Bitcoin Debit Cards Reviewed and Compared

Last updated: 15.10.18

A debit card that can be loaded with Bitcoins – It’s as simple as it sounds. Using your Bitcoin debit card you can pay with your debit card at any “normal” store while the charge is deducted from your Bitcoin balance (plus a fee of course).

Post Summary

Even though the list of merchants that accept Bitcoin is continuously expanding, it’s still not possible to buy everything with Bitcoin. However, thanks to several companies in the Bitcoin ecosystem you can now order your own Bitcoin debit card.

Wirex
Availability:
EEI
Supported coins:
BTC, ETH, XRP, LTC
Overall rating:
4.5 Star Rating
Bitpay
Availability:
US
Supported coins:
BTC only
Overall rating:
4.5 Star Rating
Cryptopay
Availability:
Russia
Supported coins:
BTC, ETH, XRP, LTC
Overall rating:
4.5 Star Rating
Shift
Availability:
46 US states
Supported coins:
BTC only
Overall rating:
4 Star Rating

Here’s what we’re going to cover in this post:

  1. What are Bitcoin debit cards?
  2. Best Bitcoin debit cards reviewed
  3. Inactive debit cards
  4. Conclusion – Which card should you choose?

1.What are Bitcoin debit cards?

Simply put, Bitcoin debit cards allow you to add funding in Bitcoin to your card’s prepaid balance. Thanks to that, you can buy almost anything with Bitcoin. While many businesses don’t accept payments in Bitcoin (yet), they do accept debit cards. With a Bitcoin debit card, merchants get paid in their own currency while you are charged in Bitcoin from your prepaid balance.

However there are downsides. First, when using a Bitcoin debit card, you’re basically giving someone else control over your coins (at least the ones you’ve deposited).

Second, this service comes with a price. Every payment you make entails both processing fees as well as conversion fees for paying with a foreign currency if you’re not using the card’s native currency.


2. Best Bitcoin debit cards reviewed

Important – On January 5, 2018 Visa suspended the activity of WaveCrest – the company providing most crypto credit cards out there. This means that Xape, Wirex, TenX, Bitwala and CryptoPay either suspended their services or work only in specific countries.

There are only 4 active companies that supply Bitcoin debit cards. Here’s an overview of all of them:

Wirex Bitcoin debit card review

Pros: Multiple coins supported, established company

cons: Available only in the EEI, relatively high maintenance fees

Overall rating: 4.5 stars

Previously known as E-coin, the company rebranded to Wirex in 2016. The company supplies a Chip & Pin visa debit card that can be loaded through your Wirex app (desktop or mobile). The card can be loaded with Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP) and Litecoin (LTC).

Card balance can be converted to USD, EUR or GBP.

The card is available to all EEI residents and will soon be available in North America and Asia as well. The card is usable anywhere Visa is accepted.

There is a  $2.5 for ATM withdrawal within Europe and $3.5 outside of it. Account management costs $1.5/month. The company also supplies a virtual card if you don’t need the actual plastic.


Bitpay Bitcoin debit card review

Pros: Well known company, no transaction fees

cons: Limited to US residents only, Bitcoin only

Overall rating: 4.5 stars

For US residents there is the option of using Bitpay’s Bitcoin debit card. The card is available in all 50 US states. You must have a home address (no PO boxes), government-issued ID, and Social Security number to apply.

The card costs a flat fee of $9.95 and takes about 7 days to arrive in the mail. There are no transaction fees for the Bitpay card. Bitpay’s card supports only Bitcoin.

If you’re using the card outside of the US you will need to pay a 3% conversion fee. If you withdraw money from your card you will pay a $2 fee ($3 outside the US). There are also additional deposit and mailing fees which can be seen here.


Cryptopay debit card review

Pros: Multiple currency support,

cons: Russia only, relatively high fees

Overall rating: 4.5 stars

Founded in October of 2013, Cryptopay is a wallet and payment platform that also issues a Bitcoin debit card. The card is currently available in Russia only (European residents can use a virtual card). You can either order a physical card with a chip & pin, or a virtual debit card if you’re just into online shopping.

The card supports BTC, ETH, LTC and XRP.

