How to buy Litecoin (LTC) – A Beginner’s Guide
By: Ofir Beigel | Last updated: 11/2/21
Ever since Litecoin was created back in 2011 it was considered as Bitcoin’s popular younger brother. In this guide I will review the various ways you can buy Litecoin online and offline and also how to store it.
How to Buy Litecoin Summary
- Get a Litecoin wallet (e.g. Exodus, Ledger, Edge)
- Find an exchange that sells Litecoin (e.g. Coinmama, CEX.io)
- Deposit money and make the trade
- Withdraw the Litecoins to your wallet
If you want a deeper explanation about the various methods available for buying Litecoin and wallets to store it in, keep on reading. Here’s what I’ll cover:
- What is Litecoin in a nutshell
- Buying Litecoin in 3 Steps
- Additional methods for buying Litecoin
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Conclusion – What does the future hold for Litecoin?
1. What is Litecoin in a Nutshell?
Litecoin is a Bitcoin spinoff created by former Google employee Charles Lee in October 2011. Litecoin has taken the general idea behind Bitcoin, but changed a few key component:
- The block time is 2.5 minutes on average versus 10 minutes for Bitcoin.
- The mining algorithm has changed from SHA-256 to Scrypt. This makes mining hardware for Litecoin harder and more complicated to create.
- The total number of Litecoins available is 84 million, as opposed to Bitcoin’s 21 million.
To sum it up, if Bitcoin is digital gold, Litecoin is digital silver. It’s faster but also cheaper and more abundant than Bitcoin.
2. Buying Litecoin in 3 Steps
Step 1 – Get a Litecoin wallet
Before you go off to buy Litecoins, you will need a wallet to store them in. There are many Litecoin wallets available today, but in this post I’ll just review the best ones in my opinion.
Litecoin Hardware Wallets
The best option for storing any cryptocurrency would be to use a hardware wallet. These are pieces of hardware that store the private key to your coins offline.
Today there are two leading hardware manufacturers to choose from – Ledger and TREZOR. Both companies have different models of hardware wallets that will get the job done.
If you want deeper insights on specific models you can read my Ledger Nano X review or my TREZOR Model T review.
Litecoin Software Wallets
Hardware wallets cost money. So if you’re not sure how serious you are about cryptocurrencies and just want to get a taste of what they feel like, perhaps you would be better off to start with a software wallet.
A software wallet is a free program that allows you to store your coins on your computer or mobile phone.
The easiest Litecoin software wallets to get started with are undoubtedly Exodus and Edge. Both wallets are very intuitive. Exodus works only on desktops, while Edge is for mobile. If you want more information you can read my Exodus review.
For a complete explanation about hardware wallets, software wallets and additional types of wallets make sure to watch our Bitcoin Whiteboard Tuesday episode about wallets.
Once you have your wallet you will need to locate your Litecoin address. Your Litecoin address is a long string of letters and numbers starting with “L”, “3” or “M”. Here’s an example:
Step 2 – Find an LTC Exchange
As Litecoin becomes more and more popular the number of cryptocurrency exchanges that sell Litecoin increases.
In this post I’ll focus on the easiest exchanges to get started with, that also supply the widest variety of payment methods.
Credit, debit, PayPal, wire
Credit, debit, SEPA
Credit, debit, SEPA, wire
Debit, SEPA, wire, ACH
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68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
CFDs are not available to US customers.
Buying Litecoin through eToro
Pros: Easy to get started with, various payment methods
Cons: Less suited for accessing the actual coins
eToro is a popular and well established cryptocurrency trading platform that makes it easy for you to invest in Litecoins and other cryptocurrencies for fiat currency (i.e. Dollars, Euros, etc.). In other words, eToro is more targeted towards traders than towards users who are looking to actually own their coins.
Even though you can withdraw or send coins from eToro to other people, it is not the ideal platform for that and it is more suited for price speculation.
This is thanks to its user friendly platform that offers great customer support and the widest variety of payment methods (wire, credit card, PayPal, Neteller and more).
