Buying bitcoin in person is usually only carried out by people wanting to maintain a degree of anonymity. There are a few ways it can be carried out that are fairly simple and straightforward. The best way to do it and maintain your privacy is to pay for bitcoin in person using cash.
The first thing you need to do is find a reputable seller with a defined and reliable record in the sale of bitcoin. You can do this by consulting an online bitcoin marketplace or peer-to-peer network that lists their bitcoin sellers with associated information such as their selling history, a number of times they’ve successfully sold bitcoin through the platform and also their rating as per the people they’ve dealt with. Once you’ve found a reliable seller, you can arrange to set up a transaction.
Ensure you consider things such as:
- The seller’s location. It needs to be somewhere accessible if you are to meet face to face
- Does the seller have the required amount of bitcoin you want to buy?
- Has the seller offered you a price that you are happy to pay for the bitcoin?
The transaction can be taken offline and you can arrange to meet the bitcoin seller face to face. You can conduct the transaction in person, but there are a few things you might want to take note of.
What To Take With You When Buying Bitcoin In Person
Make sure you take your bitcoin address with you or a printed QR code that the seller can scan. It’s also wise to make sure you have a smartphone on hand so that you can reference the transaction on blockchain.info once it goes through. This represents all transactions taking place within the blockchain and yours will be one of them. It could take around ten minutes for the first confirmation to show up, so simply ask the seller to bear with you and be patient while you ensure you are not being taken advantage of. In most cases, the seller will be doing the transaction in front of you, so you can ensure that it’s legitimate.
Something important to note is that the seller includes a reasonable mining fee when making the transfer to your bitcoin account. It has happened that transactions have been made without a transaction fee and the bitcoins are returned to the sender.
Using Escrow To Ensure You Receive Your Bitcoins
Another option to ensure your security is to use an escrow service that will guarantee your safety and the receipt of your bitcoins.
- You make the request on a bitcoin marketplace that offers escrow protection
- The seller sends the amount of bitcoin requested into escrow protected bitcoin address
- You are sent a code that you must keep private
- You would then arrange to meet the seller in person and hand them the cash or provide them with a deposit slip reflecting the cash amount that has been deposited in their account
- They will then send an instruction to release the funds from escrow or they can log into their account and release it manually
- They will be sent a private code too
- Make sure that both of your codes match and you will be guaranteed that a secure and successful transaction has just taken place