Becoming a Bitcoiner (Getting Your First Bitcoin)
Welcome to the fifth lesson of the course!
Before I start, I just want to thank you personally for virtually walking with me through the last four days. As we get through the first half of the course, I just want to tell you that it is an absolute privilege and honor to be introducing and teaching you about bitcoin. The only payment I’d like in return is for you to successfully complete the course and then send it to as many people as possible.
But today’s the day I’d love to help you get your first bitcoin.
The easiest and fastest way to become a bitcoiner is to receive it from a friend or family member. If you happen to know of another bitcoiner in your own relational sphere, then calling them up and asking them to help you can be one of the most rewarding experiences for both parties.
But I’ll assume that you don’t have anyone immediately available for that type of transaction and exchange of value. So, I’ll walk you quickly through a few other ways to acquire your first bitcoin because as of this moment, it is not easy to get new bitcoin, as you cannot (yet) purchase bitcoin from your bank or a physical foreign exchange system (like the ones you see in an airport).
Here are four other ways to get started:
1. Besides a trusted friend, colleague, or family member, the second best way to get your first bitcoin is to attend a local bitcoin or blockchain meetup, easily done via the social networking site, Meetup.com. Just like your family and friends, you’ll find friendly and enthusiastic bitcoiners who would love to get you started.
2. Visit LocalBitcoins.com, where you can find people in your own area to sell you bitcoin in person via your own local fiat currency, like US dollars. Many require a minimum transaction size, but I’ve seen it as low as $5.00!
3. Visit a bitcoin ATM in your city. This is not available everywhere (yet), but it’s a safe and secure way to exchange your local currency for bitcoin. Some ATMs have limits to the size of transaction, but most will accept small transactions. Of course, most of these ATMs have fees that you’ll pay so they can continue to operate. CoinATMRadar.com is a great place to start. Head to one, transact, and don’t forget to take a selfie!
4. Use a bitcoin currency exchange and purchase via your connected bank account, credit card, or even PayPal (fees will be incurred). You can find accepted exchanges for your own local currency and country on sites such as BitcoinAverage.com. Sign up, head to “Price Data,” and then “Currency Markets” to find links to accepted exchanges.
What to choose? Honestly, I highly recommend that you try your best to do one of the first two on the list because, besides getting bitcoin, you’ll also make new friends and start learning that this entire community is friendly and welcoming to all new folks.
The ATMs are fun, especially if you take some friends, and the last option, using a web service and currency exchange, is neat, but you can do that at home by yourself, which isn’t nearly as exciting as getting it from a family member or (new) friend.
So, you’ve got some homework to do, and it might take a bit of time for you to get your first bitcoin, but it’ll be worth it.
Though you can do the last option by yourself, I can’t possibly leave you hanging like that! Tomorrow, I will walk through one such currency exchange as an example (with images) so you can understand the general sign-up experience and transaction flow.
A full walkthrough awaits you tomorrow, friends!
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