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Many people are itching to own bitcoin and competing altcoins to capitalize on the cryptocurrency bull market. It’s possible to buy bitcoin with a credit card but is it the best way to build your crypto wallet? Let’s take a look.
How to Buy Bitcoin with a Credit Card
Buying bitcoin with a credit card isn’t as easy as before. The major American credit card issuers, including American Express, Capital One, Chase, and Citi, define cryptocurrency purchases as cash-like transactions.
As a result, fewer crypto exchanges offer credit cards as a funding option. One of the world’s largest crypto exchanges, Coinbase, no longer supports credit cards but accepts debit card purchases.
Two exchanges to consider are Crypto.com and Bitcoin.com.
Most exchanges also accept transfers from linked bank accounts and wire transfers.
If an exchange excepts credit card payments, the transaction may qualify as a cash advance, meaning you pay hefty interest charges until you repay the balance. It’s also possible that the exchange will decline the transaction if the exchange accepts credit cards.
After finding a participating exchange, you can choose which crypto(s) you want to buy. The exchange will list the transaction fees. The fees are higher for credit card purchases than transferring from a bank account.
Credit Card Fees
Plan on paying a 2.99% transaction fee to the crypto exchange if you buy bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies with a credit card. The credit card company will also charge a cash advance fee with an approximate 25% APR for most cards.
The exchange fees are the lowest for bank and wire transfers. Additionally, there won’t be any ongoing cash advance interest charges like credit card transactions.
Transfer Credit Card Rewards to Cryptocurrency Exchanges
If your preferred cryptocurrency exchange doesn’t support credit cards, the next best option is to transfer purchase rewards from a cash back credit card.
There are several steps involved, but you avoid extra platform fees:
- Deposit cash back into a linked bank account
- Transfer cash from a bank account to a cryptocurrency exchange
- Buy cryptocurrency
You won’t earn credit card rewards. However, this strategy lets you use “free money” to buy crypto. If the transfer amount is small enough, the exchange may treat the transaction as an instant transfer.
Instant account deposits let you buy crypto purchases up to the deposit amount before the actual bank transfer finishes.
Not having to pay the credit card fees can help you pay to put more of your cash to work to buy a more prominent position.
Bitcoin Rewards Credit Cards
While you may not easily buy bitcoin with a traditional credit card, various crypto platforms are launching their own credit cards. You can earn purchase rewards on everyday purchases that can buy cryptocurrency.
The information for crypto.com cards has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Crypto.com offers a rewards credit card with five different rewards tiers. Which tier cardholders qualify for depends on how much cash they stake in the CRO cryptocurrency for six months.
- Midnight Blue ($0 stake and 1% back on purchases)
- Ruby Steel ($400 stake and 2% back on purchases)
- Royal Indigo & Jade Green ($4,000 stake and 3% back on purchases)
- Frosted Rose Gold and Icy White ($40,000 and 5% back on purchases)
- Obsidian ($400,000 and 8% back on purchases)
Cardholders earn their rewards in the CRO token which is the exchange’s crypto token. Similar examples are the Binance Coin (BNB) and the Coinbase Coin (COIN). Users can exchange this coin for other cryptos, including bitcoin.
The entry-level Midnight Blue card only offers 1% back on purchases and no additional benefits but doesn’t require a minimum stake in CRO.
Other cards offer to purchase statement credits for select streaming apps like Spotify and Netflix. The more luxurious cards offer LoungeKey airport lounge membership access and 10% reimbursements on Expedia and Airbnb purchases.
BlockFi Rewards Visa Signature Card
The BlockFi Rewards Visa® Signature Card earns 1.5% back in bitcoin on every single purchase. Additionally, cardholders earn 2% back in bitcoin on every purchase over $50,000 of annual spend.
The rewards rate increases from 1.5% to 2% after $50,000 of spend has been achieved. It will reset on the card anniversary date every year.
However, note that a soft credit pull will be done before you’ve accepted the credit card offer. Once you’ve accepted the credit card offer, a hard credit pull will be conducted, which can have an impact on your credit score.
There is also an introductory offer available. New cardholders can earn 3.5% bitcoin rewards on all purchases in the first 90 days of card ownership, up to $100 in bitcoin.
There are no foreign transaction fees or annual fees to worry about.
The information for the Gemini Credit Card has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
The Gemini Credit Card can earn up to 3% back in crypto rewards once it launches. There also won’t be platform fees to exchange the credit card rewards for bitcoin and altcoins.
Few specifics are available for this card like the 3% bonus categories, additional features, and the annual fee. As this project is taking over the Blockrize Credit Card, it will most likely have no annual fee.
The information for the Nexo Card has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
The Nexo Card lets you earn 2% back on card purchases. Cardholders can redeem their rewards for NEXO Tokens or bitcoin.
It’s possible to switch between the different rewards options before purchasing to earn the better-for-you reward. The rewards deposit in the Nexo Account to invest in the crypto market.
There isn’t an annual fee for this card.
Do Bitcoin Purchases Earn Credit Card Rewards?
Buying cryptocurrency directly from a rewards credit card most likely won’t earn credit card points or miles. The banks are very likely to classify these purchases as cash-like transactions.
Credit card issuers assign a merchant classification code to each vendor collecting credit card payments. The crypto exchanges will most likely classify as non-qualifying merchants to earn purchase rewards.
Similar non-qualifying transactions include:
- Cash advances
- Traveler’s checks
- Foreign currency
- Money orders
- Wire transfers
Speculative betting transactions like buying lottery tickets, casino gaming chips, and race track wagers also don’t earn credit card rewards.
But, it’s possible to earn credit card rewards on non-cryptocurrency purchases. You can then redeem those rewards for bitcoin and altcoins.
The process can be more straightforward with a credit card or rewards debit card that a cryptocurrency exchange offers. Several crypto exchange cards are launching in 2021, making it easier to enjoy credit card rewards and trade crypto.
In conclusion, it’s possible to buy bitcoin and cryptocurrency with a credit card. However, most travel rewards and cash rewards cards treat these transactions as cash advances. A more effective way is to redeem credit card points/miles as a cash reward to purchase cryptocurrency on an exchange.
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