Coinbase Review 2024: Still a Great Option for UK Investors?

Authored by:
Adam Woodhead
Adam Woodhead

Adam Woodhead

Co-Founder

Adam is a Co-Founder and content creator for The Investors Centre. His key areas of interest and expertise are cryptocurrency and blockchain technology.

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Reviewed by:
Dom Farnell
Dom Farnell

Dom Farnell

Co-Founder

Dom is a Co-Founder of TIC, a passionate investor and seasoned blog writer with a keen interest in financial markets and wealth management. "My goal is to empower individuals to make informed investment decisions through informative and engaging content."

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Last Updated 30/02/2024
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Quick Answer

Coinbase offers a user-friendly platform for buying crypto in the UK, but fees can be high, especially for simple trades. Security is a plus, and it supports many currencies. However, advanced features require switching interfaces.

4.3/5

Please keep in mind that Crypto assets are volatile and currently unregulated. This volatility presents risk to your investment, and you may lose your funds. Profits from Cryptocurrency sales may be subject to Capital gains tax under UK law.

Review Criteria
TIC Review Rating
Cryptocurrencies Available
4.3/5
Security
4.7/5
User Experience
4.5/5
Fees
3.5/5
Mobile App
4.4/5
Community
3.9/5
Staking
4.0/5
Transparency
4.2/5
Advanced Trading Tools
4.1/5
UK Accessibility
4.1/5
Overall Review Score
4.1/5

Review of Coinbase

4.1/5

In assessing the performance and capabilities of crypto exchange platforms like Coinbase, our review grading system offers a structured and objective way to evaluate various aspects of the service. This system uses specific criteria that are crucial for users when reviewing choosing a cryptocurrency exchange. Our goal in our Coinbase review is to provide a comprehensive and balanced perspective on Coinbase, highlighting its strengths and areas where it can improve. Let's see how Coinbase measures up in the competitive world of top cryptocurrency exchanges.

Our Coinbase review has provided an in-depth look at various aspects of the crypto exchange platform, culminating in an overall average rating of 4.1/5. The analysis covered the breadth of features that Coinbase offers, from the variety of cryptocurrencies available to the intricacies of its advanced trading tools.

Coinbase has established itself as a reliable platform for both novice and experienced crypto investors, marked by its extensive selection of cryptocurrencies, robust security measures, and user-friendly interface. The mobile app’s functionality and the platform’s commitment to community building and transparency further solidify its position in the market.

On the flip side, the platform’s fee structure, while transparent, is a point of contention for users seeking more cost-effective trading options. Moreover, the advanced trade tools, although comprehensive, present a learning curve and could benefit from further optimization for high-frequency trading.

Coinbase continues to be a major player in the cryptocurrency exchange arena. Its strengths in security, diversity of offerings, and user experience are commendable. However, the areas for improvement, particularly in cost structure, complexity of advanced tools, and regional accessibility, suggest there is still room for growth and adaptation. As the cryptocurrency landscape continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see how Coinbase adapts and enhances its platform to meet the changing needs and expectations of its global user base.

What follows is a more in-depth analysis of our 10 Coinbase review criteria.

Cryptocurrencies Available: 4.3/5

As of 2024, the platform supports 248 digital currencies, including major coins like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and a variety of altcoins. This diversity caters to both the risk-averse investors who prefer more established coins and the adventurous traders seeking potential in emerging cryptocurrencies. Despite this impressive selection, Coinbase falls short of a perfect score due to the absence of certain lesser-known, yet high-potential, digital currencies. This limitation might deter some users who are looking to explore beyond the mainstream offerings in the crypto market.

The platform frequently updates its listings, providing opportunities for users to invest in new and potentially lucrative digital assets. However, the stringent process for adding new coins, while beneficial for security and trust, can sometimes delay the availability of emerging cryptocurrencies, which might be readily available on other crypto exchanges.

