Where to Buy Bitcoin Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania has many options to buy bitcoin – via legal cryptocurrency exchanges, bitcoin ATMs, mining and the exchange for goods and services.

A snapshot of Pennsylvania Cryptocurrency Market:

  • It is legal to buy and sell bitcoin in Pennsylvania
  • You must be at least 18 years old to buy and sell on an exchange
  • The majority of Penn cryptocurrency exchanges have obtained a Money Transmitter License

If you are looking to get started with buying bitcoin, or even if you are a seasoned trader wanting to know more about bitcoin in Pennsylvania, select from our recommended exchanges, read the reviews of available exchanges in Pennsylvania the tax implication and legality of buying bitcoin.

Top 5 Pennsylvania Bitcoin Exchanges

Overview of Pennsylvania Bitcoin Exchanges

When buying bitcoin in Pennsylvania, there is a wide range of cryptocurrency exchanges to choose from. New comers to the market include Crypto.com, FTX.US and BlockChain.com. The big US players remain as the preferred option with Binance.US and Coinbase for Pennsylvania, while the global exchanges lead the charge for high volume sophisticated day traders. Though Pennsylvania exchanges need NOT to be licensed in the State (see Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Laws in this article), many have obtained a license to err on the right side of the law. Customer support is very much needed for KYC compliance, and this overhead is particularly burdensome for business, company and trust structure. What you will find is that the low fee exchanges will not be bothered with supporting the more complex KYC accounts.

Choosing an exchange that is right for you, will depend on your circumstances. We ouline the below characteristics of an exchange that you should consider.

🔒 Safety and Security

Safety and security has improved in leaps and bounds since the launch of bitcoin into mainstream.

A breach in security often now comes down to individuals being scammed and revealing their bitcoin keys to their wallets. Or, ironically losing keys to their wallets and therefore unable to unlock their bitcoins. All the licensed exchanges now offer customers several layers of protection. Many of the global exchanges even have insurance to protect against any losses suffered from a hack. (please note that the insurance only covers the event on an attack on an exchange and not at an individual customer).

Common layers of security includes 2FA (2 Factor Authentication), white listing IP addresses and withdrawal time limitations.

Regulatory and compliance rules is also required to be met. KYC (Know Your Customer) documentation is an onerous task, but one that must be fulfilled to prevent criminal activity. Anti-Money Laundering is also a requirement of cryptocurrency exchanges, adhered to through the monitoring of suspicious trading activity.

📞 Customer Support

Don’t underestimate the value of good Customer Support.

Professional, prompt and accurate Customer Support is important, particularly if you intend to open a business account, that is, an account for a company, trust or any other structure that is not a personal account. A non-personal account will require additional information for KYC requirements, and typically low trade platforms tend to “let slip” customer support in this area. Hence, you will often find a disgruntled customer that had attempted to open an account with Binance.US or Coinbase, but then gave it because of frustration.

The best exchanges for Customer Support tend to be the new exchanges, such as Crypto.com and FTX.US, and the higher fee charging exchanges such as CEI.IO.

💳 Payment Methods

Ensure the exchange you choose, offers the payment method you want to use.

Many of the top Pennslyvania exchanges will offer the common US payments – ACH, wire transfers, debit and credit cards, and some will also accept PayPal, Skill and Neteller. The no frills exchanges may only accept one or two types of payment methods. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the exchange is bad, as long as you are willing to use the payment methods that they offer then there are no issues.

🪙 Cryptocurrency Selection

Diversification helps reduce risk

Buying bitcoin is a great investment for the long term. But placing all your eggs into one basket, leaves exposure to the volatility of one cryptocurrency. A common strategy to minimize volatility is to spread your investment across several cryptocurrencies. For an investor who chooses to mitigate their risk with this strategy, they will need an exchange that offers a wide range of coins and tokens that will suit their cryptocurrency goals.

Some exchanges offer hundreds of cryptocurrencies to choose from, while others are limited to the tens or twenties. As long as the exchanges offer the coins that you want to spread your risk across, then its fine.

Choose an exchange that offers the cryptocurrencies that you want to trade with.

🏷 Coupons and Discounts

Refer a friend and Claim Discounts

Based on their common purpose, coupons and discounts are intended to create a win-win situation by attracting more and more clients to start trading with them. For a good cryptocurrency exchange, these offers work as a marketing tool where they can reach maximum number of people and expect to get at least 50% responses within no time. traders are rest assured of getting discounts or reductions in transaction fees.