The physical card costs $15 and is shipped for free worldwide. ATM withdrawal costs $2.5 and international currency change adds another 3% on each transaction. The card has a monthly maintenance fee of $1 and a 1% commission for loading money. Non-verified you can load up to €1000 in your card.


Shift Bitcoin debit card review

Pros: Easily connects to your Coinbase account, no maintenance fee

cons: BTC only, high ordering fee

Overall rating: 4 Stars

Shift position themselves as “the first US Bitcoin debit card”.  The company supplies a debit card that is connected to your Coinbase account. The card is available in 46 out of 50 US states at the moment.

The card costs $20 to produce and has no maintenance fees. There is a 3% international transaction fee and $2.5 flat ATM withdrawal fee ($3.5 for international withdrawals).

The Shift debit card is accepted at any Visa supported payment terminal.


3. The following debit cards are currently inactive:

  • XAPO debit card
  • SpectroCoin debit card
  • CoinsBank debit card
  • ANXPro debit card
  • TenX debit card

4. Conclusion – Which card should you choose?

With the ongoing shortage of payment processors there aren’t a lot of options to choose from like there were in the past. US residents can choose from Bitpay and Shift, while European residents should go with Wirex. In the end, most of these cards work more or less the same.

On a personal note, using a Bitcoin or crypto debit card is a great way to start realizing your crypto gains on a day to day basis. Hopefully, a suitable solution will be found and the previous companies will resume their services.

Have you had any experience with a Bitcoin debit card? If so, I’d love to hear about it in the comment section below.

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CuntZilla
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CuntZilla

TenX is a scam. Their CEO Julian Hosp has previously been involved in the MLM Lyoness Pyramid scheme. They’ve promised that cards will be send out soon since January 2018. They also scammed people into buying their PAY shitcoin, by promising rewards, and after the got $80 million they now say that they are not allowed to pay rewards.

joey
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joey

Its so sad that people outside the eea or eu can’t get these crypto debit cards. i live in south america and i’ve been wanting a debit card from wirex or Revelut. but non of them are working with countries outside the eea or eu. its so frustrating. and i would really like to have a card and app like that. N26 has a amazing metal card too just like Revolut. but i can’t have that too. its so sad.

Dan Roberts
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Dan Roberts

The Shift card converts BTC from your Coinbase wallet. You don’t need to convert your BTC to USD ahead of time in order to preload your card, simply keep a spending balance of BTC on Coinbase and it will automatically be exchanged at the time of the transaction. It is the most elegant payment solution to use when sellers do not accept BTC directly.

Peter
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Peter

Shift card now has a $20 card issuance fee

Eric Cee
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Eric Cee

I hate it when a lot of tech companies don’t even have their shit together which countries are which. I live on Bonaire Dutch Caribbean which was part of the Netherlands Antilles but since 10.10.2010 it has dissolved into Curacao, and St. Maarten, like Aruba as a single entity within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and then Bonaire, Saba and St. Eustatius [BES Islands] as a special municipality directly under the kingdom of the Netherlands. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caribbean_Netherlands I even had to fight Google to be recognized… especially when it involves our prefix phone number. How hard is it to check…? If… Read more »

Kevin Newman
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Kevin Newman

Wirex accounts and physical cards now available throughout UK & EU. Coming soon to Singapore and rest Asia (ex-Japan) very soon.

Weiwu Zhang
Guest
Weiwu Zhang

None of the cards you listed work outside of U.S. Wirex Registered account. No place to order the card. The help document says that it is in the dashboard – well, it isn’t. For location I chose Singapore, so maybe it’s only available in the US. By the way the website wrecked in Safari. OK in Chrome. Bitpay Clearly stated that they only do card in U.S. and the interface is less buggy. XAPO I have been their user for years. They previously said that no card is available for Australian residents, now removed the card option (after I chose… Read more »

sergio anibal pindo
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sergio anibal pindo

Epayments funciona muy bien en america latina… no tiene cobros excesivos de fee …

Jim Hemthorpe
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Jim Hemthorpe

DS Exchange have a Euro BTC card.
working fine for me.

patricia
Guest
patricia

I have had shift card for a while and it works fine. I don’t keep all my bitcoins at coinbase just what I want to spend. I really wish they would let up be able to choose litecoin or ether though. bitcoin is a bit volatile at the moment.