In my latest article, I will be talking about:
- The best crypto exchanges for traders in the UAE
- What makes these exchanges the best for UAE based traders
- Things to look for when identifying the best crypto exchange for traders
Crypto is a hot buzzword in the UAE. The country is really leading the way with popularizing crypto-friendly conversations, making it as open to cryptocurrency adoption as anywhere in the world. This is particularly true from a legislative perspective, with moves made by the UAE government to promote the use of blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies in business settings.
Now, not everybody is sold on the idea of cryptocurrency, which is understandable. There are many narratives surrounding crypto that can easily turn people away: “it will replace money”, “fiat currencies are fading”, etc. All the while, Bitcoin’s value remains volatile, and it almost feels like the industry is trying to run before it can walk.
Nonetheless, it is as feasible an investment opportunity, in my opinion, as any other long term staking. There is of course a balance between risk and reward that is aligned to your own personal circumstances, but look in the right places – and importantly, invest in the right exchanges – and this can open up a world of opportunity.
My Favorite Crypto Exchanges
A crypto exchange is a cryptocurrency marketplace. Exchanges act as ledgers to facilitate the buying and selling of crypto, so if you want to buy crypto, head to an exchange!
There are hundreds of exchanges to choose from across the world. Some are global exchanges, others specialise in specific currencies, and a few even focus solely on a specific set of cryptocurrencies. Regardless of this, if you’re on the search for a cryptocurrency exchange to invest in, I’d stick to the top 20 ranked.
These are my top 3 crypto exchanges:
Binance – Binance is the GOAT of crypto exchanges. They have huge trading volumes on a daily basis of over $15 billion, and a presence in the market that is felt the world over.
I would say that Binance is actually as close to a financial institution as you will find in cryptocurrency. Binance Pay, a means of sending cryptocurrency to friends and family as well as buying goods in crypto, is the very first of its kind in the industry.
Khaby Lame was announced in June as a brand ambassador too, which goes to show that they’re looking in the right places to build their reputation, and have a clear understanding of who their audience is.
The CEO of Binance, Changpeng Zhao, is himself Dubai based. He has noted the city’s openness to the adoption of cryptocurrencies as a huge opportunity for the exchange, and they now have a trading license to operate in the region. This allows traders in the region to feel like they’re close to the exchange, and it is by no means a faceless organization in that sense.
Traders can purchase crypto using AED, as well as the usual options of USD, GBP and more.
For a well-oiled, polished exchange with a stellar reputation and a solid presence in the GCC, it’s hard to look beyond Binance.
Coinbase – Coinbase is essentially the second in command in the crypto industry. With a 24 hour trading volume averaging close to $2.5 billion, they may be well behind Binance – but they’re streets ahead of the rest.
A key selling point in favor of Coinbase is that they are NASDAQ listed, and actively collaborate with government agencies in the United States to develop software for their administrations. As far as clout is concerned, Coinbase has plenty of it.
It is worth noting that Coinbase only accepts three major currencies – the US Dollar, Pound Sterling, and the Euro. However, with the Dirham pegged to the Dollar, that shouldn’t have too much of an impact on local traders who want an exchange with a solid foundation.
To that end, with Pound Sterling underperforming over recent months, traders in the UAE may even get a bit more for their money if they were to trade in GBP.
You may also remember the famous QR code advert from the 2022 Super Bowl? That was Coinbase. Nice job, team.
BitOasis – This is a personal favorite of mine, for biased reasons. Led by the incredible Ola Doudin, Coinbase is the MENA region’s largest dedicated cryptocurrency exchange.
So, not only are Bitoasis led by a groundbreaking female entrepreneur, they’re tailored to be adapted just for the traders of our region.
Crypto is a growth market in MENA, with once flawed perceptions slowly turning thanks to the hard work of the BitOasis team to build a positive reputation for both cryptocurrencies and exchanges in general.
Both the desktop and app versions of the exchange have a really smooth interface, making them super easy to navigate, and there are very strong verification measurements in place on the platform to ensure that every user who trades on the platform is verified.
If you want to be part of a MENA-led crypto revolution, jump aboard with BitOasis.
What To Look For From An Exchange
As I mentioned previously, there are so many different exchanges to choose from when trading crypto. The amount of choice can prove to be overwhelming, so it’s important to filter down and hold exchanges to a high standard to earn your custom.
Here are three things I consider when choosing an exchange:
Reputation. Use CoinMarketCap or CoinGecko to judge this, as well as word of mouth and general social media presence overall. CoinMarketCap and CoinGecko are to crypto exchanges what comparison websites are to regular businesses, so you can head to them if you want to judge the rep of an exchange.
CoinMarketCap also gives an Exchange Score to every exchange they list. If they’re not above 6.5, I recommend staying clear.
Do note, there are plenty of good exchanges that aren’t listed – BitOasis being a perfect example of this. There are of course many other factors to consider, but this is a pretty good indicator to begin with.
Trading Volume. Trading volume is something you can see on CoinMarketCap and Coin Gecko too. Next to each listed exchange, their trading volume over the previous 24 hours will also be visible.
Now, there’s a little bit of an art to this, because it’s not as simple as looking for the exchanges with the highest volume. You can of course keep it simple with the top rated exchanges, notably Binance and Coinbase. However, if you’re looking a little further down the chain of exchanges, you want to look for a trading volume that looks realistic, rather than large.
The fact of the matter is that trading volume reporting can easily be manipulated. So, look for what feels right – it’s most likely a sign of transparency.
Transparency. That’s the final thing I look for from an exchange, and it’s a very very simple method I use to gauge whether it’s there. If I google the name of the exchange, followed by CEO, and I can’t find the name of the CEO within 3 articles? Move on.
The crypto industry is still building a reputation for itself. Exchanges that take the opportunity to build credibility and trust in their user base should be prioritized.
What’s more, the less you know about an exchange, the more likely they are to not be forthcoming about how they do business. Or certainly, the more you know about an exchange, the more confidence can be built into their operations.
The nature of cryptocurrencies being faceless means there is a vacancy for business owners to fill that faceless void. Look for exchanges that voluntarily fill it.
Crypto In The UAE
You’re in the right region if you’re a crypto enthusiast. That, however, doesn’t mean that normal rules don’t apply when it comes to finding the right exchange. It’s important to do your research in full when selecting the right crypto exchange to invest in cryptocurrencies with.
Follow the steps I follow, and you’ll find the right exchange for you.
Remember – cryptocurrency investment holds risk. Please research projects in full before investing.