Bitstamp and Coinbase are cryptocurrency exchanges available to U.S. and international investors. Both offer a digital hot wallet and follow strict security standards. Plus, they’ve been around for years. Bitstamp was founded in 2011 with headquarters in London. Coinbase began in 2012 and went public through a direct listing in 2021 (Nasdaq: COIN). The company recently announced the closure of its California headquarters.
Coinbase supports 66 cryptocurrencies versus Bitstamp’s 28, but the differences don’t end there. While Bitstamp caters to experienced, active traders, Coinbase is geared to beginners. However, Coinbase also offers the Coinbase Pro platform, which is a good fit for intermediate and advanced investors.
We compared the crypto exchanges by looking at their features, supported currencies, and ease of use. Additionally, we reviewed fees for trading and withdrawing funds, mobile apps, and digital wallets.
At a Glance
|Fees||0.50% plus variable spread||0.50% spread plus $0.99 to $2.99 fee or variable fee based on the payment method|
|Security||98% of assets stored offline, crime insurance against theft or fraud, and 2FA||98% of assets stored offline, 2FA, FDIC-insured USD balances, insurance against fraud or theft, and a bug bounty program|
|Wallet||Allowlisting, multi-signature, AES-256 encryption||Allowlisting, multi-signature, AES-256 encryption|
|Transactions Supported||Instant, limit, market, stop, trailing stop, and fill-or-kill orders, withdraw||Buy, sell, exchange, send, withdraw, and receive|
|Max. Trading Amount||Varies by payment method||Varies by location and payment method|
|Mobile App||iOS and Android||iOS and Android|
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Features
Although both cryptocurrency exchanges let users buy and sell altcoins, they’re geared toward different groups of people. Coinbase is recommended for beginners, thanks to its user-friendly platform and limited transaction types. Bitstamp, however, targets users familiar with cryptocurrency.
Bitstamp features include:
- Businesses: Bitstamp supports institutions and provides several application programming interfaces (APIs) for custom business applications.
- Easy to add funds: Users fund accounts via credit or debit card and automated clearing house (ACH).
- Advanced trading: Investors can take advantage of advanced trading options, such as instant, limit, market, stop, trailing stop, and fill-or-kill orders.
- Bitstamp Earn: International traders can stake Ethereum (ETH) through Bitstamp to earn a return on their holdings.
In comparison, Coinbase also makes it easy to add funds by supporting credit or debit, wire transfers, ACH, and PayPal. However, it also offers several features ideal for new investors, such as:
- Learn and earn: Coinbase users may earn up to $28 in altcoins by watching videos and reading guides about cryptocurrency and exchange basics.
- Staking: Earn 0.15% to 5% annual percentage rate (APR) for USD Coin (USDC), Dai (DAI), Tezos (XTZ), Algorand (ALGO), Cosmos (ATOM), and Ethereum (ETH).
- Coinbase card: The Visa debit card and Coinbase card app let users make purchases using their crypto.
- Interest accounts: Put USDC into a Coinbase account to earn up to 4% annual percentage yield (APY).
- Businesses: Coinbase offers several professional crypto products, including a prime brokerage platform and direct access to the exchange.
- Advanced platform: Once beginners feel comfortable, they can move to the Coinbase Pro platform for free to get reduced fees and more trading options.
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Currencies
Users of both platforms can trade fractions of coins and deposit fiat funds, with Bitstamp supporting EUR, GBP, and USD, and Coinbase supporting more than 20 fiat currencies, including USD, EUR, GBP, CAD, and SGD.
Bitstamp supports 28 currencies, whereas Coinbase offers 66. Investors will find popular coins and stablecoins on both exchanges, such as:
- Tether (USDT)
- Bitcoin (BTC)
- Compound (COMP)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- Stellar Lumens (XLM)
- Aave (AAVE)
- Algorand (ALGO)
- The Graph (GRT)
- Uniswap (UNI)
Additionally, Bitstamp supports six coins unavailable on Coinbase: Chainlink (LINK), Maker (MKR), Paxos Standard (PAX), Gemini Dollar (GUSB), Audius (AUDIO), and Ethereum 2.0 (ETH2).
