BTC
18940
DOGE
0.0627
ETH
1318.5
LTC
53.71
EN
RU

LocalBitcoins is a popular P2P exchange that allows users to buy and sell bitcoins directly. The international platform was launched in 2012 in Finland. Notably, the exchange is not like other similar platforms. The transactions at the exchange are performed between the users and the service is the guarantee that the parties will comply with the conditions of the trade. Buyers and sellers decide on the price at which they want to buy or sell bitcoin and choose the methods of exchange.

LocalBitcoins is currently one of the most liquid P2P exchanges, providing the services of exchange of the first cryptocurrency absolutely legally. The platform is registered as a legal entity (EU VAT number (VIES) FI25251957) in Helsinki, Finland. The operation of the platform is regulated by the laws of the country and the rules of the Financial Supervisory Authority of Finland. Also, all transactions on LocalBitcoins are performed in compliance with the Act on Detecting and Preventing Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (AML) and KYC.

LocalBitcoins exchange rating

Total score 7,9
Commissions 10
Security and regulation 10
Markets 8
Passive income 2
Deposit and withdrawal 9
Trading platforms 7
Analytics 0
Education 9
Customer support 9
Bonuses 6

LocalBitcoins Pros and Cons

Pros
You can buy bitcoins online or offline by setting up a meeting with the seller.
You can use 248 national currencies of different countries, including Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan.
A large number of international payment systems are available
You can pay with altcoins.
No fees are charged on the transfers to the exchange’s internal wallets.
All transactions are executed very quickly (as quickly as the workload of the blockchain network allows)
Cons
Users of the exchange can only buy/sell bitcoins.
In order to actively trade at the exchange, you need to upgrade your user account.
No features for active trading.

Basic information

Name LocalBitcoins
Website www.localbitcoins.com
Exchange type Decentralized p2p platform
Regulation Financial Supervisory Authority of Finland, no license for transactions with cryptocurrencies.
Taker’s fee 0%
Maker’s fee 1%
Demo account No
Minimum deposit No
BTC withdrawal limits No
USD withdrawal limits No
Withdrawal in Fiat No limits, transactions can be performed in any of the 75 national currencies.
Time frame for account opening No longer than 24, verification included.
Leverage No
Markets only BTC
Passive income No
Customer support languages English, Russian, Chinese, Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese.
Withdrawal fee Your bank’s fee + 0.5% of the withdrawal amount; for cryptocurrencies the fee is calculated depending on the asset. If the funds are withdrawn to an external wallet, there is also the blockchain fee.
Payment methods Over 60 methods of payment: debit/credit cards, wire transfers, electronic payment systems, cash.
Account currencies 75 national currencies, including euro, ruble, hryvnia, US dollar and others (+BTC).
Promo No
Author of the review
Anastasia Hernandez
Anastasia Hernandez

Anastasia Hernandez is a financial consultant and analyst with over ten years of experience. She has been an active trader in the cryptocurrency market since 2018. Hernandez specializes in detailed analysis of digital currencies and development of trading strategies and investment portfolios.

LocalBitcoins commissions and fees

10

There is a simple and clear system for calculating the fees on the platform. You can find the information on the fees in the Fees section on the website or on the page of the wallet when you are making the trade.

Pros
The service offers low fees on the buy/sell transactions compared to competitors.
No fees for transactions in the LocalBitcoins wallet.
Cons
No fixed rate of the fee on withdrawals to third-party wallets.

LocalBitcoins Trading fees

The platform charges a fixed fee for bitcoin trading at 1% of the value of the trade. At that, the buyer’s fee is not charged. There is also an additional platform fee of 0.5%.

If an external transaction is involved in the execution of your trade, an additional Bitcoin blockchain fee is charged (this fee is automatically deducted). In this case, the fee varies based on how congested the Bitcoin blockchain is.

All incoming transactions to the platform’s wallet are processed for free. There is, however, a limit for minimum deposit (shown on the wallet page).

LocalBitcoins Non-trading fees

LocalBitcoins withdrawal fee is regulated automatically to ensure quick execution of transactions. In case of external issues with a transfer of fiat money or bitcoins (transaction failures or errors), you can leave a request for custom work, e.g. research of external problems. The cost of such service is EUR 200/hour.

