Changelly is a well-known platform commonly used by beginner and intermediate-level investors to exchange one cryptocurrency for another. You can also trade fiat for crypto on the exchange, but I recommend you use a platform more focused on those types of trades such as Gemini or Coinbase. In this review, I’ll focus on:
- Key Information
- How It Works
- Trading Fees
- Available Cryptocurrencies
- Transfer Limits
- Company Trust
- Fund Security
- Customer Support
Changelly Key Information
|Site Type||Cryptocurrency Exchange|
|Company Location||Prague, Czech Republic|
|Deposit Methods||Credit Card, Debit Card, Cryptocurrency|
|Available Cryptocurrencies||Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, +69 more coins|
How It Works
Changelly has a simple interface that walks you step-by-step through the process of exchanging your assets. They provide ample instructions that should make even the most novice investor feel comfortable using their platform.
Right away, you’re greeted with two dropdowns for you to select which two currencies you’d like to exchange. Once you enter in the amount of currency you want to exchange from, Changelly shows an estimate of the amount of the new currency you’ll receive.
On the next page, you can change and confirm the amount that you had originally entered. The exchange rate, amount you’ll receive, and estimated arrival time are clearly shown as well. Changelly even calculates and displays their 0.5% transaction fee leaving no room for confusion as you continue through the process.
Next, you’re required to enter the wallet address that the funds should be sent to. Double and triple check this address. If you enter the wrong address, there’ll be no way to access your cryptocurrency after the exchange is made.
At this point, you’re almost done. On the next page, you’re shown all of the information from the previous pages and asked to confirm that everything is correct. Once again, I highly recommend that you take your time to look over this information and check for any inaccuracies. Once you send your funds to the Changelly wallet, there is no way to fix this information.
For the final step, you need to transfer the funds of the original currency to the wallet that Changelly provides. You can either do this by copying the wallet address listed or scanning the QR code at the bottom of the page.
If you’re sending STEEM, Ripple, or XEM, there’s additional information that you need to include as well. More information on that can be found here.
Once Changelly receives your funds, they’ll send you an email confirmation. Most exchange pairings take 5-30 minutes, and you can expect to have the final currency in your wallet within that timeframe.
Although the website is well designed and intuitive to use, it crashed several times while I was using it, and several of the buttons were not working properly. Once the Changelly team gets these kinks worked out, Changelly will be a top-rated platform in regards to user experience.
Changelly charges a flat fee of 0.5% for each transaction – much lower than many other popular exchanges. However, not all is as it appears. Oftentimes, the exchange rate that Changelly uses to make trades is much worse than the current market rate.
As you can see below, the market rate of Bitcoin at the time of this writing is $5337.69 according to coinmarketcap.com (a trusted source for cryptocurrency market data and trends).
On Changelly, $5338 will only buy you ~.866 Bitcoin. This is slightly more than 13% less of one full Bitcoin and much greater than the 0.5% fee that they state.
If you don’t mind exchanging your coins at a less than perfect rate, Changelly is still a good option to make quick trades.
Changelly supports several coins and pairings including:
- Basic Attention Token
- Bitcoin Cash
- Ethereum Classic
- 58 more coins
New coins are constantly added to the platform, so if you can’t find what you’re looking for now, it’s possible it’ll be there in the near future.
Changelly limits the amount of fiat currency you can exchange, but this is only limited during your first week of trading. U.S., Canadian, and Australian citizens can only trade $50 in their first transaction. This limit is increased to $100 for the next trade made within 4 days. At one week, the limit increases again to $500. After that, there’s no more limit on your trades.
There’s no limit to the amount of cryptocurrency you’re able to exchange. You should be aware of the minimum deposits for each coin, though. If your deposit isn’t enough to cover the network fees to transfer the funds, there’s a high risk that you’ll lose your deposit, and no coins will be exchanged.
Changelly was created by the team behind MinerGate, a bitcoin mining pool, in 2013. They have several partnerships with well-established wallets like Coinomi and Jaxx, and the platform is now being used by over 500,000 traders. Several community members have voiced their disappointment with the company, though, stating reasons around the poor exchange rates I mentioned above.
Changelly doesn’t provide many details about their security policies, but there’s not much to worry about in regards to fund security. Your funds are never stored on the platform. Instead, your assets are immediately sent to a wallet after they’re exchanged. As additional protection on your account, Changelly also uses two-factor authentication for sign-ins.
I had some trouble finding customer support on the Changelly website. The link to the support system only works on some of their pages. There were numerous times when I clicked on the “Support” link only to be navigated back to the home page. When the link does work, a buggy pop-up window appears where you’re able to submit an issue.
On the plus side, the exchange has an FAQ section that covers many of the questions a new user would have about their platform.
Overall, Changelly is a solid option for investors who are interested in trading one cryptocurrency for another without the hassle of a normal exchange.
As a young(“ish”) company, it’s noticeable that the team is still working to fix some bugs on the website. Once these issues are resolved and the exchange rates are at a more competitive level, I’ll have no problem recommending Changelly to anyone looking for a quick way to switch between coins.