💰 Fees

Look for a low trading fee exchange, but balance other important attributes

Fees are a key attribute particularly if you are intending to trade often. While comparing fee percentage may show minor absolute differences, for example: a charge of 0.1% vs 0.2% is only an absolute difference of 0.1%, the 0.1% difference can actually translate to big dollar trading fee expenses. $1,000 in trading fees becomes $2,000 at another exchange.

Hence, particularly important for long term frequent traders, you should consider the fees (structure). However, be aware that the lowest fees, do not mean, they are the best exchange for you. Low fees tend to correlate to poor customer service. Don’t undervalue the importance of customer service, because you never know when you will need it as some point in time.

Sometime low fees can also be hidden among large spreads. Large spreads discount your buy and sell values, meaning you get less bang for your buck. It’s a way of an exchange clipping into your trade. There are some exchanges which market themselves as ZERO fee exchanges, but they catch you on the spreads.

⚙️ Platform Reliability

A reliable platform reduces frustration

The vast majority of exchanges are built on reliable platforms that are easy to use, interface well and don’t crash. But, as part of the licensing, they are required to continually improve their system controls, reliability and IT infrastructure. Occassionally, they will need to shut down their platform for maintenance which includes fixing bugs, upgrading software, adding new features. At most, a shut down will not last more than a day, and will occur outside of normal working hours.

For the vast majority of buyers of bitcoin who are long term traders, platform reliability is an important attribute but not as important as others that we have mentioned.

📈 Liquidity

High Liquidity lead to quick transactions

Choosing an exchange with high liquidity permits a fast transaction. Liquidity means the number of buyers and sellers. The more buyers and sellers on an exchange, the easier it is to come to an agreed exchange price. The less buyers and sellers, the longer it will take to agree. Therefore, if you are looking to buy and sell fast, a highly used exchange will provide good liquidity. Exchanges without liquidity may take an excessive amount of time to complete a trade. This is not great, especially if the market is moving fast, and you want to lock in any of the profits you have made.

However, liquidity may not be an issue for you if you are a buy and hold trader of bitcoin. Your bitcoin investment strategy will determine your purpose and whether liquidity is an important attribute to consider for an exchange.

Pennsylvania Bitcoin Exchange Reviews

Pennsylvania has a wide range of bitcoin exchanges to choose from, ranging from the low trading fees through to excellent customer service to global market makers.

We review some of the most popular Penn bitcoin exchanges in alphabetical order.


Some US States have restricted Binance.US, but not Pennsylvania. Binance.US is the lowest fee exchange coupled with high liquidity. This combination is a compelling reason to sign up to Binance.US if you are intending to open a personal account. If you are intending to open a business account that is for a company, trust or other complex structure, beaware that you may be faced with an onerous KYC process. Business accounts need more documentation to establish source of funds and ultimate owners, and it is widely known that Binance.US has a poor customer service record to help you navigate through this process. Some customers have waited over a month, with constant follow up with Binance.US to find out the status of their account application.

Aside from the potential poor experience with opening a business account, the rest of Binance.US is really good. Leveraging from the IT platform from Binance (International), Binance.US is able to provide to Pennslyvania rich features for both novice and expert. The selection of cryptocurrencies isn’t in the hundreds, but then again it’s not small either and would suit most buyers. There are some buyers who do want to diversify into more exotic coins that aren’t available on Binance.US, but you will find that all other exchanges will not be able to cater for the needs of everyone.

Binance.US is safe and secure. There is no doubt about it. Without going into all the detail, Binance.US has been under the most scruitiny of all exchanges for compliance and regulation. Being under the spot light, they have left no stone unturned to create the safest of environments. However, this does NOT dilute the individual responsibilities of users. No matter how good any platform controls are, if a user discloses their passwords, user ids and other personal details, there is nothing a platform can do to prevent fraudulent withdrawals.

Binance.US has a download mobile app for both Android and iOS, plus a downloadable desktop app. All apps provide more than enough features for trading, but the desktop version offers better analytics.

Overall Binance.US is a platform that you can’t go wrong with. Though you may not be able to open a business account quickly, it’s worth a try.

