There are a lot of cryptocurrency exchanges out there and it can be difficult to know which is good and which is bad, especially if you are new to it all. The Changelly Exchange is one of many that I’ve been hearing about lately so I decided to dive deep into it and write this review for anyone wanting to know what its like beforehand.
If you are wondering is Changelly a scam the answer is No its not. I’m aware of the scam rumors out there that exist and I will be addressing them in this review.
Changelly Exchange Review
Changelly (Changelly.com) is a cryptocurrency exchange that gives people the ability to buy cryptocurrencies easily with their credit/debit cards as well as exchange one cryptocurrency for another. Overall the platform is very well laid out and easy to use. Its very easy to navigate and the process of exchanging is straightforward.
The exchange is nice and I like what they bring to the table, however, this exchange is very different from others like Binance, Bittrex, COSS, CoinEgg etc. Its good for some things but not good for others. I’ll explain what I mean by this later in the review. First I want to go over to use the exchange…
Using The Exchange
On the homepage of Changelly you will see where you can exchange currencies and cryptocurrencies. On the left you will be able to choose what currency you have that you want to use to exchange for another currency. As you can see below I chose BTC (Bitcoin). You can choose from a list on the dropdown menu and after that enter in the amount you want to exchange.
Then over on the right you will choose what cryptocurrency you want to receive. I chose XRP (Ripple) as an example although I don’t personally like Ripple. It will automatically calculate how much you will get based on the current market price. After that you will click on the green Exchange button.
After you click to exchange you will be taken through a series of steps.
- First you will verify the amounts you entered
- Then you will enter your wallet address that you want the cryptocurrency you are buying to be sent to
- Next you will confirm the transaction
- And lastly you will send the cryptocurrency you are paying with to an address that they give you
The time it takes for the transaction to go through depends on the cryptocurrency you are exchanging for and its blockchain. Generally they tell you that you can expect it in 5-35 minutes.
Buying With a Debit/Credit Card
You are able to choose to pay in USD or EUR if you wish to. If you choose to do this you will be directed to pay with your credit/debit card.
And don’t worry, if you live in a country and do not have your money in EUR or USD luckily you can still purchase crypto. You can use any currency and they will just convert it to EUR or USD for you.
The process of buying cryptocurrency with a credit/debit card is pretty easy and straightforward but a little more complicated than buying normal online goods and services.
If you select USD or EUR from the dropdown menu where you choose the currency you want to pay with, you will be taken to a different set of steps. Everything is normal…. you enter your payment details, address & name, but the part that is different is that you have to verify that the credit/debit card you are using is yours. You will need access to your bank account online to do this.
You Are Going To NEED a Wallet First
Its important to know that you will need a wallet set up for whatever cryptocurrency you are buying before you actually buy it. Unlike most exchanges that provide wallets on the exchange and deposit your funds directly into this wallet, with Changelly the cryptocurrency that you purchase will be sent directly to your wallet elsewhere. They do not have wallets on the exchange.
So if you are buying crypto and want to send it directly to a hardware wallet like TREZOR, or to a wallet on another exchange you can easily do this.
What This Exchange Is & Isn’t Good For
As I said, Changelly differs a lot from some of the most popular exchanges out there. From what I see it is a decent exchange if you are looking to purchase cryptocurrency with a credit/debit card but not a good choice if you are looking to exchange one cryptocurrency for another.
When it comes to buying a cryptocurrency with a credit/debit card there aren’t nearly as many options as there are for exchanging one crypto for another. Coinbase is one of the few other good exchanges where you are able to purchase with a card. The difference between the two is that Changelly charges higher fees and, like I mentioned, your cryptocurrency is sent directly to the wallet address you put in, whereas with Coinbase the fees are higher and the funds are deposited in your wallet on the exchange.
Crypto to Crypto
If you are looking to exchange one cryptocurrency for another then there are a lot better options. For example, exchanges like Binance and many others allow you to exchange much faster with much lower transaction fees.
The reason other exchanges like Binance can do this is because they don’t interact with the blockchain for exhanges like going from one coin to another. Instead they basically just move numbers around from one account to another. On Changelly every transaction goes on the blockchain which takes time and includes a higher fee (usually) which depends on the cryptocurrency you are exchanging.
However on other exchanges your coins will end up in the exchange wallet and you will have to make an additional transaction to put them in a wallet off the exchange which will include another. So really it depends on what you are looking to do. If you are looking to just trade one crypto for another and hold it in your wallet for a long time then Changelly is also a good choice here too.
A Look at the Fees
Changelly only charges 0.5% fees for most transactions. This is nothing major but if you are buying with a credit/debit card you are going to be charged higher fees. Because they use Simplex (Bitstamp’s payment processor) service for processing, you will be charged 5% for this service and on top of that Changelly charges a higher fee of 5%, which makes it a 10% fee total.
So if you buy with cryptocurrency you will only be charged the 0.5% fee so far but if you buy with a credit/debit card you will be charged more.
However, on top of these fees you will be charged the transaction fee for putting your order on the blockchain. This fee can vary a lot and depends on the coin you are exchanging.
Overall the fees are not too bad.
If you refer others to join Changelly you will earn 50% commissions from the fees of your referrals for life. So that 0.5 – 5% fee that Changelly collects is what you will be earning 50% of.
Its great that they have this but this leads to a lot of misinformation being provide online by people just trying to get others to sign up through their affiliate link.
Is Changelly Safe?
One of the nice things about Changelly is that since they don’t provide wallets they don’t actually hold anyone’s funds in their hands. So if the exchange gets hacked it doesn’t really matter much to you because your coins will be elsewhere.
There isn’t all that much to worry about.
For account protection against hacking they give you the the option of setting up 2-factor authentication (2FA) where you will recieve a code on your phone in order to login. This way hackers will also have to somehow get their hands on your phone or hack into it to be able to get into your account. Its an added layer of security.
Final Thoughts – Is Changelly Worth Using?
Changelly is definitely not a scam. I’ve read a couple other reviews from people claiming that it is. One in particular was written by a guy who was mad about the fees. He was claiming that they took a massive amount of fees from his transaction and this may have been true but could have been the result of the blockchain. For some transactions the majority of the fees come from the actual transaction on the blockchain which has nothing to do with Changelly and has everything to do with the blockchain that the cryptocurrency you are exchanging for runs on.
Changelly is a nice exchange that is pretty good if you want to buy cryptocurrency and store it away in a wallet. But if you are looking to trade between cryptocurrencies it is not for you. Also, if you are looking to buy cryptocurrency with USD or Euro’s but don’t want to set up another wallet then you should look into GDAX or Coinbase. GDAX is what I would recommend.
And as always, leave any questions or comments below. I’ll get back to you soon 🙂