How to Buy Ripple in the UK

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Contributor, Benzinga
October 9, 2023

When Benzinga readers want to buy crypto, they turn to Uphold, CoinJar and Interactive Brokers.

After Bitcoin’s initial success, a private U.S. technology company called Ripple Labs, Inc. decided to create its own transaction protocol, currency exchange and cryptocurrency.

The name “Ripple” refers to three things: the Ripple network based on the Ripple Transaction Protocol, a cryptocurrency (XRP) and the company responsible for creation. Unlike Bitcoin, which consists of a decentralized cryptocurrency, the Ripple remittance network is a real-time centralized gross settlement system. Its blockchain ledger uses the XRP cryptocurrency for payment networks and banks to settle transactions.

Ripple (XRP) ranks second in market capitalization among digital currencies at roughly billion after Bitcoin, which currently has a market cap of .2 billion.

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Overview: How to Buy Ripple in the U.K.

Like with other cryptocurrencies, buying XRP in the U.K. involves access to a source of cryptocurrencies, such as an exchange, broker or peer-to-peer network. Once you’ve made the decision to purchase XRP, you need a unique XRP-specific or multi-asset crypto wallet to store your currency.   

On the other hand, if you prefer to speculate on XRP’s price moves without taking possession of the currency, then you can open an account with a spread betting firm or an online broker that specializes in crypto contracts for difference (CFDs) such as XTB, for example. Taxes in the U.K. favor gambling and trading profits over investing in the long term, since investment profits are subject to capital gains tax.

Ripple’s XRP also appeals to many people in the U.K. because of its low price compared to many of the other top coins. (XRP traded at just £0.244411 at the time of this writing.) Furthermore, the XRP cryptocurrency is readily available in many U.K. exchanges and peer-to-peer groups. You will need a wallet specifically designed to hold XRP or a multi-coin wallet to withdraw your currency from its source. Check out our step-by-step guide to buying XRP in the U.K.:

How to Buy Ripple in the UK

  1. Get an Account at a Cryptocurrency Exchange

    To buy Ripple XRP in the U.K., you should first find a source for cryptocurrencies. The most common way for you to purchase XRP consists of opening an account at a cryptocurrency exchange. The U.K. lags somewhat behind other more active crypto markets, but the number of available exchanges and peer-to-peer groups specializing in XRP continues to grow.

  2. Get a Cryptocurrency (XRP) Wallet

    In order to maintain full control over your XRP purchases and holdings, you’ll want to withdraw the cryptocurrency you purchase from the exchange or other source to a unique personal crypto wallet. A cryptocurrency wallet comes in several different forms and notifies the network that you wish to send and receive transactions.

    You can install a wallet on your home desktop and laptop, as well as on an Android or iOS smartphone or tablet. Otherwise, you can use a web-based wallet that does not require a download and allows you to access your cryptocurrencies anywhere with an internet connection. If you will be trading XRP, you must either get a multi-currency wallet or one specifically for Ripple.

    Another type of wallet you can opt for is a hardware wallet, which consists of a peripheral device that plugs into a computer like a USB memory stick. This type of wallet offers increased security.

  3. Withdraw XRP to Your Wallet

    Once you’ve purchased XRP on an exchange or from another source, you may withdraw the currency to your personal XRP or multi-currency wallet with a QR code. If you leave your XRP on an exchange, you run the risk of theft since you do not have control of your private keys and exchanges can get hacked.

    If you do not have your XRP in your personal possession, you could lose your entire investment if the exchange you left them on gets hacked. Withdrawing your XRP to a wallet usually makes the most sense.

    Keep in mind that Ripple Labs charges a small reserve amount of 20 units of XRP to hold the currency in a personal wallet. Once you have withdrawn your XRP from the exchange or other source, you have successfully bought Ripple’s XRP cryptocurrency and can now use it for purchases, as a tradable asset or as an investment.

Best Crypto Exchanges for Ripple in the UK

You can view a partial list of exchanges that support Ripple’s XRP and are accessible to U.K. residents:

Best for Active and Global Traders: Interactive Brokers

Active crypto traders can trust Interactive Brokers with their portfolios, with no added spreads, no markups, no custody fees and low commissions. Tokens are offered from Paxos, and you can open a new account at any time. Plus, you can make many other investments on the platform if you would like to expand your portfolio that much more.

Listmaker of Benzinga's FinTech Awards for Best Day Trading SoftwareBest Broker for Short Selling & Winner for Best Paper Trading Platform.

Pros

  • The tokens come from a powerful platform
  • You can build a larger portfolio than just crypto

Cons

  • IBKR is quite complex, and if you don’t want to use all its features, it could prove to be overly complex

Best for Inexperienced Traders: CoinJar

  • securely through CoinJar's website
    securely through CoinJar's website
    Best For:
    Inexperienced Traders
    Rating:
    Read Review

    **Disclaimer: Don’t invest unless you’re prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. 

CoinJar is a unique cryptocurrency exchange that makes digital asset management far simpler for everyone on the platform. You can set up your account in moments, buy, sell and exchange tokens on a simplified dashboard and gather information on these assets as you invest.

