How To Invest In Cryptocurrency in the Philippines 2023

Bitcoin. Ethereum. Binance. These words might seem familiar to you, especially if you’re someone who’s interested in cryptocurrency trading. Before you jump on the bandwagon and invest all your hard-earned money, it is important that you understand the cryptocurrency market in the Philippines (and in the world) very well. 

In this article, I will be sharing with you the basics of cryptocurrency platforms, cryptocurrency pros and cons, how to invest in cryptocurrency Philippines, and help you figure out how much money you need to start trading cryptocurrency in the Philippines. 

What Is Cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency (more commonly called as crypto) is a digital currency that is not regulated by any centralized system (like banks) but rather by a decentralized one. Crypto is usually centered around blockchains or a database wherein all transactions are recorded across multiple servers.

In short, cryptocurrency is virtual money; therefore, it has no physical form. 

How Does Cryptocurrency Work?

Cryptocurrency works through blockchain technology. As previously mentioned, a blockchain is a decentralized database that stores data and records every transaction that takes place. In other words, a blockchain is a sort of “global ledger” that records every transaction of everyone who uses the same cryptocurrency.

What is the Best Cryptocurrency in the Philippines?

As of this writing, the top 5 cryptocurrencies (among the 10 listed by Forbes) are:

Bitcoin (BTC)

Created in 2009, Bitcoin has a market cap of $880 billion. Just like any other cryptocurrency, BTC runs on a blockchain. Back in May 2016, you could buy Bitcoin for around $500 (Php 26,100). As of April 2022, 1 Bitcoin is equivalent to $46,300 (Php 2,416,906)! 

Ethereum (ETH)

Ethereum is a cryptocurrency and a blockchain platform at the same time. Its market cap is $415 billion and is a favorite among program developers. In April 2016, you can buy ETH for $11 (Php 574). This April 2022, 1 Ethereum is equivalent to $3,450 (Php 180,093)!

Tether (USDT)

With a market cap of over $79 billion, Tether is considered to be more consistent than other cryptocurrencies and is more favored by investors who want to be on the “safer side” of crypto investing. Tether is a stablecoin that is backed by fiat currencies, including U.S. Dollars and Euro. 

Binance Coin (BNB)

Binance is one of the largest crypto exchanges worldwide. With a market cap of over $68 billion, Binance Coin can be used not only in trading Crypto but also in making payments and booking travel arrangements. The best thing is that Binance Coin can be traded or exchanged for Ethereum and even Bitcoin!

In April 2017, Binance Coin was worth $0.10 (Php 5.22). This April 2022, it is valued at $445 (Php 23,229)!

U.S. Dollar Coin (USDC)

Just like Tether, USD Coin is backed by U.S. Dollars. With a market cap of over $53 billion, USDC is powered by Ethereum, and you can use it to conduct your transactions worldwide. 

What Is The Best Cryptocurrency Trading Platform In The Philippines?

The top-performing (and probably the best) platforms used to trade Crypto in the Philippines are:

Binance

Binance is one of the most used and most popular platforms used to trade Crypto in the Philippines. They have very minimal trading costs (0.1%); however, be on the lookout for their withdrawal costs which vary depending on the type of Crypto you wish to withdraw.

Coins.ph

Coins.ph is a mobile wallet in the Philippines used to transfer money and pay bills. It is also one of the most trusted cryptocurrency exchanges in the Philippines, giving Filipinos a secure way to buy crypto even without a bank account. 

PDAX

A BSP (Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas) regulated exchange, PDAX allows users to directly trade crypto in the Philippines. Aside from making crypto more accessible to all, PDAX is trusted by many since they can be assured that they are trading on a secure, legitimate, and government-regulated platform. 

Crypto.com

This platform trades only from crypto to crypto (meaning you cannot use PHP or peso here). The good thing is that you can gain discounts on crypto loans simply by staking their CRO token.

