LocalBitcoins Review in India
So you’ve read the Bitcoin whitepaper and found the project very exciting – good for you!
And now you’re thinking to invest in this tried and tested digital currency but can’t find a suitable place to buy bitcoin? I know that feeling all too well.
Buying bitcoin in India can be tricky as there are not many crypto exchanges that offer a wide range of payment methods. But don’t worry – I’ve gathered a few secure options to buy bitcoin in India.
In this guide, I’ll give you a complete overview of how to buy bitcoin instantly and safely using LocalBitcoins exchange.
Pros / Cons
- One of the established Bitcoin exchanges
- Wide range of payment methods
- Available worldwide
- Uses trusted reputation system
- Limited to Bitcoin trading
- Requires user caution
What is LocalBitcoins
Put simply, LocalBitcoins is a Bitcoin exchange where you can buy and sell bitcoins in a peer-to-peer (P2P) fashion. It is very different from other crypto exchanges like ZebPay or Binance, as it is a P2P marketplace.
You can think of it as an “eBay or Craigslist for Bitcoins” – where users post advertisements on the website and agree on trade terms for buying and selling bitcoins.
LocalBitcoins was founded by Jeremias Kangas in 2012 and has since grown to become one of the most widely used platforms to trade bitcoins. In 2019, LocalBitcoins was registered as a Virtual Currency Provider by the Finnish Financial Supervisory Authority.
LocalBitcoins Exchange and Wallet Services
LocalBitcoins exchange is truly a global platform, facilitating bitcoin trading in 248 countries. Impressive as it is, they also support 169 different fiat currencies.
In India, you can buy or sell bitcoins using one of the 44 different payment methods, including Paytm, Google Pay and bank transfer.
Other than fiat currencies, LocalBitcoins also supports crypto payments. So, you can also buy/sell bitcoins using one of the six supported altcoins: Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP), Stellar (XLM), Verge (XVG) or OKEx (OKB).
With their userLocalBitcoins has clearly stood the test of time since its inception in 2012.
Every LocalBitcoins account comes with a free LocalBitcoins wallet where you can store your bitcoins. Using this built-in web wallet, you can buy/sell bitcoins on LocalBitcoins exchange.
Additionally, you can also send or receive bitcoins from other external wallets.
LocalBitcoins doesn’t have a native mobile or desktop app – but you can access the website using your mobile browser.
How Does LocalBitcoins Work?
LocalBitcoins is a peer-to-peer platform – this means you trade bitcoins with other people online. Not only is LocalBitcoins a quick and easy way to trade bitcoins, but it also offers safe escrow protection to both the buyer and seller.
The escrow service ensures a fair trade, as the bitcoins are transferred to the buyer only after the funds are received in the seller’s account.
Before we get into the details of how to buy and sell bitcoins, let’s take a look at the account registration process.
Creating your LocalBitcoins Account
- Navigate to the LocalBitcoins website and click on the Sign up free button to register a new account
- Enter a desired username (it can be set only once), provide your email address and choose a strong password
- Check your details and click Register
- Email verification: Confirm your email by clicking on the link that was sent to you from LocalBitcoins
- Next, enter your Profile information: mobile number, country of residence and estimated trade volume and click Submit
- Enter the OTP that was sent to your mobile number to confirm your SMS verification
Once this is done, your account setup is complete!
To comply with anti-money laundering (AML) regulations, LocalBitcoins requires verification to know who its users are. Consequently, the know your customer (KYC) verification system increases the overall trust of the users and ensures a safe trading environment.
LocalBitcoins has four verification account levels: T0–T3. Since the verification system is progressive, users have to provide more details to unlock the next verification level.
If you’ve already completed your onboarding checks (email address and phone number verification), your account is T0 verified.
|Verification Level||Required Documents|
|T0||Full name, country of residence, email address, phone number|
|T1||Address check, ID verification, KYC info (and requires T0)|
|T2||Proof of residence (and requires T1)|
|T3||Extra ID verification (and requires T2)|
The trading restrictions associated with the four verification levels might slightly vary based on your country of residence’s regulatory and legal requirements. If your country of residence is India, you need to need a T1 verified account to buy bitcoins.
To complete this, you need to upload a valid ID proof; this can be your Aadhar card, PAN card, Passport or Voter ID.
And that’s it – once your account is T1 verified, you are ready to make your first bitcoin trade on LocalBitcoins!
