Review: Coinmama – Is it 100% legit? (Reddit users speak out)

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One of the first services I’ve ever reviewed on 99Bitcoins, back in January 2014, was Coinmama. What was special about it back then is that it allowed you to buy Bitcoins with Western Union. Recently I’ve decided to revisit the site an saw that a lot has changed for Coinmama, so you can call this a renewed review of the service.

Goodbye, Western Union. Hello, credit cards!

simplex logoOne of the major changes in the Bitcoin industry throughout 2014 is how easy it has become to buy Bitcoins with a credit card. This is mainly due to the fact that companies like Simplex have allowed exchanges and brokers to verify users with less risk, thus allowing the acceptance of credit cards.

This is a much welcomed change since without this you’d be bound to the old methods of actually going to your local Western Union counter and depositing money. Coinmama integrates Simplex in its system and allows you to pay with any Visa or Mastercard you might have.

Fees are lower thanks to credit cards

Since the process has become much more advanced, the fees are lower as well. Just so you’ll get a perspective: before the change to credit cards was made, one Bitcoin would cost you $310 when the corresponding Bitstamp rate was only $257. That’s a whooping 22 percent fee. Ouch!

After changes were implemented fees are around 6.5%. Now that may still sound like a lot, but if you look around at companies selling you Bitcoin with credit card as a payment method you’ll see that it’s basically the same fee everywhere. This is due to expensive measures these companies have to deploy in order to avoid fraud and chargebacks.

“We’re aware that the current commission can be considered pretty high to the average customer and we’re constantly looking for ways to lower it in order to give our customers more value for their money.”

Nimi, Coinmama’s CEO

You get your Bitcoins instantly, of course

What are inputs of a Bitcoin transaction?Last thing that gets dramatically improved is the speed at which you get your coins. In the past you’d have to wait for a wire confirmation to arrive from Western Union. Today, as soon as your payment has cleared, you can withdraw your coins, which is completely awesome.

This is crucial, since sometimes a day or two can mean wide price fluctuations in Bitcoin and you end up buying coins for more or less than you intended. Keep in mind that for first time users there is a limit on how much you can buy (at the time or writing this limit is $5000).

What does the reddit community think of CoinMama?

As always I make sure to cross reference my review with Bitcoin’s subreddit and the Bitcointalk forum. I’ve been looking around the web to try and find other reviews of Coinmama, but all I found on Reddit was this thread, which has several users saying they are happy with the site.

Going through Bitcointalk I couldn’t find any more useful information, except for one post stating that the site is not that well-known and another one stating it has high fees (this was before the change to a lower fee structure).

Hands-on tutorial: How it’s actually done…

If you’re considering using Coinmama, I made a short screen capture of the whole process to help you out.

Conclusion – Would I use Coinmama?

The short answer is yes. It is a reputable company with the only downfall being its high fees. Unfortunately, this can’t be avoided when using a credit card at the moment.

On the other side, the long answer is “it depends”. If you have the option to use a different payment method other than a credit card then I’d avoid paying the high fees and go elsewhere.

All in all, the service is solid and hopefully will become more affordable in the near future. If you’ve had your own experience with Coinmama, I’d love to hear it in the comment section below.

Ofir Beigel

Owner at 99 Coins ltd.
Blogger and owner of 99Bitcoins. I've been dealing with Bitcoin since the beginning of 2013 and it taught me a lesson in finance that I couldn't get anywhere else on the planet. I'm not a techie, I don't understand "Hashes" and "Protocols", I designed this website with people like myself in mind. My expertise is online marketing and I've dedicated a large portion of 99Bitcoins to Bitcoin marketing.

Coinmama

Coinmama
8.56

Price tag

8/10

    Ease of use

    9/10

      Support

      9/10

        Reputation

        8/10

          Security

          9/10

            Pros

            • Great user interface
            • Secure transactions
            • Fast delivery
            • Good support

            Cons

            • High fees (~7.5%)

            48 Comments

            1. Paid 4K. I can see the charge on my account. No bitcoin. Sent email to support. No reply. Stay away. I will call my credit card company and dispute the charge. Hopefully, they will block simplex and coinmama.

            2. Ease of use

              10

              Support

              5.1

              Reputation

              8

              Security

              5

              Current BTC Price in coindesk/coinmarketcap is around 1890$
              When I go to coinmama the rate offered is 1984$

              Almost 100$ more expensive than the real BTC price.

              No thanks

            3. Price tag

              6.5

              Ease of use

              9.5

              Support

              8

              Reputation

              8.5

              Security

              9.5

              Coinmama rules, took less than a minute to get my bitcoins.

