Bittrex Vs Kraken | An In-Depth Comparison Between Two Popular Altcoin Exchanges

Cryptocurrency Markets

Bittrex and Kraken are two popular cryptocurrency exchanges used by investors to trade a multitude of altcoins. Both platforms are great options for individuals accustomed to more straightforward platforms like Gemini and Coinbase who feel like expanding their trading experience.

This in-depth Bittrex vs Kraken exchange comparison will outline the key differences between each platform so you can confidently choose the exchange that is best for your trading needs. We’ll go over the following topics:

Exchange

bittrex altcoin exchange logo
Bittrex

Kraken Exchange Logo
Kraken

Beginner Friendly?

No
No

No
No

Deposit Methods Cryptocurrency Bank Transfers, Bank Wires, Cryptocurrency
Withdrawal Methods Cryptocurrency Bank Transfers, Bank Wires, Cryptocurrency
Trading Fees 0.25% ~0.36% or less + deposit fees
Supported Cryptocurrencies 190+ Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, Dash,

Litecoin, EOS, Monero, Stellar, Ripple,

Zcash, Ethereum Classic, Gnosis, Augur, Melon, Doge, Iconomi.

Location Seattle, WA, USA San Francisco, California, USA
Trust Grade A+ A+
Customer Support Okay Okay
Review & User Guide Bittrex Review

Kraken Review

Site Visit Bittrex

Visit Kraken

Bittrex does not support funding via fiat currency. It only permits deposits and withdrawals via cryptocurrencies. Since the exchange supports a plethora of e-wallets, you must take extra care not to deposit your funds into a wrong wallet. You don’t want to make the mistake of transferring your Bitcoin Cash into a regular Bitcoin wallet.

Kraken, on the other hand, looks at a user’s verification tier to determine the available funding methods. Each tier requires increasingly private identity information, but users who give this information are rewarded with more flexibility on the platform.

Tier 1 users are only able to make deposits and withdrawal via cryptocurrency. However, they are also allowed to trade with both fiat and cryptocurrency. To become a Tier 1 investor, you are required to provide personal details such as full name, date of birth, country of residence, telephone number.

To move to Tier 2, you’re required to supply details of your address while Tier 3 requires you to upload a valid government ID and proof of residency. At Tier 2 and Tier 3 users can make deposit and withdrawal via bank transfer but U.S. residents can only access this funding method when they complete the Tier 3 verification.

The commission fee for all trades on Bittrex is 0.25%.

Kraken, however, uses a trading fee schedule with different fees in-line with a user’s 30-days trading volume and whether the user is a maker (putting an order on the books) or a taker (filling an order from the books).

The maker fee on Kraken for most pairings falls between 0.00% and 0.16% while the taker fees are usually between 0.10% and 0.26%.

Looking at the trading fee systems, Kraken is more advantageous for high-volume investors. But if you’re a low-volume trader seeking to buy a coin with one of these platforms, the fees are comparable with 0.25% on Bittrex and 0.26% on Kraken.  

It would be relatively hard for you not to find the coins you need on both exchanges.

Arguably Bittrex’s greatest strength is the huge number of cryptocurrencies it supports. Bittrex currently offers over 200 digital pairings. It covers everything from major players like Bitcoin and Ethereum to much more obscure altcoins like Storj and Salt.

Kraken supports comparatively fewer coins, however it covers most of the big ones, including Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dash, EOS, Ethereum Classic, Ethereum, Gnosis, Iconomi, Litecoin, Melon, Augur, Tether, Dogecoin, Stellar Lumens, Monero, Ripple and Zcash.

However, if you choose to trade with Bittrex, we recommend you purchase one of the three major coins we mentioned above using another exchange and then transfer them to your Bittrex account before trading.

Both Bittrex and Kraken are US-based companies.

Bittrex, INC was launched in 2014 by a team of individuals with experience in product development and security. The founding team contributed to the growth of some reputable companies such as Amazon, Microsoft, Blackberry, and Qualys. Its headquarters is in Seattle and has been recommended time and time again as one of the best option for trading altcoins.

