KuCoin 2021 Review: The Complete Guide With Ratings Fees
Packed full of advanced features, KuCoin is the exchange of choice for pro traders!
KuCoin is one of the largest crypto exchanges in the world.
It opened its doors in September 2017 and has gone on to become a popular destination for serious crypto traders.
With a 24-hour volume of more than €2.6 billion, it’s safe to say that KuCoin is as legit as they come.
So, let’s explore the world of KuCoin and teach you how to become a pro at trading at KuCoin!
What is KuCoin?
KuCoin is a world-renowned cryptocurrency exchange based in Singapore.
It focuses on listing coins and trading pairs that are of quality and that add value to its users.
KuCoin calls itself the "people’s exchange" as it focuses on putting traders first.
As a result, you’ll find a lot of features and functions at KuCoin that you won’t find anywhere else!
Let’s explore those features together!
The history of KuCoin.
Before we can dive into the features, it’s a great idea to take a look at KuCoin’s history and see where it came from.
Founded in September 2017, KuCoin was around for the infamous bull run of December 2017.
It launched at a time when lots of other exchanges were going live, so it had to differentiate itself from the crowd in order to stand out.
Many of KuCoin’s critics will say that it’s become needlessly complicated and confusing.
But, this is what was lacking from other crypto exchanges launched during the era, and a lot of its features are still missing from other crypto exchanges.
So, you can call KuCoin a true pioneer and visionary in the crypto trading sphere.
In November 2018 KuCoin partnered with IDG Capital and Matrix Partners in order to raise funding and supercharge its development.
Since then, KuCoin has become more ambitious with its development roadmap and we’ve seen some huge features land.
There’s plenty more in the pipline, and this will only take the KuCoin experience to new heights.
In September 2020, KuCoin was hacked, and it saw more than $150 million of Bitcoin and ERC-20 tokens drained from its hot wallets.
KuCoin initially tried to deny the claims of a hack, but then admitted to the hack several days later.
Since then, KuCoin has allegedly completed a "thorough security review", but this doesn’t mean that you should store your funds on an exchange long-term – ever!
How to buy cryptocurrency at KuCoin?
Let’s face it, the real reason that you’re here is to find out how easy it is to make an account and buy crypto at KuCoin.
Well, let’s stop delaying and get right to it.
Creating an account and buying crypto at KuCoin is a quick process, but it can get a little complicated and tricky.
So, we’re going to walk you through the entire process of signing up and buying crypto from KuCoin.
Depending on your region and device, things may look a little different, but the core process will be the same.
This means that you might see a few different payment options when it comes to depositing or buying crypto with fiat at KuCoin.
Unverified users are limited to buys of €20,000 per day and withdrawals are capped at 5 BTC per 24 hours.
You can currently buy crypto using the following fiat currencies:
Fiat buys aren’t done directly through KuCoin and are done with a 3 rd party provider.
When you input the fiat you wish to use and the amount you wish to buy, you’ll be given a choice of provider to use.
You’ll then need to complete registration at this provider.
The payment methods may vary at the end of this registration period as well, which can be frustrating.
It’s not the best system for buying crypto with fiat, but it gets the job done if you’ve got patience.
Not all cryptocurrencies can be bought with all fiat currencies.
For example, you cannot currently buy Bitcoin with EUR at KuCoin.
Also, certain providers claim to accept certain payment methods, but once you complete registration at the 3 rd party, that payment option isn’t available.
You don’t need to complete verification, but if you do, you’ll need a few bits to hand.
You can do this on any device you wish seeing as the KuCoin application doesn’t allow you to use your camera.
This means that you can take a picture of the documents and send it to the device that you’re going to be using.
You’ll need one of the following documents to get verified at KuCoin:
ID Card Passport Government issued ID.
You’ll also be asked to sign a piece of paper, write a special unique code on it as well as today’s date.
You’ll then have to hold this paper and your photo ID of choice while taking a selfie.
This process can be tricky as getting everything into focus and not covering your face is a bit of a challenge, especially if you don’t have someone to take the picture for you.
But, more on that process in just a minute!
Are you ready to buy crypto at KuCoin?
We certainly are!
Step-by-step guide to buy crypto at KuCoin.
Let’s get down to business and sign up at KuCoin.
The registration process is realtiely easy and quick.
