Do not invest unless you are prepared to lose all the money you invest. Cryptoassets are high-risk investments, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take two minutes to learn more. Additionally, capital gains tax may apply to profits from cryptocurrency sales.

How to Buy Cardano in the UK

Updated On: Jun 21, 2024
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Halimah Omogiafo
Author: Halimah Omogiafo
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How to Buy Cardano UK


How to Buy Cardano (ADA)

To buy Cardano (ADA) in the UK, you’ll need to:

  1. Create an account with a crypto exchange, such as eToro or CoinJar. A crypto exchange allows you to buy, sell, hold, and manage many kinds of cryptocurrencies, including popular coins like Cardano (ADA), Bitcoin, Ethereum, USD Coin, XRP, Solana, and Dogecoin. Scroll down to see a list of crypto exchanges where you can buy and sell Cardano in the UK. You’ll need a valid form of ID (National Insurance number, driving licence, or passport) and payment method to create an account with most of these exchanges.
  2. Fund your account with GBP using your debit card or via bank transfer. Next, deposit funds into your exchange account using GBP. Most platforms support funding via debit card, bank transfer, or a new technology called Open Banking—a secure and innovative way to manage online payments.
  3. Research Cardano (ADA) and other cryptocurrencies. Before buying any cryptocurrency, including ADA, it is important to carry out thorough research. You’d want to consider factors such as market capitalisation and liquidity, technology and innovation, team and community, use case and adoption, and security and transparency.
  4. Choose and configure a Cardano wallet, such as Daedalus. Wallets are extremely important as they help you store your ADA and other crypto holdings. Storing your cryptocurrencies in a wallet instead of a crypto exchange is better because wallets are typically independent of exchanges. If the exchange goes bust, for example, you can rest assured that your money is safe on the blockchain and separated from the crypto exchange.
  5. Buy Cardano with GBP using the crypto exchange’s web or mobile app. Once you’ve created an account with a crypto exchange, funded it, and configured your wallet, you are now ready to buy ADA. Simply search for the Cardano (ADA) page on the crypto exchange and place an order for the amount you’d like to buy.
  6. Transfer your Cardano to your wallet for safekeeping. Most exchanges provide an integrated wallet, but you can also use a third-party wallet. Cardano’s own Daedalus wallet gives users a full blockchain node so they can enjoy total control over their funds and greater transparency over the blockchain. The Daedalus wallet is also the only wallet where ADA holders can take part in the staking system - the Proof of Stake (PoS, explained below) allows holders to receive rewards for delegating ADA or running a staking pool.

Where to Buy Cardano

We’ve put together a list of the best places to buy Cardano (ADA) in the UK. These are apps, wallets, exchanges, and websites where you can buy Cardano (ADA), Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies in the UK.

Please remember that crypto assets, such as Cardano (ADA), are highly volatile, unregulated investment products with no UK or EU investor protection. You could lose all the money you put into them. Additionally, capital gains tax may apply to profits from cryptocurrency sales.

Here are the best places to buy Cardano (ADA) in the UK:

eToro - Good for beginners and experts; 70+ Cryptocurrencies

eToro Logo
Minimum Deposit
US$100 (£80)
Trading Fees
Withdrawal Fees
US$5 (£4)
FX Fees
FCA Registered

eToro is a multi-asset trading platform that enables you to trade or invest in cryptocurrencies, NFTs, stocks, ETFs, commodities, forex, and indices. With eToro, you can trade over 70 “real” cryptocurrencies, including popular coins like Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Binance Coin (BNB) and Dogecoin.

Crypto trading on eToro is suitable for both beginners and advanced traders. Beginners can benefit from the educational materials, user-friendly desktop and mobile apps and copy trading tools (which allow you to copy the trades of top-performing crypto traders on the eToro platform). Advanced traders can take advantage of the superior charting and analytics tools, staking service, social trading feature, and real-time crypto market news and insights. You can also benefit from eToro’s risk management tools, such as Stop Loss, Take Profit and Trailing Stop Loss, to better manage your positions, protect your investments and secure your profits. Stop Loss and Take Profit are not guaranteed.