Kraken has its headquarters in San Francisco and is operated by Payward, Inc. Many reputable investors, including Blockchain Capital, have invested over $6 million into the platform. Since its launch in 2011, Kraken’s trading volume has also increased drastically — doubling twice a year every year. This indicates a high level of trust that cryptocurrency investors have in the company.

Both Bittrex and Kraken take significant precautions in protecting and securing investors’ funds.

Bittrex states that they store 80% to 90% of all their funds offline using a unique elastic, multi-stage wallet system. The exchange also uses 2-factor authentication, IP address detection, and email alerts as a way of further protecting users’ accounts during login attempts.

However, it’s important to mention that Bittrex is a primary focus of hackers trying to phish and steal users’ login details. Whenever you want to access Bittrex’s official website, always use “bittrex.com” and bookmark the exchange when you’re sure the name has been entered correctly. Do not type “Bittrex” into your Google search bar and use a link from the search results. It is common for phishers to use ads that have a similar website design and URL as the official Bittrex site in order to mislead investors into giving out their login details.

Although Kraken does not specify the percentage of funds stored offline, they have stated that they store all new cryptocurrency deposit in encrypted offline wallets to secure them from hacks. The only coins that are stored online are those used for operational liquidity on the platform. Kraken also makes use of 2FA and gives users the option to make a “Master Key” that will be required to make changes to their account (e.g. password resets). Finally, Kraken maintains full reserves to mitigate the danger of a run on the exchange.

The Bittrex exchange isn’t too complicated on first use. Users can click on the market name from the home page on the website to purchase or sell a coin, or they can just click on the coin name from their wallet page.

Bittrex provides detailed information like charts just above the input box for orders. This enables users to make some quick analyses as they make orders.

Bittrex Review of Platform

Kraken offers a similarly intuitive trading experience, with options for more advanced users. The exchange provides three trading views: Simple, Intermediate, and Advanced. With the Simple tab, a user can only place market and limit orders, while the Intermediate and Advanced tabs provide the opportunity for users to set conditional closes and stop-losses.

Kraken Exchange Review Example of Poor User Interface 2

Both Bittrex and Kraken provide solid customer support and sufficient educational resources for new users.

The Bittrex exchange has an all-compassing support site that consists of FAQs, announcements, latest news, as well as a subsection to report issues.

Kraken’s website has an FAQs section that answers common questions asked by new investors. The exchange also provides a comprehensive guide for beginners and crypto enthusiasts that want to learn more about trading. It is worth noting, however, that in the past Kraken customer support has received some criticism for delayed responses and occasionally ignoring tickets.

There are many reasons why Bittrex and Kraken are two of the largest exchanges in the crypto-verse. Choosing either one for trading altcoins wouldn’t be an objectively wrong decision.

The major advantage Bittrex has over its competitors is the availability of a plethora of altcoins — with over 200 available pairings. This comes at the expense of being able to make fiat deposits. As such, Bittrex only operates with cryptos. This could be a limitation for new investors because it requires first purchasing a cryptocurrency from another exchange that accepts fiat currency, before then depositing that cryptocurrency on Bittrex for trading. That being said, this only marginally complicates the process. Bittrex is widely trusted and is an excellent platform for trading a huge variety of coins.

Kraken’s major advantage would have to be the fact that it accepts fiat deposits, while still offering a decent number of altcoins compared to many other exchanges. Kraken has a solid industry reputation and is well-trusted, with no major hack attempts over the course of its 5+ years of operation. The platform feels excellent to use and is suitable for those looking to deposit fiat currency and trade with a range of altcoins.

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Bitcoin Bitcoin $6,528.39 +1.4%
Ethereum Ethereum $310.598 +4.18%
XRP XRP $0.346185 +15.89%
Bitcoin Cash Bitcoin Cash $588.404 +10.34%
EOS EOS $5.38578 +13.53%

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