Security: 4.7/5

Security is a paramount concern in the world of cryptocurrency, and Coinbase has established itself as a leader in this domain. The platform employs advanced security measures, such as bank-level encryption, two-factor authentication, and cold storage for the majority of customer funds, which significantly reduces the risk of hacking and fraud for your Coinbase account. This robust approach to safeguarding user assets and information is reflected in its high score of 4.7 out of 5. Coinbase’s commitment to security is further evidenced by its insurance policies, which offer an added layer of protection for users’ funds against potential breaches.

Despite these strong security measures, the landscape of cyber threats is constantly evolving, presenting new challenges for Coinbase and other crypto exchanges 

User Experience: 4.5/5

User experience is a critical aspect of any online trading platform, and Coinbase excels in creating a user-friendly environment. The interface is designed to be intuitive and easy to navigate, making it accessible for users with varying levels of experience in cryptocurrency trading. From setting up an account to executing trades, the process is streamlined and hassle-free. This focus on a seamless user experience earns Coinbase a 4.5 out of 5. The platform also offers a range of educational resources, helping users to understand the complexities of the cryptocurrency market and make informed decisions.

However, while Coinbase is highly user-friendly for beginners, some advanced traders might find the platform lacking in certain sophisticated features found on other exchanges. Although Coinbase has made efforts to introduce more advanced trading tools, there is still a gap between the needs of professional traders and the functionalities offered. Bridging this gap by enhancing the platform’s advanced trading capabilities and providing more in-depth analytical tools could further improve the user experience for a broader audience.

Coinbase Fees: 3.5/5

One of the more contentious aspects of the Coinbase exchange is its pricing model. The platform employs a combination of fixed and variable fees, which can be somewhat higher compared to other cryptocurrency exchanges. This fee model is transparent, with costs clearly outlined on the platform, but it can be a deterrent for frequent, small-volume traders, as the fees can accumulate and impact overall profitability. Thus, Coinbase receives a 3.5 out of 5 in this area. The fees are straightforward for larger transactions, but for those engaging in regular, smaller trades, the costs can be comparatively steep. Funding from a

The fees on Coinbase are designed to maintain the platform’s robust infrastructure and security measures, which are crucial for user trust and safety. However, in a highly competitive market, where users are sensitive to transaction costs, there is a need for Coinbase to re-evaluate and potentially restructure its fee model. A more competitive and flexible pricing model, perhaps with tiered pricing or discounts for high-volume traders, could enhance the platform’s appeal and affordability.

Mobile App: 4.4/5

The Coinbase exchange mobile app is a standout feature, epitomizing the platform’s commitment to accessibility and convenience. It allows users to manage their cryptocurrency portfolios on the go, offering the mostly the same range of functionalities as the desktop version. The app’s design is sleek and user-friendly, making it easy to navigate for users of all experience levels. This high level of functionality and accessibility earns the app a 4.4 out of 5. The app also includes features like price alerts and the ability to buy, sell, and convert cryptocurrencies, providing users with a comprehensive mobile trading experience.

Coinbase Screenshot desktop for Coinbase Review
Coinbase Desktop Screenshot Coinbase Review
Coinbase Advanced Screenshot desktop for OKX vs Coinbase
Coinbase Advanced Screenshot desktop Coinbase Review

Community: 3.9/5

Coinbase has nurtured a robust community, which plays a vital role in the platform’s ecosystem. The community encompasses a diverse group of users, ranging from beginners to seasoned traders, and provides a platform for discussion, knowledge sharing, and support. This vibrant community contributes to the overall appeal of Coinbase, earning it a score of 3.9 out of 5. The platform encourages community engagement through various channels, including social media, forums, and a dedicated support centre. This level of engagement fosters a sense of belonging and provides valuable feedback for continual improvement.

Staking: 4.0/5

Staking is an increasingly popular feature in the cryptocurrency world, and Coinbase has capitalized on this trend by offering a variety of staking options. Users can earn rewards by staking their cryptocurrencies directly through the platform, which supports staking for several major coins. This feature not only provides an additional revenue stream for users but also contributes to the overall security and efficiency of the respective blockchain networks. The Coinbase crypto staking options are user-friendly and easily accessible, making it an attractive feature for both novice and experienced users, and earning a score of 4.0 out of 5.

