A Comprehensive Guide: How to Buy Bitcoin in Canada

Abstract: The realm of digital currency is no longer the future, it’s the present. With cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin becoming more mainstream, it’s more important than ever to understand the process of buying and selling this form of currency. And if you’re based in Canada, this guide is crafted specifically for you to comprehend how to step into the cryptocurrency market proficiently.

With a vast horizon of digital currencies available in the global market today, the secret to successful investing lies in understanding the nuances of the cryptocurrency platforms you’re utilizing, the procedures involved, and the context of local regulations and restrictions. This article serves as your comprehensive guide to navigating the complexities of this buzzing financial field in Canada.

In this guide, you’ll encounter a step-by-step process to buy and sell cryptocurrencies on various trusted platforms in the country. From a basic introduction to digital currencies, to a more in-depth look at trading strategies and tax laws, we’ve got it all covered! Ready to dive in and understand how you can invest wisely? Let’s get started!

Understanding the Basics of Cryptocurrency in Canada

Cryptocurrency, notably Bitcoin, has become a popular digital asset for investment worldwide, including in Canada. Here, we’ll briefly explain what cryptocurrency is and how it functions within the scope of Canadian regulations.

What is Cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency is digital or virtual currency that uses cryptography for security. Unlike traditional currencies like the Canadian Dollar, cryptocurrencies function using decentralized technology known as blockchain, which keeps track of all transactions across multiple computers. The most well-known cryptocurrency is Bitcoin, but other popular ones in Canada include Ethereum and Litecoin.

The Use and Acceptance of Cryptocurrency in Canada

In Canada, the use of cryptocurrencies is legal and increasingly common. Numerous Canadian businesses accept Bitcoin as payment usingservices such as BitPay. However, the Bank of Canada has been clear that it does not see cryptocurrencies as legal tender. This means that no businessin Canada is legally required to accept cryptocurrencies as a payment method.

While the usage of cryptocurrency is welcomed, the Canadian government has implemented regulations to ensure the protection of users and investors. For example, cryptocurrency exchanges in Canada are required to register with the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC), and follow certain procedures to prevent money laundering and other illegal activities.

In addition, several Canadian provinces have specific laws for businesses that deal with cryptocurrencies. For instance, businesses dealing with cryptocurrency in Quebec must have a license from the Autorité des marchés financiers.

Overall, while cryptocurrency in Canada offers significant potential for growth and increasing acceptance, it’s crucial to understand the regulation and potential risks involved before jumping into investments or transactions. Be sure to do your due diligence and consider getting advice from a financial advisor who understands cryptocurrencies in the Canadian market context.

Examining Canadian Cryptocurrency Laws and Regulations

The nature of cryptocurrency, with its inherent anonymity and decentralized foundation, presents unique challenges for regulators. Despite these challenges, the Canadian government has adopted a proactive and evolving stance towards cryptocurrency regulations.

The Legal Status of Cryptocurrencies in Canada

In Canada, cryptocurrencies are entirely legal and are viewed as a commodity by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). This means transactions involving cryptocurrency are regarded as barter transactions. The implications of this characterization are significant for tax purposes.

If you use cryptocurrencies for goods or services, the CRA classifies these transactions as a form of barter trade, and thus, you’re expected to keep track of all cryptocurrency transactions for income tax reporting.

Cryptocurrency Exchanges Regulations

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) and Investment Industry Regulatory Organization of Canada (IIROC) regulate cryptocurrency exchanges. They enforce a strict compliance framework to mitigate possible risks associated with investments and trading.

These exchanges must provide transparent disclosure of potential risks and are required to establish processes for identity verification, compliance reporting, and maintaining records. Furthermore, cryptocurrency exchanges are subject to the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act (PCMLTFA), making them responsible for reporting suspicious transactions.

However, Canada doesn’t have any specific legislation that would regulate Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) or Security Token Offerings (STOs), compared to similar offerings in traditional financial markets.

Consumer Protection

The Canadian government has taken measures to protect users of cryptocurrencies. For instance, cryptocurrency exchanges in Quebec are required to obtain a license from the Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF) and to put in place security measures for protecting clients’ assets.

