Its market cap of $US7.6 billion makes it the third-largest cryptocurrency behind bitcoin and ether.
Unlike with those two other giants, buying XRP takes a bit more finagling than just taking a trip over to a popular exchange like Coinbase – though that’s still important.
Here’s how to buy your first batch of Ripple’s XRP coins.
There are several exchanges for Ripple’s XRP, many of which are overloaded with requests at the moment. For the sake of convenience, I used Bitsane.
Bitsane is unique in that people in the US can’t buy cryptos directly with their credit card, which is how Coinbase works. You have to exchange other cryptocurrencies like bitcoin or ether for XRP.
For most people, this means using Coinbase to buy ether, bitcoin, or bitcoin cash first.
Here’s a walk-through of how I bought bitcoin using Coinbase early last year.
Once you set up your Bitsane account, go to the balances tab at the top, then locate the crypto you’d like to exchange for XRP. I chose bitcoin cash.
To buy XRP, you’ll first want to deposit your other crypto in Bitsane.
Click the “deposit” button to display your unique wallet address – this is what you’ll plug into Coinbase so it knows where to send the other cryptocurrency.
I decided to exchange 0.15 bitcoin cash units for the equivalent amount in XRP. The fee was a few pennies.
Bitsane said that sending bitcoin cash to my wallet would take only 30 minutes, but the confirmation took much longer. After about 45 minutes, I let it be. Much later at night, I saw it had gone through.
The next step was buying XRP.
On the main dashboard, under the exchange tab, select Ripple (XRP) in the first box and bitcoin cash (BCH) in the second. This means you’ll be buying XRP with bitcoin cash.
Select either a “market” or “limit” order for the buy and type in the amount. In my case, 0.15 bitcoin cash units got me 175 XRP coins.
Then hit “buy.”
The transaction went through almost instantly.
Under the balance tab, the bitcoin cash value showed the original 0.15 units minus the amount in XRP.
It wasn’t exactly 0.15 units, as the 175 XRP coins came out to a bit less. Bitsane also took a negligible fee, putting my final balance of XRP at 174.7375 coins.
When I decide to sell, I can trade it for another coin hosted on Coinbase and do the whole thing in reverse until I get back to US dollars.