If you use eToro for investment purposes only, you don’t actually need a Litecoin wallet. eToro also allows you to short a certain currency if you think its price will drop.Visit eToro Read review
*75% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. CFDs are not offered to US users. Cryptoassets are highly volatile unregulated investment products. No EU investor protection.
Buying Litecoin through Coinmama
Pros: Simple buying process, reliable company
Cons: Relatively high fees
Coinmama allows you to instantly buy Litecoins with your credit card, debit card or a SEPA transfer. They accept users from most countries around the world (excluding several states of the US).
The company has been around for a long time (since 2013) and is considered trustworthy. You can read my full Coinmama review here.
Coinmama won’t hold your Litecoins for you, which means you’ll need to make sure you have a Litecoin wallet and address before starting the buying process (as I’ve covered in Step 1).
Coins are sent almost instantly once the buying process is completed.Visit Coinmama Read review
Buying Litecoin through CEX.io
Pros: Low fees on trading platform, wide variety of payment methods
Cons: High fees on the brokerage service
CEX Allows you to buy Litecoin in a fast & secure way, using your credit card, debit card or wire transfer. The site offers two methods for buying Litecoins:
- A brokerage service (the company sells you Litecoins directly) – An easy process at a premium price
- A trading platform (you interact with buyers/sellers from around the world) – A cheaper, but relatively complex process for beginners
Like Coinmama, CEX has been around since 2013 and has gained a very good reputation since. If you’re just starting out, it will probably be better if you use the brokerage service since it’s simpler than the trading platform.
Keep in mind that the brokerage service fees are around 7% while the trading platform fees are around 0.25%.
If you’re buying a small amount, that shouldn’t make that much of a difference and sometimes it’s better to pay a little extra for an easier, faster process.Visit Cex.io Read review
Buying Litecoin through Coinbase
Pros: Low fees on ACH/SEPA transfer, established company
Cons: Horrible support, not available worldwide
Coinbase allows you to buy Litecoins using your debit card or bank account. Coinbase accepts buyers from 103 countries around the world and the fees on the exchange are relatively low (mainly for ACH transfers inside the US).
The company is well established and has been selling cryptocurrencies since 2012. On the downside, don’t expect anyone from their support to answer if you encounter any issues (they created a name for themselves in that field).
The bottom line for Coinbase is this – if they are supported in your country they are probably the cheapest and fastest option for buying Litecoins.Visit Coinbase Read review
Buying Litecoin through Bitpanda
Pros: Multiple payment methods supported, relatively low fees
Cons: Not available worldwide
Bitpanda is a cryptocurrency broker that specializes in buying and selling cryptocurrency within the Eurozone. Bitpanda Allows you to buy Litecoins using your credit card, Skrill account, SEPA transfer or SOFORT transfer.
The company was founded in late 2014 and has since grown to become one of the more popular options to purchase cryptocurrency around Europe.Visit Bitpanda Read review
Buying Litecoin through Bitstamp
Pros: Reputable exchange, relatively low fees and exchange rate
Cons: Complicated for beginners
Bitstamp is one of the oldest cryptocurrency exchange out there. Bitstamp allows you to buy Litecoins through a credit card or a wire transfer of USD/EUR. Alternatively you can change Bitcoins to Litecoins on the exchange.
Aside from a pretty confusing trading platform, Bitstamp also offers a direct buying service for cryptocurrencies via a credit card at a premium.Visit Bitstamp Read review
Step 3 – Withdraw Your Litecoins
Once you decide on an exchange, open an account and buy the Litecoins. Make sure to withdraw the Litecoins from the exchange to your personal wallet.
Never leave coins in an exchange, as you risk losing them all if a certain exchange gets hacked or shuts down (which happened in the past).
4. Additional Options for Buying Litecoins
If you already own Bitcoins and wish to exchange them for Litecoin, you can do that on a crypto to crypto exchange like Binance. Alternatively, you can always buy Bitcoin and convert them to Litecoins using Binance.
Buying Litecoins with Paypal
There is no direct option to buy Litecoins with PayPal. If you’re looking only for price speculation and not to actually own the coins you can invest through eToro.
