Coinbase Fees- How to avoid them

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Coinbase, like most exchanges charges withdrawal fees. However there is a neat trick allows you to avoid withdrawal fees. Coinbase is the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in the US and UK due to the ability to directly purchase cryptocurrencies with fiat, as well as being one of the few exchanges that allow US citizens to trade. Many not only use Coinbase to buy cryptocurrencies, but also to store their cryptocurrencies. So with frequent usage of the Exchange, withdrawal fees can certainly add up. Here are some top tips and hacks to avoid or reduce Coinbase Fees.

To find out more about the best Cryptocurrency Exchanges in our Guide.

Reduce Coinbase Fees when sending Bitcoin

Coinbase and Coinbase Pro (previously known as GDAX are two of the more popular platforms around the world where people can buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrencies. Coinbase and Coinbase Pro currently operate in the US, Europe, UK, Canada, Australia, and Singapore. Users can trade cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.

Name:
Binance
Fiat Options:
USD, EURO
Rating:
4.5 Star Rating
Name:
Coinbase
Fiat Options:
Generally accepts your local currency
Rating:
3.5 Star Rating
Name:
Bybit
Fiat Options:
-
Rating:
4.1 Star Rating
Name:
Phemex
Fiat Options:
USD
Rating:
4.3 Star Rating
Name:
FTX
Fiat Options:
USD, TRY, AUD, GBP, EUR & HKD
Rating:
4.5 Star Rating
Name:
OKEx
Fiat Options:
USD, EUR, GBP and more
Rating:
4.4 Star Rating
Name:
PIT Exchange
Fiat Options:
EUR, USD, GBP & TRY
Rating:
4.5 Star Rating

Coinbase vs Coinbase Pro: What are the differences?

Coinbase and Coinbase Pro are actually two separate but related products. Coinbase was launched first in 2012 and aimed to provide a user friendly platform for people with no experience to buy and sell bitcoin through bank transfers. In 2015, with the growing interest and popularity in cryptocurrencies, the Company expanded to create Coinbase Exchange- a US based Bitcoin exchange to allow for Bitcoin and cryptocurrency trading. Because Coinbase Exchange was beyond the original scope for their more “casual” users, they decided to rebrand it to GDAX – Global Digital Asset Exchange (which is now known as Coinbase Pro).

GDAX and Coinbase compared

GDAX and Coinbase compared

Coinbase – a place where customers can buy, sell, send, receive and store your cryptocurrencies.

Coinbase Pro (formerly GDAX or Coinbase Exchange) – an exchange for professional traders. Aside from having the same functions as Coinbase, Coinbase pro also allows users to do the following:

  • Trade between different cryptocurrencies;
  • place market, limit and stop orders; and
  • have more detailed trading charts to analyse short term trends (e.g. order book, volume etc).

Most importantly, Coinbase Pro has lower fees and in some limited transactions, zero fees.

What are the fees on Coinbase and Coinbase Pro?

Coinbase buy/sell transaction fees

Coinbase has the most expensive fees compared to other what we consider as Tier 1 Cryptocurrency Exchanges. Coinbase charges a 0.50% fee for cryptocurrency purchases and sales. On top of this, Coinbase also charges a Coinbase Fee. The Coinbase Fee is the greater of (1) a flat fee depending on order size; (2) a variable percentage depending on your region and payment type.

Here are the flat fees charged by Coinbase:

Total Transaction AmountTransaction Fee (USD, EUR, GBP)
Less than $10$0.99, €0,99, £0,99 
More than $10, Less than $25$1.49, €1,49, £1,49
More than $25, Less than $50$1.99, €1,99, £1,99
More than $50, Less than $200$2.99, €2,99, £2,99
Flat fee

Below is the variable percentage for users in the US. Check here for the variable percentages for other countries.

US variable percentage
US variable percentage

Here’s an illustration of how to calculate your buy/sell transaction fee. For example, I’m in the United States and want to purchase USD $20 worth of Bitcoin using my debit card. My flat fee would be USD$1.49 because total transaction amount more than USD$10 but less than USD$25. Whilst the variable percentage would be 3.99% because I am paying with debit card. In this case, Coinbase would charge me USD1.49 because the flat fee is higher than the variable percentage.

Coinbase crypto to crypto conversion fees

For crypto to crypto conversions e.g. USDC to BTC, or BTC to ETH, Coinbase charges a spread margin of up to 2%. The exact margin would depend on the market fluctuations at the time.

Coinbase Pro trading fees

Coinbase Pro on the other hand operates on a maker-taker fee model. You would be considered a “taker” if you place an order at the market price, and this order is filled immediately. On the other hand, you are a “maker” if the order you placed is not immediately matched by an existing order. In the case where only part of your order is matched immediately, you would pay the taker fee for that portion only. You would then pay the maker fee for the remainder of the total order when it is matched.

