In a nutshell, the best places to buy Ethereum in the UK are eToro, Uphold, and Coinbase. Each of these platforms offers user-friendly interfaces and secure transactions. They are widely recognised for their reliability and range of services in cryptocurrency trading.
I remember when I first bought Ethereum (ETH), it was overwhelming and I felt out of my depth.
If you’re feeling this way or you’re looking for the best place to buy Ethereum in the UK, this guide is for you.
I will walk you through the process step-by-step, ensuring you can securely buy ETH with confidence.
I’ll cover key aspects like selecting the right exchange, payment methods, and security precautions.
This article was reviewed by Tobi Opeyemi Amure, a cryptocurrency expert and writer at Investopedia, Investing.com, and Trading.biz.
Best Places to Buy Ethereum UK Ranked
Here is a quick list of the best Ethereum exchanges to use in the UK based on my hands-on analysis:
- eToro – Overall best place to buy Ethereum UK
- Uphold – Best buying and selling Ethereum
- Coinbase – Easy-to-use Ethereum broker
- Kraken – Cheapest way to buy Ethereum UK
- Revolut – Best if you want your mobile banking & Ethereum in one place
Best Places to Buy Ethereum Compared for UK Investors
Here I’ve compared the platforms based on four key factors you must consider and compare:
What is the best way to buy Ethereum in the UK?
|Fees to buy Ethereum
|GBP deposit methods
+ market spread
|Bank transfer, debit card,
Neteller, Skrill, eToro Money
|1% trading fee
& 1% spread fee
|Debit card fee
|Bank transfer (ACH), debit card,
Apple Pay, Google Pay
+ 0.5% spread fee
|Debit card fee
|Bank transfer, credit card,
cryptocurrency, debit card, PayPal
|£1 fee on
|Bank transfer, credit card,
cryptocurrency, debit card,
Apple Pay, Google Pay, SWIFT
|Bank transfer, credit card,
cryptocurrency, debit card, Apple Pay,
Google Pay, SWIFT
Reviews of the Best Places to Buy Ethereum in the UK
Ethereum and cryptocurrency are moving fast in the UK, here are some statistics that highlight the movement.
- As of 2023, nearly 4.97 million people in the UK hold some form of crypto asset, which is nearly 10% of the population1.
- The revenue in the cryptocurrency market in the UK is projected to reach US$1.89bn in 2023, with an annual growth rate of 18.84%2.
- Almost 500 businesses in the UK accept cryptocurrency as a payment method3.
As you can see, crypto and Ethereum are gaining traction in the UK and reshaping the financial scene daily4.
In fact, “After the approval of the Bitcoin ETF, the price of Ether, the cryptocurrency linked to Ethereum, spiked to its highest level since May 2022 on hopes that an ETF for the token might be given the green light next (source).”
But, the complexities put many people off, but I’m here to shine some light on it.
Having worked in the retail investment & crypto sector in London over the last four years, I had the opportunity to experience the rise in cryptocurrency first-hand.
Using my experience in this field, I’ve compiled a list of the best places to buy ETH based on three key criteria:
- Fees to buy Ethereum
- Deposit fees
- GBP deposit methods
Factors such as usability, education materials, and additional features were also considered.
All the platforms I’ve reviewed below are regulated by the UK’s financial watchdog, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), and have apps available on Android and iOS. You can read about how we test platforms here.
I’ve done a lot of testing on different exchanges, you can see my comprehensive guide to the best crypto exchanges in the UK here.
But, below is a shortened version of the top 3 platforms I recommend for investing in Ethereum.
1. eToro – Overall best place to buy Ethereum UK
eToro is a secure, FCA-regulated exchange in the UK, acclaimed for its user-friendly platform and selection of over 90 cryptocurrencies including Ethereum.
It offers innovative tools like CopyTrader and Smart Portfolios, suitable for both beginners and experienced traders.
