Revolut: Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies

revolut bitcoin

Revolut jumped on the steaming Bitcoin and crypto bandwagon in 2017 just in time for the unprecedented boom and the following 2018 market crash. 

They initially gave their users exposure to Bitcoin (BTC), Litecoin (LTC), and Ethereum (ETH). The important word here is exposure and you’ll find out why if you keep reading. But first, here’s our short verdict of Revolut crypto features:

While Revolut makes it extremely easy to invest in cryptocurrencies and has made a wider audience aware of Bitcoin and altcoins, there are quite a few downsides to this ease-of-use. High markups and no way of sending or spending cryptos are some serious drawbacks and a more serious investor will shy away from using Revolut in this manner.

Revolut for Cryptocurrencies

Pros

  • Easy to sign up
  • You can start trading in seconds
  • It’s beginner-friendly
  • 10 cryptos to choose from

Cons

  • High fees
  • No way to send crypto to a wallet
  • No way to spend your crypto
  • 10 cryptos to choose from

Besides cryptocurrencies, you can buy stocks and commodities in some countries with the same ease. This can make you a full-fledged investor in a couple of minutes. If that’s not something to brag about in the pub, we don’t know what is.

How do I Buy and Sell Cryptocurrency?

The process is really easy, and that’s one of the things that we liked the most in this Revolut Bitcoin review. Here are the steps:

  1. Download the Revolut app on your phone or sign up online.
  2. Go to Dashboard, Cryptocurrencies, and accept the T&Cs 
  3. You can now browse cryptos and their market rates
  4. That’s it. Buy, trade, or sell.

If you already have a Revolut account, locate the ‘Crypto’ section in the ‘Wealth’ tab of your app and accept the T&Cs (after reading them).

How Much Does it Cost to Buy or Sell?

Just how much exactly does Revolut charge for investing in Bitcoin and others? Well, users of the Standard and Plus account will get hit by a 2.5% exchange markup, while Premium and Metal users get charged only 1.5%. 

Plus, Premium and Metal are all paid accounts. Find all their features here.

Can I set Target Prices for Trading?

Any respectable crypto exchange has to allow for stop orders and limit orders, and Revolut is no different. They used to call this feature Auto-exchange but now it’s more in line with the terminology used by traders. 

If you set a stop order, the app will automatically buy or sell (depending on what you chose) crypto once it reaches the specified price (the stop price). 

A limit order will make the app buy or sell at the specified price or better. 

How Does Revolut’s Cryptocurrency Exchange Work?

While a regular crypto exchange does require at least some knowledge of general trading principles, Revolut makes it super-easy to trade; for better or worse. 

Revolut also doesn’t have its own crypto exchange; they’ve partnered with other, respectable exchanges to offer this service on their app. It seems that one of their partner exchanges is Bitstamp.

When you’re trying to buy Bitcoin, for example, you’ll get a live rate that is streamed directly from Revolut’s partner exchanges. 

What’s important to understand is that these rates are computed as a Volume Weighted Average Price or VWAP that doesn’t reflect short-lived price movements and that could get you a worse rate.

Revolut also marks-up a flat fee of 1.5% or 2.5% (depending on your account) to account for trading volatility.

What Cryptocurrencies are Available?

The following cryptocurrencies are available on the platform: 

  • Bitcoin (BTC), 
  • Bitcoin Cash (BCH), 
  • Ethereum (ETH), 
  • Litecoin (LTC), 
  • Ripple (XRP), 
  • Stellar (XLM), 
  • EOS (EOS), 
  • OMG Network (OMG), 
  • 0x (ZRX), and 
  • Tezos (XTZ).

Transferring or Spending Cryptocurrency

Your cryptos are basically landlocked on your Revolut app and unfortunately can’t be transferred to anyone that isn’t a Revolut user.

You might be thinking, if I can’t transfer them, can I at least, I don’t know, spend them? That would be great, but I’ll have to disappoint you again. You can only spend fiat currency. If you have the only cryptocurrency in your account, the payment will fail. 

The Exchange Rate

The crypto exchange rates are constantly changing to reflect what is happening on the market. The rates are set by Revolut, based on the rate that the crypto exchanges offer them.

The important thing to remember is that the rate doesn’t include the 1.5% or 2.5% fee that Revolut charges for buying and selling cryptocurrencies. So, although it’s easy to invest in crypto via Revolut, it might end up costing you quite a penny.

Am I the Real Owner of Bitcoin on Revolut?

The fact that you can’t manage your cryptocurrencies outside the Revolut app, makes you merely “exposed” to them, while the real owner and holder of cryptos are still Revolut. 

Seasoned crypto enthusiasts will tell you that the app defacto doesn’t allow you to buy them or transfer them into your crypto wallet. Go anywhere where Revolut and Bitcoin are in the same sentence and you will see a trail of comments that reminds you of the fact!

Competitors

Revolut vs Coinbase

Coinbase is the biggest and most-known crypto exchange in the world that offers around 50 cryptocurrencies on their marketplace. They also have a physical Visa card that lets you spend your cryptos directly from your account. And you can get them off the exchange and into your crypto wallet.

Revolut vs Wirex

Wirex is another great alternative to Revolut that has run into some issues lately. But Wirex lets you own the crypto and use it as you wish, ie. use every day with their card or transfer it to an outside wallet. You also get cash back in crypto. Read more in our Wirex review here.

The Bottom Line

Revolut is a great tool for beginners to get exposure to the all-encompassing BTC and other, to the general public, lesser-known cryptos. For everyone else, the fact that there are high fees and that there’s no ability to transfer your coins off Revolut will be a deal-breaker.