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How to Buy Bitcoin in Canada

By: Ofir Beigel | Last updated: 2/21/24

In this guide, I’ll show you the best options for buying Bitcoin in Canada. I will also explore the legality and popularity of Bitcoin in Canada.

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How to Buy Bitcoin in Canada Summary

Along with Bitcoin ATMs, there are several ways to get your hands on Bitcoin in Canada. Just follow these steps:

  1. Get a Bitcoin wallet
  2. Open an account at CoinSmart
  3. Choose how much Bitcoin you want to buy
  4. Enter your Bitcoin wallet address
  5. Select your payment option

In addition to CoinSmart, here are some more options for buying Bitcoin in Canada:

Coinsmart
Availability:
Canada only
Bitbuy
Availability:
Canada only
Coinberry
Availability:
Canada only
Coinmama
Availability:
Worldwide
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That’s how to buy Bitcoin in Canada in a nutshell. If you want a more detailed explanation, keep on reading. Here’s what I’ll cover:

  1. Bitcoin legal status in Canada
  2. Bitcoin’s popularity in Canada
  3. Bitcoin communities in Canada
  4. Buy Bitcoin on Canadian exchanges
  5. Buy Bitcoin on international exchanges
  6. Bitcoin ATMs in Canada
  7. Conclusion

1. Is Bitcoin legal in Canada?

While digital currencies aren’t officially recognized as money, Bitcoin is legal in Canada. According to the Government of Canada website, tax rules do apply to digital currency transactions, and cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin are taxed as either a capital gain or business income.

Canadian residents are, therefore, free to buy, sell, and trade Bitcoin, which is regulated under Canada’s anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing laws.


2. How popular is Bitcoin in Canada?

The Google Trends graph below displays interest in Bitcoin in Canada. The linked graph is live data, updated directly from Google. Using the search term ‘bitcoin,’ the graph represents the search interest of users through Google. A mark of 100 indicates peak popularity, while a score of 50 means half as popular.

Bitcoin popularity in Canada on Google Trends graph


3. What are the main Canadian Bitcoin communities?

As so many Canadians are involved in Bitcoin, there are plenty of Canadian Bitcoin communities to be found. The main community can be found on Reddit. There are also some large Meetup groups in Canada as well:


4. Local Bitcoin exchanges based in Canada

There are many Bitcoin exchanges based in Canada. Among the most popular are CoinSmart, Coinsquare, and Bitbuy:

CoinSmart

CoinSmart is a Canadian cryptocurrency trading platform based in Toronto, which launched in mid-2018.

You can buy Bitcoin on CoinSmart with CAD directly using a credit or debit card for a 6.75% processing fee. As for other deposit methods, the costs for funding are 0% for wire transfers, while an Interac e-Transfer is 0% on $2,000+ or 1.5% on $100-$1,999.

Once your account is funded, trading for BTC with CAD costs a trading fee of 0.2%, and withdrawing the BTC from the exchange costs an additional 0.0005 BTC fee.

CoinSmart recently introduced an exclusive deposit bonus for 99Bitcoins readers. Get $20 in free BTC when you make your first CAD deposit of $100+.

Coinsquare

Coinsquare, founded in 2014, is a Canadian Bitcoin exchange based in Toronto. Apart from Bitcoin, it features a handful of other cryptocurrencies available for trading, including Ethereum, XRP, Solana, Dogecoin, and Litecoin.

Coinsquare allows users to fund their accounts for free (0% fee) using Interac e-Transfer or wire transfer.

Withdrawal options are direct bank deposits, charged at 1.5% with a $20 minimum, wire transfers, charged at 1.5% with a $10,000 minimum, or an Interac e-Transfer for a 0% fee and $20 minimum.

Bitbuy

Bitbuy’s overall mission is to simplify the trade of digital assets for all Canadians. It is a convenient Canadian cryptocurrency exchange offering over-the-counter (OTC), brokerage, and advanced trading options.

Fees are extremely reasonable compared to the competition, and customer support seems to be doing a very good job. Overall, it is a solid choice if you live in Canada. You can read my complete Bitbuy review here.

Coinberry

Note: All Coinberry accounts have been transferred to Bitbuy. The platforms are owned/operated by the same Canadian company, WonderFi.

Coinberry, founded in 2017, is a FINTRAC-registered platform for buying and selling Bitcoins in Canada.

As a side note, Coinberry’s partnership with the Town of Innisfil resulted in the first payment of property taxes with Bitcoin in Canadian History.

Shakepay

Shakepay is a Montreal-based company that allows you to buy and sell Bitcoins free of any deposit or withdrawal fees. Being entirely commission-free, Shakepay makes money by applying a small difference between the price at which customers can buy crypto and the price at which they can sell. Shakepay accepts Interac e-Transfer and wire transfers only (no credit/debit cards).

The company also offers neat features through its Shakepay Card, such as the Shakepay Round Up, where users can turn their spare change into Bitcoin by rounding up purchases to the nearest dollar.

Newton

Newton is a Canadian-based “no-fee” cryptocurrency exchange. It allows users to use Interac e-Transfer, wire transfers, or crypto to make deposits and withdrawals. The platform is beginner-friendly, streamlining the buying and selling process by offering market orders only.

