Bitcoin in Kenya – Ultimate How-To Guide

Kenya is a hotspot for bitcoin in Africa. Getting started with bitcoin in Kenya is not as difficult as it may seem. You can purchase your first bitcoin with any payment method like MPESA, bank transfer, and credit card.

In this article, you will learn how to buy, sell, and use bitcoin in Kenya.

Quick Summary

For readers who want a quick overview of this article, this section covers the most important things to note when getting started with bitcoin.

  • Download a bitcoin wallet.
  • Buy bitcoin – Paxful (MPESA and bank transfer), Binance (Credit Card and bank transfer).
  • Transfer bitcoin to the wallet.
  • Back-Up your wallet.

A more detailed step-by-step guide can is down below:

What is bitcoin?

Bitcoin is digital money, it is money just like the Kenyan Shilling, but instead of a paper and coin-based form of currency, Bitcoin is virtual.

The concept behind bitcoin is to have a new form of money that gives you absolute freedom—bitcoin is decentralized, permissionless, anonymous* and fast.

Read our Bitcoin Explained To Newbies article to understand bitcoin further.

Get A Bitcoin Wallets

A bitcoin wallet is the first point of entry for many new users. A bitcoin wallet is an application or device built for storing bitcoin.

We at BlockNewsAfrica, use Exodus and Trust wallet for Android and iOS. You can read our Best Bitcoin Wallets article for an in-depth review of wallet options.

It is best practice to keep your bitcoin in a wallet and not exchange to mitigate risks. Also, you should back up your wallet to save your funds in case you lose your gadget.

Where Can I Buy Bitcoin in Kenya?

If you are in Kenya, there are several ways to buy bitcoin, such as through crypto exchanges, ATMs, and peer-to-peer (P2P) marketplaces.

Top platforms to buy bitcoin in Kenya include Paxful, Binance, and LocalBitcoins.

How To Buy Bitcoin on Paxful

One of the easiest ways to buy bitcoin in Kenya is through Paxful, a popular peer-to-peer trading platform. People have been buying bitcoin on this platform since 2015. The company claims to have over 800,000 active users across the world. You can buy bitcoin in Kenya on Paxful with or without a bank account.

Payments on Paxful can be made via MPESA, Chipper Cash, Western Union, and 300 other payment options. To buy bitcoin on Paxful, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Create a free account.

The first step is to register for a free account on the Paxful website.

Screenshot: Paxful homepage showing how to buy bitcoin with Kenyan Shilling,

After, you are required to verify your account with your email and phone number. To have access to all features and payment methods, you will have to verify your identity with a valid ID card like passport, driver’s license, and national ID.

Step 2: Start buying bitcoin.

Once verification is complete, you can start buying bitcoin on Paxful. Enter the amount you want to buy in Kenyan shilling, and you will see how much bitcoin you will receive and the conversion rate.

If you are happy with the amount of bitcoin, you will get, select a payment option and click search offers.

Out of the list of sellers that will appear, select any, you feel comfortable with, follow the prompts, and make your purchase.

Buy Bitcoin on Binance

There are several global cryptocurrency exchanges, but very few allow you to buy bitcoin with the Kenyan Shilling directly. Binance recently announced support for users in Kenya to purchase bitcoin with their local currency.

Binance is a major cryptocurrency company with several projects in the space, beyond an exchange. Aside from bitcoin, you can trade hundreds of other cryptocurrencies on Binance.

To buy bitcoin on this platform, you need to create an account and submit the necessary verification documents. After, you will then have to visit the Buy Crypto page on binance to make your purchase.

Making a 20,000 Kenyan Shillings purchase of Bitcoin on Binance.

On the page, select KES (Kenyan Shilling) as your currency and enter the amount of bitcoin you want to buy. Click the “Buy BTC” button to complete your order.

Buy Bitcoin on LocalCryptos

The final site on our list is a relatively new platform for users in Kenya. LocalCryptos is a peer-to-peer platform, just like Paxful. However, on this platform, you can make purchases without verification.

LocalCryptos more than 40 payment methods, including MPESA. Recently, LocalCryptos added 4 African payment methods: Chipper Cash, Airtel Money, MTN Mobile Money, and EcoCash as payment methods

To buy bitcoin on Kenya on LocalCryptos, you have to sign up to create an account. Sort through the list of sellers based on your preferred currency and payment option.

Finally, open a trade with any trader of your choice and complete the trade to get your bitcoin.

Buy Bitcoin on Bitcoin ATMs in Kenya

Another easy way to buy bitcoin is usually by using a bitcoin ATM. However, in Kenya, there aren’t many of them around.

According to the crypto ATM tracking website Coinatmradar, there is only one in the country. The ATM is located in Nairobi, the capital city of Kenya.

Every bitcoin ATM has its own set of rules, limits, instructions, and fees. You should check that before using it.

Is Bitcoin Popular in Kenya?

Bitcoin is popular in Kenya, with several bitcoin communities like the Blockchain Association of Kenya.

Also, you can join our Telegram group to join a community of other bitcoin enthusiasts in Africa.

Frequently Asked Questions About Buying Bitcoin in Kenya

Can I buy bitcoin with MPESA in Kenya?

Yes, you can buy bitcoin with MPESA in Kenya using Paxful or LocalCryptos.

Is Bitcoin illegal in Kenya?

No. Currently, there is no legal framework that describes cryptocurrencies as illegal in Kenya.

How Can I Earn Bitcoin For Free?

There are several ways to earn bitcoin in Kenya. You can use sites that pay you for completing tasks; you can mine or find a job that pays in bitcoin.

Read our Earn Bitcoin in Africa article to learn more.

How Do I Withdraw Bitcoin To MPESA?

You can withdraw bitcoin to MPESA by selling your bitcoin on Paxful and LocalCryptos. While selling your coins on these platforms, select MPESA as the payment method.