The platform charges a 1% fee on Ethereum trades and has low GBP deposit fees.
eToro’s global reputation is solidified by an ‘Excellent’ rating on Trustpilot, reflecting high user satisfaction.
Read my full eToro review.
2. Uphold – Best buying and selling Ethereum
Uphold stands as a versatile crypto platform and multi-asset brokerage in the UK, featuring an extensive array of over 250 cryptocurrencies, Ethereum included.
The platform uses a variable spread fee model, generally ranging from 0.8% to 1.2%, and is dedicated to transparency and security, evident through regular financial updates and independent audits.
Uphold, with its wide range of altcoins, complements eToro for those seeking diverse trading options.
Read my full Uphold review.
3. Coinbase – Easy-to-use Ethereum broker
Since 2012, Coinbase has grown into a globally recognised exchange with over 70 million users, supporting a variety of over 200 cryptocurrencies, including Ethereum.
It appeals to a broad spectrum of traders with offerings like Coinbase Pro and a range of educational resources while prioritising security with offline storage and two-factor authentication.
Despite a fee structure that varies from 0% to 3.99%, Coinbase is esteemed for its comprehensive security measures and extensive crypto wallet services.
Read my full Coinbase review.
How to Buy Ethereum UK – Step-by-Step Guide
For an in-depth approach, here’s a detailed guide on how to buy Ethereum in the UK:
1. Register with an exchange
Choosing an exchange: Research exchanges that support Ethereum transactions, focusing on their security measures, ease of use, and credibility. Consider transaction fees, user feedback, customer support quality, and regulatory compliance.
Creating an account: Visit the selected exchange’s website or mobile app. Look for the sign-up or registration button to start the process.
Verification process: To comply with regulatory standards, provide necessary personal details and a government-issued ID for identity verification. This step is crucial for account security and to prevent fraud.
Securing your account: Enhance your account’s security by enabling two-factor authentication (2FA). This typically involves linking your account to a phone number or an authenticator app, adding an extra layer of security beyond just a password.
2. Deposit GBP into your newly created account
Linking a payment method: Add a payment method to your exchange account, such as linking a bank account, credit card, or debit card. Ensure that your chosen method is approved for transactions with cryptocurrency platforms.
Making a deposit: Access the ‘Deposit Funds’ section, select GBP as your currency, input the amount you wish to deposit, and confirm your transaction. Be mindful of potential deposit fees and transaction limits.
Transaction processing time: The processing time for your deposit can vary depending on your chosen method and bank. It’s important to wait for the transaction to fully process before proceeding to purchase Ethereum.
3. Conduct thorough research on Ethereum
Understanding Ethereum’s fundamentals: Educate yourself about Ethereum’s core technology, including its blockchain basis, smart contract functionality, and its role in the broader crypto ecosystem.
Market analysis and trends: Regularly follow Ethereum market trends, news, and expert analyses. This will help you understand market dynamics and make more informed investment decisions.
Risk assessment: Evaluate how Ethereum’s price volatility aligns with your risk tolerance and investment goals. Cryptocurrency markets can be unpredictable, so it’s crucial to understand your personal risk threshold.
4. Purchase Ethereum
Exploring the exchange: Familiarise yourself with the exchange’s user interface, specifically the section for buying and selling Ethereum.
Planning your purchase: Decide the amount of Ethereum you want to buy. It’s advisable to start with a small amount if you’re a beginner, to understand the market without significant risk.
Executing the transaction: Find Ethereum (ETH) on the platform, enter your desired purchase amount, check the current price and associated fees, and then confirm the transaction. Ensure that your account balance reflects the new Ethereum holding.
5. Set up a secure Ethereum wallet
Choosing the right wallet: Research and select a wallet that supports Ethereum. Decide whether a hardware wallet (for higher security) or a software wallet (for more convenience) fits your needs better.
Wallet setup: Follow the provided instructions to set up your wallet. This could involve downloading software or purchasing and setting up a hardware wallet device.