Average commission of LocalBitcoins compared to competitors

LocalBitcoins Binance Huobi Global
Taker 0% 0,08% 0,13%
Maker 1% 0,06% 0,13%

The maker’s fee is 1%, which is higher than at the other cryptocurrency exchanges. However, the taker’s fee is 0%. Therefore, a conclusion can be made that the service offers rather good conditions for the takers.

Margin lending on LocalBitcoins

LocalBitcoins is a P2P exchange, where all transactions are performed exclusively between the users of the service. There is no margin lending on the platform.

Reliability and regulation

10
Pros
Regulated by the Financial Supervisory Authority of Finland
Operates in compliance with the international standards on preventing money laundering (AML) and KYC
Cons
No license for cryptocurrency trading

The company does not have the license for trading cryptocurrencies. However, the service offers other ways to protect your personal data and money.

The platform keeps records of all user transactions, collects user ratings and requires account verification for trading without restrictions.

Traders, on their part, can activate two-factor authentication, use the features of a cold wallet for holding assets and transfer only part of them to the trading account of the exchange. Coin escrow feature deserves special mention. Specifically, when a trader opens a sell position, the service automatically reserves the trade amount from the wallet and moves it to the escrow account. After you confirm the trade (after you receive payment), the funds held in escrow are transferred to the buyer. The security of the transaction is also regulated by the escrow service protocols.

For the protection of user data and cryptocurrency, the platform uses HTTPS encryption, SMS- and email alerts, and PGP encryption for emails. Automatic option Login Guard is yet another option of information security, which remembers the browsers and devices the clients use when passing authentication. When a new device is used, confirmation of access is sent to the email.

In the entire history of the exchange, there have been three attempts to hack it and steal users’ funds. The first time, the fraudsters hacked the service in 2015 and stole 17 Bitcoins. The next hacker attack happened in 2018, although no funds were stolen. The latest attack happened in 2019, when six user accounts were hacked and 8 Bitcoins were stolen.

After the hacker attacks, the entire security system of the exchange has been revised and strengthened. For example, the funds of the traders are held in cold wallets. However, in active trading, the escrow service provides a certain degree of risk minimization, ensuring temporary holding of the assets for payment and transaction confirmation.

LocalBitcoins markets and products

8

The users of the platform can buy or sell bitcoins, using 75 global currencies, including euro, dollar, British pound and Ukrainian hryvnia, as well as various assets that are not used as much for international payments (for example Tunisian Dinar or Leone).

Naturally, compared to other exchanges the choice is rather limited, but you shouldn’t forget that it is a P2P platform and not a traditional exchange.

Pros and cons of market diversity on LocalBitcoins
Pros
Payments in altcoins are accepted.
Cons
You can only buy Bitcoin

LocalBitcoins markets

LocalBitcoins Binance Huobi Global
Cryptocurrencies - 395 584
Trading pairs - 1682 1135
Bitcoin Yes Yes Yes
Etherium No Yes Yes
Altcoins No Yes Yes
Futures
and options
No Yes Yes
Cryptocurrency funds (a basket of cryptocurrencies in one lot) No No No
NFT No Yes Yes
* As a reminder, this is a P2P exchange that differs from other platforms. It is designed for purchase and sale of bitcoins between the users of the service and the trading pair here is BTC + a fiat asset.
Cryptocurrencies (spot)

At the moment, the platform offers access to 75 trading pairs*. All of them are BTC + a fiat asset. Also, starting from this year, 5 altcoins are available at the exchange, which can also be used for payments. Considering that LocalBitcoins is a P2P platform, the choice of assets is rather diverse. It is convenient that you can pay with different national currencies.

Passive income on LocalBitcoins

2

The platform currency does not offer passive income options.

Account opening on LocalBitcoins

10

In order to start trading at LocalBitcoins, the first thing you need to do is to create a personal account on the platform and open a trading account. The entire procedure will not take more than 36 hours (if the system has a low workload, verification can be quicker).

Account opening on LocalBitcoins
Pros
Simple registration algorithm.
You will need to provide a minimum of user information to create an account.
Cons

Residents of which countries can trade at the exchange?

As of now, creation of accounts and performance of any trade transactions on LocalBitcoins is prohibited for the residents and citizens of the following countries:

  • Afghanistan;
  • American Samoa;
  • The Bahamas;
  • North Korea;
  • Ethiopia;
  • Territory of Guam;
  • Pakistan;
  • Panama;
  • Puerto Rico;
  • Saudi Arabia;
  • Sri Lanka;
  • Syria;
  • Yemen.