This platform works well for those who are new to the crypto space and need an intuitive platform that won’t confuse them. Plus, there are low or no fees depending on whether you’re a maker or a taker. Sure, there aren’t any sign up deals right now, but you can make the most of this platform and build your portfolio with ease. 

Pros

  • The platform makes it easier to access the crypto space and cuts out all the extras that many investors don’t need
  • The fees are low enough that you can afford to reinvest in your portfolio

Cons

  • CoinJar may not have the expanse of functionality that you’re looking for

Best for Algo Support: Changelly

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An “instant” international cryptocurrency exchange, Changelly allows its customers to buy Bitcoin (BTC aka XBT), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Ripple (XRP) and Ethereum (ETH) with USD or EUR. According to their website, Changelly provides the best crypto-to-crypto exchange rates in the business. The company’s trading algorithm integrates with the largest cryptocurrency exchange platforms including Bittrex, Binance and Poloniex, among others and publishes the best bids and offers on its site. Deposits get charged a 5% Simplex card processing fee with a $10 minimum and can be made with a Visa or Mastercard.

Pros

  • You can easily invest in popular crypto tokens
  • There is an algorithm that can help you better develop your portfolio

Cons

  • There are nagging fees that could prove to be an issue for most investors

Best for a Fast Trading Experience: Uphold

  • securely through Uphold Crypto's website
    securely through Uphold Crypto's website
    Best For:
    A Fast Trading Experience
    Rating:
    Read Review

    Terms Apply. Cryptoassets are highly volatile. Your capital is at risk.

With more than 250 digital assets available, you can use Uphold to build a crypto portfolio, stake your crypto, build passive income and trade other assets like altcoins, stocks, precious metals and more.

Pros

  • There are hundreds of assets that allow you to build a much larger portfolio
  • You can diversify using other types of investments that are also available

Cons

  • Yes, you can stake your crypto, but you must watch these investments carefully because crypto prices fluctuate regularly

Popular wallets commonly used to trade XRP in the U.K. are:

Ledger Nano S

This popular hardware wallet supports more than 40 cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin (BTC aka XBT), Ethereum (ETH) and Ripple (XRP). The wallet’s chip offers a high level of security and was designed to be similar to chips used in passports and credit cards. The Ledger Nano S wallet protects your assets through a PIN code.

Toast

This XRP-specific, cross platform wallet works on Windows, Mac and Linux desktops and laptops, and it has a mobile version for iOS and Android smartphones and tablets. The open-source software is freely distributed by New Zealand-based StarStone Limited.

Atomic

A universal multi-asset desktop wallet, Atomic allows you to buy XRP with EUR or USD, as well as your credit card. In addition to XRP, the wallet supports Bitcoin (BTC aka XBT), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC) and more than 300 other coins and tokens using a single interface. Transactions carry a $20,000 limit per transaction.

Bitfi

A wireless hardware wallet, the Bitfi wallet comes in a smartphone-like device and supports an unlimited number of cryptocurrencies and crypto assets. The wallet allows you to manage all of your cryptocurrencies on one dashboard and provides complete security from online and offline security threats.

Coinomi

The Coinomi wallet offers a single platform that supports numerous different cryptocurrency wallets and tokens. The wallet provides native support for as many as 125 blockchains plus 382 tokens for a total of 507 digital assets. Coinomi has a mobile application for iOS and Android devices along with a desktop version. The main advantage of this wallet is its ability to exchange cryptocurrencies at no cost.

Coinpayments.net

This platform was designed for merchants who wish to accept cryptocurrencies as payment and for anyone doing business online. It currently accepts 65 altcoins and services more than 230,000 vendors in 182 countries. Also, Coinpayments.net supports popular shopping carts used by ecommerce stores, such as Opencart, Magento and WooCommerce.

Final Thoughts

Buying Ripple’s XRP cryptocurrency in the U.K. is rather easy, but the exchange or broker you select matters the most. Knowing whether you plan to speculate in XRP or enter the market as an investor or spender will determine your best option.

The latter two will generally involve buying a wallet and opening an account at a crypto exchange, while gamblers can open an account with a spread betting firm like Money.co.uk. If your preference is to trade the price of Ripple’s XRP actively using leverage, then you can open an account at one of the many online brokers that offer cryptocurrencies on trading platforms such as XTB, for example.

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About Jay and Julie Hawk

During her financial career, Julie developed world-class expertise in technical analysis, including Elliott Wave Theory, and was deeply involved in initiating research into automated trading and trading signal systems. As a member of the San Francisco Writers’ Guild, Julie regularly wrote trade strategies, educational material, market commentary, foreign exchange newsletters, reports, articles and press releases. In addition, Julie was interviewed for various financial markets magazines and news wires in her professional capacity as a forex and derivatives expert. Since retiring from working at banks, Julie has been writing and editing books and articles about financial markets for companies like Benzinga, as well as trading forex online and mentoring other traders as part of TheFXperts’ financial team.

In addition to trading stock index, forex and commodity futures and options professionally on exchange floors, Jay also has experience trading stocks and options for private investors and trading forex online for his own account. He has also developed extensive experience in performing and using fundamental economic and corporate analysis to inform his trading and investment activities. Jay is also an expert financial writer with particular expertise in reviewing online brokers and investor services.