It is entirely free to open an account with eToro, and all registered users receive a US$100,000 demo account for free, which you can use to practise buying crypto and other assets before committing real money. eToro does not charge a deposit fee but charges a 1% trading fee on all crypto positions. Trading on eToro occurs in USD, so a conversion fee will apply if you deposit or withdraw in a currency other than USD. Withdrawals incur a fee of US$5 (£4), and the minimum withdrawal amount is US$30 (£24). For UK customers, eToro offers an eToro Money app that allows you to convert your GBP to USD free of charge, thereby reducing your foreign exchange costs. The app also functions as a crypto wallet for storing your crypto holdings and allows for easy transfer of your cryptocurrency from one exchange or wallet to another.

Please note: Do not invest unless you are prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take two minutes to learn more. Cryptoassets are not regulated by the FCA and are not subject to protection under the FSCS or within the scope of jurisdiction of the Financial Ombudsman Service. Capital gains tax may apply to profits from cryptocurrency sales.

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CoinJar - Ready-made crypto portfolios; 50+ Cryptocurrencies

CoinJar logo
Minimum Deposit
Trading Fees (Maker/Taker)
0.10% - 0.00% /
Withdrawal Fees
FX Fees
FCA Registered

CoinJar is a cryptocurrency app and exchange based in the UK and Australia. With CoinJar, you can trade or invest in 50+ cryptocurrencies, including popular coins such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, USD Coin, Dogecoin and Shiba Inu Coin. The CoinJar app, which doubles as a crypto wallet, allows you to buy, sell, hold, spend and transfer cryptocurrencies securely on your desktop, iOS or Android device. The CoinJar card lets you make purchases with your crypto, online and in-store, anywhere Mastercard is accepted. It is free to activate the CoinJar card, and there are no monthly fees for using it. When paying with the card, your crypto is automatically converted to fiat currency using CoinJar’s best rates at the time of the transaction. You can choose to have a virtual or physical card or both. The CoinJar card is fully integrated with Google Pay, so Android users can spend crypto instantly and securely with any device.

CoinJar has a unique feature called a Crypto Bundle. A Crypto Bundle is a themed basket of cryptocurrencies, similar to a crypto index fund, crypto ETF or a ready-made stock portfolio. For example, you can buy a CoinJar Universe bundle, which is a portfolio of all the cryptocurrencies available on CoinJar. One investment into such a bundle means you have invested in every cryptocurrency available on CoinJar with just a click of a button. Crypto Bundles can either be proportional, where the weight of each cryptocurrency in a bundle is equal or cap-allocated, where the weights are allocated based on market cap performance.

CoinJar is suitable for both beginners and advanced traders. Beginners can take advantage of the easy-to-use app and ready-made crypto portfolios, while advanced and professional traders can take advantage of CoinJar’s institutional-grade crypto solutions, such as the CoinJar OTC, with razor-thin spreads and globally sourced liquidity. The minimum deposit to open an account with CoinJar is £10. Deposits are made in GBP, so FX fees do not apply. There is a trading fee of 1% on the CoinJar mobile app and website. The CoinJar Exchange (for market orders and aggressive limit orders) charges 0.00% for Taker orders and 0.10% - 0.04% for Maker orders (limit orders).

Please note: Do not invest unless you are prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take two minutes to learn more. Cryptoassets are not regulated by the FCA and are not subject to protection under the FSCS or within the scope of jurisdiction of the Financial Ombudsman Service. Capital gains tax may apply to profits from cryptocurrency sales.

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Uphold - Crypto card; Cheap forex rates; 250+ Cryptoassets

Uphold Logo
Minimum Deposit
US$1 (£0.80)
Trading Fees
0.90% - 1.20%
Withdrawal Fee
US$3.99 (£3.22)
FX Fees
FCA Registered

Uphold is a beginner-friendly cryptocurrency exchange that allows you to buy and sell over 250 cryptocurrencies, including majors, altcoins and emerging tokens such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, Dogecoin, Polkadot, ApeCoin, PancakeSwap and Audius. Users can also buy and sell up to 3 national currencies, including GBP, EUR and USD and enjoy competitive forex rates. Uphold offers a free virtual crypto card that allows you to spend your crypto anywhere a Mastercard is accepted. With the Uphold crypto card, you receive up to 1% cashback on your card transactions paid to you in GBP. The card has no transaction fees when spending locally or internationally and can be easily linked to Apple Pay or Google Pay.

