Kraken vs Coinbase

Kraken and Coinbase are among the oldest cryptocurrency exchanges. Kraken was founded in 2011, while Coinbase appeared the following year. Today, they are two of the most highly-valued crypto exchange platforms worldwide.

Among their main similarities is that both platforms try to appease crypto newbies. Yet, they attend to the needs of well-seasoned investors as well. How do they manage to do that, and which one is better? Find out in our Kraken vs Coinbase comparison. Down the lines, we investigate how the two platforms compare in fees, features, and number of available crypto assets.

Side-by-Side Comparison

For a better perspective, we sorted out the most important information and gathered everything together in the table below.

Kraken Coinbase
Account types: Starter, Express, Intermediate, Individual Pro, and Business Pro Individual, Business, and Developer
Number of cryptocurrencies: 120+ 100+
Supported deposits: Crypto deposits, Clear Junction, Etana, Pay ID, Apple Pay, Google PayCash, Wire Transfer, Credit/Debit card (for Intermediate or Pro)

ACH (for Express, Intermediate, or Pro)

Debit Card, Wire Transfer, ACH, PayPal, Google Pay, Apple Pay
Minimum trade: Based on coin $2
Trading fees: 0.9% for stable coins and 1.5% for other crypto on Instant Buy0.00% – 0.26% maker-taker on Pro Maker-taker fee 0.00% – 0.50% + Network fees + spread
Deposit fee: Crypto deposits are mainly free, fiat deposits depending on currency and deposit method Up to $10 on fiat
Withdrawal fee: Flat fee depending on the coin Network fee – crypto
$0-$25 – fiat
2.49% – for Coinbase card purchases
Mobile app: Android, iOS Android, iOS
Customer support: Ticketing system, Live Chat, phone Ticketing system, Live Chat, phone
Supported countries: 200+ 100+
Excluded US states: New York, Washington Hawaii, Indiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Montana, Utah, Wisconsin, Wyoming

The first thing everyone will probably notice is that the Kraken exchange fees are lower than those of Coinbase. The platform is available in more US jurisdictions when compared to its competitor as well. On the other hand, the Coinbase minimum order size is a fixed amount for all cryptocurrencies.

Now that we know the basics, let’s deal with the specifics in the following paragraphs.

Kraken vs Coinbase: Account Requirements

When signing up with either of the two exchanges, users need to be of legal age and residents of one of the supported countries.

Other information that needs to be submitted on Kraken depends on the type of account one is applying for. Starter and Express accounts have the lowest requirements. The process of applying for Intermediate and Pro accounts resembles opening a bank account.

Coinbase doesn’t make such distinctions on its platform, and the process of setting up an account is the same for everyone. Users need to provide Proof of Identity to verify Coinbase accounts. If not provided, the account will be restricted. Other information that you’ll need to submit includes place of residence, address, and the last four digits of your SSN.

Number of Cryptocurrencies

What Kraken and Coinbase have in common, among other things, is the wide selection of supported coins. The Kraken crypto list includes more than 120 coins. In addition to this, the exchange supports around 130 crypto-crypto pairs, some fiat-crypto pairs, and a few fiat-fiat pairs. Unfortunately, US users don’t have access to fiat-fiat pairs.

Coinbase doesn’t fall short in its crypto offer either. There are more than 100 cryptocurrencies supported on this exchange. Moreover, there are 81 crypto-crypto pairs available. Whether users will have access to fiat-crypto pairs depends on their place of residence.

Coinbase vs Kraken: Features

Regardless of which platform you decide to get on, you’ll immediately notice one thing. They both have designated platforms for advanced crypto trades – Kraken Pro and Coinbase Pro. The original platforms are reserved for those looking simply to sell, exchange or buy crypto coins.

One of the advantages of Coinbase is that the platform has its own wallet service. The Coinbase Wallet is a separate app, so users don’t need a Coinbase account to use it. Kraken, on the other hand, is very straightforward in informing users that it doesn’t offer wallet services. Instead, users can deposit their assets into other wallet services of their choice.

