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Kucoin vs Wealthsimple Crypto: What Works Better For Canadians in 2024

Oleg Galeev

Last updated May 25, 2024

In this comparison, we will scrutinize two prominent cryptocurrency exchanges, Kucoin and Wealthsimple Crypto, focusing on various aspects like security, compliance, user support, and mobile & desktop trading experience. Both offer distinct advantages; Kucoin provides access to a wide range of cryptocurrencies and advanced trading features, while Wealthsimple Crypto emphasizes simplicity and compliance with Canadian regulations.

Description

Kucoin is a sort of Canadian-friendly cryptocurrency exchange that offers peer-to-peer crypto trades, lending, and futures trading. Kucoin is suitable for more advanced traders looking for advanced charting and order types. Kucoin has 8 million

Wealthsimple is a Canadian trading platform that offers several popular cryptocurrencies. You can connect your bank account, move funds from different investment accounts, and buy crypto in CAD.

Coins

500+ coins

Over 30 coins, e.g. Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, EOS, Stellar, LINK, AAVE, Solana (SOL)Cardano (ADA)Polkadot (DOT), Dogecoin (DOGE), Polygon (MATIC), and a few stable coins.

 

Fees

  • Low maker/taker trading fees ( 0.005%/0.025% to 0.1%/0.1% for class A coins)
  • Free deposits
  • Variable withdrawal fees
  • KCS holders get 20% discount on trading fees

Pros

  • Low fees
  • Wide range of altcoins available
  • Advanced order types
  • Crypto lending
  • Futures trading
  • Fast crypto purchases
  • Peer to peer exchange
  • Anonymous trading
  • Offers 30 popular cryptocurrencies
  • Easy to use
  • Can transfer funds between investment accounts
  • Secure and trustworthy
  • You can set limit orders
  • $200M insurance
  • Free CAD bank transfers and withdrawals

Cons

  • Platform is confusing for beginners
  • No fiat to crypto pairs
  • Must buy USDT to trade
  • Previously hacked
  • Not compliant in Ontario (but you can still use it though)
  • High trading fees
  • Cannot move crypto to a private wallet yet

Account Limits

Low

Low

Methods to buy

  • Credit/debit card 
  • Third party Bank transfer

CAD Bank transfer

Security

  • $275 million stolen in 2020 hack
  • 2FA available
  • Coins are insured for $200 million by Gemini Trust Company LLC™
  • Fully regulated in all Canadian provinces
  • Touch/Face ID

Mobile and Desktop Trading

Both Kucoin and Wealthsimple Crypto offer mobile apps and desktop platforms for trading. Kucoin's app, rated 4.3 on Google Play and 4.6 on Apple Store, offers advanced trading features, charting tools, and supports a wide range of cryptocurrencies. The Kucoin desktop platform mirrors this functionality, providing a seamless trading experience.

On the other hand, Wealthsimple Crypto's app, boasting a 4.7-star rating on Apple Store and a 4.5-star rating on Google Play, emphasizes simplicity. It allows users to switch between investment accounts, view charts, and execute trades. The desktop platform mirrors this functionality and is designed for accessibility and ease of use.

Kucoin

Kucoin is slightly different than your average crypto exchange. You won’t be able to deposit Canadian dollars directly. You’ll have to go through a third-party such as Banxa to deposit fiat. Kucoin does, however, accept credit and debit card payments, but you’ll need to check if your Canadian bank allows crypto transactions.

There are no fiat to crypto pairs, so you cannot buy bitcoin or other crypto directly with your dollars. You’ll need to first purchase Tether USDT on Kucoin and then trade that for the crypto you want.

The Kucoin exchange can be quite confusing for beginners.

There are advanced charting and order types available, plus you can trade on margin and trade futures contracts if you wish.

To buy USDT quickly, go up to the top menu and select the “Fast Buy” option. Here, you can purchase USDT using your credit or debit card or via the P2P exchange, or via a third party transfer. Once you have your USDT, then you can trade it on the Kucoin exchange under “spot trading”. Select the trading pair e.g. USDT/BTC and then choose your order type e.g. market order.

The Kucoin app has a 3.7-star rating from over 2,000 reviews on the Apple App Store and a 2.7-star rating from over 12,000 reviews on Google Play. Many people complain that the app crashes or that there are certain features lacking such as the ability to filter order history by trading pair.

Kucoin’s app is a bit more simple than its desktop exchange but it’s still confusing for beginners. There are lots of features, tabs, and menus. Buying USDT is easy since you do not need to verify your account. Simply sign up with an email and you can buy crypto in seconds using your credit or debit card under the Fast trade option. From there though, you will need to navigate to the spot trading page and select the trading pair you want.

Kucoin crypto exchange desktop interface

Kucoin desktop interface

Kucoin desktop app (Fast Trade)

Kucoin desktop app (Fast Trade)

Kucoin app screenshot

Kucoin app interface

Kucoin app while trading

Kucoin app interface while trading

Wealthsimple Crypto

Wealthsimple’s Trade app has a 4.7-star rating from 121,000 reviews on the Apple App Store, and a 4.6-star rating from 41,000 reviews on Google Play.