Ensuring wallet security: Secure your wallet with a strong, unique password. Write down your recovery phrase and store it in a safe place. Consider using additional security features if available.
You can see my guide on the best crypto wallets in the UK here to help you with this step.
6. Safely store your Ethereum
Assessing storage options: Weigh the advantages and risks of keeping your Ethereum on the exchange (for ease of access and trading) versus transferring it to your private wallet (for enhanced security).
Transferring Ethereum to your wallet: If you opt for a wallet, generate a receiving address in your wallet, and use this to transfer Ethereum from your exchange account.
Ongoing management: Regularly monitor your Ethereum investment. Stay updated with market trends and changes in security protocols, especially if you keep a significant amount in your wallet or on the exchange.
For those planning to use or trade small amounts of Ethereum in the near term, keeping it on the exchange might be practical.
However, for larger amounts or long-term holdings, transferring to a secure hardware wallet is generally recommended for enhanced security.
What Is Ethereum?
Ethereum is a decentralised, open-source blockchain platform that enables the creation and execution of smart contracts and decentralised applications (DApps).
It was proposed by Vitalik Buterin in 2013 and launched in 2015.
Unlike Bitcoin, which primarily serves as a digital currency, Ethereum is designed as a programmable platform. Its native cryptocurrency is called Ether (ETH), and it acts as a means of value exchange within the Ethereum network.
Ethereum’s distinguishing feature is its ability to support smart contracts. These are self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement directly written into the code.
Smart contracts eliminate the need for intermediaries and allow for trustless and transparent execution of agreements.
Developers can leverage Ethereum’s platform to build and deploy decentralised applications, ranging from decentralised finance (DeFi) protocols and tokenised assets to gaming and decentralised exchanges.
Ethereum’s vast ecosystem and large developer community have contributed to its widespread adoption and influence in the blockchain space.
Additionally, Ethereum has undergone significant upgrades, with the most notable being Ethereum 2.0.
This upgrade aims to improve scalability, security, and sustainability by transitioning the network from a proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism to a more energy-efficient proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism.
Overall, Ethereum plays a vital role in driving innovation in blockchain technology, offering a versatile platform for the creation of decentralised applications and the execution of smart contracts.
How Does Ethereum Work?
Ethereum operates as a decentralised, programmable blockchain platform.
It employs a combination of innovative technologies and protocols to facilitate its functioning.
Here’s a simplified overview of how Ethereum works:
- Blockchain Infrastructure: Ethereum operates on a distributed network of computers, known as nodes, that collectively maintain a decentralised ledger called the blockchain. This blockchain contains a record of all transactions and smart contracts executed on the Ethereum network.
- Smart Contracts: Ethereum’s key feature is its ability to execute smart contracts. Smart contracts are self-executing agreements with the terms written in code. They automatically execute actions and transactions when predefined conditions are met. Smart contracts enable trustless and transparent interactions without the need for intermediaries.
- Ether (ETH): Ethereum has its native cryptocurrency called Ether (ETH). It serves multiple purposes within the Ethereum network, including compensating participants for computational efforts (mining or validating transactions) and as a means of exchange for value transfer.
- Gas and Transaction Fees: To prevent abuse and prioritise network resources, Ethereum utilises a concept called gas. Gas is a unit that measures the computational effort required to execute operations or smart contracts on the network. Each operation has a gas cost associated with it. Users must pay transaction fees in Ether to cover the gas cost of their operations.
- Consensus Mechanism: Ethereum currently operates on a proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism. Miners compete to solve complex mathematical problems, and the first miner to find a valid solution adds a new block of transactions to the blockchain. However, Ethereum is transitioning to a proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism, known as Ethereum 2.0, where validators are chosen to create new blocks based on the amount of Ether they hold and are willing to “stake” as collateral.
- Decentralised Applications (DApps): Ethereum allows developers to build decentralised applications (DApps) on its platform. These DApps leverage smart contracts and interact with the Ethereum blockchain, enabling a wide range of use cases such as decentralised finance (DeFi), non-fungible tokens (NFTs), gaming, and more.