            4. Price tag

              10

              Ease of use

              10

              Support

              8.2

              Reputation

              8.3

              Security

              10

              wahouuuuuu!!!!!!!
              l’ensemble des discussions nous confondent finalement….
              je suis nouveau dans l’utilisation des monnaies électroniques et surtout dans leur achat via les sites de vente…
              quelle garantie aurais-je en payant mes btc avec COINMAMA???
              mes BTC arriveront t-ils?
              en attente d’une réponse pour me réconforter…
              Bien à vous.

                • He says:

                  “All these discussions lead to confusion. I’m new to crypto currencies, especially buying them online. What guarantees would I have when buying BTC through Coinmama? Will my coins be delivered? Answers to these questions will give him some peace of mind.
                  -Be well”

                  • Thanks Paul!
                    ARISTIDE – No one can guarantee anything I guess, the best I can do is tell you that from my experience with Coinmama everything worked fine. However, you can see that some other users are less satisfied. I’m guessing you should inspect each case on its own. As a general rule, I suggest whenever you buy from a new exchange to start out with a small amount and see how things go. This way, even if you don’t get your coins (which I doubt will be the case with Coinmama), you haven’t risked much. After you personally verify this exchange with the small amount you can move to larger amounts.

            5. My first order I did last month got me my BTC in 4 hours. Now on second order it has been three days and nothing yet. When you contact support you receive a nonsense reply. Please avoid using them unless you like a painfully slow experience.

            6. Do not buy from these guys, charged my card and received no bitcoin, lost $1000, i am furious!!!

              • Ofir Beigel on

                Hey Ryan, sorry to hear about your situation. Have you contacted their support? Usually all of the claims we get on this site about Coinmama turn out to be misunderstandings or something along those lines. Let me know.

                • Price tag

                  3

                  Ease of use

                  3

                  Support

                  9

                  Reputation

                  6.5

                  Security

                  8.5

                  I have been contacted, they had a problem with their system. However it has been sorted out and i am now waiting for the refund.

            7. Coinmama is a Scam
              I have bought Bitcoin on 23 mai , and I sent a picture to verify my credit card , and he had sent me an email telling me that it had verified my credit card. But I hadn’t received my bitcoin

            8. Price tag

              1

              Ease of use

              8

              Security

              5

              Go away from simplex.com, i started a transaction around 1000 USD when 1 BTC exchange rate was 2100 USD, they don’t approve my transaction and reply me “WAIT” in all mails. After 2 days, they send an e-mail about “Transaction cancelled, because BTC rate is changed”. YES, IT’S CHANGED AND NEW RATE IS 2600 USD. So if you do not want to be sad, go away from simplex.com

            9. Price tag

              1.2

              Ease of use

              9.8

              Support

              0.4

              Reputation

              0.4

              Security

              0.3

              HI, my name is ramon from the dominican Republic, i
              I bought with my credit card bitcoin 1.8 bitcoin US $ 4,985 with a very high fee, I still do not receive it,
              but it is strange that since I gave my address to Coinmama,
              Russian hacker have removed all my bitcoin from my blockchain bitcoin address.

              I send 4 emails to coinmama and and they don’t respond my emails, i call my bank and they say that they take the money, is up to me to desice to start and process, coin mama use the excuse know that ¨Simplex, our credit card processor, are currently under heavy load. You may experience delays of more than 48 hours in processing your payment.¨
              before that i buy the 1.8 bitcoin I complete 3 order, from 96 us, 76 and 63 to To test the service, And I received the bitcoin and a few minutes and know that i pay 5000 us, I do not hear anything from them, and the opportunities to invest in other currencies I can forget, and wanted to buy more bticoin, but with this situation so strange I do not get involved or share a dollar with it.

            10. I’m having payment verification issue with Coinmama, though, I think Coinmama is not responsible for this. The real problem I believe is their credit card processor Simplex. I know this because another exchange using Simplex is having the same exact issue with payment verification taking long hours like more than 24 hours to 48 hours or more.

              I mean, it really begs me a question. Why am I paying higher fees using credit card to buy Btc if the payment process takes about the same time as bank wire?

            11. Price tag

              10

              Dont trust coinmama, its an absolute scam, I deposit my money through my debit card and the payment pass through 15 hours ago and it still state “in process”. WTF man, return my money!!!!!

            12. I have been using Coinmama for may months with no problem until today. I went to buy bitcoins and as I entered my credit card information and hit submit the page went white. This happened twice. I do not know if my card was charged. I have contacted Coin mama twice today and no response. needly to say I am worried now. Upon review online someone else has this experienced yesterday and no reply via email. Not sure what is going on.