However, if you want to actually hold your coins, you’ll need to buy Bitcoins with Paypal and then exchange them to Litecoins on a crypto to crypto exchange like Binance or Changelly.
Important – Buying cryptocurrencies with PayPal usually includes A LOT of fees. Make sure you’re aware of all of the fees beforehand so you won’t be surprised.
Buying Litecoins without ID or verification
Since Litecoin isn’t as popular payment method as Bitcoin is, it’s hard to find a credible way to buy it without any verification. The best way to buy Litecoin anonymously would be to buy Bitcoins anonymously and then trade those Bitcoins for Litecoins on Binance or Changelly with a disposable email.
5. Frequently Asked Questions
How Many Litecoins are Left?
As of June 11, 2020 65,214,075 Litecoins have been mined. This means that 18,785,925 Litecoins are left to mine.
Can you Mine Litecoin?
Yes. Litecoin mining is used in order to update the ledger of Litecoin transactions, Just like Bitcoin Mining. Litecoins can be mined with specific Litecoin mining hardware.
6. Conclusion – Is Litecoin a Good Investment?
Throughout the years Litecoin has proved itself to be a coin that’s here to stay with a strong community and development team behind it.
The question of “will it play a role in the future monetary system?” is still unanswered, but for now Litecoin remains a close second to Bitcoin, following it in its ups and downs.
Have you found any other interesting ways to purchase Litecoins? If so, I’d love to hear about it in the comment section below.
How to save Litecoins. I have ( had ??) 40 litecoins in my Litecoin core wallet. Never seen a warning for saving the wallet besides a password. Suggestion: save with a wallet password because you loose all of your coins after a crash, etc. Also the possibility to save the wallet on your computer, I thought if i have the password I can’t loose my coins. However I did a recover install of my Windows X and after that I lost my wallets only wallets from Litecoin Core) I thought I have my password so i installed the new version of the core wallet did the password thing, but not any coin in it! I read that the new versions weren’t compatible with the old versions so I installed an old version and did the password thing but again no coins in it. What have I to do to get my coins again?? I need the saved wallet.dat-file but can’t find the good one and there was not any warning that you will loose the coins if you do not have a saved wallet. Only for the password?! Just like the way with hotmail.com ( need only a password to get your old mails again!)
Anyone a suggestion how to get my coins back ?? I can download all the old versions if necessary. Thanx
Yes, unfortunately with Litecoin Core you do need the wallet.dat file (and the password) to access your old wallet. You may be able to recover files which were lost during the reinstallation of Windows however. Don’t install any new programs in the meantime as you don’t want to overwrite the part of the hard drive in which the old data may still exist. I suggest searching for data recovery tools relating to Windows reinstallation, hopefully you find one which is able to restore your wallet.dat file.
tôi cũng bị trường hợp tương đương như bạn. vi blockchan của tôi không thế đăng nhập vào được khi vẫn còn ID ví và mật khẩu. tôi không thể lấy lại được tiền của mình. có ai giúp mình với tôi có liên hệ hô trợ nhưng họ nói xin chờ vi quá nhiều việc. tôi xin chân thành cảm ơn moi người
Hello! Thanks for the great review, I think you can add changenow.io to this list. I used this exchanger to buy BTC without registration, and now I am going to buy LTC. In any case, I am grateful to your site, where I found a lot of useful information.
I used them, it is really very simple and convenient service.
Glad you find the site helpful!
We don’t really give out investment advice, as if we get it wrong we’re in trouble and if we get it right, we don’t see any of the profit!
That said, I believe Bitcoin is the safest bet of those 3. It’s impossible to predict where price will go in future with any accuracy but one method of dealing with that is “Dollar Cost Averaging.” What this means is that you buy a set, affordable amount of crypto at a predetermined time (usually every month). Over time, this will allow you to scale into a position at an average price, which takes out a lot of the guesswork.
Remember to only invest what you can afford to lose! Also I believe the safest strategy is not to try to trade the market, but rather to buy and hold over the long term.