In contrast, Coinbase offers 45 coins not found on Bitstamp, including:
- 1Inch (1INCH)
- Ankr (ANKR)
- Band Protocol (BAND)
- Cardano (ADA)
- Cosmos (ATOM)
- Dash (DASH)
- Dogecoin (DOGE)
- Ethereum Classic (ETC)
- Loom Network (LOOM)
- Polkadot (DOT)
- Storj (STORJ)
- SushiSwap (SUSHI)
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Security
Both platforms abide by strict U.S. regulations, including know your customer (KYC). The exchanges offer two-factor authentication (2FA) and multi-signature protections on their hot wallets. Additionally, each service holds 98% of account assets offline in cold storage and maintains a crime insurance policy covering funds on the exchange from theft or fraud. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insures USD deposits on the Coinbase platform.
The cryptocurrency exchanges meet or exceed industry standards. However, the Coinbase website provides a detailed account of most security measures, whereas Bitstamp only references security through its frequently asked questions. Although Bitstamp was hacked in 2015, resulting in the theft of roughly $5 million in Bitcoin, no recent breaches have occurred. While Coinbase hasn’t had its exchange hacked, many users have been targets of various phishing schemes, leading to stolen funds.
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Fees
The beginner Coinbase exchange charges higher fees than found on Bitstamp. However, Coinbase Pro users pay about the same as Bitstamp traders. Bitstamp uses a tiered fee schedule based on total trading volume over the past 30 days, with $10,000 or less incurring a 0.50% transaction fee. Higher trading volumes reduce expenses.
Meanwhile, the Coinbase fee structure is more complex. Users pay either a flat rate or variable fee, depending on their funding method, and incur a spread of about 0.50%. In most cases, traders using Coinbase will pay more than those on Bitstamp. However, the Coinbase Pro platform uses a maker-taker model with a 0.50% transaction fee for investors trading $10,000 or less over the trailing 30-day period.
Additionally, credit or debit card users will pay 3.99% on Coinbase versus 5% on Bitstamp. Both offer free ACH transactions, making this payment method the best way to save on fees.
|Bank Account Purchase||N/A||1.49%|
Withdrawals: 4 EUR
|Deposits and Withdrawals: 0.15 EUR|
|Wire Transfer||Deposits: 0.05% or $7.50 minimum
Withdrawals: 0.1% or $25 minimum
|Crypto Conversion||Varies by currency||Up to 2% spread|
|Trades||0% to 0.50% based on 30-day trading volume, plus an undisclosed spread||Up to 0.50% spread, plus a variable or fixed fee of $0.99 to $2.99 or variable fee, based on amount and payment method|
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Ease of Use
Bitstamp and Coinbase are web-based platforms offering mobile apps. The initial account signup and verification processes are similar. Moreover, each makes it easy to buy or sell crypto through their exchange by offering simple website or app navigational tools. However, Coinbase is better for beginners. It provides an array of instructional materials and guides. Its knowledge base and FAQs are comprehensive and cover nearly every topic a new investor would want to learn about.
In contrast, Bitstamp provides a basic FAQ section to help users navigate website functions but doesn’t offer a complete database. Plus, some of the advanced features may be unfamiliar to new users, making it harder to know which transaction type to select.
However, Bitstamp earns a slightly higher rating, as customer service is more responsive than Coinbase. Neither service offers customer support by telephone, but you can contact the companies through email, or Twitter for Coinbase users.
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Mobile App
Bitstamp and Coinbase provide mobile apps for Android and iOS users. The Bitstamp app offers complete trading functionality, including four order types, analytical tools, and real-time charts through Tradeview. Users can also view their crypto holds and trade right from the mobile app.