                • Something is going on weird with Coinmama and Simplex, I can not seem to understand.

                  First I finally sent a message the next day from Coinmama stating my card was declined and etc and contact my bank, a generic response it seemed. I let them know I did contact my bank, that was not the problem and I proceeded to send them a pictures step by step what happens once I enter my credit card info and hit submit the page goes white. Since then no response.
                  I also contacted Simplex, who Coinmama used to make the credit card payments and then sent me a generic response but once I sent them the pictures of what was happening then replied saying they will send it to tech for support, then asked what windows I use and what browser. They also asked me if I used another device.
                  I replied to them and told them I did not use another device and all the other info the asked for but I also used this same computer for many placements over the months and one successful as soon as 5 days ago. I tried another device and I entered my card info as usual and hit submit and the part where it goes white it now took me to another page with all my information,name and info already filled in almost like another simplex page just to confirm this transaction, but I have not seen this page before. Anyways I hit submit and now it proceeded to process and them told me card can’t be used and to contact support. So I then decided to try my USA debit card, when I hit submit it now seen unable to process because of location, which is weird. I have since not heard back for simplex or coinmama on this matter.My cards are fine and active so it is not that either. Also my card was not charged for these charges, so I am not sure if Simplex is changing how they accept cards or what it may be now, but sadly I think after almost a year off buying off of Coinmama with no problem and been verified more then a few times already, its sad this might be the end for me on that site.

              • Martin Koelbaek on

                Hi Nick,

                This is your money and you have every right to be worried. The truth is that after the recent surge not only in prices but customers, most services have been under heavy load and even the Blockchain has experienced unusual confirmation delays. While Coinmama has managed to get by unscathed so far, unfortunately this was not the case for our credit card processor, Simplex.

                For the past couple of days they have been working to fix a number of issues with their payment services and while we’re happy that they seem to be over it, we still need to get that message across to countless customers and still provide a personalized customer service that we can be proud of.

                I hope this shed some light on what’s happened. I would like to apologize for this inconvenience and to thank all of our customers for their patience and continued loyalty as we work our way through this. Rest assured that we will use it as a learning experience going forward.

                Best regards,
                Martin Koelbaek
                Head of Support at Coinmama

                • Hello,
                  thanks for the reply. But unfortunately the problem is not fixed. I got the email 2 days ago that it was fixed. Today I tried to make a order, and it got declined, which is normal. So I called my bank like I normally would and normally they would see the transaction on their end and lift it for me. But just like the other day, they said they are not seeing any transaction that was attempted, which means it never even went through on simplex end. They like at my previous order from simplex a week ago and said they would still life any restrictions and to try again. After they lifted the restrictions, and I tried again, and guess what, I got declined. Something is still going on, the issue is not fixed. This has caused me and I am sure many others to go else where now. I will still try coinmama in the future but right now simplex making everything difficult.

            13. Price tag

              4.9

              Ease of use

              7.6

              Support

              9

              Reputation

              4.1

              Security

              5.9

              I`m interested why coinmama request personal ID and other relative scans? If i want to remain anonymous i would love to stay that way when i buy bitcoins with western union as well

              • Ofir Beigel on

                Hey, I think it’s standard AML procedures. In any case if you want to buy Bitcoins anonymously perhaps you should try Paxful or Local Bitcoins.

            14. Dustyn Read on

              Coinmama i the biggest SCAM sit i placeed and orderr for $2720 and for some stupid reason my order failed and 6 days later im waiting for my refund

              • Ofir Beigel on

                Hey Dustyn really sorry to hear that. But you say that you are waiting for a refund – so I’m a bit uncertain why you’re calling this a scam? Scams are companies that take away your money and never give it back. This may be however a case of poor execution by the company.

              • Price tag

                10

                Ease of use

                10

                Support

                10

                Reputation

                10

                Security

                10

                Hi Dustyn,

                As we talked about over email, this is a payment issue between our credit card processor Simplex and your bank. We have been in open communication with you about this since you placed the order, have explained several times that the issue concerns an authorization check, that no money was ever charged from your account, and that you need to sort it with your bank as it’s entirely up to them.

                We understand that you’re frustrated, but we hope you understand that this is not an issue with Coinmama and that you would not vent that frustration by spreading misinformation about our service.