In conclusion, Canada has generally adopted a balanced and cautious regulatory approach to cryptocurrency, acting to protect consumers and prevent illegal activity without stifling innovation in the digital currency space.

Steps to Purchasing Cryptocurrency as a Canadian Resident

Purchasing cryptocurrency in Canada involves several procedures that are essential for security and compliance with Canadian laws. The following is a step-by-step guide on how you can get started with investing in cryptocurrencies.

Step 1: Create an Account on a Cryptocurrency Exchange

The very first step towards purchasing cryptocurrency is to open an account on a reliable exchange that operates in Canada. You can choose between international exchanges such as Binance, or country-specific exchanges like Coinsquare or BitBuy.

Step 2: Verify Your Account

Due to Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Know Your Customer (KYC) regulations in Canada, users are required to verify their identity before they can start trading. This usually involves uploading a valid form of identification, such as a passport or driver’s license, and in some cases, proof of address.

Step 3: Fund Your Account

Once your account is verified, you can fund it using various methods such as Interac e-transfers, bank wires, or even credit cards. The fund clearance time usually depends on the method chosen.

Step 4: Purchase Cryptocurrency

As soon as your account is funded, you can start purchasing cryptocurrency. You can do this by navigating to the exchange portion of the site, selecting the cryptocurrency you wish to buy, specifying the quantity, and confirming the transaction. Purchase orders are usually fulfilled instantly, unless you’re trading in large volumes.

Step 5: Secure Your Cryptocurrency

After buying cryptocurrency, it is crucial to secure your investment properly. An essential safety practice is to transfer your holdings into a secure wallet – either a software-based “hot” wallet or a hardware “cold” wallet. This step reduces the risk of losing your cryptocurrency through exchange hacks.

As with any investment, it’s critical to do your research and comprehend the market before purchasing cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrencies can be a highly volatile investment, so it is essential to only invest money you can afford to lose.

Selling Cryptocurrency in Canada: Essential Guide

Despite the volatility and unpredictable market conditions, cryptocurrency holds the potential to make impressive returns. As a Canadian, if you have invested in cryptocurrency and plan to sell, here is an essential guide to facilitate your process.

Know the Right Time to Sell

Understanding when to sell your cryptocurrency is crucial. Keep an eye on the market trends, price fluctuations, and recent news concerning cryptocurrencies. Determine whether the market is bullish (rising) or bearish (falling), and make decisions accordingly.

Choosing the Right Platform

Selecting a suitable platform for transaction purposes is crucial. Transaction fees, security, ease of use, payment options, and customer support are major factors that determine a good platform. Some popular platforms used by Canadians include Bitbuy, NDAX, and Shakepay.

Platforms Transaction Fees User-Friendly Interface Payment Method
Bitbuy 0.10%-0.20% Yes Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer
NDAX 0.20% Yes Bank Transfer
Shakepay No Fee Yes Interac, e-Transfer, Bank Wire

Before selling your cryptocurrency, ensure to understand Canada’s cryptocurrency regulations to avoid legal issues. Cryptocurrencies are legal in Canada and are classified as a commodity by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). Any income from the sale of cryptocurrencies needs to be declared as either business income or capital gain.

Make sure to track and document all of your transactions, given the tax obligations. Also, prioritize your security, store your cryptocurrencies in the right wallet, avoid sharing sensitive information, and implement dual-factor authentication.

Top Cryptocurrency Exchanges Accessible in Canada

The transformed digital age has allowed Canadians to trade and invest in cryptocurrencies with ease and safety. Many reputable and safe exchanges are accessible in Canada. The main factors making them on the top list includes their security measures, the volume of transactions they handle, their reputation and customer support. Here are some of the most widely-used cryptocurrency exchanges in Canada.


Coinsquare is considered one of Canada’s premier cryptocurrency exchanges. It offers a sophisticated trading platform that supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and other popular cryptocurrencies. Coinsquare appreciates security, making it an attractive platform for Canadians. Apart from this, it also offers simplified quick trades where you can buy and sell crypto with few clicks.