We did the registration through the iOS application, but it’s the same process if you opt to do it on the Android app or through the website.
The apps offer a slightly better experience when it comes to uploading verification images as well as ease of use in general.
But the website is just as good, so don’t feel like you must use the mobile application.
Step 1 – registration.
When you’re ready to create your account, head on over to the KuCoin website.
From there you can click through to the official KuCoin app or opt to remain on the website.
This is far safer than looking for the app in the App Store or Google Play Store as there are many fakes out there.
Once you’ve got the app ready to go, hit sign up button.
First up, you’ll have to input your email address.
Once you’ve put that in, click send and you’ll get a code sent to your email address.
Pop that code in the box and click next.
You can also opt to do this with your mobile phone number instead by clicking the "by phone number" option at the bottom.
It’s worth noting that not all country codes are supported, despite KuCoin operating in that region.
Once you’ve done this step, you’ll need to enter a password twice and hit sign up.
Congratulations, you just registered at KuCoin.
See, wasn’t that easy?
Step 2 – verification.
This step is optional and isn’t worth your time if you’re going to be buying and trading less than €20,000 a day.
Withdrawals are also capped at 5 BTC in 24 hours before verification. But this is lifted to 3,000 BTC in 24 hours of you complete verification.
We attempted to complete the verification process but failed with the last step 9 times and have faced no issues when buying, selling, trading, and withdrawing crypto.
But, if you want to be a good cookie, or trade crazy amounts of crypto, then it’s worth doing this step.
You’re less likely to run into any issues down the line if you are fulled verified.
If you don’t want to verify, skip this step.
So, in order to do get verified, you need to open up the app and click on the letters in the circle at the top-left corner of the app.
We would call them your initials, but in our case, they’re not our initials at all.
This will open up a side menu, and then you need to click on idendity in the middle at the top.
This will take you to the verification process.
First up, you’ll need to fill in some personal details.
Next, you will pick the ID type that you wish to submit.
Take the images with your camera and send them to the device you’re using as the app doesn’t permit use of the camera.
Attach these files and then open up the final verification check.
This is where you need to sign a paper, put today’s date and use your special code.
You then need to take a picture holding this paper, the ID you’ve used and your face.
This is tricky to do on your own, so we recommend asking a friend to help you take the picture.
We tried to do this 9 times, but every time we’ve failed for something not being clear enough.
If you manage to pass this on the first attempt, you should probably pop a bottle of champagne!
After you submit this image, you will have to wait anywhere up to 6 hours for confirmation on whether you passed verification or not.
If you failed, you can retry seemingly as many times as you want.
If you pass, you’re all set and ready to move on to the next set – buying crypto at KuCoin!
Step 3 – buy cryptocurrency.
Now we come to the exciting step – buying crypto at KuCoin.
KuCoin doesn’t appear to have any fiat payment processors, meaning that you need to head to a 3 rd party site in order to buy crypto with KuCoin.
This is a little irritating, especially if you just spent the time completing verification.
Gripes aside, it’s the only way to buy crypto with fiat at KuCoin, so let’s dive in.
Open up the app and hit trade at the bottom in the middle.
Then, you’ll want to toggle it to fiat using the top menu.
Next up, select which crypto you want to buy and the fiat currency you want to use.
KuCoin lets you pick just about every fiat currency in the world, so you’re pretty spoilt for choice.
Then enter the amount you wish you buy and pick your payment method.
You’ll then be given a list of payment channels that you can use.
Unfortunately, not all cryptocurrencies can be bought with all fiat currencies.
This means that you might have to settle for a different crypto then trade into the one you want afterwards.
For example, you cannot buy Bitcoin with Euro at KuCoin.
Once you’ve finally settled on a pair, pick a payment channel, and follow the instructions.
All the payment channels we tested out, or should we say tried to use, asked us to complete verification on their end.
This is a bit of a slap in the face if you’re already done it with KuCoin.
Once you complete the verification, which is often just your mobile number of email address, you can get down to paying for crypto.
Sometimes the payment method you picked won’t show after all of that, so you either need to swap payment methods at the last minute or pick a new payment channel.
For example, we opted to use Apple Pay with one, but after the verification we were only given card or Google Pay as a payment method.