Coinbase

Another commonly used cryptocurrency trading platform in the Philippines, Coinbase has almost the same features as crypto.com, allowing users to trade only from crypto to crypto. 

eToro

eToro Philippines offers various services such as trading cryptocurrencies and investing in stocks. It is usually based on USD, but you can deposit in PHP with a minimal conversion fee computed based on the current USD-PHP exchange rate. 

Best Cryptocurrency Trading Platforms In The Philippines

  1. Coins.ph
  • Minimum balance: Php 100
  • Trading Fee: Free
  • Withdrawal Fee: Starts at Php 10
  • BSP Regulated: Yes
  • Transfer Methods: Online Transfer, Debit/Credit Card, Mobile Wallet, Over the Counter
  1. PDAX
  • Minimum balance: Php 200
  • Trading Fee: Up to 0.5%
  • Withdrawal Fee: Starts at Php 10
  • BSP Regulated: Yes
  • Transfer Methods: Online Transfer, Debit/Credit Card, Mobile Wallet, Over the Counter
  1. Coinbase
  • Minimum balance: $2 (approx. Php 100)
  • Trading Fee: 2%
  • Withdrawal Fee: 1% of the amount to be withdrawn 
  • BSP Regulated: No
  • Transfer Methods: Online Transfer, Debit/Credit Card, Paypal
  1. Binance
  • Minimum balance: Php 1,000
  • Trading Fee: Up to 4.5%
  • Withdrawal Fee: Depends on the type of coin
  • BSP Regulated: No
  • Transfer Methods: Online Transfer, Debit/Credit Card, Mobile Wallet
  1. eToro
  • Minimum balance: $200 (approx. Php 10,000)
  • Trading Fee: Up to 5%
  • Withdrawal Fee: $5
  • BSP Regulated: No
  • Transfer Methods: Online Transfer, Debit/Credit Card, Neteller, Paypal, Skrill

How to Invest In Cryptocurrency for beginners in the Philippines?

Now that you know where to trade crypto in the Philippines, it’s time to answer the pending question: how do you trade crypto in the Philippines? 

Step 1: Create A Cryptocurrency Brokerage Account

Most people prefer using Coinbase, eToro, and Gemini, as these are some of the best crypto brokerages in the market today. To create an account, all you have to do is provide personal information like your address, birthday, e-mail address, and security number – just like when opening an account with a stock brokerage. 

Step 2: Fund Your Account

The next step you need to do in order to trade crypto in the Philippines is to fund your account. Most of the time, connecting your bank account will be required since this is usually the fastest and cheapest option to transfer money to and from your account.

Step 3: Choose A Cryptocurrency

After creating and funding your account, the next question you have to ask is, “how do I choose which crypto to invest in the Philippines?” Most crypto traders allocate their capital to Ethereum and Bitcoin.

Step 4: Strategize

There are various factors you have to take into consideration before buying and selling cryptocurrency in the Philippines. If you are new to crypto trading, it would be best to do your own research, talk to experienced investors, and enroll in classes to gain a wider understanding of the cryptocurrency market to strategize better. 

Step 5: Get A Secure Crypto Wallet

Cryptocurrency wallets come in 2 forms: hardware wallets and software wallets. Both of these are secure, but if you are looking for top-notch security, then opt for hardware wallets, as these store your crypto on a physical device offline. 

Of course, if you are in for ease of access, you can opt for a software wallet that you can easily download from Google Play Store. 

How To Invest In Cryptocurrency Philippines

Pros and Cons of Investing In Cryptocurrency in the Philippines

Pros Of Investing In Cryptocurrency In The Philippines

  • Security and Confidentiality of Data

Each crypto transaction is secured and confidential, thanks to blockchain technology. Since it is based on complex mathematical puzzles, hackers will have difficulty stealing a consumer’s personal information. 

  • Hedge Against Inflation

Crypto is a possible hedge against inflation since it is not regulated by banks and the government. Most crypto (Bitcoin in particular) only has a certain amount released at a given time. The limited supply makes it resistant to inflation, which also helps increase its value as more people adopt them.