  • Money Transmitter License: 80252
  • Cryptocurrencies: 64
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.1% – 0.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer


** Update – Feb 2022 – BlockFi has been penalized with a whopping $100m infringment from the SEC and various States for issuing and operating financial products that have not been approved. As a result, we do NOT recommend choosing BlockFi.

BlockFi has only recently come to market with an exchange platform from its origins of being a depositor and lender. There’s not to the platform at the moment, with only one payment method and limited coins. Trading volume and liquidity is small.

If you are looking beyond simply buying bitcoin, but also depositing and borrowing then consider BlockFi. But if looking to just buy and hold, or even to trade daily consider other exchanges first. BlockFi may mature further, but for the moment only join BlockFi for deposit and lending bitcoin.

  • Money Transmitter License: 66140
  • Payment Methods: ACH
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: embedded in the spread

CEX io cryptocurrency exchange


CEX.IO is global decentralized exchange that originated from the UK. Established in 2013, it has a good history of being a safe and secure bitcoin exchange. It’s platform has powerful analytics that would suit experienced investors. For the beginners, the layout may at first appear confusing, but it’s not difficult to be accustomed to it.

With over 4 million customers, CEX.IO is valued at over $43 billion. Specifically for Pennsylvania, the exchange is highly liquid. Trading fees are reasonable, not the best, but their customer support more than makes up for it.

CEX.IO is an exchange that ranks as one of the best for Penn. Alongside Binance.US and Coinbase, CEX.IO ranks highly.

  • Money Transmitter License: Note State Licensed
  • 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 one of the best exchanges because it ranks highly due to its all round attributes. Trading fees are very reasonable, and are competitive with that of Binance.US. Though trading fees are reasonable, the structure is complex and can be confusing. Pay attention to your deposit and withdrawal methods as these may lead to higher fees than expected. Liquidity is exceptionally high due to the large number of buyers and sellers, hence closing out a transaction quickly is never a problem. Coinbased is one of the safest exchanges to use. Listed on the NASDAQ and licensed in Penn it is required to meet strict regulations. Portability is convenient with both Andriod and iOS apps available with exactly the same functionality as the desktop version.

  • Money Transmitter License: 51015
  • Cryptocurrencies: 96
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.5% – 4.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer

coinmama cryptocurrency exchange


If you are a beginner and wanting a simple exchange that gets the job done, without all the fancy margin lending, leveraging and other high risk products, then Coinmama might be the exchange for you. It is purposely simple for beginners, the layout is intuitive and easy to use, and bitcoin can be bought instantly.

Unfortunately, the fees are slighly higher than other exchanges, and only an Andriod app is available (no iOS). But there is a large pool of cryptocurrencies to choose from, and maybe it will have the coin that you are looking for, if none of the other exchanges offer it.

Lastly, Coinmama does not hold a license to trade in PA. Instead it uses a third party provider’s license to enable it to accept PA customers.

  • Money Transmitter License: Not Required
  • Cryptocurrencies: 96
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.5% – 4.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer

Crypto.com (CDC)

Crypto.com is becoming one of the biggest exchanges in Pennsylvania. It has enlisted a couple of well known celebrities to broaden its market share – Matt Damon and LeBron James. In addition it has purchased the naming rights of L.A. largest sports arena, previously known as the Staples arena. It’s marketing doesn’t stop there, with user of Crypto.com being offered a metal card instead of a plastic card for daily use. The metal card is impressive in appearance, and does get people talking. But in terms of functionality, it’s exactly the same as any other debit and credit card.

The Crypto.com platform is one of the more reliable to use. The app works effortlessly on mobile devices, with some users joking that bugs are easily fixed with uninstall and re-install (other exchanges are a lot worse and cannot even be resolved). Users of Cryto.com also benefit with earning the native coin (CRO) of the platform. The more user that join, the more potential value the native coin has. Scale is everything in the cryptocurrency market, and certainly Crypto.com is trying to achieve that quickly.

Trading fees are low. It is almost equal to Binance.US and Coinbase, with the lowest fees. Customer Service can be a bit hit and miss. Most users are happy with the support that is available, but some aren’t happy with the lack of support for opening up a business account.

