Coinmama is a cryptocurrency exchange created in 2013 allowing you to purchase Bitcoin or the major altcoins with a number of different payment options and currencies. They now serve over 1.5 million customers across 190 countries.
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Coinmama was one of the original cryptocurrency exchanges. They hung out their digital shingle in 2013 and were among the first to offer credit card purchases of virtual currencies. Like a lot of their competitors, they started as a Bitcoin-only exchange. But it didn’t take long for them to expand to Ethereum and gradually to other coins.
Before we go too far, we should clarify that they’re not an “exchange” as most people probably understand the word. They’re a buy-only platform that allows interested parties to purchase some of the major cryptocurrencies and store them in a virtual wallet of their choice. At the same time, it should be noted that whispers are afoot that Coinmama will start allowing crypto sales in the near future.
Today Coinmama boasts some 1.5 million regular customers and operate in more than 200 countries worldwide. And although they are registered in Slovakia, their defacto headquarters are in Israel.
Before you can start buying Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies on Coinmama, you’ll need to register. To do so, just fill out the registration form on their website and provide:
- A valid email address.
- Your full first and last name.
- Your country of residence.
- And then choose a password.
A verification email will be sent to the address you provided that includes a verification link. Once you click on that verification link, you’ll be directed to a follow-up page where you complete the registration process by providing more personal information including a phone number and proof of a valid, government-issued ID. Once you have submitted all your information and it has been accepted, you’ll be able to start buying cryptocurrencies.
If there is one area where Coinmama tends to run into a lot of resistance from hard-bitten cryptocurrency traders, it’s in their fee structure. Simply put, their fees are some of the stiffest you’ll find. Those fees include:
- A 6.15% transaction fee on each purchase.
- An additional 5.65% fee if you purchase with a credit card.
That means you’ll be paying a premium of nearly 12% on your purchases if you use a credit card. Which is pretty extraordinary and will have a lot of people thinking twice. In addition, you should be mindful of the fact that some credit card issuers categorize a cryptocurrency purchase as a cash advance. If the financial institution that issued your card is one of them, you can expect and additional hefty fee to be added to the purchase price.
Which Cryptocurrencies are Available to Purchase Through Coinmama?
As we mentioned, Coinmama started as a Bitcoin (BTC) only purchase platform but has expanded in recent years to also offer:
- Ethereum (ETH)
- Litecoin (LTC)
- Ethereum Classic (ETC)
- Bitcoin Cash (BCH)
- Qtum (QTUM)
- Ripple (XRP)
- Cardano (ADA)
What About Transaction Limits?
Coinmama imposes limits based on whether you’ve made a cash purchase or credit card purchase. Your verification status also affects your potential transaction limit. As a general rule transaction limits are:
- $5,000 per day when buying with cash or credit card.
- $20,000 per month if you purchase only with credit cards.
As we said, your verification level also impacts your transaction level.
- Level 1 verification earns you a $ 10,000 lifetime purchase limit.
- Level 2 raises that limit to $50,000.
- And with level 3 verification, there is no lifetime limit on how much crypto you can purchase.
These verification limits are characterized by the amount of personal information you’re willing to divulge to the company. To attain verification level 3, they may go so far as to run a background check on you to see if, for instance, you’ve ever been convicted of securities fraud.
Coinmama has a middling reputation for security that was severely tarnished in Feb 2019 when it was revealed hackers made off with millions of customer data records. The data theft involved more than 1/3 of the company’s customers and sent confidence in the exchange into free-fall.
In the months since Coinmama claims to have taken steps to bolster security although, as of this writing, they still don’t require something as simple as two-factor authentication on purchases.
The Bottom Line
Coinmama got into the crypto business early, and yet they’ve never really taken off. They seem content to sit back and enjoy the money they’re making from their elevated fee structure and reluctant to spend any of their profits on improving security. While they may come around at some future date, our advice would be to proceed with caution when using Coinmama.