Once you’ve picked your payment method and completed the transaction, you’ll be taken back to your KuCoin account.
The crypto will then appear in your account shortly.
Depending on which crypto you bought, it could take anywhere from a few seconds to an hour to show up in your account.
You can see all pending deposits on the fiat page.
Congratulations, you just signed up, verified your account, and bought crypto at KuCoin!
Sending cryptocurrency to your external wallet.
Storing your cryptocurrency on an exchange is never a good idea, so moving it to your own wallet is essential.
By all means keep some crypto on an exchange to trade with, or if you plan on trading in the near future.
But if you want to store it for a few days, consider moving it to your own wallet.
Fortunately, it’s incredibly easy to move your crypto to your own wallet with KuCoin.
First of all, you’ll need an external crypto wallet.
There are loads out there and they all work slightly differently.
Some are better for daily use, while others are more of a long-term storage option.
You can learn more about crypto wallets with our detailed guide to crypto wallets.
There we run through the types of wallets, and which work best for your use cases.
Once you’ve got your wallets set up and secure, it’s time to make your KuCoin withdrawal.
Before you can withdraw, you need to set up 2-factor authentication (2FA) and bind your phone number to your account.
KuCoin doesn’t support all country codes, but don’t worry, we’ve got a workaround for that issue.
To enable 2FA, open the left-hand menu by clicking your "initials" and then tap security.
Select 2FA and then you can link a 2FA application, like Authy or Google Authenticator.
Either scan the QR code or copy and paste the key, both methods work the same.
Once that’s set up, head back to the security menu.
Then where it says "phone" make sure that it says disabled.
If it says anything else, open up that menu and toggle it to disabled.
You can then withdraw from your account.
Click on assets from the bottom menu and then pick whtdraw from the top menu.
Simply pick the cryptocurrency that you wish to withdraw, and start filling in the details.
When you input the wallet address, triple check that it’s correct as you cannot recover any funds once they’re sent.
You’ll also have the choice of network, which might confuse a lot of people.
For Ethereum and other ERC-20 tokens, you have the choice of ERC-20 or TRC-20.
This lets you pick between using Ethereum on Tron or Ethereum.
If you want to keep your ERC-20 tokens on Ethereum and are using an ERC-20 wallet, make sure you pick ERC-20.
Your funds will be lost if you pick a different network.
For Bitcoin, you’ll have the choice between the following options:
BTC is a regular wallet that doesn’t have Segwit enabled.
This is the standard choice and will work for all Bitcoin withdrawals, but it will cost a bit more in transaction fees.
If your wallet address starts with a 3 or BC1 then you can opt for Segwit, which will give you lower fees and will be quicker.
In the ideal world, you should be using a Segwit wallet that has an address beginning with a 3 or BC1, but it’s not essential.
Finally, TRC-20 is the Tron version of Bitcoin and should be avoided unless you’re moving your Bitcoin to the Tron network to use in DeFi.
Once you’re happy with everything, you can then hit continue and fill in a verification code that will be sent to your email address.
Once you’ve done that, KuCoin will process the transaction within 30 minutes.
Buying cryptocurrency at KuCoin with a credit card.
If you want to buy crypto at KuCoin with your credit card, then you’re in luck.
It’s one of the only ways that you can actually buy crypto at KuCoin.
However, KuCoin doesn’t handle this in-house and will send you to a 3 rd party provider in order to complete the transaction.
This in turn causes the fees to be a little bit higher than you see with other exchanges.
When you go to buy crypto with your card at KuCoin, you’ll be given a choice of payment facilitators.
You can then choose the one that offers you the most crypto for your money, as these have the best rates and lowest fees.
You then have to complete verification at the 3 rd party provider the first time you use them.
It’s also worth noting that not all cryptocurrencies are available for all currencies.
If you can’t buy the crypto of your dreams with your card at KuCoin, you will have to buy a different crypto then trade into your crypto of choice afterwards.
Fortunately, this system does allow you to maneuver around banking bans on crypto quite nicely.
Some of the payment channels don’t show up as crypto exchanges, so your bank should approve the transaction with no problem at all.
Other payment methods available at KuCoin.
Most crypto exchanges have a few fiat payment methods available for you to pick from, and KuCoin sticks to the trend.
However, owing to its fairly unique setup of only using 3 rd party providers for fiat purchases, you are somewhat limited.
