Through our previous articles, we can not say that we have helped to make Bitcoin – or other cryptocurrencies – more "palpable". Of course, you now have the equipment to mine cryptocurrency and you may have one or two accounts to trade currencies between them. Nevertheless, Bitcoin is still quite theoretical and does not seem to leave the world of finance. Our last step is precisely the opportunity to glimpse the most concrete.
Once is not customary, innovation does not necessarily come from the United States and as we will see soon, the oldest Bitcoin debit card solution comes from the United Kingdom. More generally, when choosing such a card, it is important to check that your country is supported and, in this game, the United States is not always very well off. Thanks to the power of the euro zone, France has a cover that is finally very correct.
Another element to take into account when choosing one platform rather than another: operating costs. Attention, some solutions evoke a total absence of commission: beware, there is undoubtedly eel under rock and hidden costs appear then regularly at the time of the conversions. We are not ourselves immune to errors on this level so if you spot a shell, do not hesitate to tell us.
The Best Bitcoin Debit Cards (August 2017)
Today, more than fifty cards are on the market. Some are limited to one country or another when others play the card of universality. Still, it is very difficult to have the necessary perspective to recommend one solution over another. However, we have a slight preference for the oldest, Cryptopay. It is not distinguished by its particularly original features, but rather by the seriousness of the institution. Nothing prevents us from using it as a basis and testing one or two competitors at the same time, but on smaller sums.
Pioneer of Bitcoin debit card, Cryptopay is based in the United Kingdom, Cryptopay was founded in 2013. In absolute terms, it is a very young company, but on the scale of Bitcoin it is already old fashioned. It started as a simple platform of exchanges proposing in particular an electronic wallet. Today, its debit card solution is one of the most used. She also claims over 30,000 cards issued.
First asset, Cryptopay offers its services in France. More interesting, the company is particularly transparent on the costs generated: thus, it will cost € 15 for the card itself and € 2.25 / € 2.75 for each national / international withdrawal. Note in passing that it is not necessary to provide identity documents and thus remain "anonymous", even if the use ceilings are then lower. Overall, a good, practical and serious solution.
Like many companies offering debit cards, Spectrocoin first specialized in currency trading with many different payment methods and a "presence" in more than 150 countries. Founded in 2013, the company quickly followed suit with Cryptopay and offered a physical card associated with virtual cards recognized by many merchants.
Since nothing is really free in this world, Spectrocoin bills its card 8 € and has the good taste to present all the expenses inherent to its use in a way that can not be clearer. As on all "serious" platforms, the fees are quite high and note that if your account is zero, Spectrocoin does not charge any service fee (otherwise 1 € per month). Spectrocoin enjoys a good reputation and the quality of its service seems to be among the highest.
Obviously, we are still lacking in perspective, but Uquid has quickly become one of the most interesting solutions for those who want a debit card in cryptographic money. The main advantage of Uquid is obviously its opening of many cryptocurrencies. Currently, in addition to Bitcoin, there are 88 currencies including Ethereum, Dogecoin, but also DASH, Monero, Zcash and many, many more.
Very appreciable also, Uquid walks here in the footsteps of Cryptopay completely avoiding hidden fees and "tricks" not necessarily very elegant. Everything is clearly presented on the website. On the other hand, it is not so obvious to find the "stupid" price of the card and the verification of the account (not essential) imposes to send a piece of identity of course, but also an attestation of residence which more is … written in English. English is the only language recognized on the site.
A relatively new player, Bitpay first became known by being the first to offer its services in all 50 states of the United States. An element certainly interesting, but far from vital for us French. Still, to convince Americans, Bitpay relies heavily on the concepts of security and protection of the individual. We have not been able to verify it in the long run, but in the absolute it is rather a good thing, of course.