How to open an account on LocalBitcoins:
a step-by-step guide

The procedure of registering a new account on the website is simple and clear.

Step
1

Open the official website of the exchange and click “Sign up free”. www.localbitcoins.com

Open an account on LocalBitcoins
Step
2

In the registration form, provide your username, email and come up with a password. Confirm your password, tick the box “I’m not a robot” and click “Sign up”.

Registration on LocalBitcoins
Step
3

Confirm registration of the new account by following the link from the message you received to your email. There, you have created a new account and received a free wallet for holding cryptocurrency.

To access your account, use your email and password.

Verification on the platform

In the middle of 2019, after another hacker attack, the exchange introduced a new verification system of user accounts. Now, there are 4 tiers on the platform.

T0 T1 T2 T3
Full name All information of T0. All information of T0 and T1. All earlier provided information.
Phone number Scanned copy of your ID document and the country of residence. Proof of address (utility bill, bank statement, for example).
Country of residence
This category of users cannot create transactions and the wallet for holding funds is not available. Transactions with external wallets are available (up to EUR 1,000). Access to the local Bitcoin wallet, transactions up to EUR 10,000. Unlimited access to transactions and several points to the personal rating of the trader, transactions over EUR 100,000.

In order to verify your account, open account settings (the menu in the top right corner) and select the corresponding page. Notably, if the trading volume exceeds the limit available on one tier of verification, the system requests verification for the next tier.

Minimum deposit on LocalBitcoins

In order to start trading at the exchange, you need to fund your account. Notably, the exchange does not have minimum deposit requirements.

LocalBitcoins Binance Huobi Global
Minimum deposit No $5 $20

Compared to the competitors, the platform offers the best conditions for trading the digital coin.

Account types

The users have access to a Bitcoin wallet and a fiat account for trading, and also the so-called cold wallet for holding the assets. There are no deposit/withdrawal limits on the wallet. However, in order for the transactions not to get deactivated, specialists recommend not to perform transactions for the amount that is lower than the limits specified on the buy/sell page (they change daily depending on the congestion of the blockchain).

Deposit and withdrawal on LocalBitcoins

9

Platform users can make deposits with debit/credit cards, via wire transfers and also transfers of digital assets from wallets. This is rather convenient, as you can deposit and withdraw funds in fiat as well as in cryptocurrency.

Pros
No deposit fee
No fees are charged on transfers inside the exchange to the cold wallet.
The limits of available trading transactions are regulated by the level of account verification.
Cons
If you deposit an amount equivalent to $20,000 you will need to provide documents on the source of the money.
Deposit and withdrawal options and processing time on LocalBitcoins
Deposit/withdrawal method Fee Processing time
Bitcoin No fee is charged on deposits, the withdrawal fee is calculated by the blockchain. Up to one hour (inside the system). If the deposit/withdrawal involves external wallets, it will take about 4 hours (depending on how congested the blockchain is).
Debit/credit cards Bank’s fee + 0.5% of the withdrawal amount Up to 3 working days.
Over 60 different payment systems Bank’s fee + 0.5% of the withdrawal amount Up to 3 working days.

Overall, the platform provides an excellent choice of deposit and withdrawal methods. However, you need to remember that your bank may charge additional fees, and then the total fees will be higher than stated on the exchange’s website.

Trading platforms on LocalBitcoins

7
Pros and cons
Pros
Easy navigation on the website.
All features are available on the home page.
Sellers’ rating.
Cons
There is no information about the current rate of Bitcoin used by the trading exchanges, not P2P platforms.

The main website of the exchange is very simple, but has all the necessary features. There is the company’s logo in the top menu that directs you back to the home page and also the “Buy Bitcoins” and Sell Bitcoins” buttons. There is also the “Learn” button with a pop-down menu to thematic sections, such as FAQ, Guides, Webinars, Blog, etc.

At the bottom of the page, you can find information about the services, regulations, and links to the company’s pages on social media, which is rather convenient.

The interface of the mobile application is similar to the web version.

Notably, unlike traditional exchanges, there are no price charts or other instruments of analysis and dynamics of the asset. However, taking into consideration that the users form the price themselves, this category of options is not necessary.