Although they do not charge fees in a traditional sense, users should watch out for the spread between buying and selling prices. Withdrawal fees are also free, and Newton will cover up to the first $5 in gas fees when you withdraw with crypto.

The platform has support for users on iOS and Android. Newton is a registered money service business with FINTRAC in Canada.


5. International exchanges available in Canada

While there are some great Canadian Bitcoin exchanges in Canada, there are also plenty of international exchanges that cater to Canadian citizens:

Coinbase

Coinbase allows you to purchase bitcoins with a credit card and receive them instantly. This US exchange is one of the most user-friendly places to buy Bitcoin, making it great for beginners. There’s very high liquidity, along with high buying limits, but one issue is that your transactions are tracked, which is a privacy concern.

You can read my complete Coinbase review here.

CEX.IO

CEX.IO is a London-based exchange on which you can buy Bitcoin via credit card or bank transfer. Canada is one of many countries this Bitcoin exchange supports. CEX.IO is an easy exchange to use and is known to be reliable, but bear in mind that it has higher fees.

You can read my complete CEX.IO review here.

Coinmama

Coinmama operates in around 200 countries worldwide, including Canada. One of the main advantages of this Bitcoin exchange is that you can purchase with a credit or debit card. It’s also an easy platform to use for beginners. However, there’s a 4.5% fee on each purchase, which is on the higher side compared to many Bitcoin exchanges.

You can read my complete Coinmama review here.

Kraken

Kraken was launched in 2011 and caters to Canada, as well as the US and EU. The exchange allows Canadians to purchase about 200+ CAD-paired altcoins in addition to Bitcoin.

Kraken has very low fees of 0.00% to 0.16%, depending on the size of the order and whether one places or takes an order. Kraken allows funding with either credit or debit card, wire transfer or e-transfer, and even in-person at your local Canada Post.

You can read my complete Kraken review here.


6. How many Bitcoin ATMs are there in Canada?

Only the United States has more Bitcoin ATMs than Canada. As of 2024, there are 2,871 Bitcoin ATMs in Canada, according to CoinATMRadar. Most of these ATMs are located in six major cities: Vancouver has 212, Montreal has 278, Toronto has 993, Edmonton has 171, Ottawa has 127, and Calgary has 189.

Bitcoin ATMs in Canada on CoinATMRadar

There are over three dozen different operators with varied buy and sell fees. Many of these Bitcoin ATMs allow the purchasing of other cryptocurrencies, such as Ethereum and Litecoin.


7. Conclusion

Despite the ever-fluctuating crypto market, the Canadian Bitcoin community remains healthy and active. Awareness and involvement are very high in the country, as evidenced by community activity both online and offline and the high number of Bitcoin ATMs scattered around the country.

Have you had any experience with buying Bitcoin in Canada? I’d love to hear about it in the comment section below.

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18 comments on “Canada”

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    1. Kibet - 99Bitcoins support

      Hi @Cryptobb,
      Please take a look at these options:
      Commission-free:

      Shakepay: Simple and user-friendly, great for beginners, offers zero fees on Bitcoin and Ethereum purchases with Interac e-Transfer. However, they have a limited selection of cryptocurrencies.
      Wealthsimple: Integrates seamlessly with your existing Wealthsimple account, offers convenient automated investing options, but has slightly higher spreads than Shakepay.

      Low-fee:

      Newton: Known for its competitive spreads and transparent fee structure, offers a wider range of cryptocurrencies than Shakepay.
      NDAX: Trusted platform with high liquidity and tight spreads, good for active traders with its advanced order types.
      Coinsquare: Well-established Canadian exchange with strong security features, offers margin trading for experienced users.

      Other Factors to Consider:

      Security: Check if the app uses multi-factor authentication and cold storage for user funds.
      User reviews: Read app store reviews and online comparisons to get insights from other users.
      Features: Decide which features are important to you, such as margin trading, staking, or educational resources.

      Disclaimer:

      I am not a financial advisor and this information is not financial advice. Please do your own research before investing in any cryptocurrency.

      Urgent action:

      If you absolutely need to make a decision right now, Shakepay might be the fastest option with its commission-free e-Transfer purchases. However, be sure to weigh the pros and cons of each platform before making a final decision.

      I hope this helps!

  1. Bitcoin is no longer the best cryptocurrency. I think the next best coin to buy is CRP privacy coin. Crypton is an internal cryptocurrency of the Utopia P2P ecosystem — a closed, decentralized ecosystem. CRP mining does not require crypto farms or other types of specialized equipment.

  2. Caroline Henry

    You should really mention the spread for each of them in the blurb. It’s the only info I was really missing. Great list otherwise.

  3. I had someone , don’t know who it was it was an investment company apparently. Years ago 2014 or 15 they told me to buy bitcoin for $114 a coin I wish I did. So can I guy get into buying $500 worth of investment to start?

  4. Hey 99Bitcoins,

    This list won’t be complete if you do not do a review of NDAX :), they do offer a competitive Referral Program.

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