Bank transfers are not possible owing to this setup.
But you can use Google Pay and Apple Pay.
It’s worth noting that some payment channels that advertise the fact that they accept Google Pay or Apple Pay may not actually do so once you pass verification.
So, prepare for this outcome ahead of time.
To pay with Google Pay or Apple Pay at KuCoin, simply pick it as your payment method.
You are then only shown payment channels that should accept that payment method.
Depending on the fiat currency you select, you may get additional payment methods based on your region.
Banks can prevent purchases of cryptocurrency.
Some countries have banking bans on crypto.
This means that any transaction from a bank account to a crypto exchange will be declined automatically.
This is problematic, especially when using crypto is legal and allowed in the country.
There are other nations that are crypto friendly, but banks in that region don’t like crypto and will prevent transactions.
This is commonplace inside Europe, but there are workarounds.
Using Apple Pay and Google Pay are fantastic alternatives that KuCoin has available.
So, if you live in a country with a banking ban on crypto, you shouldn’t need to worry too much about it at KuCoin thanks to its payment channels.
Can you sell crypto at KuCoin?
Buying crypto at KuCoin might not be the easiest task, but when it comes to selling, you’re in for a surprise – it’s not possible.
There are no fiat wallets or trading pairs at KuCoin.
This means that you can only withdraw or hold cryptocurrency in your KuCoin account.
So, while you can trade your crypto for a stablecoin or another cryptocurrency, you cannot sell it for fiat currency.
If you want to sell your cryptocurrency for fiat, you’ll need to look at using a different exchange with a fiat off-ramp.
KuCoin has an incredible range.
If you’re looking to trade cryptocurrencies for other cryptos, then KuCoin has your back.
It has a phenominal range of markets, with 771 trading pairs at the time of writing.
This is one of the largest selections in the crypto trading world.
When you consider that KuCoin only lists cryptocurrencies that it sees with good potential and fundamentals, it’s done well to have that mainy pairs.
Best of all, KuCoin is always on the lookout to add even more pairs based on user demand.
That means if a new cryptocurrency pops up and it’s not scammy, Kucoin will list it and create markets with its liquidity providers.
Why is KuCoin one of the largest trading venues?
Despite its many flaws and drawbacks for beginners, KuCoin is actually one of the most popular crypto trading venues in the world.
This is largely down to the fact that there are so many trading pairs available for crypto traders.
Throw in the fact that KYC isn’t nessesary and you’ve got the perfect crypto exchange.
The benefits and perks don’t really apply to newcomers to the crypto world and can only really be enjoyed by someone who’s been in crypto a while.
There are trading bots that can generate upwards of 7,000% APY for you to use and you can stake directly from your KuCoin account.
It even supports Ethereum 2.0 staking in the form of a pool, meaning that you can start staking Ethereum 2.0 with as little Ethereum as you wish.
You don’t need the 32 ETH requirement, which is a massive draw.
You can trade most currencies on leverage up to 100x, you can lend out crypto just like in DeFi and there are regular contests.
KuCoin really has rolled out the red carpet for crypto traders, and if you’re an active trader, there are oodles of benefits waiting for you.
As a beginner trader, KuCoin’s benefits might be a little out of reach and the advanced trading interface might be a bit too complicated.
The good, bad, and ugly at KuCoin.
KuCoin does a lot of things right, and that’s the reason it’s one of the biggest crypto exchanges in the world in terms of trade volume.
It’s perfect for seasoned traders that already have a good knowledge of crypto and a healthy portfolio.
But for beginners, it can be a scary, confusing and tricky place.
The contests give you plenty of chances to rack up free crypto.
The trading bots allow you to supercharge your earnings and the staking feature is second to none.
For advanced users, KuCoin is the best exchange, hands down.
But, if you’re newer to the crypto world and aren’t overly confident, KuCoin might not be the best place for you.
Let’s look at the pros and cons of KuCoin!
The pros of KuCoin.
KuCoin is perfect for advanced traders, packing in some incredible features.
Here are the pros of KuCoin:
Incredible range of trading pairs Ultra-low fees Professional trading interface Can stake multiple cryptocurrencies Highly profitable trading bots Up to 100x leverage trading Lending and borrowing facilities Lots of contests.