Trading platforms. Comparison with competitors.
LocalBitcoins Binance Huobi Global
Web platform Yes Yes Yes
Android Yes Yes Yes
iOS Yes Yes Yes
Desktop No Yes Yes

Analytics on LocalBitcoins

0

There is no section with analytical materials on the website.

Education on LocalBitcoins

9

Despite that the service is positioned as a P2P platform, there is a rather large number of educational materials here:

  • Thematic webinars (held in English);
  • FAQ, where you can find the instructions on how to work on the website;
  • Blog.

Let’s discuss the last one in more detail. Blog is a separate page of the service with a huge number of publications about Bitcoin. And these are not just price change reports, but rather detailed materials of security of transactions, causes of price growth or decline, popularity of the digital asset, etc.

Overall, the platform offers more than enough educational materials.

Pros
Easy explanation of complex terms and facts.
Answers to frequently asked questions.
The information is regularly updated.
Cons

You can also find short video tutorials on the YouTube channel of the exchange.

Customer support on LocalBitcoins

9

Customer support is excellent. You can contact the support specialists using the feedback form on the website or by sending an official request by email.

Pros
Several channels of communication, quick responses.
Cons
No contact with customer support via a live chat on the website.
Customer support languages

Customer support is provided in 7 languages: English, Russian, Chinese, Spanish, French, Italian.

Bonuses and promo

6

The platform offers a partnership program. Any user can participate in it. For this you need a new user to register using your referral link. The mandatory condition is that the new user starts trading.

The owner of the referral link will receive bonuses based on the fees for the transactions performed by the new user.

Summary

7,9

LocalBitcoins cryptocurrency exchange is a good way to buy or sell bitcoins. The service is very convenient, because you can use the currency of your country for transactions and choose the best rate.

The service guarantees a high level of protection and security of user information and funds.

The exchange charges low fees compared to the competitors and offers a rather wide selection of available payment systems.

In the company’s blog, the traders can learn about Bitcoin in detail.

Summing up, LocalBitcoins is a good service, but only for working with Bitcoin. Compared to the rest of the exchanges, it certainly is at a disadvantage, as it does not offer passive income options, lending and does not have high trading volumes. LocalBitcoins does not have the proper trading platform and instruments for active trading. However, taking into consideration that it is not a traditional exchange, but a P2P platform, the conclusion is that it is one of the best in the segment.

Reviews

4.3
9 reviews
Mai El Agezy
6 days ago
Was emailed that my account is terminated for no reason. Could be because of inactivity for a while but that money still belongs to me. I was told that I could make my last transaction to a wallet up to my choice which is fine. But after clicking the link they’ve sent and logging into my account literally nothing works. Perhaps because they terminated my account. Support ignores. I can’t resolve this on my own. I can’t recommend the exchange.
Karen D'Jong
9 days ago
Legitimate, compliant way to do p2p of your crypto. Everything is set up for a positive experience. And the main - nice trades! I’m impressed. Fast and very good guidelines.
JustCryptastic
12 days ago
Cryptocurrency trading is a great way to invest. The process of selling bitcoin on LocalBitcoins is very simple: just accept the offer from the buyer or submit an application to the selected seller. It’s easy to perform any actions on the exchange, as the interface is as clear as possible. It’s better to fill up the form with personal info in an honest way as it will be checked thoroughly.
jans mich
12 days ago
Crypto is a part of my life. Buying/selling BTC brings me a decent income. Special thanks to the developers of LocalBitcoins that there are no lags. I also like the built-in converter, so no need to visit additional sites for calculation. Prices are displayed up-to-date, the real time rate. The only con is that the commission is too high.
bonanza
15 days ago
First time, I was worried about getting ripped off. But that was a smooth and positive process. Thanks LocalBitcoins.
n$cole
16 days ago
Excellent. Even on the first day of trading experience. Friendly and helpful seller, easy procedure, immediate transfer!!! Strongly recommended.
local-duck
17 days ago
Great app, very easy to use. Great communication with support. But once I had difficulty with getting a verification code.
r. judd
20 days ago
It was the fastest and most enjoyable bitcoin buying experience of my life. Very good transaction procedures to follow, I like the steps. Excellent app for Android and easy to use. But they’re spamming my inbox with no way to unsubscribe.
Stacy Barrick
20 days ago
Quick, efficient, reliable, trustworthy! Easy to use, I will continue using this service.