While Coinbase’s staking feature is commendable, there is room for expansion and improvement. The selection of stakable coins is somewhat limited, and the terms and conditions associated with staking can be complex, especially for less experienced users. Expanding the range of stakable assets and providing more transparent and detailed information about the staking process, risks, and rewards could enhance the user experience. Furthermore, competitive staking rates and the introduction of more flexible staking options could attract a wider user base and solidify Coinbase’s position as a leading platform for cryptocurrency staking.

Transparency: 4.2/5

Coinbase excels in this regard. The platform is forthcoming about its operations, security measures, fee structure, and regulatory compliance, which instils confidence among users. This level of transparency is crucial in an industry often shrouded in ambiguity and uncertainty, earning Coinbase a 4.2 out of 5. The platform’s commitment to regulatory compliance and open communication about its practices sets a high standard for transparency in the cryptocurrency exchange market.

Advanced Trading Tools: 4.1/5

The platform offers a suite of sophisticated trading tools designed to provide in-depth analysis and enhanced trading strategies. These tools include comprehensive charting capabilities with a range of technical indicators, real-time market data, and customizable modules. Traders can analyse trends, monitor market movements, and make informed decisions based on detailed data analytics. This suite is particularly beneficial for those who rely on technical analysis as part of their trading strategy.

However, while these advanced features are robust, their complexity can be daunting for beginners or less tech-savvy users. Some users have reported a steep learning curve when first navigating these tools.  These aspects result in a score of 4.1 out of 5, reflecting the balance between comprehensive features and areas for improvement.

UK Accessibility: 3.9/5

Coinbase has made considerable efforts to tailor its services to the British market. The platform supports transactions in GBP, allowing for straightforward funding and withdrawal for UK users. This local currency support is crucial in minimizing exchange rate complications and fees, making it more accessible for UK residents. Additionally, Coinbase complies with UK regulatory standards, ensuring a secure and legal framework for users. This commitment to aligning with local regulations is commendable and essential for building trust among UK-based customers.

However, the platform’s UK accessibility is not without its limitations. Notably, some features and cryptocurrencies available to users in other regions are restricted in the UK. These restrictions can be a source of frustration for UK users, especially those looking to diversify their portfolios with a wider range of cryptocurrencies or access specific platform features. Additionally, UK users have reported facing delays and limitations in customer service responses, an aspect that can significantly impact the user experience. These factors contribute to the score of 3.9 out of 5, indicating good accessibility but with notable room for improvement.

Key Features

Coinbase Mobile Trading Screenshot Coinbase Review
Coinbase Mobile Trading Screenshot Coinbase Review
  1. Ease of Use: Perhaps the most notable feature of Coinbase is its intuitive and beginner-friendly interface. This makes it particularly appealing for those new to cryptocurrency trading.

  2. Wide Range of Supported Cryptocurrencies: Coinbase offers a substantial variety of cryptocurrencies for trading, including major coins like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin, as well as a selection of altcoins and ERC-20 tokens.

  3. Security Measures: Security is a top priority for Coinbase. The platform employs industry-leading security practices, including offline storage of the majority of assets, 2FA, and insurance coverage for digital assets stored on the exchange.

  4. Educational Resources: Coinbase provides a wealth of educational content through Coinbase Learn, aimed at helping users understand cryptocurrencies and the underlying blockchain technology.

  5. Coinbase Advanced for Seasoned Crypto Investors: For those seeking more advanced trading features, Coinbase offers Coinbase Advanced, which includes more detailed charting, a variety of order types, and lower fee structures.

  6. Regulatory Compliance: Coinbase is known for its strong compliance with regulatory standards, operating as a fully regulated and licensed cryptocurrency exchange in multiple jurisdictions.

  7. Coinbase Wallet: Coinbase offers a separate mobile wallet app known as the Coinbase Wallet. Crypto wallets allow users to store their cryptocurrencies securely, manage their private keys, and have full control over their funds. It’s separate from the Coinbase exchange but can be linked for easy transfers between the Coinbase wallet and the exchange.