KuCoin has an impressive range of features that you’ll be hard pressed to find anywhere else.
The only exchange that gets close to the variety of KuCoin in terms of features and trading pairs is Binance.
If you’re looking for a high-quality crypto trading platform, KuCoin certainly has everything that you could ever need.
It really is a remarkable exchange that will blow your mind.
The Cons of KuCoin.
Unfortunately, despite all of the positives, there are a few issues with KuCoin that are big enough to put off certain groups of crypto traders.
If you’re new to crypto, KuCoin might be a bit too advanced for you.
We don’t mean that in an insulting way, but more of in a way where KuCoin won’t help you and give you the support that you need to get familiar with the crypto world.
Here are the cons of KuCoin:
No fiat trading pairs Fiat purchases done through 3 rd party providers off-site No basic or simple interface.
These issues that we have with KuCoin are all related to its ease of use.
KuCoin is known as the exchange of the people, but it’s not well suited to all people.
If you’re looking for a simple way to buy and sell crypto, Kucoin is not the exchange for you.
Is KuCoin safe?
All exchanges carry a certain degree of risk, but some carry a little more than others.
KuCoin sits relatively middle of the pack in terms of security, but it claims to have increased security in recent times.
It suffered a hack worth around $150 million back in September 2020, and since then it has undertaken what it claims to be a "thorough security review".
Still, that doesn’t mean that you should leave thousands of Euros worth of crypto on KuCoin.
Crypto exchanges are inherently risky places to store crypto.
There are a lot of security features built in that you can use to keep your account as safe as possible.
But, all the security features in the world are useless if KuCoin’s hot wallets get hit again.
The same goes for your security.
It’s useless having the best security in the world if your password is quite literally password.
Before you are able to withdraw any funds from your KuCoin account to a personal wallet, you’ll need to enable 2-factor authentication (2FA).
This is the only point where it becomes mandatory for you and is a good fail safe.
However, it’s wise to enable it even if you’re just trading using the platform.
Let’s say that your account is compromised, and you don’t have 2FA enabled.
The hacker can then slide in his or her own 2FA app and then withdraw from your account.
Not to mention that the hacker wouldn’t be able to access your account in the first place.
KuCoin makes enabling 2FA incredibly easy.
To do this, you need to tap on your "initials" in the top-right corner and then tap on security.
Then tap on Google Authentication and you’ll be able to connect your 2FA app.
You can use any 2FA application despite the fact it says Google Authentication, so don’t worry.
Just follow the steps on screen and you’re good to go.
If you’re looking for a good 2FA service, Google Authenticator is a good choice.
If you don’t like Google, Authy is a fantastic alternative that also works on your computer.
Do you pay fees at KuCoin.
All crypto exchanges have trading fees, but KuCoin’s fee schedule is pretty fair.
Its fees are some of the lowest around, and you can get a reduction on these fees if you’re an active trader or hold KuCoin’s token, KCS.
Maker and taker fees are 0.1% by default, but you can reduce this by paying trading fees with KCS.
At the base level, you’ll pay 0.08% maker and taker fees is you use KCS to pay.
As you trade more, your fees will drop.
The top level will require you trading more than 8,000 BTC in a 30-day period, and when you pay the fees with KCS, you’re looking at 0.005% in maker fees and 0.02% for taker fees.
When withdrawing, you only pay the transaction fee which is displayed on the withdrawal page.
Trade with leverage at KuCoin.
For those of you that are into leverage trading, you’ll be happy to know that it’s possible at KuCoin.
You can trade with up to 100x leverage at KuCoin on certain markets.
But, doing so is incredibly risky.
If you’re trading at 100x leverage and the price changes the wrong way by 1% your loss is 100%.
You don’t need to pass any tests or quizzes in order to be able to leverage trade at KuCoin, which makes this even more dangerous.
Anyone can hop on a 100x leverage trade, which might sound good, but it’s risky for newbies to the crypto world.
You should only leverage trade if you know what you are doing and have a lot of experience.
Buy crypto on your mobile.
If you’re a mobile user, then KuCoin is a great choice for you.
The KuCoin mobile app is sleek, smooth and runs well on all devices.
We tested it out on iOS, and it was a great experience, especially for those of you looking for a more advanced platform.
KuCoin isn’t really geared towards new traders and is filled with advanced features, even on mobile.