The Coinbase crypto app features a clean dashboard where investors can get automatic price alerts, view portfolio value, and buy crypto on the exchange. Both mobile apps receive high ratings for ease of use, but advanced users will find more features on the Bitstamp app.
Bitstamp vs. Coinbase: Access
Bitstamp and Coinbase operate in about or over 100 countries. While Bitstamp may work in all 50 states, Coinbase isn’t available to Hawaii users. In addition, U.S. residents can’t stake coins on Bitstamp, whereas they have access to most functions, including staking, on the Coinbase exchange.
U.S. residents using Bitstamp can’t buy Ripple (XRP), while New Yorkers using Coinbase can’t buy the following coins using fiat currency:
- 1Inch (1INCH)
- Celo (CGLD)
- Chiliz (CHZ)
- Cartesi (CTSI)
- Dash (DASH)
- Enjin Coin (ENJ)
- Eos (EOS)
- Ampleforth (FORTH)
- Game.com (GTC)
- Augur (REP)
- Shiba Inu (SHIB)
- Tellor (TRB)
- Tether (USDT)
- Tezos (XTZ)
Coinbase and Bitstamp are well-known, trusted cryptocurrency exchanges used by people across the globe. Both offer hot wallets, mobile apps, and store 98% of account funds in cold storage. However, Coinbase is a great fit for beginners and provides an advanced platform for active traders, whereas Bitstamp works for mature investors but may confuse people new to trading.
For many users, Coinbase is the better option. The beginner platform does have high fees, but it’s easy to trade crypto, stake coins, and earn rewards. Plus, when users are ready to move into advanced trading, the Coinbase Pro platform offers a fee schedule similar to Bitstamp’s while still giving users access to perks like the crypto Visa card.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are Bitstamp and Coinbase?
Bitstamp and Coinbase are centralized cryptocurrency exchange platforms where users go to buy and sell cryptocurrency. Investors can view market prices, deposit fiat funds, and access their accounts through a web browser or mobile app.
Additionally, Coinbase users may take advantage of rewards features to earn crypto, stake cryptocurrencies, or earn interest on certain stablecoins. The company also offers a Visa debit card, allowing investors to spend crypto at millions of online and retail locations worldwide.
How Do Bitstamp and Coinbase Work?
Both platforms are centralized exchanges, meaning they verify accounts and transactions on behalf of investors. Users deposit fiat funds into Bitstamp and Coinbase hot wallets, which means the exchanges have more control over your assets than traders have when using decentralized exchanges.
Bitstamp and Coinbase support funding types like ACH, credit or debit card, and wire transfer. However, Coinbase offers much more information about getting started with trading, their security levels, and their features.
Can You Transfer Crypto From Bitstamp to Coinbase?
Yes, investors can transfer crypto from Bitstamp to Coinbase. Simply select “Withdrawal” from the main menu, enter your Coinbase wallet address, and choose the amount to send. Find your Coinbase wallet address by logging into your Coinbase account and tapping the “Receive” button. From there, you can choose your cryptocurrency type and view the address and quick response (QR) code.
Who Should Use Bitstamp vs. Coinbase?
People new to investing or cryptocurrency should start with Coinbase, as it’s convenient and straightforward. The platform rewards users for learning about crypto and offers basic transaction types. Furthermore, once a beginner learns their way around, they can move up to the advanced Coinbase Pro platform for more features, such as advanced trading options and lower fees.
On the other hand, Bitstamp is good for active traders and not as suitable for new investors. It offers several transaction types that require investing experience and doesn’t offer a large database of instructional guides and tutorials.
We reviewed Bitstamp and Coinbase by checking out features offered on both platforms, including unique offerings, and assessing accessibility for U.S. and international traders. We looked at the overall number of cryptocurrencies, stablecoins, and fiat currencies supported; the amount and types of fees; and security levels. Moreover, we checked out the mobile apps and web-based exchanges to evaluate each one for ease of use and functionality.