Security for Bitpay already passes through the knowledge of its customers and verification of the account is not only mandatory, but relatively demanding with proof of residence of less than three months and proof of identity. Another constraint, Bitpay is also available in English and the interface of its site is not very nice: the costs are not, for example, put forward by the company. Too bad, the wallet is well made and transactions seem fast.
The story of Xapo begins like those of many Bitcoin companies, through an electronic wallet. In May 2015, the company relocated its headquarters from California to settle in Switzerland: a guarantee of reliability when it comes to money. Jokes aside, Xapo quickly forged a good reputation. She was also among the first to evoke the idea of a bitcoin debit card, but was capped on the pole by some competitors.
Today and despite the absence of French translation on the site or application, we appreciate the overall clarity. All fees are well presented and the card remains among the cheapest "serious" to 18 €, but with an annual commission of 10 €. Beware however, Xapo abhors any idea of anonymity and three levels of verification are possible depending on the transaction amounts desired. The general opinion is that Xapo's responsiveness is excellent and the card is sent in a dozen days, for example.
Founded in San Francisco, Shift Payment Company was the first to offer a Bitcoin debit card in the United States. Today available in 41 states, it has a weight advantage: in fact, the company is backed by Coinbase and benefits from the quality of service of the latter. The payment application is linked to your Coinbase wallet and the debit card directly draws money from it.
If the Shift card is charged $ 10, there is no transaction fee for a so-called "domestic" use. The situation should soon change, but Shift was not very talkative about it. That said, the question does not arise for us French since Shift is not yet available in the Hexagon. We only talk about it because of the importance of Coinbase in the Bitcoin economy.
Introduced in December 2015 by the platform of the same name, the Bitwala debit card raises many questions to which we are not yet able to provide an answer. In fact, the card is simply the cheapest on the market at almost every level. Thus, to subscribe and receive the card costs only 8 € for a physical model and 2 € for a virtual one.
Even more interesting, all transactions are subject to a commission of only 0.5% with a minimum of € 1 … A very good thing to perform small operations compared to other cards. All this seems too good to be true and even if the returns seem convincing, we prefer to be cautious. Still, not everything is perfect in Bitwala and the English language is for example ubiquitous, but that, you start to get used to it.
For the record, Bonpay was created to simplify exchanges and purchases for Bitcoin users. On paper, it's cute all full. Only problem, in fact it is difficult to distinguish Bonpay dozens of other solutions to obtain a bitcoin debit card. The site is elegant and the information overall well presented, but, for change, exclusively available in English.
The Bonpay wallet linked to the card is quite limited in its functionality and is limited for example to Bitcoin. We are also quite surprised that Bonpay is allowed to provide his physical card for free. Generally, this kind of practice hides some, but we could not find anything extraordinary in the details of the fees and other commissions and the returns of the community are rather good. An outsider who probably deserves our attention.
Formerly known as E-Corner, Wirex is a platform that blows hot and cold, that's nothing to say. We can not advise you to be careful if you are tempted by its products as it is difficult to have clear information. Of course, several testimonials are available to announce how excellent the services are, but others leave room for doubt, especially regarding the actual costs.
Too bad, Wirex is yet one of the only players on the market to offer a site in French. The explanations seem pretty clear and Wirex is in the middle of the other platforms with fees on withdrawals and a double system of account verified / not verified. If we invite you to be cautious about possible hidden costs, we keep an eye on this platform which has indisputable assets.
Some specialized sites list dozens of platforms that have implemented bitcoin debit cards. The market is very young, it is difficult to be sure of the seriousness of this or that company. One can not be certain of the viability of one actor or another and BitPlastic is a good example of these uncertainties.
The company was nevertheless one of the pioneers of the bitcoin debit card, but today the site is difficult (impossible?) To access. The very operating conditions of the card encourage caution, especially for neophytes. Indeed, to protect your anonymity, no name appears on your card. This "discretion" is found at the level of society that is difficult to trace to verify its seriousness. In doubt, caution.
Photo Credits: Begeek