As an Uphold customer, you can earn staking rewards when you put your digital assets to work. Currently, customers can earn up to 13% APY. Please keep in mind that staking rates are variable and may change at Uphold’s discretion. Uphold offers crypto wallets for up to seven cryptocurrencies and crypto networks. Customers can store their crypto in the Uphold Bitcoin Wallet, Ethereum Wallet, XRP Wallet and many more. With Uphold, you can schedule regular transactions using AutoPilot, which allows you to set up recurring buy or sell orders and reduce the impact of price volatility. As an Uphold customer, you can also take advantage of the limit order feature, which allows you to buy or sell a cryptocurrency at a specified price. Customers can place up to 50 limit orders using one pool of capital.

There are multiple fees involved when trading crypto on Uphold. The most important fees to look out for are trading fees, FX fees, and market spreads. In the UK, US and Europe, Uphold charges a market spread ranging from 0.9% to 1.2% on BTC and ETH. Spreads can be significantly higher for low-liquidity cryptos and tokens such as XRP, ZIL, OXT, UPT, DOGE and others. You will be able to see the total cost of your trade before you place the trade. Uphold charges a withdrawal fee of $3.99 for bank transfers and $2.99 for crypto transfers. Visit Uphold to learn more.

Please note: Do not invest unless you are prepared to lose all the money you invest. This is a high-risk investment, and you should not expect to be protected if something goes wrong. Take two minutes to learn more. Cryptoassets are not regulated by the FCA and are not subject to protection under the FSCS or within the scope of jurisdiction of the Financial Ombudsman Service. Capital gains tax may apply to profits from cryptocurrency sales.

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What Is Cardano?

Cardano is one of the biggest cryptocurrencies by market cap, with a market cap of £10 billion (at the time of writing). It is very similar to Ethereum 2.0 in that it uses a proof-of-stake consensus algorithm to validate transactions before they are added to the blockchain instead of proof of work, as is the case with the Bitcoin blockchain and Ethereum 1.0.

Cardano claims it is built on a more sustainable and scalable blockchain technology called Ouroboros, which provides and improves the security guarantees of proof of work at a fraction of the energy cost.

Cardano, like Ethereum, can be used for running smart contracts, which allows for the development of a wide range of decentralised finance apps, new crypto tokens, games, and more.

The native cryptocurrency of the Cardano platform is ADA (named after Ada Lovelace, a 19th-century mathematician who is recognised as the world’s first computer programmer). Any user located anywhere in the world can use ADA as a secure exchange of value without requiring a third party to mediate the exchange. Every transaction is permanently, securely, and transparently recorded on the Cardano blockchain.

There is a maximum supply of 45 billion ADA, and at the time of writing, 35.7 billion were already in circulation.

Cardano was launched in September 2017 by Ethereum co-founder Charles Hoskinson.

How Does Cardano Work?

Cardano relies on a specially designed proof-of-stake blockchain protocol for consensus called Ouroboros, which is designed to reduce the energy expenditure required by proof-of-work mining by eliminating the need for massive computing resources.

Ouroboros secures the transactions as well as the smart contracts. It also rewards users who stake their ADA to the network and helps ensure network consensus by validating transactions and processing blocks.

Ouroboros is unique for its mathematical security that guarantees truly randomly selected block validators and objectively fair staking. Cardano also implemented smart contract support in 2021 with its Alonzo update, which allows users to create smart contracts and NFTs and manage multiple assets.

What Is the Cardano Blockchain?

The Cardano blockchain is designed to be a highly scalable and environmentally sustainable blockchain platform. It uses a new and innovative proof-of-stake consensus mechanism called Ouroboros, which is intended to be more energy-efficient compared to the energy-intensive proof-of-work mechanism currently used by Bitcoin and Ethereum. (Ethereum is also moving to a proof-of-stake mechanism via the ETH2 upgrade).

The Cardano blockchain is divided into two layers: the Cardano Settlement Layer (CSL) and the Cardano Computing Layer (CCL). The CSL contains the ledger of accounts and balances (and is where the transactions are validated by the Ouroboros consensus mechanism). The CCL layer is where all the computations for apps running on the blockchain are executed - via the operations of smart contracts.

Splitting the blockchain into two layers helps the Cardano network process as many as a million transactions a second.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is Cardano the new Bitcoin?

A number of people have called Cardano the new Bitcoin, but there are significant differences between both blockchains. The Bitcoin blockchain uses the proof-of-work consensus mechanism to verify transactions before they are added to the blockchain, and the Bitcoin cryptocurrency is mainly used for spending and monetary transfers. The Cardano blockchain, on the other hand, uses proof of stake, and although ADA can be used to send and receive money like Bitcoin, the Cardano blockchain is primarily used for smart contracts and decentralised apps.