  • Money Transmitter License: Not Required
  • Cryptocurrencies: 96
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.5% – 4.5%
  • Payment Methods: Debit Card, Credit Card, ACH, Wire Transfer

etoro cryptocurrency exchange


eToro has a lengthy history of operating in the exchange market. Its beginnings were as a foreign currency exchange, which lends as a good leaping board to acting as a cryptocurrency exchange. Their trading fees of zero is misleading, which arguably does not give the perception of an exchange that you can trust. Although trading fees are zero, eToro hurts you with the wide spreads. By widening the spreads, transparency of fees is appalling lacking. How much “true” trading fees is very difficult to determine.

The platform, as you would expect, is rich with analystic, functions and powerful. Experience traders enjoy the eToro platform with strategies that can be implemented by using other financial products. The mobile app is simple to use, and is great for new and experienced buyers of bitcoin.

  • Money Transmitter License: Not State Licensed
  • 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 one of the newest bitcoin exchanges to enter the Pennsylvania market, and it is offering very low trading fees. It is so competitive that it ranks along side Binance.US and Coinbase. If you are considering selecting an exchange on fees alone, then FTX.US will be the one for you.

Cryptocurrencies are limited to only 20, which isn’t a lot when compared to the CEX.IO which has hundreds. Liquidity is lower than the other big exchanges, because it’s relatively new and is still building up its base. But liquidity is quickly improving as it captures more of the US market. NFL GOAT Tom Brady is the ambassador and shareholder of the exchange, lending support to make FTX.US a household name in Penn.

Choose FTX.US if you are looking for value for money when buying bitcoin.

  • Money Transmitter License: Not required
  • Cryptocurrencies: 20
  • Mobile App: iOS and Android
  • Fees: 0.4% – 5.0%
  • Payment Methods: Wire, ACH, PayPal, e-wallets


kraken cryptocurrency exchange

Belongs in the top exchanges for Pennsylvania, Kraken has been around since the early days of Bitcoin. Famously begun to provide an alernatively to Mt. Gox (which infamously made headline for millions of stolen bitcoins), Kraken has never been “publicly” hacked.

Similar to Coinbase, there is a basic platform and an advance user platform Kraken Pro.

The platform has many users, hence liquidity is not a problem, and fees are reasonable.


Nexo is a Euro based deposit and lending platform which has branched out to being an exchange. It has followed the same path of BlockFi (with the only difference that BlockFi is USA based).

Certainly the deposit and lending business of bitcoin has made a healthy return for many in the industry. How Nexo.io can make ground in the exchange area remains to be seen with an overcrowded market in the US.

  • Fees – Zero

LocalBitcoins – Peer to Peer Exchange

Known for providing an escrow service, this cryptocurrency platform enables clients to find the right buyers for their Bitcoins. Although advertisement is a good option to go with, many have not received the required level of responses. The thing that makes LocalBitcoins different from others is the in-person meeting, which is facilitated and secured by LocalBitcoins have turned out to the fastest platform to acquire Bitcoins within a few minutes.

Pennsylvania Bitcoin ATMs

With the help of Bitcoin ATM, it’s quite easy for potential investors to buy bitcoins whenever they have enough funds available. They make the process so quick and easy that traders used to wonder whether things have been done properly or not. It is worth mentioning that Bitcoin ATMs charge between 5% to 10% fees against providing privacy, security and convenience of keeping personal and other details in private. This fee is literally worth the features traders will be getting.

Pennsylvania Cryptocurrency Tax Ruling and Rates

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is a taxable asset in the eyes of the IRS. Therefore when you buy and sell bitcoin, you will need to calculate how much tax is payable. Tax is dependent on the outcome of realizing capital gains or losses. The tax rates differ between short term and long term, which is defined by one year. Short term realized gains have tax rates that are in alignment with personal income tax rates. While long term realized gains have an average of 20% (but may differ depending on your circumstances).

Be prepared to submit to the IRS details of your trading activity. Most exchanges will provide tax reports which will help with the IRS submission.

Bitcoin Cryptocurrency Laws and Legislation

Pennsylvania laws and legislation governing cryptocurrency exchanges has been interpreted with clarity by the Department of Banking and Securities (DoBS). But, their interpretation of the Money Transmission Act, may not necessarily be in alignment with the application according to the State judiciary. As a result, there are many cryptocurrency exchanges in Penn that have obtained a Money Transmission License even though the DoBS has explicitly stated that it is not required. Exchanges would rather err on the right side of the law, particularly when the obtaining a license is not onerous.

