How to Use a Bitcoin ATM ? A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

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The first Bitcoin ATM was Robocoin, which opened on October 29, 2013, in Vancouver and processed over 1,000,000 Canadian dollars in the following months. As of January 1, 2021, there are more than 14,000 ATMs around the world. 

Bitcoin ATMs allow users to buy and sell Bitcoins for cash. Today, Bitcoin ATMs are one of the fastest ways to purchase Bitcoins. But what are the advantages of BTMs, and are there any disadvantages? How safe is it to use them? Let’s find out in this article.

How do Bitcoin ATMs work?

Bitcoin kiosks look like a usual ATM from which we used to withdraw money. However, the device is connected via the Internet to the Bitcoin blockchain. During the operation, it gives the user an address to which the cryptocurrency has been transferred (in the form of a usual address or a QR code). The purchased cryptocurrency is transferred from one of the company’s wallets that owns the ATM.

Types of Bitcoin ATMs

There are three main options available for users:

  • Buy Bitcoins (purchase);
  • Sell Bitcoin (withdrawal);
  • Both buy and sell.

The commission fee in a Bitcoin ATM depends on the pricing policy of the operator company. In most cases, it is 7-9% of the transaction amount.

There are several safety procedures for each operation. For example, you may be asked to enter a pin-code, which will be sent to the mobile phone number you entered earlier, pass the KYC process, or you can confirm your personal ID by providing a selfie. 

How to Buy Bitcoin in BTM

Buying Bitcoin in ATM is a simple process. Here is a short and simple algorithm to buy Bitcoin in ATM:

1. Find an ATM Near You

How to find Bitcoin ATM locations? They are usually located in cafes, bars, and shops. You can find the location of your nearest ATM on live maps like CoinATMRadar, Coin ATM Finder, and Bitcoin ATM Map. Create an account and pass the KYC process.

2. Open a Bitcoin Mobile Wallet

Before buying any coins, get a Bitcoin wallet. The easiest way is to download an app on your phone. Remember to transfer your money later if you are planning to hodl Bitcoin for the long term. Set it up, and don’t forget to secure it (seed phrase, 2-factor authentication, password, Face ID, etc.)

In most cases, a Bitcoin wallet is used on a smartphone or tablet. They are suitable for convenient storage and use of small amounts of BTC that you buy with a Bitcoin machine.

3. Buy Bitcoin at the Bitcoin ATM

After you have reached the ATM, access the dashboard, fill in the amount you want to purchase, scan your wallet QR code or type it manually, put the cash into the machine. Your transaction might be confirmed in a matter of hours. 

4. A Real-Life Example of a Bitcoin Purchase at an ATM

You might ask, ‘How do I buy Bitcoins with a Bitcoin ATM?’ First of all, to start using BTC ATM you should create an account on the ATM operator’s website. Let’s look at a specific example on Satoshi 1 ATM.

  1. By the first step, you might verify your identity to start your ATM experience (KYC purposes).

2. Next step – enter your verification code.

3. Indicate how much Bitcoin coins (in USD) you want to purchase.

4. Select a coin you want to purchase

5. Select the way you want to fill in your Bitcoin wallet address – by QR code or typing manually.

6. Scan the digital wallet’s QR code.

7. Insert the fiat currencies (cash) into the ATM.

8. Your transaction has been created. Wait for the transaction confirmation and accept money in your wallet.

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How to Sell Bitcoin at a Bitcoin ATM

‘How do I withdraw from a Bitcoin ATM?’ is the next question you might face. Some Bitcoin ATMs allow customers to withdraw cash for BTC. Here is how to use ATM in this way:

  • Create an account on the ATM operator’s website.
  • Log into your account or verify your identity on the nearest Bitcoin ATM, fill in the amount you want to sell, and indicate your cryptocurrency wallet address.
  • Confirm the transaction on your wallet, and wait for verification. Usually, it takes about 10-30 minutes.

Thinking about selling Bitcoins? Please, note that Bitcoin ATM operators charge the fee for the service. The Bitcoin network fee is excluded from the final amount. 

How to Send Cash to Someone Using a Bitcoin ATM

‘How do I send money through a Bitcoin ATM?’ – one more question you might ask. An ATM is an excellent way to transfer money. Here is how to send Bitcoin:

  • Create an account if you haven’t done it yet.
  • Go to the nearest ATM and log into your account. Fill in the amount of cash you are ready to deposit and indicate the wallet address you send money to.
  • Insert cash and wait for the confirmation. 

Bitcoin ATM Warnings

There are four points to consider when using Bitcoin ATMs: 

  • Bitcoin transactions are irreversible due to the blockchain nature.
  • Never share your private key.
  • Never pay for services or goods if the merchant asks you to do it.
  • Never purchase Bitcoin for anyone. Sometimes, you need to provide your ID, so do it only for your own purposes.

You can also buy Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency directly via our instant exchange service. Check out our cross-rates and find the one that suits you best. 

Bitcoin ATM  – FAQ

In this section, we answer the most common questions about Bitcoin ATMs. 

How do I withdraw money from BTC ATM?

We’ve already described the mechanism in the article. You should find the BTC ATM with a selling/withdrawing function, scan QR-code and then you get cash.

Does Bitcoin ATM accept debit card?

Some Bitcoin ATMs in the US allow the purchasing Bitcoin using a credit card, but there are only a few dozen of them. The vast majority of Bitcoin ATMs work exclusively with cash.

How do I deposit money into a Bitcoin ATM?

Find the nearest Bitcoin ATM, then scan the QR-code of your Bitcoin address, and put cash into the ATM – voila!

Are Bitcoin ATMs safe?

If you are using an authorized machine, so the process is absolutely safe.



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