Kraken, in operation since 2011, is known for its wide selection of cryptocurrencies, advanced security features, and lower fees. It supports a variety of funding options such as wire transfers and electronic funding. Kraken also offers 24/7 customer support, which sets it apart from many other cryptocurrency exchanges.

These exchanges are known for their reliable service, ease of use, and robust security mechanisms. As a trader or investor in Canada, you have many options to choose from for your cryptocurrency transactions. Please keep in mind, it is crucial to do your own research and due diligence before choosing a platform to ensure that it meets your specific needs and requirements.

Securing Your Cryptocurrency Assets: Canada-Based Wallets

There are many options available for storing and securing your cryptocurrency assets in Canada. There exist several well-established Canadian-based wallets that can provide top-notch security while offering ease of use. This section will walk you through some of the popular Canadian-based cryptocurrency wallets that are most frequently recommended for their security features.

1. Shakepay

Shakepay is a Montreal-based wallet that facilitates the buying, selling, and storing of bitcoin and ethereum. Besides, it also offers its users the ability to send cryptocurrencies to other Shakepay users for free.

2. Bitbuy

Based in Toronto, Bitbuy is not only a trading platform but also offers a digital wallet service. It is recognized for its security, as it incorporates two-factor authentication and SSL encryption.


NDAX is a Calgary-based digital asset exchange that also provides a secure digital wallet. It offers a variety of cryptocurrencies including but not limited to: Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Ripple (XRP), EOS, Stellar (XLM), Dogecoin (DOGE), and Cardano (ADA).

4. Coinberry

Coinberry is a Toronto-based, FINTRAC-registered money service business (MSB) that supports a wide range of cryptocurrencies. It offers a secure wallet service where users can store their blockchain assets.

Apart from choosing a secure wallet, it is essential to take additional measures to further secure your cryptocurrency wallet. Here are some quick tips you can employ:

  • Enable two-factor authentication (2FA) whenever it’s available.
  • Keep your wallet’s software updated to ensure you have the latest security enhancements.
  • Only use wallets offered by reputable providers which have a proven track record of good security.
  • Backup your wallet regularly and store your backup and recovery details securely.

Remember, the security of your cryptocurrency is only as good as the measures you take. Invest your time in learning and understanding the best practices to secure your digital assets.

Reporting Cryptocurrency Transactions for Canadian Taxes

The tax implications for dealing with cryptocurrencies in Canada are important to consider. As a resident of Canada, you are required to report cryptocurrency transactions. Below is a guide on how to do so.

Understanding How Cryptocurrency is Taxed in Canada

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has made it clear that cryptocurrency is to be treated as a commodity for tax purposes. This means that any income from the sale or transfer of these digital assets is considered business income or a capital gain.

  • For Business Income: If you are using the currency for day-to-day transactions or business activities, any gains or losses are considered as business income. Such income should be reported on form T2125 (Statement of Business or Professional Activities).
  • For Capital Gains: If you are investing in cryptocurrency and make a profit from its appreciation, you have a capital gain. Tax is levied only on 50% of the capital gains achieved. If a loss is made, it is considered a capital loss and can be used to offset other capital gains.

Risks of Non-Reporting

If you do not properly report your cryptocurrency transactions, the CRA could deem all of your trading activity as business-related. This means that you could end up owing income tax on 100% of any gains from all of your trades. Failing to report your tax is a federal offense and you could also face heavy fines.

Steps to Report Cryptocurrency Transactions

  1. Keep Detailed Records: Track every transaction you make in a cryptocurrency, logging the date, amount, and for business purposes, what the transaction was for.
  2. Calculate the Fair Market Value: Determine the fair market value in Canadian dollars at the time of the transaction.
  3. Determine the Type of Income: Based on your activity, determine if you should report the income as business income or as a capital gain.
  4. Report on Your Taxes: Report all sales and exchanges to CAD on your tax return, regardless of whether you made a gain or not.

Using a tax professional or a software solution that specializes in cryptocurrency can make it easier to navigate these reporting requirements.

FAQ How to buy and sell cryptocurrency in canada

How can I buy cryptocurrency in Canada using a crypto exchange?

You can buy cryptocurrency in Canada using a crypto exchange by signing up for an account on a reputable exchange platform like Kraken, Bitbuy, or Coinberry, and then following their instructions for purchasing crypto.

