Bitcoin ATM: How true is it?

Bitcoin ATM: How true is it?

Are you looking for ways to convert your bitcoin to cash or are you worried about how digital

currency such as bitcoin can be converted to real cash or to your traditional currency for use?

Bitcoin ATM is now available in some countries to help make easier conversion.

As everyone in the world is getting steadily caught up with the idea of cryptocurrency, most

frequent question is, is it possible to cash it out and if yes HOW?

one of the ways is through a bitcoin ATM machine.

you can also check out the list of bitcoin ATM manufacturers here

What is a Bitcoin ATM machine?

According to Wikipedia, A Bitcoin ATM is a kiosk that allows a person to purchase Bitcoin by using

cash or debit card. Some Bitcoin ATMs offer bi-directional functionality enabling both the purchase

of Bitcoin as well as the sale of Bitcoin for cash. 

In some cases, Bitcoin ATM providers require users to have an existing account to transact on the machine.

There are two main types of Bitcoin machines: cash kiosks and ATMs. Both types are connected to

the Internet, allowing for cash or debit card payment, respectively, in exchange for bitcoins given as

a paper receipt or by moving money to a public key on the blockchain. 

Bitcoin cash kiosks look like traditional ATMs, but do not connect to a bank account and instead

connect the user directly to a Bitcoin exchange. 

Bitcoin-enabled ATMs are traditional ATMs and connect to a bank account to allow for the cashless
purchase of bitcoin. 

According to an advisory issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, "they may also

charge high transaction fees – media reports describe transaction fees as high as 7% and exchange

rates $50 over rates you could get elsewhere"

A Bitcoin ATM is much like the traditional ATM that dispenses fiat currencies where you use your

debit card to withdraw USD, EUR, INR, etc. 

However, unlike the traditional fiat ATMs, some Bitcoin ATMs actually allow you to withdraw

bitcoins from it. Some help you convert your bitcoins into fiat currencies, while there are also some

that help with both!

A notable aspect of these ATMs is that it allows you to buy/sell bitcoins anonymously. No KYC or

AML is required to transact using a Bitcoin ATM which means it is actually a very good way to

secure your identity and privacy.

However, privacy doesn’t come free. Bitcoin ATMs typically charge between 7-10% for

buying/selling bitcoins, a fee worth paying for some of us. But to use a Bitcoin ATM, you need to

find it first which is the tough part because of the low number of Bitcoin ATMs around the world.

How does it work

If it is your first time to use a Bitcoin ATM you may find it quite overwhelming since there are about

30 different types of bitcoin ATMs. For now, we’ll first discuss the general way to buy bitcoins and

after that, the two most common types of bitcoin ATM.

The General Process

1.   Input and verify your phone number (not applicable for all Bitcoin ATMs).

2.   Go to the deposit option and provide your bitcoin wallet address. You can choose to type it in 

manually (prone to error) or to scan it from your mobile phone using your wallet’s QR code.

3.   Insert cash into the ATM.

4.   Wait for the confirmation of your transaction.

Keep in mind that all Bitcoin ATMs work differently depending on the company that created it. Next, we’ll discuss the most popular type of ATM.


This ATM was made by Genesis Coin, a San Diego based company. It is very similar to the

traditional bank ATMs. It works both ways, it can be used to both buy and sell bitcoins.

What makes this ATM unique is that it can support other cryptocurrencies as well. Specifically, it can

support Litecoin, Dogecoin, Blackcoin, and XCurrency.

The process to buy bitcoin from a Genesis ATM:

1.   Click “Buy Bitcoins”.

2.   Provide a mobile number for verification.

3.   Enter the verification code sent through SMS.

4.   Scan fingerprint.

5.   Select cryptocurrency.

6.   Choose to scan a wallet (pre-defined) or generate new.

7.   Scan wallet QR code if chosen.

8.   Insert cash.

9.   Press “Send”.

10.   Get the printed receipt.

Compared to the general bitcoin ATM, Genesis takes security a step further by adding a fingerprint


Genesis Coin ATMs are also pricier but offer increased functionality. Next, we’ll discuss their

competitor, the Lamassu ATM.


This is the second most installed Bitcoin ATM in the world after Genesis Coin models. There are

453 of them installed worldwide.

The process to buy bitcoin from a Lamassu Bitcoin ATM:

1.   Press “Start”.

2.   Scan QR code of your pre-defined Bitcoin address.

3.   Put cash into the machine.

4.   Press “Send”.

What differentiates Lamassu from Genesis is that they position themselves as the cost-efficient

choice. It is important to note that there is no paper wallet printer on this type of ATM.

You need to have your digital wallet address ready either on your phone or printed on paper. Also,

not all of them have verification steps like SMS verification. You need to find out what is the process

based on your location, which you can search online.

How can you locate the bitcoin ATM nearest to you?

There is a coin radar service that provides you the option of searching nearby ATMs using the live

worldwide Bitcoin ATM map, this can help you to locate a Bitcoin ATM near to you.

To find a Bitcoin ATM checkout here

You have the following steps to follow on the map

1.   Add your location/city and click enter to search ATMs (I have added ‘Davos’). 

2.   Choose the nearest ATM and click to see the details.

3.   Click ‘Get directions’ to get the Google maps location and direction.

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