You may already be aware that before you can begin playing around with crypto, you’ll need a ‘crypto wallet’ – essentially the launch pad to do anything with a digital currency. And while it may seem easy, opening a crypto wallet can get confusing, especially for someone unfamiliar with the space.
This is where we save the day.
First things first – why do you need a crypto wallet?
Well, it’s not exactly like your normal wallet used to hold ‘real’ cash. Crypto wallets, instead, store your coins on the blockchain. You can only access your assets using a private key (unique to you that allows you to prove ownership), and only then can you make transactions. Think of it as an online bank account for your digital currency, but where you’re in complete control.
Got it. How do I open a crypto wallet?
Before you can do anything, you need to download a wallet from Apple’s iTunes Store and Google Play Store. But how will you know which one is best for you? Considering there are many different types of crypto wallets, it’s good to know that the most used are hosted wallets (the easiest to set up and held by a third party), non-custodial wallets (you’re in complete control of your assets), and hardware wallets (a physical device that stores your crypto). You can read more about each of these wallets here.
Now that you’ve chosen the wallet best for you, which one should you download? Money.com mapped out the best crypto wallets in 2022 a few months ago, keeping in mind everything from the best wallets for beginners to those using bitcoin, mobile, keeping their wallet offline or on their desktop, those using Ethereum, and more.
So, what’s next?
You’ll then need to set up your wallet, which usually means setting up an account. This means creating a password, as well as a “seed phrase,” or a unique code you can use to recover your wallet if you forget your password. The seed phrase is something you do not want to lose, so it’s best to have this written somewhere and stored in a safe place.
Once you’re set up, you’re good to go! Now you can start adding funds to your wallet. Your crypto wallet will have a unique blockchain address for each type of blockchain/currency, which you can find by going into the ‘Receive’ section of your wallet.
Pro tip: It’s best to experiment with your new wallet by sending and receiving funds (starting with small amounts is key). Some also suggest deleting your wallet and restoring it to practice using your seed phrase, as you’ll want to be 100% sure of how the recovery process works.