2. Is Cardano better than Ethereum?

The founder of Cardano, Charles Hoskinson, was one of the five original founders of Ethereum and was CEO but was removed from the project the following year after a dispute with Vitalik Buterin. Hoskinson and a former Ethereum colleague then went on to found IOHK, which built Cardano. Cardano was inspired by Ethereum, which had been criticised for its inefficiency, and claims to have superior transaction speeds, low fees and energy efficiency. 

Both Cardano and Ethereum are working to provide the basic infrastructure for blockchain-based services and applications. Cardano has solved some of the limitations faced by the Ethereum network, which could only handle around 15 transactions per second (TPS), whereas Cardano was launched to process more than 250 TPS. This is thanks to Cardano’s Ouroboros proof-of-stake mechanism, which reduced the energy required to run the network by around 99%. However, Ethereum is a more established cryptocurrency asset, with around one million transactions per day compared to around 100,000 for Cardano. Ethereum’s fees are more expensive than Cardano’s, at around US$20 per transaction compared to below US$1 for Cardano.

3. Will Cardano be as big as Ethereum?

It’s hard to say if Cardano will be as big as Ethereum. Some have pointed out that Cardano’s robust peer review system can prevent glitches down the line as an advantage over Ethereum, but Ethereum has the first-mover advantage and a reliable track history. You should always do your own research depending on what you hope to gain before investing in any cryptocurrency.

4. Should I buy Cardano or Solana?

Solana and Cardano are rivals in terms of speed of settlement, smart contract capability and minimal transaction fees, and both platforms have realised a more than 400 times return since inception. Both set out to solve the scalability issues encountered with Bitcoin and Ethereum. Solana was launched 2-3 years after Cardano, and although its proof-of-history algorithm has allowed it to process over 50,000 TPS at low transaction fees, it is also less decentralised than Cardano, which has a better security record overall. Cardano is hoping to increase TPS to over one million in its Hydra update, which is scheduled to be launched in Q3 2022. Overall, Cardano and Solana are ambitious projects, and you should decide to invest in whichever suits your needs only after thorough research.

5. Is Cardano safe?

Cardano is considered reputable due to Hoskinson’s prior experiences and advocacy for the crypto industry in Washington, DC. Unlike other cryptocurrencies, Ouroboros requires each security claim to be mathematically correct before it is implemented. The latest Genesis update makes Ouroboros the first proof-of-stake protocol that is mathematically proven to ensure persistence and liveness under the assumption that an honest majority is participating, just like Bitcoin, and so they are theoretically equally secure. This is in comparison to other proof-of-stake protocols that require at least 2 or 3 honest participants, such as Ethereum Casper.

If you choose to buy Cardano (ADA), you should be aware of the general risks associated with cryptocurrencies, such as losing all your money if the cryptocurrency loses its value, if you lose access to your wallet, or if you are a victim of a scam or fraud.

6. Will Cardano survive?

Cardano is a relatively new blockchain technology and is currently in the third of its five stages: Byron (foundational), Shelley (Cardano’s mainnet and decentralised blockchain network, Goguen (smart contract platform allowing users to build decentralised applications), Basho (scaling solutions to optimise blockchain) and finally, Voltaire (treasury and voting systems introduced to create a self-sustaining network).

Many functions in the different stages overlap with each other, and each stage is supported by intense academic research and prototyping before being integrated into Cardano. Though historically, the phases have been delayed, the developers are confident in the completion of all five stages.

7. Does Cardano have too much supply?

ADA has a fixed monetary policy, so there will only ever be 45 billion created, unlike currencies like Dogecoin and Ethereum, which have no fixed supply. Just under 26 billion ADA was sold during the initial sale, and around 19 billion will be released through the blockchain as rewards for mining blocks. The remaining ADA will be distributed in staking rewards through generated blocks on the blockchain. Around 35.7 billion ADA are currently in circulation (as of June 2024).

8. What is the current price of Cardano (ADA)?

The current price of Cardano (ADA) is £0.30 (at the time of writing). You can find the live price on CoinMarketCap at any time.

9. Where is the best place to buy Cardano (ADA)?

Here are the best places to buy Cardano (ADA) in the UK:

  1. eToro - Good for beginners and experts; 70+ Cryptocurrencies
  2. CoinJar - Ready-made crypto portfolios; 50+ Cryptocurrencies
  3. Uphold - Crypto card; Cheap forex rates; 250+ Cryptoassets

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