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.
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.
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).
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 Amount||Transaction 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|
Below is the variable percentage for users in the US. Check here for the variable percentages for other countries.
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:
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.
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.
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.
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
Disclaimer: Cryptocurrency trading involves significant risks and may result in the loss of your capital. You should carefully consider whether trading cryptocurrencies is right for you in light of your financial condition and ability to bear financial risks. Cryptocurrency prices are highly volatile and can fluctuate widely in a short period of time. As such, trading cryptocurrencies may not be suitable for everyone. Additionally, storing cryptocurrencies on a centralized exchange carries inherent risks, including the potential for loss due to hacking, exchange collapse, or other security breaches. We strongly advise that you seek independent professional advice before engaging in any cryptocurrency trading activities and carefully consider the security measures in place when choosing or storing your cryptocurrencies on a cryptocurrency exchange.