This does lead to a cluttered feel, but it’s actually well laid out and easy to use as far as pro trading apps go.
You can buy crypto on your mobile at KuCoin using the 3 rd party integrations.
You simply hit trade, select fiat, and then go through your currency selection preferences.
You are buying crypto from a 3 rd party rather than KuCoin, which isn’t the best experience on your mobile device.
KuCoin customer support.
Having good customer support is vital in the crypto exchange world, and this is something that KuCoin does well.
You can access support from the website and mobile app once logged in.
You have a choice of live chat, ticket submission and the detailed FAQ section.
The FAQs are well thought out and have detailed answers.
When we tested, it took around 6 hours to get a reply to a ticket, and the response was helpful.
The live chat is available in English and Chinese.
The support agents were incredibly helpful and detailed in their answers.
We didn’t have to wait long to get a reply and binaryoption.ae the response time was good.
So far, the support is our favorite part of the KuCoin experience.
Is KuCoin legal?
When it comes to the legal side of KuCoin, it’s a bit of a grey area.
The way that KuCoin functions doesn’t nessesarily require it to be regulated.
This is because you cannot use it as a fiat on or off ramp.
So, as a result, KuCoin isn’t regulated in any major jurisdiction in thw way that Coinbase or Kraken is.
As a result, you are advised not to use KuCoin from the USA.
While you can use it with no problem at all, KuCoin could decide to turn around and shut your account because they don’t wish to comply with US laws and regulations.
KuCoin doesn’t offer any fund protection guarantee like you get at Binance either, so you are on your own if it gets hacked again or your account gets compromised.
That being said, there are plenty of other exchanges out there using the same business model.
Just because it’s not regulated or licensed doesn’t make it unsafe to use.
We’ve used KuCoin for the purpose of this test and had no problems at all, other than trying to get verified and buy crypto, but those are minor issues.
Are profits from KuCoin taxed?
Hopefully when you’re trading you’re making money.
If you’re taking losses, these can actually benefit you in the long-run.
Whenever you make profit on crypto, you’ll need to report it to the tax man.
The upside of this is that you can also deduct losses from your tax bill, which evens everything out in the long-run.
Now, seeing as you can’t sell crypto for fiat at KuCoin, you won’t be directly taxed on your KuCoin activity.
But, you will still need to keep note of the trades you make so that when you do eventually cash out to fiat, you can pay the appropriate amount of tax.
Tax isn’t due on your crypto gains in every country, but it does apply in most.
Australia, Germany, and Malta will give you nice discounts on your tax if you hold for a year or more.
You can learn more about crypto tax and the specifics with our detailed guide to crypto taxes!
KuCoin is perfect for advanced users.
If you’re a more advanced user and you know what you’re doing, then KuCoin will become your new favorite crypto exchange.
It’s packed full of top-quality features that will allow you to take your trading game to the next level.
However, it’s a bit more advanced than most beginners should be using.
So, if you’re new to crypto, you might want to start out by using platforms like Kraken and Coinbase until you’re more confident.
KuCoin doesn’t give you the confidence you need to get going and is more geared towards experienced traders.
The trading bots are fantastic, offering real value for money in terms of return.
The fact that you can’t buy crypto directly from KuCoin and need to use a 3 rd party provider does ruin the experience.
What currencies can I use at KuCoin?
KuCoin currently has more than 770 trading pairs.
This is an insane range of trading pairs, so you should be able to find a pair that you wish to trade.
As for fiat currencies, you can’t actually buy or sell crypto for fiat at KuCoin.
You have to use a 3 rd party provider, which it matched to you based on the crypto that you want to buy and the fiat currency you’re using.
Is KuCoin available in my country?
KuCoin isn’t regulated in any country, meaning that if your country requires a license to operate, you can’t use KuCoin.
But, that doesn’t mean that you can’t use KuCoin from a restricted country.
You can still use a VPN and opt to not verify your account.
However, this could result in you losing your crypto if KuCoin decides to clamp down.
So, use KuCoin from a restricted country at your own risk.
Will KuCoin list more currencies?
KuCoin actively lists new cryptocurrencies and trading pairs based on their popularity.
It claims to only list projects with potential and trust, but there are lots of coins that are questionable already live on KuCoin.