The app makes it easy to switch between all of your investment accounts, and see exactly how much you have in each one. The desktop trading platform is essentially the same and allows you to deposit and withdraw, buy and sell, and view charting for different cryptocurrencies. It has a simple interface making it easy for beginners. 

Wealthsimple desktop app screenshot

Wealthsimple desktop app

Wealthsimple crypto trading main screen

Wealthsimple crypto trading main screen

Wealthsimple mobile app screenshot

Wealthsimple Crypto Mobile app

Buying crypto with Wealthsimple Crypto

Security Compliance

Kucoin provides world-class security meaning your coins are in relatively safe hands. It has two-factor authentication, so you can prevent unauthorized access to your account.

Keep in mind, $275 million worth of crypto was stolen from Kucoin by North Korean hackers in 2020. Later, $200 million of the stolen funds was recovered. Still, it doesn’t bode well for Kucoin. If you have funds on the exchange, it’s best to move them to a private crypto wallet

Wealthsimple Crypto requires new customers to go through the KYC process in order to trade and offer two-factor authentication. 

In your Wealthsimple account, you can use Touch ID or Face ID instead of entering a username and password each time you log in. Currently, there is no Two-factor authentication available. 

Kucoin ensures stringent security through various measures such as the utilization of micro-withdrawal wallets, employing high-level encryption with multiple layers, the adoption of dynamic multifactor authentication, and the establishment of specific internal departments for risk control. However, they've experienced a security incident in the past.

Wealthsimple Crypto, on the other hand, insures coins for $200 million by Gemini Trust Company LLC™. It doesn't yet support moving cryptocurrencies to private wallets, but this feature is reportedly forthcoming.

Regulatory Compliance

In June, 2021, the Ontario Securities Commission stated that Kucoin was illegally offering its residents securities and derivatives trading, but Kucoin did not respond to this. As a result, Kucoin is still available in Ontario as well as the rest of Canada. You can use Kucoin at full capacity whether it’s a simple buy order at market price or a more advanced order type. Bear in mind, Kucoin does not allow Interac e-Transfer to deposit Canadian dollars to your account. Instead, you will have to use a debit or credit card or a SWIFT transfer with USD.

Wealthsimple Crypto is insured by the Gemini Trust Company LLC™ which covers $200 million. Wealthsimple is fully regulated in Canada and has been a staple for Canadian investments since 2016. It's a fully-compliant crypto platform in Canada.

Wealthsimple Crypto is fully regulated in all Canadian provinces, making it compliant with Canadian laws and financial standards. This makes it a trustworthy platform for Canadian users.

KuCoin has recently faced prohibition in Ontario due to non-compliance with regulatory standards. The Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) imposed a fine of $2,000,000 in addition to the costs of investigation on KuCoin for persisting operations in the province without adhering to OSC's guidelines.

Customer support

Kucoin offers helpful FAQs and online ticketing service for their customers as well as 24/7 support and a live chat option.

Wealthsimple has a comprehensive help centre on its website and within the app. It is full of articles about crypto in general as well as how to use their platform. They also have live chat support, email support and phone support, all available 24/7. Wealthsimple has good customer service and you will be able to find an answer to your question quickly. 

Kucoin provides round-the-clock customer support via email, live chat, and hotline. They also have an extensive FAQ section and a Kucoin community for additional support. Wealthsimple Crypto also offers a comprehensive help center, live chat support, email support, and phone support, available 24/7. They have high customer service ratings on platforms like Trustpilot.

Conclusion

Both Kucoin and Wealthsimple Crypto have their strengths. If you're a Canadian resident looking for a compliant, beginner-friendly platform with good customer service, Wealthsimple Crypto is an excellent choice. However, for access to a broader range of cryptocurrencies, advanced trading tools, and more versatile platform, Kucoin emerges as the winner.

We recommend choosing Kucoin over Wealthsimple Crypto for your cryptocurrency trading needs. By opting for Kucoin through our referral link, you support us in conducting comprehensive independent analyses of crypto trading options for Canadians.

If you find that neither Kucoin nor Wealthsimple Crypto meets your requirements, we encourage you to explore our monthly-updated list of the best exchanges for Canadians to trade crypto. This list provides a range of alternative options that may better suit your specific needs and preferences.

Author

Oleg is a Canadian citizen & crypto expert who has been trading since 2016. He started out with Coinbase, Kraken and Peer-to-Peer exchanges. After some time, centralized exchanges started charging crazy fees to their users.

He decided to review different crypto exchanges that operate in Canada and start a Youtube channel in order to educate Canadians on what kinds of things are going inside each one while giving them unbiased advice. On top of that, Oleg also has experience with NFT, airdrops, and crypto staking and he is constantly checking on new crypto assets.

His writing has been featured in popular Canadian media sources such as Toronto Sun and Ottawa Citizen.