Where to Buy Bitcoin Kentucky

Kentucky bitcoin buyers and sellers have many avenues to transact. They can go through a cryptocurrency exchange, use bitcoin ATMs, exchange goods and services in return for bitcoin or mine. Buying and selling is legal in Kentucky if you are above the minimum legal age.

A snapshot of Kentucky Cryptocurrency Market:

  • It is legal to buy and sell bitcoin in Kentucky
  • Investors and exchangers must be at least 18 years old
  • Kentucky has no guidelines regarding virtual currencies
  • It is inferred that bitcoins falls under the definition of “monetary value” in the Kentucky Money Transmitter Act

Due to the ambiguous and outdated laws surrounding the Money Transmitter Act and licensing framework, the ability to buy and sell bitcoin, use it for business and bitcoin mining is relatively liberal.

Read further to understand how and where to buy bitcoin, the legality and tax obligations.

Top 5 Kentucky Bitcoin Exchanges

Overview of Kentucky Bitcoin Exchanges

Choosing a Kentucky bitcoin exchange requires assessing various attributes. These attributes are common among all exchanges, but their importance to you may differ to someone. Your bitcoin strategy, maybe to buy and hold. Or it may be to trade often. A strategy will determine which exchange is best for you to use.

The most common attribute considered are fees. Fees have an impact to your bottomline, and therefore it makes sense to rank this at the top of considerations. This should be balanced with Customer Support which mostly correlates with KYC requirements. KYC can be a lengthy process, if there is inadequate customer support. Other attritbutes such as security, liquidity, payment options is also important in deciding which exchange to use.

We outline the attributes and discus further their importance.

💰 Fees

Fees are the first attribute that many buyers of bitcoin consider. Some exchanges have a complex fee structures that can be quite confusing. Others, which in our opinion, declare that they charge zero fees is misleading. While prima facie that may be true, they deliberately widen the trading spreads and take their earnings through them. There is no exchange that has true zero fees, they must earning an income some how.

Low fees are often sought after by bitcoin buyers, because it clearly impacts the bottom line. The percentage earnings from bitcoin appreciating is offset by the trading fees (which are also a percentage). Therefore a trader that signs up to a low fee exchange will have better returns that a high one, irrespective of any other attributes.

Of course, the other attributes that we will discuss do not represent investment risk, but relate to operational, safety and execution. Different risks but still must be balanced against trading fees.

📞 Customer Support

New bitcoin buyers in Kentucky may be surprised to read how important Customer Support is. Shouldn’t it be easy to open an account and start buying bitcoin? Well, yes and no, because it depends if you are opening a personal account vs business account, and the features of the exchange platform.

Firstly, KYC can be an onerous process. KYC is a mandatory requirement that all exchanges must perform in Kentucky. This involves asking new customers to provide sufficient document to identify who they are, their sources of income and ultimate beneficiary of any gains and losses of trading. For personal accounts, KYC is relatively easy. Hence most exchanges would prefer to accept personal accounts, because the overhead is low. For business accounts, the KYC process can be complicated, slow and laborious. Exchanges do NOT want to provide an excessive amount of Customer Support for business accounts, because it hurts their profits. Unfortunately, for buyers of bitcoin who want to open a business account for a company, trust, partnership or any complex structure, you will need to find an exchange that can support you and often it is at an exchange with higher trading fees.

Secondly, an exchange rich in features for sophisticated investing, maybe confusing to use. Customer Support will be needed to assist with platform issues, how to use, or even just general trading questions.

The quality of Customer Support should be balance directly against the fees.

🪙 Bitcoin and Supported Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has proven to be reliable and effective as a method of payment. Due to bitcoin being the most popular digital currency, it is regarded as the safest investment. This however does not mean that you should put all your money into bitcoin. Diversification is a common strategy by investors to spread risk. Spreading risk across several cryptocurrencies, in theory, removes the dependency on bitcoin. Accordingly, choosing an exchange that supports other cryptocurrencies besides bitcoin is important.

🔒 Safety and Security

Global and local exchanges have insurance to protect their customers against the event of a hack. In the past, exchanges have lost millions of dollars of bitcoin, because hackers have been able to infiltrate the platform and steal from hot wallets. Nowadays, platform security has improved with Kentucky and Federal legislation enforcing strict IT controls. Even though tremendous improvements have been made to platform security, insurance adds that extra layer of protection to the exchange.