Features unique to Kraken

The Kraken crypto exchange enables:

  • Margin Trading: trading on a margin with a leverage of up to 5x
  • Staking: opportunity to earn interest on the crypto assets you keep in your Kraken account
  • Futures: speculate on the prices of crypto coins and maximize your profits. Unfortunately, this feature is not available for Kraken US customers.

Features unique to Coinbase

What sets Coinbase apart are the following features:

  • Earn crypto: possibility to earn crypto coins (up to $13 worth) while watching educational videos about them
  • Watchlist: receive price alerts for assets you intend to buy by putting them on your watchlist
  • Coinbase Taxes: see all taxable events in the Coinbase Tax Center, and file your crypto taxes easily when only using the native platform (this Coinbase feature is not for non-US citizens)

Fees

Kraken calculates its trading fees by using the maker-taker model on its advanced platform. The maker-taker fees range from 0% to 0.26%. How much you will be charged depends on your past 30-day trading volume, which currencies are traded, and whether you are making or taking liquidity. A flat fee of 0.9% is charged for stable coins and 1.5% for other cryptocurrencies when using the Instant Buy feature on the original platform.

How do Kraken fees vs Coinbase fees compare?

First off, Coinbase is not as forthcoming as Kraken when stating its trading fees. What they have in common is the maker-taker fee model, but the Coinbase trading fees are higher. The maker-taker fees range from 0% to 0.50%, depending on the past 30-day trading volume. Additionally, other fees may apply when making a transaction. While not explicitly mentioned on the site, they will be displayed before concluding the trade.

Mobile App

Both trading platforms have apps to accommodate users who use either Android or iOS mobile devices. The set of features available on the mobile apps is the same as on the web platforms.

As already mentioned, Coinbase and Kraken have separate platforms for more advanced traders. That means that they have separate mobile apps for these users. The Coinbase Pro and the Kraken Pro app are available on both Google Play and the App Store.

Customer Support

Kraken accepts user requests through their ticketing system on the Client Portal, via the Live Chat feature, or over the phone. Agents responding to the Live Chat and support tickets are available 24/7. However, if you wish to speak to someone on the phone, then you cannot reach out at any time. Phone support is available from 6 AM to 6 PM EST for US users, or from 10 AM to 10 PM GMT for European users.

Our Kraken alternative, Coinbase, provides customer service to user requests coming in via Live Chat, by opening a support ticket, or by phone. Unfortunately, the Coinbase Live Chat feature is unavailable on mobile devices. Phone support is available 24/7 for US and international users. Residents of Ireland or the UK can get phone assistance from 8 AM to 9 PM GMT every day.

Security

Kraken keeps its platform secure for its users by encrypting all sensitive data. Furthermore, the servers are kept in special cages that are monitored 24/7 and secured by armed guards. For an extra layer of security, Kraken runs a bug bounty program in addition to its penetration testing mechanisms. Accounts can be accessed using 2FA, and 95% of crypto assets are kept in cold storage.

How do the Coinbase vs Kraken security measures differ?

Coinbase is very similar to Kraken when it comes to security. All sensitive data on the platform is encrypted as well, and login credentials are kept separate. Their drives are kept in safe deposit boxes in different geographic locations. Employees need to pass strict background checks to prevent any breaches from their end. When it comes to digital assets, Coinbase keeps 98% of its users crypto in cold wallets.

Who Is Kraken Best For?

Kraken is best for everyone interested in exchanging crypto. No matter whether beginner or advanced, investors will feel comfortable using the platform. This is especially true when considering that the Kraken crypto fees are among the lowest out there. Those who need more advanced trading features will feel at home on the Kraken Pro platform.

Kraken Pros & Cons

+A wide selection of cryptocurrencies
+Low fees on the separate Pro platform
+Top-level security

-Fewer deposit methods available than on competitive platforms
-High fees for Instant Buy
-Kraken withdrawal limits based on verification tier

Who Is Coinbase Best For?

Coinbase is a great exchange for everyone looking forward to their first crypto trading transactions. The extensive educational materials and the options to earn free crypto coins are some of its upsides. Among its disadvantages are the higher fees when compared to other crypto exchanges.