Coinbase Pro’s fees are charged as a percentage of the transaction in question. As to the percentage, it would depend on the total amount traded by users in 1 month as follows:

Coinbase Pro trading fee
Coinbase Pro trading fee

Based on the above, for small volume users, e.g. those that trade less than USD$10,000 a month, their fees would be 0.50% of each transaction.

Of course, one possible method to reduce trading fees is to work towards a higher tier by increasing your monthly trade volume. For example, if more than $10,000 USD is traded in a month, the Maker and Taker fees drop to 0.35%, this means 15% a reduction on trading fees.

Coinbase hack: use Coinbase Pro (GDAX) to avoid withdrawal fees from Coinbase

Coinbase withdrawal fees can be very high. When users withdraw their coins off the Coinbase platform, Coinbase will charge users a fee based on their estimation of the network transaction fees they anticipate they will pay. Coinbase has stated that in some circumstances, the fee that Coinbase pays may be different from the estimate. So there is a possibility that the estimated fee that users have to pay are HIGHER than the network transaction fee actually paid by Coinbase.

However, there may be a way to avoid Coinbase withdrawal fees. According to Coinbase, they do not charge for transferring cryptocurrency from one Coinbase wallet to another. Since Coinbase and Coinbase Pro (GDAX) are owned by the same company, sending your funds from Coinbase to Coinbase Pro would be instant and free since it is a transfer from one Coinbase wallet to another.

Coinbase Pro offers FREE withdrawal fees for Digital Assets like Bitcoin
Coinbase Pro offers FREE withdrawal fees for Digital Assets like Bitcoin

The key here is that Coinbase Pro does not charge any withdrawal fees. You can then send your cryptocurrencies from Coinbase Pro to any other wallet outside of the Coinbase platform without paying any network transfer fees.

Withdraw in another cryptocurrency

Bitcoin has the most expensive transfer fees on Coinbase. One way to reduce transfer fees is to exchange Bitcoin to another cryptocurrency such as Litecoin or Bitcoin Cash. These coins will be cheaper to transfer, and could be exchanged back to Bitcoin once the transfer is complete on the receiving exchange.

Use another Exchange

If Coinbase fees are too expensive for you, you can always use another exchange such as Binance or FTX Exchange. These exchanges offer more competitive withdraw rates and also have more types of cryptocurrency options. To find out more about the best Cryptocurrency Exchanges in our Guide.

Is Coinbase expensive to use?

Coinbase fees are in line with other cryptocurrency exchanges, with $2.99 being charged for transactions between $50-200 dollars. However for larger transactions, Coinbase charges a variable percentage fee of 1.49%. For anything over $10,000 USD, we recommend using Over The Counter (OTC) trading desks which are better at handling large volumes with more flexible rates. Here’s a list of the top 5 OTC desks.

Further reading

To learn more about Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and how to get started, check out my course created in collaboration with Jeff Kirdeikis of Uptrennd- Bitcademy: Learn, Invest & Trade Bitcoin – In Under an Hour

The information provided in this article is intended for general guidance and information purposes only. Contents of this article are under no circumstances intended to be considered as investment, business, legal or tax advice. We do not accept any responsibility for individual decisions made based on this article and we strongly encourage you to do your own research before taking any action. Although best efforts are made to ensure that all information provided herein is accurate and up to date, omissions, errors, or mistakes may occur.

7 COMMENTS

  1. I transferred LTC from coin base to GDAX and was charged a fee.

    I was also charged a fee when I purchased LTC using debit card.

    Your post seems to suggest you can put fiat onto coinbase and transfer to gdax to avoid fees. Is this correct and if so how do I deposit fiat directly onto coinbase?

    Also looking at long term investment is now a good time to get into alt coins like stellar and ripple or have I missed the boat on these? Furthermore any forums/guides you could recommend id really appreciate. thanks!

    thanks

  2. i got verified on coinbase but i can’t withdrawal at all. it keeps saying i have 0 out of 0 withdrawal available. when i try to apply to have a withdrawal option, it redirected me to a 404 part of the site.

  3. This post fails to mention there is a minimum amount required in coinbase for it to even show up in GDAX. I think it’s like .1 or .01 BTC. That means that if you want to transfer anything out of Coinbase via GDAX that is less than that, you can’t do it. So if you are making small transfers you will have to pay the coinbase fee. Which for some reason is 2% on some days, 3% and 4% on others. can’t seem to figure that out.

  4. Thanks for every other informative web site. Where else may just I am getting that kind of information written in such an ideal way? I’ve a undertaking that I’m simply now running on, and I’ve been at the look out for such info

  5. I have $13.79 of compound tokens in my coinbase wallet, and the miners fee to withdraw them is over $14, so Id lose money withdrawing from it?
    This is so infuriating, why is this?

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