Money as defined by the law

1965 Act 249 Money Transmission Business Licensing Law – Pennsylvania’s Money Transmission Act (MTA) does not mention the term virtual currency, digital currency or any intangible but rather it uses the term “Money”. This has been defined as “currency or legal tender or any other product that is generally recognized as a medium of exchange.”

In addition State law further defines Money as follows:

1 Pa. C.S. §1991 – “[l]awful money of the United States”

13 Pa. C.S. §1201(b)(24) – “[a] medium of exchange currently authorized or adopted by a domestic or foreign government.”

When the above three definitions of Money are interpreted in conjunction, the DoBS comes to the conclusion that bitcoin and cryptocurrencies do not technically fall under the defintion of money.

Obtaining a License per MTA

The MTA explicitly states “no person shall engage in the business of transmitting money by means of a transmittal instrument for a fee or other consideration with or on behalf of an individual without first having obtained a license from the DoBS.”

DoBS has interpreted the above statement that a cryptocurrency exchange is not “transmitting” and that they are mere matching buys and sellers of bitcoin together. Therefore, a cryptocurrency exchange, also known as a virtual currency trading platform, does not fall under the scope of the existing MTA.

This is explicitly mentioned in their guidance as per the link: https://www.dobs.pa.gov/Documents/Securities%20Resources/MTA%20Guidance%20for%20Virtual%20Currency%20Businesses.pdf

Substance over Form

The DoBS has issued explicit guidance with licensing requirements within Penn, however, it cryptocurrency exchanges have demonstrated that they have interpreted cryptocurrency laws differently. In effect, the vast majority of exchanges have obtained a license to operate in the State.

Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Wallets

Some exchanges also offer wallets. It’s not necessary for a good exchange to offer a wallet to their clients, though it can be a nice to have for new investors. However, be aware that online wallets offered by exchanges are normally hot wallets. That is, these wallets are connected permanently to the internet. This can be quite risky to use a wallet that is controlled by the exchange and not by yourself.

Hence it’s not necessarily a good thing if an exchange offers a wallet, but it’s a nice to have, if you are looking for an exchange with their own wallet.

  • Online Wallets: Every crypto-exchange has their own wallet where traders can store their coins or cryptocurrencies for as long as they want. However, there are two types of these wallets that traders have to decide about which wallet they want to use for their trading.
  • Pennsylvania Hot Wallets: Since the inception of bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies, wallets have been transformed and divided into two forms- desktop and online. Digital wallets are free and can hold any cryptocurrency that traders want. They enable them to get easy access to their cryptocurrencies via mobile devices. They are perfect for beginners who want something easy to start with.
  • Pennsylvania Cold Wallets: These specifically designed devices work as physical cryptocurrency storage that allow traders to bring their cryptos with them, no matter where they are going. Though, the only considerable thing is their expensive nature with limitations of storing certain cryptocurrencies for future use.

You must be at least 18 years old to legally buy and sell bitcoin on a cryptocurrency exchange in Pennslyvania.


In Pennsylvania you will find various ways to buy bitcoin. The most common is via cryptocurrency exchanges. The vast majority of cryptocurrency exchanges are licensed by the Department of Banking and Securities. A cryptocurrency exchange that you select to buy bitcoin should fit your investment strategy. A good balance of fees, safety and security, platform reliability, liquidity, supported cryptocurrencies and payment methods is often sought after.

In addition to buying on a cryptocurrency exchange, bitcoin can be bought at ATMs, through the exchange of goods and services or mining.

After purchasing bitcoin, a wallet is needed to store it. The keys to the wallet are vital in keeping safe. There are different types of wallets, each with their pro’s and con’s that should be considered.

Finally, when using bitcoin there are tax implications. The IRS treats using bitcoin the same as foreign currency. If you profit from bitcoin, you may need to pay taxes.

How to Lodge a Cryptocurrency Customer Complaint

A customer complaint with a Pennsylvania cryptocurrency exchange, should first be attempted to be resolved directly with the exchange.

If unresolved, proceed with lodging a complaint with the Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities

Pennsylvania Department of Banking and Securities
17 North Second Street, Suite 1300
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17101

Click on below link to lodge complaint


Bordering States

Delaware | Maryland | New Jersey | New York | Ohio | West Virginia

Best Exchanges

Low fees, high liquidity

Top notch crypto exchange, with the lowest fees, high volume trades, and fast processing.