By combining these elements, Ethereum creates a decentralised platform for the execution of smart contracts and the development of innovative decentralised applications, revolutionising various industries by introducing trust, transparency, and programmability to digital interactions.
Commonly Asked Questions About Ethereum
What is Ethereum 2.0?
Ethereum 2.0, or ETH 2.0, is a major upgrade to the Ethereum blockchain. It replaces the current energy-intensive proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism with a more efficient proof-of-stake (PoS) mechanism.
Ethereum 2.0 introduces shard chains for increased scalability, a Beacon Chain for coordination, and incorporates improvements like EIP-1559. This upgrade aims to enhance scalability, security, and sustainability, enabling Ethereum to support more transactions and decentralised applications (DApps).
What is staking?
Staking in the context of Ethereum refers to the process of participating in the Ethereum 2.0 upgrade by holding and locking up Ether (ETH) as collateral to support the network’s security and consensus.
Validators stake their ETH to earn rewards and help secure the Ethereum network through the proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism.
Will Ethereum overtake Bitcoin?
It is uncertain whether Ethereum will surpass Bitcoin in terms of market capitalisation or dominance. Both cryptocurrencies serve different purposes and have their unique strengths within the cryptocurrency ecosystem. The future outcome and dominance of each cryptocurrency are influenced by various factors and remain unpredictable.
Is Ethereum a good investment?
Whether Ethereum is a good investment depends on various factors, including individual financial goals, risk tolerance, and market conditions.
Ethereum has shown significant growth and has gained attention due to its widespread adoption, development activity, and the potential for decentralised applications (DApps) built on its platform.
It has also experienced price volatility, as is common in the cryptocurrency market.
Before considering any investment, it is important to conduct thorough research, understand the underlying technology, and evaluate the potential risks and rewards associated with investing in Ethereum or any other cryptocurrency.
Can I buy ETH with GBP?
Yes, it is possible to buy Ethereum (ETH) with GBP (British Pound). There are several ways to do this:
- Cryptocurrency Exchanges: Many reputable cryptocurrency platforms allow you to trade GBP for Ethereum. You can create an account on a cryptocurrency exchange that supports GBP deposits and withdrawals, complete any necessary verification processes, and then proceed to buy Ethereum using your GBP funds.
- Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Trading Platforms: P2P platforms facilitate direct transactions between buyers and sellers. You can find individuals willing to sell Ethereum in exchange for GBP and arrange the transaction accordingly.
- Over-the-Counter (OTC) Desks: OTC desks specialise in handling large cryptocurrency transactions. They can assist you in buying Ethereum with GBP, especially for larger trades that may require personalised assistance and support.
When using any of these methods, it’s essential to research and choose a reputable platform or service provider.
Consider factors such as fees, security measures, liquidity, and user reviews to ensure a reliable and trustworthy transaction.
What is the best way to buy Ethereum?
To buy Ethereum, first select a suitable crypto exchange. Then follow the steps below:
- Choose a cryptocurrency platform: Select where you will buy Ethereum. Consider user experience, transaction fees, regulatory compliance, and security features of different platforms.
- Register for an account: Visit the website of your chosen platform to start setting up your account. This process typically involves providing basic personal details and verifying your identity.
- Decide on investment amount: Determine how much Ethereum (ETH) you want to invest in. Having a clear idea of your investment size is important before proceeding to the next step.
- Fund your account: Look for the ‘Deposit Funds’ option on your platform. It’s usually located at the bottom left of the screen. Choose your preferred payment method and complete the deposit.
- Purchase Ethereum: Search for ‘ETH’ in the platform’s search bar. When Ethereum appears, select ‘Trade’, enter the amount you want to buy, and confirm the transaction by clicking ‘Open Trade’.
What happens after I buy Ethereum?