Are there Bitcoin ATMs in Canada that allow you to buy crypto?

Yes, Canada has a network of Bitcoin ATMs that allow you to buy crypto. You can locate these ATMs in various cities across the country.

What is the best way to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Canada?

The best way to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Canada depends on your preferences. You can use online exchanges, Bitcoin ATMs, or even crypto brokers like Wealthsimple Crypto to make purchases.

How do I sell Bitcoin in Canada, and what platforms or methods can I use?

To sell Bitcoin in Canada, you can use a crypto exchange like Kraken or Bitbuy. Simply create an account, list your Bitcoin for sale, and follow the platform’s instructions to complete the transaction.

Can I use my Canadian bank account to facilitate crypto transactions?

Yes, many crypto exchanges and platforms in Canada allow you to link your Canadian bank account to make deposits and withdrawals for buying and selling crypto.

What are some popular Canadian crypto exchanges that support the purchase and sale of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin?

Some popular Canadian crypto exchanges that support buying and selling cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin include Coinsquare, Shakepay, and NDAX.

Are there any legal restrictions when it comes to buying and selling cryptocurrencies in Canada?

The legal landscape for cryptocurrencies in Canada is evolving. It’s important to stay informed about any regulations or tax implications related to buying and selling crypto in Canada.

Can you recommend a reliable crypto wallet for storing my crypto assets in Canada?

Some reputable crypto wallets for Canadians include Exodus, Ledger Nano S, and MyEtherWallet, each offering secure storage options for various cryptocurrencies.

What is the process of cashing out Bitcoin in Canada, and are there tax considerations?

To cash out Bitcoin in Canada, you can use a crypto exchange to sell it for Canadian dollars. Tax considerations may apply, so consult with a tax professional for guidance.

How can I learn more about crypto trading and invest in crypto assets?

You can learn about crypto trading and invest in crypto assets by researching online resources, taking online courses, or joining crypto communities. Additionally, you can start with a reputable crypto trading platform to gain practical experience.

How can I use a Bitcoin ATM in Canada if I want to buy crypto?

To use a Bitcoin ATM in Canada to buy crypto, locate a nearby ATM, follow the on-screen instructions, and insert the required amount of cash. You’ll receive crypto to your wallet.

What options are available to trade crypto in Canada, and which platforms are recommended?

You can trade crypto in Canada on various platforms like Binance, Kraken, and Bitstamp. Research each platform’s features and fees to choose the one that suits your needs.

Is it legal to buy and sell Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Canada?

Yes, it is legal to buy and sell Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Canada. The country has regulations in place to govern these transactions.

Can you suggest a secure Bitcoin wallet for storing my cryptocurrency holdings?

Some secure Bitcoin wallets for Canadians include Electrum, Trezor, and Ledger Nano S, providing safe storage options for your crypto assets.

What are the steps to purchase Bitcoin in Canada using fiat currencies?

To purchase Bitcoin in Canada using fiat currencies, sign up on a crypto exchange, complete the identity verification process, deposit funds from your bank account, and place an order to buy BTC.

Are there any resources or courses available to help me learn how to buy cryptocurrencies?

Yes, you can find online courses, tutorials, and educational websites that provide guidance on how to buy cryptocurrencies safely and efficiently.

Where can I find places to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Canada?

You can find places to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in Canada through online exchanges, Bitcoin ATMs, and reputable crypto brokers.

How can I set up a crypto account in Canada to start trading and investing?

Setting up a crypto account in Canada involves choosing a reliable exchange, completing the registration process, and securing your account with two-factor authentication (2FA).

What is the process for selling Bitcoins in Canada, and are there any tax implications?

To sell Bitcoins in Canada, use a crypto exchange or trading platform. Tax implications may apply, so consult a tax professional for guidance on reporting crypto gains.

Can you recommend a cryptocurrency exchange that supports a wide range of altcoins and allows people to buy, sell, and trade crypto easily?

Binance is a popular cryptocurrency exchange known for its extensive list of supported altcoins and user-friendly interface, making it a preferred choice for many crypto investors in Canada.