                We remain at your service :)

            15. angry customer on

              don’t bother, non existing support uploaded my ID multiple times and was rejected every try. so I’ve tried to buy at least 50 buck worth of Bitcoin but it wouldn’t let me so this site has the harshest KYC of all sites that accept cc

            16. Coinmamma – scam – coin mama is NOT a scam.

              I purchased 1.5 btc on my credit card from Canada, few hiccups but got my money within 48hours.

              I signed up for coin mamma, sent in my documents.
              My documents were rejected due to poor image quality.

              I resent my verification documents.

              My documents were approved within 1 hour.

              I am in Canada, and was wondering what was taking so long…

              They operate during romainian and isreali business hours.

              AHA! They weren’t ignoring me…they will just respond when I am sleeping, as I sent them a message in the middle of the night, for them.

              Coin mamma uses another company “Simplex” for payments.

              Coinmamma was waiting from communication from simplex.

              Simplex needed to verify the same documents I sent coin mama. I re sent them.

              I also needed to call my bank, as they were blocking the transaction.

              I received my BTC and they responded to my queries during their business hours.

              I think there is disconnect between the business hours vs western hours leaves people thinking they are not being responded to, and the third party simplex processing the payments also adds a bit of confusion.

              Their geographic location leaves much to question when you’re making your decision whether to trust these guys.

              Overall you are able to buy MUCH MORE btc with coin mama than any other wallet once verified.

              Coinbase has been taking literally months to verify me to buy 1 measly btc.
              Idacoin, same deal.

              • Thank you for the kind words!

                Providing a great service is a priority at Coinmama, and it’s always nice to hear that our efforts are paying off. We operate in 182 countries and realize that in order to provide the right quality of support, we need to support 24/7. This is an ambition for us and while we’re not there yet, we are improving day by day.

                Regarding whether we’re safe and secure, I would advise anyone reading this to look around and do your own due diligence – we’ve been around since 2013, so there are a bunch of reviews and anecdotes out there. Of course, I’m happy to answer any questions, but I don’t think my words would hold the same sway as the those of hundreds of thousands of our customers.

                If that research meets your expectations, sign up and give us a go :)

            17. Not worth my time. Casnt firgutre out how to transfer my funds away from coinmama. Not only that multiple transactions did not go through AFTER talking to a vendor….WTF

              I just want my product or money. Instead you take both

            18. dinesh roy on

              Price tag

              1.7

              Ease of use

              0.2

              Reputation

              0.4

              Security

              0.3

              DONT USE 15hours ago i paid untill now nothing happened, they are just scam stay away!!!

            19. No, don’t use it ever. I was hacked through their site. They wracked up charges on my credit card i didn’t know about, therefore was late paying and starting investigation. They accept stolen cards if necessary, that’s what I’m trying to explain to you. After that, there is no way to get your money back, because they have no support. Keep a watchful eye at your email from anything coming from them.

              • Hi Alex,

                You sent the card processor a picture of you holding the card (in 3 different occasions) and you also continued purchasing from us even weeks after the time you claim you had problems with us so why would you do that if what you say is correct? Also, as you noticed, we are very communicative and answering your emails fast.
                Furthermore, what you mentioned (being hacked “through” Coinmama) simply doesn’t make any sense from a technical point of view. This has been explained to you thoroughly by email.

                We do not accept stolen cards, this is a ridiculous argument and in any case an illegal use of card is detected the payment will be declined. More than that, if a use of stolen card is detected by the payment processor or anyone else in the chain, the real owner of the card will get his money back. Credit card companies insure their customers from these cases so if indeed there has been any illegal use of your card, your card issuer will refund you any stolen funds if you simply notify them. If you need assistance with that we would gladly help you.

                You sent us the last email about it on April 14th and we responded within 6 minutes. You haven’t replied since then so we are still awaiting your reply. Please write back if you still need assistance on this matter!

                Thanks and have a nice day,
                Coinmama

            20. i have been tying to use coinmama to buy bit coin with two types of credit cards 1. is a virtual credit card that secures my credit card they stated that they do not accept that kind of payment because i was having a bit of a trouble , the order kept declining. the other card 2 is a physical card they ask me to send a video of me holding the card and call out the last and first four digits of the card and they still decline my payment now i think that this site is a damn scam how can i be following your policies and instructions to the T and your still declining my order and i am scared to go to western union because what will happen if they decline that two???? i wont be able to get that money back i will advise you guys not to use coinmamam they are the worst and they do not have anyone for you to talk to when your having issues understanding what the he wlll is going on

            21. Price tag

              8

              Ease of use

              10

              Support

              9.1

              Reputation

              10

              Security

              9.1

              Pretty good website, easy to use, and seems to have good reputaion

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