After you buy Ethereum, several things can happen depending on your intentions and actions:
Holding: You can choose to hold onto your Ethereum as an investment, expecting its value to potentially increase over time. By securely storing your Ethereum in a cryptocurrency wallet, you can monitor its price movements and decide when to sell or use it for other purposes.
Trading: If you’re interested in actively trading Ethereum, you can use cryptocurrency exchanges or trading platforms to take advantage of price fluctuations. Traders aim to profit from short-term price movements by buying low and selling high. This involves monitoring the market, analysing charts, and implementing trading strategies.
Using Ethereum: Ethereum is more than just a cryptocurrency; it’s a decentralised platform that enables the creation of smart contracts and decentralised applications (DApps). You can use your Ethereum to interact with DApps, participate in decentralised finance (DeFi) protocols, or access various services and applications within the Ethereum ecosystem.
Transferring or Sending: Ethereum can be sent or transferred to other individuals or addresses. If you need to make a payment or send Ethereum to someone else, you can initiate a transaction by specifying the recipient’s Ethereum address and the amount you want to send.
Remember, it’s essential to ensure the security of your Ethereum by using reputable wallets, following best practices for storing private keys, and staying informed about potential security risks or scams in the cryptocurrency space.
Is Ethereum legal in the UK?
Yes, Ethereum (ETH) and other cryptocurrencies are legal in the UK. The UK government recognises cryptocurrencies as property, and they are subject to existing laws and regulations.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the regulatory body responsible for overseeing financial activities in the UK, has implemented regulations to combat money laundering and ensure consumer protection in the cryptocurrency space.
Cryptocurrency exchanges and service providers in the UK must comply with these regulations, including Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) requirements.
It’s important to note that the legal status and regulatory environment surrounding cryptocurrencies can vary from country to country.
While cryptocurrencies are legal in the UK, it’s advisable to stay updated on any changes in regulations and consult with legal and financial professionals for specific guidance related to your situation.
Is Ethereum taxed in the UK?
Yes, Ethereum (ETH) and other cryptocurrencies are subject to taxation in the UK.
The tax treatment of Ethereum follows the guidelines provided by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the UK’s tax authority.
In general, the tax obligations related to Ethereum in the UK can include the following:
- Capital Gains Tax (CGT): If you dispose of Ethereum by selling, exchanging, or gifting it, you may be liable for capital gains tax on any profits made. The taxable amount is typically calculated as the difference between the acquisition cost (purchase price) and the disposal proceeds (sale price).
- Income Tax: If you receive Ethereum as payment for goods or services, it may be subject to income tax. The value of the Ethereum received will be included as part of your taxable income.
- Mining and Staking: If you mine or stake Ethereum, the value of the newly acquired coins may be considered taxable income at the time of receipt.
It’s important to keep detailed records of your Ethereum transactions, including acquisition costs, sale proceeds, and dates of transactions.
This information will be necessary for accurate tax reporting.
Consulting with a tax professional or accountant who is familiar with cryptocurrency taxation in the UK is recommended to ensure compliance with tax regulations and reporting requirements.
Purchasing Ethereum in the UK is straightforward with platforms like eToro, Uphold, and Coinbase, each offering unique features like strong security, social trading, and competitive fees.
When selecting a platform, consider factors such as security, fees, and ease of use.
With careful research and a clear investment strategy, buying Ethereum in the UK can be both convenient and potentially rewarding.
How to buy Ethereum without fees?
Buying Ether (ETH) without any fees involved is challenging as most platforms charge fees for their services. To minimise fees, consider choosing exchanges with lower fees, taking advantage of free promotions, exploring peer-to-peer trading platforms, and considering negotiation for over-the-counter trades. However, prioritise security and reliability when selecting a platform or method for purchasing Ether.
Where is the safest place to buy Ethereum UK?