  8. Mobile App Availability: The Coinbase mobile app offers a seamless trading experience, mirroring the simplicity and functionality of the desktop platform.

  9. Coinbase Earn Program: This unique feature allows users to earn cryptocurrencies by learning about them, making it an innovative way to introduce users to different crypto assets.

  10. Coinbase Wallet: The Coinbase Wallet app is a versatile and user-friendly mobile solution for managing your cryptocurrency holdings. With the Coinbase Wallet app, users can securely store and access their digital assets while maintaining full control over their private keys. anytime, anywhere.

4.1/5

TIC Coinbase Review Score 4.1/5

Coinbase - Our Best for Beginners Pick

Coinbase, established 2012, is a renowned global cryptocurrency exchange platform known for its user-friendly interface and diverse range of digital asset services.

Pros

Cons

Please keep in mind that Cryptocurrency assets are volatile and currently unregulated. This volatility presents risk to your investment, and you may lose your funds. Profits from Cryptocurrency sales may be subject to Capital gains tax under UK law.

What is Coinbase

Coinbase Mobile Staking Screenshot Coinbase Review
Coinbase Staking Mobile Screenshot

Coinbase, a prominent cryptocurrency exchange, stands as a gateway into the world of digital finance. Founded in 2012, it has established itself as one of the most user-friendly platforms for buying, selling, and managing cryptocurrencies. Recognized for its intuitive design, Coinbase caters to both novice and experienced traders, offering a seamless experience for those venturing into the dynamic realm of digital currencies. 

As a cryptocurrency exchange, it supports a wide array of cryptocurrencies including major players like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and a variety of altcoins, making it a popular choice for users looking to diversify their digital asset portfolios. The platform not only facilitates the trading of cryptocurrencies but also provides users with the tools and resources to make informed decisions about cryptocurrency investing, including educational materials and market analytics. This focus on accessibility and education about crypto markets has played a pivotal role in Coinbase’s growth, positioning it as a go-to resource for those seeking to understand and participate in cryptocurrency trading.

Coinbase’s role as a cryptocurrency exchange extends beyond mere trading. It’s a comprehensive ecosystem that offers additional services like a digital wallet for storing crypto holdings, an advanced, trading tool and platform known as Coinbase Advanced for more experienced traders, and staking options for certain coins. This adaptability, along with its comprehensive range of services, cements Coinbase’s status as a leading player in the cryptocurrency exchange market, catering to a diverse and growing global user base.

TIC Crypto safety TIP

For enhanced protection against theft, we recommend transferring your cryptocurrencies to an external crypto wallet, such as Trezor or Cypherock, when not trading or collecting staking rewards. These secure hardware wallets safeguard your assets by storing them offline.

Exchange Fee Type
Approximate Fee
Trading Fees Express Buy
Standard spread (~0.5%) + Fixed fee (e.g., £0.99 for transactions under £10; varies with amount)
Trading Fees Coinbase Standard Trade
Spread (~0.5%) + Fixed fee (£0.99 to £2.99 based on value)
Trading fees Coinbase Advanced
Maker-taker fees from 0.50% to 0.04% (higher volumes incur lower fees)
Deposit Fees (GBP)
Typically no charge for bank transfer; third-party fees may apply for other methods
Withdrawal Fees (GBP)
Nominal fee (e.g., around £1 for standard withdrawal)
Credit/Debit Card Payments
Approximately 3.99% of the transaction value
Cryptocurrency Deposit Fees
Generally free, network fees may apply
Cryptocurrency Withdrawal Fees
No Coinbase fee; network fees apply (varies based on cryptocurrency and network conditions)
For the latest and most accurate fee information, checking the Coinbase official website or contacting their support is advisable.

Fees

For UK users and others, understanding the fee structure of Coinbase is crucial for efficient trading and financial planning. Here’s a detailed analysis of various fees associated trading with Coinbase, including express buy, standard trading transaction fees, and different types of deposit and withdrawal fees.