However, insurance does not protect the individual customer. This is where security for the individual should be considered when selecting an exchange. Examples of individual user security includes 2FA (2 Factor Authentication), white listing approved IP addresses and limits to withdrawals. Individual security is paramount because if any issues arise, the responsibility of loss falls with the individual and not with the exchange.

Safety and security is paramount for individual protection.

💳 Payment Methods

In Kentucky the most common method of deposting and withdrawing is though wire transfers and ACH. Credit cards such as VISA and Mastercard can also be used, but with limits. There are a few exchanges which extend payment methods to e-wallet transfers which includes PayPal, ApplePay and Google Pay.

When selecting an exchange, you may want to consider the payment options of an exchange. Though some may be limited, you can easily transfer your funds to enable an accepted payment methods. Just beaware, that different payment methods will incur different fees and each will have different processing times.

⚙️ Platform Reliability

With any IT software, especially an online bitcoin exchange, there will always be maintenance required to the hardware and upgrades to the software. Sometimes, IT maintenance will place the exchange offline, to allow for these changes to be made. During an offline period, you will not be able to buy or sell bitcoin. Often the downtime period is very short and does not impact customers. Some exchanges however have had their exchange offline for up to a week. These exchanges are generally the smaller ones that are not global and service a small customer base.

📈 Liquidity

An exchange that has many buyers and sellers can generate liquidity. The facilitating of buying and selling can only be as fast as those who are on the exchange, hence, if an exchange is small, you may find that fulfilling your buy or sell order may take a while. In theory a larger exchange is faster.

Liquidity is not bound to cryptocurrency exchanges alone. The same attribute can be considered for the stock exchange, forex and any other market with buyers and sellers.

Choosing an exchange with high liquidity will enable you to complete buying and selling quicker. This is especially important if you intend to be buying and selling often.

Kentucky Bitcoin Exchange Reviews

There are many exchanges to choose from in Kentucky. We have selected the best and most popular exchanges to review, indicating their history, selection of cryptocurrencies and licensing status.


Binance.US is one of the most popular exchanges in the US and Kentucky. Many see Binance.US as an offshoot of Binance (International), but in fact, the two companies are stand alone. Binance.US however, does utilize the IT platform and experience of Binance, and it clearly shows with their ability to provide a quality service with low trading fees.

The Binance.US platform is one of the best. It is reliable, easy to use and is most suitable for the personal account trader. The KYC process is fast, and will get you up and running in a very short period of time. On the other hand, Business account setups do take longer, and in some cases have extended one month. This is not the norm, but take note that business accounts can be lengthy and will need customer service.

Binance.US supports a good range of cryptocurrencies, including it’s own native coin BNB. Yes, there are some traders that want to diversify from bitcoin with some exotic coins that may not be available, but that is the minority. Overall, you will find a healthy range of cryptocurrencies that you can diversify your exposure into.

The Binance.US platform is downloadable on a mobile app – Android or iOS, but its functionality is not as powerful as the desktop version. Still it is effective to trade when on the move.

Binance.US is a good choice for beginners or personal account holders. It’s fast, intutive, highly liquid with narrow spreads. You will get the most bang for your buck on this platform.

  • Money Transmitter License: SC723443
  • Cryptocurrencies: 64
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.1% – 0.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer


Update: BlockFi is pending license approval to accept Kentucky residents

BlockFi is not as well known as other exchanges. Its core business is lending bitcoin through the acceptance of deposits (much like a bank). Its trading platform as an exchange is still maturing and can only accept one payment method. Fees are included in the spread, which makes it difficult to determine the actual fee to customers.

If you just want to get started with buying bitcoin, then perhaps give BlockFi a miss. But if you want to borrow and lend bitcoin, BlockFi is a good choice.

  • Money Transmitter License: Pending
  • Payment Methods: ACH
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: embedded in the spread

CEX io cryptocurrency exchange


With over 4 millions customers reaching over 20 countries, CEX.IO is a big exchange that both new starters and experienced buyers of bitcoin are attracted to. Excellent customer support, with reasonable trading fees and high liquidity. CEX.IO supports over 100 cryptocurrencies, which ranks as one of the highest.