In the UK, the safest places to buy Ethereum are through well-established and regulated platforms like eToro, Uphold, and Coinbase. eToro is known for its user-friendly interface and social trading features, and it’s regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Uphold offers a straightforward platform with competitive fees and a strong focus on security. Coinbase, also regulated by the FCA, is renowned for its robust security measures, including insurance for digital assets. Each of these platforms provides a secure and reliable environment for purchasing Ethereum in the UK.
Is Ethereum money?
Ethereum is often referred to as a cryptocurrency, but it is not considered a traditional form of money in the same sense as national currencies like the US Dollar or GBP. While Ethereum can be used as a medium of exchange and store of value, it operates within the context of the blockchain network and has unique characteristics.
What is the best way to buy Ethereum UK?
The best way to buy Ethereum in the UK is through trusted platforms like eToro, Uphold, or Coinbase. eToro offers an engaging user experience with social trading options, while Uphold is known for its straightforward interface and competitive fees. Coinbase, highly regarded for its strong security features, is another excellent choice. Each of these platforms provides a secure and user-friendly environment for Ethereum transactions.
What is the cheapest way to buy Ethereum?
The cheapest way to buy Ethereum is typically through a low-cost crypto exchange like Kraken. Kraken is known for its low fees and competitive pricing structures, making it an affordable choice. It offers various funding options, including bank transfers, which can further reduce transaction costs. Kraken’s combination of low fees and efficient trading platforms makes it a popular option for cost-conscious Ethereum buyers.
How to buy Ethereum UK with a debit card?
To buy Ethereum in the UK using a debit card, first choose a reputable crypto exchange like Coinbase, eToro, or Uphold. Register and verify your account following the platform’s KYC (Know Your Customer) process. Once verified, link your debit card to your account, deposit funds, and then purchase Ethereum directly on the platform. These exchanges offer user-friendly interfaces and secure transactions for buying Ethereum with a debit card in the UK.
How to buy Ethereum with PayPal?
To buy Ethereum using PayPal, start by selecting a cryptocurrency exchange or platform that supports PayPal transactions, such as Coinbase. Create and verify your account on the chosen platform, adhering to any required identity verification processes. Once your account is set up, link it to your PayPal account, fund it with the desired amount, and then proceed to purchase Ethereum directly through the platform. This method provides a convenient and secure way to buy Ethereum using PayPal funds.
How to buy Ethereum with a credit card UK?
To buy Ethereum with a credit card in the UK, select a cryptocurrency exchange that accepts credit card payments, such as eToro or Uphold. Register for an account on the platform and complete the required identity verification process. Once your account is verified, add your credit card as a payment method, deposit funds, and then purchase Ethereum directly through the exchange. This method offers a straightforward way to buy Ethereum using a credit card in the UK.
Can I buy Ethereum with Revolut?
Yes, you can buy Ethereum with Revolut. Revolut offers a feature that allows users to buy, hold, and exchange several cryptocurrencies, including Ethereum, directly within their app.
How to buy Ethereum on MetaMask?
To buy Ethereum on MetaMask, first install the MetaMask wallet as a browser extension or mobile app. Then, use the built-in “Buy” button within MetaMask, which redirects to a third-party service like Wyre or Transak for the purchase. Finally, complete the transaction by paying with a debit card, credit card, or bank transfer, and the Ethereum will be deposited into your MetaMask wallet.
Is it too late to buy Ethereum?
It is not too late to buy Ethereum. The cryptocurrency market is dynamic and Ethereum, as a leading blockchain platform, continues to evolve and expand in use cases. Investment decisions should be based on current market trends, future potential, and individual financial situations. *not financial advice.
- https://www.fca.org.uk/publication/research-notes/research-note-cryptoasset-consumer-research-2023-wave4.pdf ↩︎
- https://www.statista.com/outlook/dmo/fintech/digital-assets/cryptocurrencies/united-kingdom ↩︎
- https://uk.style.yahoo.com/most-popular-cryptocurrency-2021-uk-093057693.html ↩︎
- https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/study-highlights-growing-significance-of-cryptocurrencies ↩︎
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