet address vary from exchange to exchange, but it is usually relatively straightforward.
Make sure to get your “deposit” or “receiver” address.
It will be a long string of random characters, looking something like this:
Copy this address for the next step. (Your own unique address of course, not the address above!)
Step 4: Send Bitcoin to your new wallet address
Send Bitcoin from your Coinbase account (or any other account/wallet funded with BTC) to your receiver BTC address from the step above.
Step 5: Trade BTC for XMR
After you receive the BTC in your “secondary” exchange account (it usually takes a few minutes) you can trade it for Monero within the exchange.
The details for trading currencies vary depending on the exchange.
Generally, you will look for the XMR/BTC trading pair and buy or “place an order” to buy XMR with your BTC balance.
Your order may fill immediately or after a short while. If there is a delay, it is usually to find sufficient matching “sell” order(s) for your buy order.
Voila! Now you have some Monero 🙂
Step 6 (Optional): Store your Monero in a private wallet
Now that you’ve got some coin, you can just leave it at the exchange where you bought it. Maybe you want to hold your XMR or maybe you want to trade it for other coins.
Another option is to move your coins to a wallet.
Here is a list of wallets that hold XMR:
There may also be a coin-specific Monero wallet, which you can search for here.
In general, there are different types of wallets – hardware, desktop/software, mobile, web or paper. Some have cross-functionality but most are dedicated to single platform. Each type of wallet has different pros and cons but they all provide the benefit of having an additional place to store your digital currency.
Increased security may be advantage of storing your coins in a private wallet, since exchanges have been hacked in the past. It can also be good to have a backup location to store your XMR and will give you options for moving your coins in the future.
About this guide
This is intended as a beginner’s “101” guide that provides a fast and easy route for acquiring Monero.
There are many subtleties and best practices (such as using secure passwords, 2-factor authentication, etc.) to consider when buying digital currencies. There are plenty of sites out there that provide a wealth of information about cryptocurrency and altcoins. The point of this guide is to simplify the discussion a bit for the general goal of purchasing XMR. As always, use common sense.