Coinbase presents a diverse range of services with a fee structure that varies based on transaction types and methods. For UK users, the platform offers competitive features but also includes fees for express buys, mobile purchases, standard trading, and use of Coinbase Advanced. While depositing GBP is generally free from a bank account, withdrawals, credit/debit card transactions, and crypto transfers incur specific charges. Understanding these fees is vital for users to navigate the platform effectively. 

It is important to note that Coinbase advanced is generally more cost-effective for active traders due to its lower trading fees. However, it may have a steeper learning curve compared to the standard Coinbase platform. Additionally, be aware of the network fees associated with cryptocurrency withdrawals, as these can vary widely based on network congestion and the specific cryptocurrency being withdrawn.

Please note: this information was correct at the time of writing to the best of our understanding. It is however crucial for users to regularly check the Coinbase official fee website for the most current information, as fees can change based on market conditions and platform updates.

This detailed cost structure understanding should enable users, particularly those in the UK, to make more informed decisions and manage their trading costs effectively.

Which Crypto's are Available on Coinbase

Coinbase offers a diverse range of cryptocurrencies, catering to a wide spectrum of traders and investors. The platform continuously updates its offerings, but as of 2024, here’s an overview of what’s typically available:

  1. Major Cryptocurrencies: Coinbase users have access to leading cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and Litecoin (LTC). These are popular choices for both new and seasoned investors.

  2. Altcoins and ERC-20 Tokens: The platform includes a variety of altcoins such as Cardano (ADA), Polkadot (DOT), and Chainlink (LINK). ERC-20 tokens, which are based on the Ethereum network, are also widely available, offering users exposure to innovative blockchain projects.

  3. Stablecoins: Stablecoins like USD Coin (USDC) and Tether (USDT) are available, providing options for traders looking to avoid the volatility typically associated with cryptocurrencies.

  4. Niche Cryptocurrencies: Coinbase also lists a range of lesser-known or niche cryptocurrencies, catering to those interested in emerging projects and technologies in the crypto space.

For an up to date listings please visit the Coinbase website.

Coinbase Mobile Menu Screenshot
Coinbase Mobile Menu Screenshot

How to Open a Coinbase Account

Opening a Coinbase account involves a straightforward process:

  1. Visit the Coinbase Website: Go to www.coinbase.com and click on the ‘Get Started’ button.

  2. Fill in Your Details: Enter your name, email address, and choose a strong password. It’s crucial to use a secure and unique password for online financial activities.

  3. Verify Your Email: Check your email inbox for a verification email from Coinbase and click the link provided to verify your email address.

  4. Add Your Phone Number: For security purposes, Coinbase requires you to link a phone number to your account. This will be used for 2FA.

  5. Provide Personal Information: Complete your profile by providing personal information such as your full name, date of birth, and address. This step is necessary for identity verification and to comply with regulatory requirements.

  6. Verify Your Identity: Upload a government-issued ID to verify your identity. This process is part of the platform’s Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements.

  7. Set Up Payment Method: Link a funding method to your account, such as a bank account, debit card, or wire transfer.

  8. Secure Your Account: It is recommended to set up additional security measures, such as enabling two-factor authentication (2FA).

How to Buy Cryptocurrency on Coinbase

To purchase cryptocurrency on Coinbase, follow these steps:

  1. Log In to Your Account: Sign in to your Coinbase account.

  2. Navigate to the ‘Buy/Sell’ Section: Once logged in, go to the ‘Buy/Sell’ section on the dashboard.

  3. Choose the Cryptocurrency: Select the cryptocurrency you wish to purchase from the list of available options.

  4. Enter the Amount: Specify how much cryptocurrency you want to buy, either in terms of your local currency or the amount of cryptocurrency you want to purchase.

  5. Select Payment Method: Choose your preferred payment method from those linked to your account. Such as a bank account.

  6. Review the Order: Check all transaction details, including the amount of cryptocurrency you’re buying and the associated fees.

  7. Confirm the Purchase: If everything looks correct, confirm your purchase. The cryptocurrency will then be added to your Coinbase wallet.

  8. Security Measures: Consider transferring your new cryptocurrency holdings to a secure wallet, especially if planning to hold long-term.

