updated December 2017
Bitcoins are purchased through online exchanges, or in other words online marketplaces where people from all over the world can purchase bitcoins with different fiat currencies like USD or with even with Altcoins.
The first exchange I ever used was LocalBitcoins.com. It was fast AND easy, our two favorite words. I will now show you how to buy your first bitcoins!
Step 1: head over to LocalBitcoins.com and sign up for a FREE account
Step 2: on the main page there will be an order form like this
In the first box you will want to fill in the amount you want to spend in your own currency, then choose your currency, location and how you want to pay.
Tip: If you’re unsure how you want to pay, choose “All online offers” as the method of payment.
Step 3: after you click search, the page will populate with different advertisements from different traders all over the world. They look like this…
You want to choose a trader that has a large amount of trades as well as a high reputation. This trader has over 100 trades and a perfect 100% reputation. When you find an advertisement you like, simple click “buy”
Remember: Be sure to always find the lowest price per bitcoin (you can always check the current price at cex.io)
Tip: The little grey dot to the right of the rep is their response time meter. Grey means they take longer than 30 min to reply, yellow within 30 min, and green within 5 min)
Step 4: after you click the “buy” button it will take you to a page that has the terms of the trade. At this point if you don’t agree with the terms and you want to back out of a trade you still can.
To begin the trade, type in the blue box exactly how much bitcoin you want to buy. Enter a message for the seller and then click the “Send trade request” button to begin the trade. It is very important you are ready to pay after submitting a request as the trade will be automatically canceled if you fail to pay during the payment window!
Step 5: once you have sent the payment to the seller, click the “I have paid” button. The seller will then verify you have made your payment and your bitcoin will be released and deposited to your LocalBitcoins wallet instantly. And that’s it, you now own some bitcoin!