The layout and design is intuitive, but probably best for the sophisticated investor with many options. That doesn’t mean that as a beginner it’s not good, it’s just that you may find it overcrowded. CEX.IO has been in the market for over a decade, developing a reputatin of being safe and secure.

Choose CEX.IO if you are an experienced trader.

  • Money Transmitter License: N/A
  • Cryptocurrencies: 100+
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.15% – 0.25% + deposit and withdrawal fees
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer



Coinbase is a well known all rounder bitcoin exchange. It is competitive with low trading fees, although it can be difficult to determine due to it’s complex fee structure. Being listed on the NASDAQ, you can be assured that Coinbase is safe and secure to use. Part of the personal security that it offers to customers is the ability to whitelist IP addresses and put limits and timeframes on withdrawals. At nearly 100 support currencies, Coinbase ranks higher than Binance.US. Lastly, Coinbase is a highly liquid exchange with narrow spreads. Completing a buy and sell order of bitcoin is fast and efficient.

  • Money Transmitter License: SC298809
  • Cryptocurrencies: 96
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.5% – 4.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer

coinmama cryptocurrency exchange


We like Coinmama for its simple and easy to use layout. Very intuitive for beginners, hence the need for Customer Support isn’t as important as other exchanges. In addition to bitcoin, there are other coins that you can select. Trading is confined to simple outright buy and sell, there is no margin lending, stop losses and other hyrbids to consider.

The platform is stable, but only Android is downable for mobile apps. Coinmama does not hold a Kentucky license per se, but trades through a third party provider.

  • Money Transmitter License: N/A
  • Cryptocurrencies: 96
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.5% – 4.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer

Crypto.com (CDC)

One exchange that is shaking up the market in Kentucky is Crypto.com. Employing the services of Matt Damon and LeBron James, the marketing budget is huge. Crypto.com has also purchased the naming rights of what was previously known as the Staples Center, L.A.’s stadium.

Pushing for a flashy image, Crypto.com provides customers with a card that is metal. That’s right, a heavy metallic card that is shiny and bright to buy things with bitcoin. It’s not often said, but customers are drawn to pulling out their metal card rather than the boring plastic credit and debit cards.

Pretentious? Maybe. But behind the glamour Crypto.com does offer a fantastic service. The trading fees are very low, comparable to Binance.US, FTX.US and Coinbase. It’s mobile app is strong and reliable in both iOS and Android versions.

Lastly, as with Binance.US, there is a Crypto.com native coin (CRO), which can be earned when trading on the platform.

  • Money Transmitter License: N/A
  • Cryptocurrencies: 96
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.5% – 4.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer

etoro cryptocurrency exchange


Forex exchange was and still is remains the key business for eToro. However it is looking to branch out into the cryptocurrency market. It’s a natural progression because the functionality is exactly the same. With eToro’s history of trading in currency, the platform has developed into a leading, reliable, user friendly exchange.

eToro says that its trading fees are zero. Which is true. But the catch is that their spreads are wide. So wide that eToro ranks as one of the most expensive platforms to buy bitcoin with.

Getting started with eToro is very fast and simple. The customer support is fantastic, but is limited to only 27 cryptocurrencies to trade with.

  • Money Transmitter License: Not Required
  • Cryptocurrencies: 27
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: zero (but huge spreads making eToro more expensive than Binance.US and Coinbase).
  • Payment Methods: Wire, ACH, PayPal, e-wallets


FTX.US is a cryptocurrency exchange and a NFT trading platform. Alongside Crypto.com, FTX.US is splashing out a big marketing campaign to capture the US market, including Kentucky. Huge partnerships have been established with the University of Kentucky, and with other sports teams nationally. As a brand ambassador, FTX.US has employed the services of Tom Brady (who is also a significant shareholder of FTX.US).

The FTX.US layout is very sharp, and intuitive to use. But it supports a limited number of cryptocurrencies at only 20. Nevertheless, bitcoin is available and the trading fees are extremely low (in some cases even cheaper than Binance.US).

FTX.US is fast capturing a great market share in the US, increasing its liquidity for its customers and also providing narrower spreads. FTX.US is a great exchange to use if you just want to buy and hold bitcoin.