How to Buy Bitcoin on LocalBitcoins
Before you start trading, I highly recommend that you enable two-factor authentication (2FA) as it adds an extra layer of security to your LocalBitcoins wallet. You can do this by navigating to Security > Settings.
LocalBitcoins Buying Limits
The buying limits depend on your account verification level.
For instance, if you’ve reached your T0 trading limit (€1000/year), then you’ll have to complete T1 verification to continue trading.
|Verification Level||Buying Limit|
|T0||Up to €1000/year|
|T1||Up to €20,000/year|
|T2||Up to €200,000/year|
Unlike centralized crypto exchanges, LocalBitcoins is very user-centric and employs a relatively simple fee structure.
Here’s an in-depth breakdown of the LocalBitcoins fee structure.
Registering an account in LocalBitcoins is free of charge. This account comes with a free LocalBitcoins wallet with which you can send or receive bitcoins.
Since LocalBitcoins is a peer-to-peer trading platform, there is no membership fee.
LocalBitcoins Transaction Fees
Buying and selling bitcoins on LocalBitcoins is completely free.
However, LocalBitcoins charges a 1% fee for every completed trade to its users who create buy/sell advertisements. So, only the users who are promoting their services are charged.
Transactions (send/receive) to the LocalBitcoins wallet of other users are free. But if you are transacting with other Bitcoin wallets, you have to pay a small amount of Bitcoin Network fee.
If you are receiving bitcoins to your LocalBitcoins wallet from other Bitcoin wallets, there’s a deposit fee. This “receiving fee” varies depending on the Bitcoin blockchain congestion.
You can find this deposit Transaction fee on the wallet receive page. The current deposit fee is 0.00004521 BTC. This amount will be deducted from the deposit.
You have to pay a “sending fee” when you withdraw bitcoins from your LocalBitcoins wallet to another Bitcoin wallet.
The withdrawal fees depend on how congested the blockchain is. So, when you send a transaction, this amount will be paid from your LocalBitcoins wallet.
This fee is visible on the wallet send page. The current withdrawal fee is 0.00004785 BTC.
Though LocalBitcoins is a convenient platform to trade bitcoins, it is important to note that the buying fees vary based on your preferred payment method.
LocalBitcoins Customer Support
LocalBitcoins has covered pretty much every query one might have, in their guides and FAQs. Besides, the LocalBitcoins community is enormous – so you can also request help from their forums.
If you can’t find what you are looking for, you can reach LocalBitcoins support through their support ticket system. They have a highly responsive support team, so you won’t have to wait more than 24 hours to get a response.
Is LocalBitcoins Reliable?
LocalBitcoins has had its fair share of negative criticism over the years, especially related to people getting scammed by sellers. This was mainly because LocalBitcoins does not have an extensive screening process for its buyers and sellers.
But, ever since the team implemented a reputation system (to filter out the bad actors), they’ve been getting overwhelmingly positive reviews from the community.
LocalBitcoins is one of the best bitcoin trading platforms on the planet. Their escrow service, reputation system and community make them a safe and attractive platform to trade bitcoins.
Is LocalBitcoins Legal in India?
The short answer is, yes.
Ever since the supreme court of India overturned RBI’s ban on cryptocurrency trading, the government has been crafting a regulatory framework for the blockchain and crypto community.
So, should you be worried? Not at all. But, you should keep tabs on the regulation updates from the government.
Conclusion: Is LocalBitcoins For You?
LocalBitcoins is a great way to trade bitcoins—this is especially the case for people in countries where there are not many options.
The platform provides a wide range of payment options to choose from -this is convenient for anyone who wants to dip their toes in Bitcoin trading.
Also, it’s one of the few marketplaces to get to know the crypto community in India.
LocalBitcoins is exclusive to BTC trading – and this might be a concern for many advanced traders. Although the platform supports a wide range of fiat-BTC trading pairs, there’s no option to trade with other altcoins.
Since there’s no dedicated native mobile app, day trading on the go is not possible.
Despite its altcoins limitations, LocalBitcoins has been the go-to marketplace for all traders to buy and sell bitcoins.
So, if you’ve read this LocalBitcoins review from start to finish, you should be able to explore the exchange flawlessly.
|Founders||Jermias Kangas and Nicholas Kangas|
|Supported Countries||248 countries|
|Customer Support Helpline||N/A|
|Social Media Community||Twitter, Reddit, YouTube|