  • Decentralized

For most cryptocurrencies, the value is determined by those who hold a majority of the value of a certain coin. A crypto’s decentralized nature helps ensure that no institution can manipulate its value.

  • No Middleman

Because there are no middlemen, transfers are made faster and easier since there are no third-party institutions like banks. 

  • Accessible 24/7

There are no market hours as far as crypto is concerned. This means you can buy crypto 24/7, whenever, and wherever you are (unlike in the stock market). 

Cons Of Investing In Cryptocurrency In The Philippines

  • Difficulty

Crypto is complicated and quite difficult to understand, especially for beginners. Without the proper understanding which can be gained through research, this can lead to potential losses instead of gains. 

  • Illegal Activities

Since crypto trading is secure and decentralized, government agencies will find it hard to identify and track users. With this being said, crypto trading is one of the most favored methods in illegal transactions, such as purchasing illicit items and money laundering.

  • Highly Volatile

With the high potential gains in crypto comes the high potential losses. This was witnessed when Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced that they are no longer accepting Bitcoin as payment, and around $365 billion worth of Bitcoin was wiped out in the crypto market in just a span of 7 days. 

  • Legality

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are not recognized by most banks in the world as a “legitimate currency” since it is not issued or guaranteed by the central bank, nor is it backed by any commodity.

FAQs On Cryptocurrency Trading In The Philippines

Are Cryptocurrency earnings taxable in the Philippines? 

Generally, yes. Cryptocurrencies are considered assets, and any gains resulting from buying, selling, or trading cryptocurrency in the Philippines are subject to income tax unless explicitly exempted by the law. As a general rule, all income, regardless of source, is taxable.

So, is crypto trading taxable in the Philippines? Yes, it is. However, only those cryptos that are converted into Philippine pesos (PHP) are subject to tax. With this being said, a person who makes money by trading crypto in the Philippines has the responsibility to file a tax return and pay his dues to the government.  

What are the differences between Bitcoin, blockchain, and cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency is virtual or digital money, Bitcoin is a form of cryptocurrency, and blockchain is the technology used in cryptocurrencies.

Is cryptocurrency legal in the Philippines?

Yes, cryptocurrency is legal in the Philippines. Most crypto exchanges are regulated by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, and there are over 17 virtual currency exchanges registered with the BSP under Circular 944

How much do I need to start investing in cryptocurrency in the Philippines?

You can start investing in crypto in the Philippines for as low as Php 200! 

Does BPI accept crypto?

No, BPI does not accept crypto transactions anymore (as of June 2021). 

Does Union Bank accept cryptocurrency?

Yes, Union Bank accepts cryptocurrency. It is one of the licensed cryptocurrency exchanges in the Philippines and is approved by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. 

What Is The Best Crypto-Friendly Bank In The Philippines?

Unionbank is one of the best crypto-friendly banks in the Philippines. In 2019, they launched their own stablecoin (PHX) to provide rural banks with easier access to payments and remittances. 

You can check the cryptocurrency Philippines Reddit account and join the community of crypto traders in the Philippines. You can also visit Coin Desk for more cryptocurrency news and updates.

How To Invest In Cryptocurrency in the Philippines 2023

By Ameena Rey-Franc

Recognized as one of the Top Finance Blogs in the PH. Ameena Rey-Franc (founder of TTP) is a former Banker and BS Accountancy graduate turned Blogger, Keynote Speaker, and entrepreneur. Currently an RFP delegate, she is also the Author of a book about Financial Resilience and has held seminars for reputable companies like GrabFoodPH, Pru Life UK, VISA, JPMorgan Chase& Co., Paypal, Fundline, Moneymax, and many more. The Thrifty Pinay's mission is to empower women to LEARN, EARN, and be FINANCIALLY-INDEPENDENT no matter what life stage they are in.