  • Money Transmitter License: N/A
  • Cryptocurrencies: 20
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.4% – 5.0%
  • Payment Methods: Wire, ACH, PayPal, e-wallets

Bitcoin ATMs

There is a huge selection of Bitcoin ATM providers in Kentucky. The market is very much alive and open, with an ATM located in all of the major cities.

Providers include: BudgetCoinz, BitStop, Bytefederal, DigitalMint, CoinSource, Rockitcoin, CoinFlip, Bitcoin Depot, PureCoin, Bitcoin of America, Coin Cloud, Versa Exchange, National Bitcoin ATM, QuadCoin, ATM Coiners, Coin Genie, Coin Mover, Crypto Dispensers, Cash 2 Bitcoin, GetCoins.

Although bitcoin ATMs offer a lot of convenience, they charge astronomically high fees. Far better to use an online cryptocurrency exchange than to use a bitcoin ATM if you are looking to save.

Kentucky Cryptocurrency Tax Ruling and Rates

In the state of Kentucky, bitcoin buyers must pay tax on any realized capital gains to the IRS. Any realized capital losses can be carried forward to the next tax year, but this depends on the overall tax assessment of the individual.

The IRS requires buyers of bitcoin to be able to support their trading with form 1099 submmissions. Many of the top bitcoin exchanges have reports that can be downloaded and used for tax lodgements. Some exchanges even have reports that can interface with tax software.

Calculating tax on bitcoin can be extremely complicated. We highly recommend seeing a tax professional when calculating tax in Kentucky.

Bitcoin Cryptocurrency Laws and Legislation

Kentucky laws regarding bitcoin remain outdated and rather vague. Their Money Transmitter Act does not define what a Virtual Currency is, but it can be assume that the Act encompasses cryptocurrency exchanges under the term “monetary value”. Any transmitter of an item that has “monetary value”, in theory, should obtain a Kentucky license. However, it’s clear, that some exchanges have are not Kentucky licensed, but accept Kentucky residents.

Amendments to the Unclaimed Property Act have been a lot faster and easier, passing the House of Representatives in 2018. The Unclaimed Property Act now includes “virtual currency” HB 394.

In 2019, Kentucky become one of only a handful of US states to legislate on state law taxes. With HB354, exchanging bitcoin for goods and services is regarded as a “market facilitator”.

Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Wallets

When buying bitcoin, you will need somewhere to store it. The larger exchanges in Kentucky often have a facility to store you bitcoin at their exchange. In the past, hackers were able to penetrate and steal bitcoin and some exchanges, but the security has now greatly improved.

Bitcoin can also be stored at your own peronsal hot and cold wallet. A hot wallet is storage that is connect to the internet. It offers greater protection than being held on an exchange. A cold wallet storage is not connected to the internet, and is the safest of all storage. However, with cold storage, you personally must take ownership of the storage key. If it is lost, it is normally irretrievable.

It is legal to buy and sell bitcoin in Kentucky if you meet the legal minimum age of 18.


  • Kentucky has a wide selection of bitcoin exchanges to choose from. The best exchanges will depend on your investment strategy. To sign up and create an account at an exchange you will need to complete KYC details and make a deposit.
  • In addition to exchanges, you can buy bitcoin at ATMs. ATMs are convenient but charge a higher fee than an exchange.
  • There are other ways of acquiring bitcoin. Mining is very popular, and also the receiving bitcoin for the exchange for goods and services.
  • Realized capital gains are taxable in the eyes of the IRS. The tax rate is dependents on whether it is short or long term.
  • The application of sales tax has yet to be determined, hence currently there is no sales tax.
  • Legally, Kentucky residents must be at least 18 years old to buy and sell but coin at an exchange.

How to Lodge a Cryptocurrency Customer Complaint

If you have a customer complaint at a cryptocurrency exchange, please raise the issue with them first.

If unresolved, please contact the State Finance Department.

Kentucky Department of Financial Institutions
1025 Capital Center Drive,
Suite 200 Frankfort, KY 40601


Bordering States

Virginia | West Virginia | Tennessee | Missouri |Illinois | Indiana | Ohio

Best Exchanges

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