Summary: First Direct Bank does not let its customers buy cryptocurrencies directly through its interface. However, it has processes in place to allow users to interact with digital currency markets in a safe and controlled setting. The bank approves GBP transfers to select crypto exchanges that have received Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) authorisation.  

After completing a detailed analysis of the leading exchanges, we found eToro to be the best option for First Direct Bank customers. eToro supports over 3,000 digital assets, stocks, forex, indices, commodities, and ETFs at industry-leading fees. It enables immediate deposits in GBP through methods such as direct transfer, Faster Payments Service, credit card, and more.

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Can I Buy Bitcoin with First Direct Bank?

Yes, clients of First Direct can invest in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies by transferring funds to a recognised digital asset exchange in the UK. Once your GBP has been deposited, it can easily be converted into tokens. While the bank does not directly provide investing services, it does support transfers for investment purposes. To prioritise security, we advise only using platforms authorised by entities such as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). 

How to Buy Crypto with First Direct Bank

The best way for First Direct Bank clients to invest in digital currencies is through an FCA-licensed exchange. Our expert team identified eToro as the most suitable option as it provides access to over 3,000 cryptos and other financial instruments. The platform accepts GBP deposits through numerous payment methods, including debit and credit cards, Faster Payments, bank transfers, PayPal, Skrill, and Neteller. 

Begin your investment journey by following this short guide:

  1. Setup Account: Establish your eToro account and complete all necessary identity verification steps.
  2. Choose Currency: Navigate to and select "Deposit Funds", then choose "GBP" as your fiat currency. 
  3. Add Funds: Choose your preferred payment method to initiate a transfer from your First Direct bank account.
  4. Purchase Crypto: Find and select the digital currency you wish to purchase to finalise your transaction.
How to Buy Crypto with First Direct Bank.
How to Buy Crypto with First Direct Bank.

First Direct Bank Cryptocurrency Policy

With a progressive approach towards cryptocurrency, First Direct Bank nurtures financial innovation while strictly adhering to applicable legislation. It allows customers to use regulated platforms, including our recommended exchange, eToro (UK) Ltd. It is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) under Firm Reference Number 583263. It is registered with Company No. 07973792 and has its head office on the 24th floor, One Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London E14 5AB. 

Digital Asset Investing Fees

When using a trading platform, understanding the fee structure is essential for successful investing. Listed below are a few possible costs that consumers may want to take into account: 

  • Trading Spreads: Fees associated with buying and selling. eToro typically operates with variable spreads, at under 1% for cryptocurrencies.
  • Deposit Fees: Depending on the method used to deposit GBP, there might be fees incurred. Our research found that bank transfers and Faster Payments are the most economical options, while debit and credit card transactions can incur fees exceeding 2%.
  • Withdrawal Fees: Fees associated with withdrawals vary by asset. For example, Bitcoin withdrawals generally come with a fixed fee of 0.0005 BTC.

First Direct Bank account holders are likely to find eToro a strong option as an investment platform for virtual currencies. It fully complies with FCA regulations, maintains an excellent choice of digital coins, and offers extremely competitive fees.

What is First Direct Bank?

First Direct Bank, launched in 1989 as a subsidiary of HSBC, revolutionised the UK banking landscape by pioneering the concept of banking without traditional branches. From its inception, it has been recognised for its 24/7 telephone banking services, which set it apart in an era dominated by conventional banking methods.

As technology advanced, First Direct Bank quickly adapted, launching its Internet banking services in the late 1990s and subsequently introducing a mobile banking app in 2011, further streamlining its digital offerings. The bank has also been a forerunner in embracing customer feedback, launching a platform in 2009 for customers to suggest improvements.

First Direct
First Direct Bank: Home Page.

Final Thoughts

To wrap up, First Direct Bank allows its customers to initiate transactions to and from FCA-approved platforms such as eToro. We recommend this exchange for its ability to offer a secure and legal trading environment for a broad range of both traditional and digital assets. With competitive fees, instantaneous deposits, and a multitude of social trading features, the platform is well-suited for customers venturing into the world of cryptocurrencies.