Coinbase Pros & Cons

+Low minimum trade
+Access to a great number of learning materials
+Easy to use

-Higher fees compared to other competitors
-Not very straightforward when it comes to fees

Kraken

Kraken is a US-based exchange that offers trading in US dollars, Canadian dollars, Euros, British pounds, and Japanese yen. They pay special attention to their security with a track record of 0 breaches. Kraken also has an extensive list of crypto assets and covers over 70 of them.

  • Low fees
  • 6 different fiat currencies
  • 100+ cryptocurrencies

Kraken is a US-based exchange that offers trading in US dollars, Canadian dollars, Euros, British pounds, and Japanese yen. They pay special attention to their security with a track record of 0 breaches. Kraken also has an extensive list of crypto assets and covers over 70 of them.

Coinbase

Coinbase is a leading cryptocurrency exchange in the US. Apart from the large trading volume they also allow you to keep track of your currencies in one place, which are protected by insurance and stored in a digital vault.

  • $320B+ volume traded, 100+ countries, 35M users
  • Multiple Payment Methods, Transparent Fees
  • Secure, Insured, Fast, and Beginner Friendly

Coinbase is a leading cryptocurrency exchange in the US. Apart from the large trading volume they also allow you to keep track of your currencies in one place, which are protected by insurance and stored in a digital vault.

Coinmama is a bitcoin broker based in Israel. They specialize in selling bitcoins for credit card to nearly anyone in the world.

Payment Methods

Credit Card

Top Coins

BTC DOGE ADA LIBRA BNB

Which Is Better: Kraken or Coinbase?

To wrap up our Coinbase vs Kraken review, we want to point out a few things.

Both platforms are suitable for novice crypto traders and have simple and intuitive interfaces. One of the advantages Kraken has over Coinbase is its low fees. However, many of its features are restricted for US users.

Despite supporting more features for US users, Coinbase outperforms Kraken in another area too. It offers a separate wallet service, which most traders will find beneficial. This is something Kraken dissociates itself from.

Finally, when deciding which one is better, you should take into account your individual requirements as well.

FAQ

Are Kraken fees lower than Coinbase?

The Kraken trading fees are nearly 50% lower than those on Coinbase. While the Coinbase maker-taker fees come up to 0.50%, on Kraken, they are kept to 0.26%. Practically, you will pay half the fee on Kraken when trading the same amounts compared to Coinbase.

What coins does Kraken support?

Kraken has a long list of available crypto coins. On it, you will find many of the most well-known and not-so-famous digital currencies. Apart from Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum, Kraken supports Litecoin (LTC), Cardano (ADA), Flow (FLOW), Icon (ICX), and many others. It also supports around 130 crypto-to-crypto pairs.

How to send crypto from Coinbase to Kraken?

To make a transfer from Coinbase to Kraken, start by opening the Funding section in your Kraken account. From here, select the wallet where you will be making the deposit and copy its address. Once successfully copied, go to your Coinbase account, access the Accounts section, and choose the wallet from which you’ll be transferring. After selecting the Send button, you will have to enter the details about your transfer, together with the Kraken wallet address.

How to send crypto from Kraken to Coinbase?

First, copy the designated Coinbase wallet address by selecting the Send/Receive button and accessing the Receive section. From the drop-down menu, select the currency you will be receiving and copy its wallet address. Next, go to your Kraken account and access the Funding section. Select the Withdraw option next to the asset you want to send over to Coinbase. Add the wallet address you previously copied from Coinbase, enter the desired amount and select the Send button.

Which is better: Coinbase or Kraken?

Kraken is a dedicated crypto exchange platform, and as such, it offers more trading features. Coinbase leans more towards exchanging fiat for crypto. In that sense, it supports more methods for funding accounts. However, Kraken takes over the lead when speaking of fees. Coinbase outshines Kraken in providing a wallet service to its users as well. This is only the tip of the iceberg. For even more information, read our detailed Kraken vs Coinbase comparison review.

ABOUT AUTHOR

A problem-solver by day and content writer by night. In between, you’ll probably find me somewhere outside, reaching my daily step goal or admiring sunsets. My interests span multiple fields and creative pursuits. Having a background in linguistics, I’m now exploring the social aspects of information technology and I’m glad to be a part of the journey to hitting your financial targets.

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