Exchange Comparison Table

OKX
Kraken
Coinbase
Coinjar Logo
MEXC
Etoro Logo
Etoro
Cryptocurrencies Available
4.7/5
4.7/5
4.3/5
4.8/5
4/5
User Experience
4.1/5
4.3/5
4.5/5
4.1/5
3.8/5
Fees
4.4/5
4.2/5
3.5/5
4.6/5
3.7/5
Mobile App
4.5/5
4.4/5
4.4/5
4.3/5
3.9/5
Community
4.2/5
4.1/5
3.9/5
4.45
3.8/5
Staking
4.4/5
4.2/5
4.0/5
4.9/5
3.9/5
Transparency
4.3/5
4.5/5
4.2/5
4/5
3.7/5
Advanced Trading Tools
4.6/5
4.4/5
4.1/5
4.7/5
3.8/5
UK Accessibility
3.5/5
4.3/5
3.9/5
4.0/5
3.6/5
Overall Review Score
4.35/5
4.3/5
4.1/5
4.5/5
3.7/5

Key Takeaways:

  1. Extensive Cryptocurrency Options: Coinbase offers a wide range of over 240 cryptocurrencies, including major coins and niche tokens.

  2. TIC Coinbase Review rating: 4.1/5

  3. User-Friendly Platform: Ideal for beginners, Coinbase offers an intuitive interface that simplifies the crypto trading process.

  4. Security at the Forefront: Prioritizes user security with measures like offline asset storage and insurance coverage.

  5. Diverse Cryptocurrency Options: Hosts a wide array of cryptocurrencies, including major coins and various altcoins.

  6. Coinbase vs Coinbase Pro: Caters to different user needs – the main platform for casual traders and Coinbase Pro for advanced trading.

  7. Coinbase vs Coinbase Advanced: Caters to different user needs – the main platform for casual traders and Coinbase advanced for advanced trading.

Frequently Asked Questions

A Coinbase Wallet can be safe, but its security largely depends on user responsibility. Users have full control over their private keys, which is a key advantage, but it means they must take extra precautions to safeguard their funds, including storing the recovery phrase securely and enabling available security features. While the  Coinbase Wallet offers decentralized control and enhanced security, any errors or negligence on the user’s part can pose significant risks to the safety of their cryptocurrencies.

Yes, Coinbase is considered safe in the UK. It complies with UK regulations and follows strict security measures to protect users’ funds and data.

Coinbase is generally considered a trustworthy platform, as it’s one of the largest and most reputable cryptocurrency exchanges in the world. It’s regulated in various countries and has a track record of security.

One downside of Coinbase is that it tends to have higher fees compared to some other exchanges. Additionally, its user interface, while user-friendly, may not be as suitable for advanced traders.

The main disadvantage of Coinbase is its fee structure, which can be relatively high, especially for smaller trades. Advanced traders may also find its trading features limited compared to other exchanges.

Yes, you can withdraw funds from Coinbase to your UK bank account. Coinbase allows users to link their bank accounts for easy deposits and withdrawals.

Most major UK banks are compatible with Coinbase. However, it’s recommended to check with your specific bank to ensure smooth transactions.

To withdraw money from Coinbase, go to the “Withdraw” section, select your bank account, enter the withdrawal amount, and follow the prompts to complete the process.

For enhanced protection against theft, we recommend transferring your cryptocurrencies to an external crypto wallet, such as Trezor or Cypherock, when not trading or collecting staking rewards. These secure hardware wallets safeguard your assets by storing them offline.

OKX employs several security measures to secure users accounts like two-factor authentication, cold storage, and anti-phishing codes. However For enhanced protection against theft, we recommend transferring your cryptocurrencies to an external wallet, such as Trezor or Cypherock, when not trading or collecting staking rewards. These secure hardware wallets safeguard your assets by storing them offline.

Yes, linking your bank account to Coinbase is generally safe. Coinbase uses industry-standard security measures to protect your financial information.

No financial platform can guarantee 100% safety, but Coinbase employs robust security measures to protect user funds. However, always exercise caution and follow best security practices.

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