Copyright 2022 @ Cryptocurrency NZ
Before you learn how to buy Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency in NZ, you first need to set up a cryptocurrency wallet for you to store your crypto assets in.
In our simplified guide, we’ve outlined the key information all Kiwis should know about using Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrency wallets in New Zealand.
What is a Cryptocurrency Wallet?
A cryptocurrency wallet is a digital account where you store your Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Your wallet is where you receive payments in and send transactions out, acting as your heart of operations for interacting with the cryptocurrency world.
Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum aren’t stored in banks, but rather in privately controlled user wallets.
This provides crypto users with an unparalleled level of asset security and ownership, all while changing the way millions of people store and transfer value across the globe.
Crypto wallets are free to use, safe to operate, and you can have as many wallet accounts as you’d like.
Best of all – you don’t have to ask anyone for permission to set one up, or use it to send and receive payments.
Follow our guide to learn how to set up your first cryptocurrency wallet, and become your own bank in 10 minutes or less.
Disclaimer: Cryptocurrency NZ has no affiliation with any wallet or service showcased in our guide. All recommendations are based on our own research, experiences and preferences. You are ultimately responsible for the creation, safekeeping and use of your own wallet.
Different Types Of Cryptocurrency Wallet
Like your physical wallet, mobile wallets are only as safe as you allow them to be.
If you leave your physical wallet full of cash unaccompanied, it’s likely it will get stolen; similarly with your crypto wallet, if you disclose your private keys online or record them on a device that can easily be hacked, it is possible your crypto will be stolen.
Desktop wallets like Exodus are wallets that you operate on your laptop or PC.
Desktop wallets make ideal first wallets for Kiwi crypto newcomers, offering a safe and easy sandbox for diving deeper into other more secure wallet types.
Recommended Wallet – https://www.exodus.io/
Visit our Exodus wallet NZ Guide here.
Hardware wallets are the most secure wallet type available, and we’d recommend buying one if you’re serious on holding large amounts of coins long term.
Visit our Hardware Wallets NZ Guide here.
Web wallets are website-based online wallets which are accessed through a browser interface without having to download or install any programs.
You should be cautious and always ensure your internet connection is secure when accessing a web wallet, as being only accessible online they are somewhat more susceptible to attacks; a prime example of this is the Celsius Phishing Attack.
Recommended wallet – https://coin.space/wallet/
Browser Extension Wallets
Browser extension wallets are similar to web wallets, except rather than going to a website to view and control your assets, they are accessible through an extension in your web browser (such as Brave, Firefox, Safari or Chrome)
Useful for interacting with decentralized exchanges, browser extension wallets like MetaMask are an integral part of any crypto investors toolkit.
Recommended wallet – https://metamask.io/
A paper wallet is the rawest form of cryptocurrency wallet, comprised of the two core components that make up every cryptocurrency wallet;
A public and private key pair.
What are Public and Private Keys?
Until today, you would’ve been accustomed to accessing your various online accounts and services by using your email address and password.
In the world of crypto, wallet access and ownership is instead represented by something called a public and private key pair.
Acting as your digital identity and signature, every cryptocurrency wallet is distinct by having its own unique public and private key – with each unique key pair being freshly generated whenever a new cryptocurrency wallet is created.
What is a Public Key
Your public key is like your crypto bank account number – an address others can use to send crypto to your wallet. You can safely send your public key to anyone, knowing they can’t change or open your wallet, but rather use it to send you payments.
What is a Private Key
Your private key is like the password to your crypto bank account, and it’s required to sign off outbound transactions from your wallet. You should never share your private key with anyone, and the security of your wallet rides on how safely you store your private key.
To put theory into practice – below is me locating my public key (otherwise known as my Bitcoin address) in my Exodus desktop wallet. This is the address I would provide to any person or service wanting to send Bitcoin to my personal wallet.
My private key, on the other hand, is already being safely stored and harnessed by Exodus behind the scenes; allowing Exodus to authenticate and execute outbound transactions on my behalf whenever I send Bitcoin to someone else’s wallet from mine.
Almost all cryptocurrency wallets automatically hold, harness and protect your public and private keys for you. This makes setting up and using your wallet about as easy as using an app like PayPal, Venmo or TransferWise – depending on the wallet type you choose.
Because crypto wallets use public and private keys to represent ownership rather than email addresses and passwords, you’re not required to connect your real world identity to your wallet and funds by default.
This provides users with an enhanced level of security and privacy, but that doesn’t mean crypto storage autonomy isn’t without it’s own downsides.
Studies show that approximately 20% of all Bitcoin in existence has already been lost due to poor private key management. And it’s highly unlikely these coins will ever return to circulation.
Learn more about public and private keys here.
How to Choose your Cryptocurrency Wallet
The wallet best suited to you will depend on what you wish to do with your coins and how much you intend to hold.
$0.00 - $200 NZD
Mobile wallets are designed for storing small amounts of coin, to be used on the day to day.
We’d recommend only keeping coins you want to spend on the go in these wallets and look at storing the bulk in desktop or hardware wallets.
$200 - $2,000 NZD
Desktop wallets are ideal for storing medium to large amounts of coins, short or long term.
Recommended – Exodus is a perfect wallet for crypto newcomers, regardless of how little or much coin you’re holding.
Note – the size and value of your crypto stash is measured by your own perception. $200 might be a fortune to you and small amount to someone else. All three wallets above are known to be extremely safe and trusted. The security of your wallet ultimately comes down to how you backup your private keys and phrase.
How to Set up a Cryptocurrency Wallet
Used by tens of thousands of Kiwis across NZ, Exodus is a highly popular crypto wallet choice for first time Bitcoin and cryptocurrency users.
Exodus wallet is free, easy to use, and provides an extremely sleek interface and user experience.
Even better, Exodus is multicurrency; meaning you can store your Bitcoin, Ethereum, Monero, and over 100+ other supported coins in the one wallet application.
How to Set up Exodus Wallet in NZ - Step by Step
To get Exodus wallet in NZ; first head to the official Exodus website (https://www.exodus.io/) and click “Get Exodus Now”. From there, download and install the Exodus program, and follow the 5 step Exodus wallet set-up guide.
0. Run a virus scanner such as MalwareBytes on your computer to help ensure your device is secure before creating a new crypto wallet.
1. Download Exodus
For the desktop application: Head to the official Exodus website on your laptop or desktop PC and click on ‘download for desktop’ – https://www.exodus.com/download/
For the mobile application: Head to the official exodus website and click on the App Store or Google Play links, alternatively you can search for Exodus wallet in your phone/tablet app store. Bewarned, Desktop wallets are generally safer.
2. Open Exodus
Once you have downloaded either the desktop or mobile app, open exodus and follow the beginners tutorial that will be prompted on screen. Alternatively you can watch this desktop tutorial video or mobile tutorial video for a walk-through of the Exodus wallet.
3. Back Up Your New Wallet
One of the first things you need to do after setting up a new wallet is to back up your 12 word recovery phrase. After opening the app for the first time, exodus will prompt you to do this, but in case it doesn’t this can be found in the security settings, just click on backup. See the official Exodus backup guide here.
The safest way to backup your recovery phrase is by writing the 12 words down on a piece of paper (ensuring the order and spelling are correct), it is a good practice to have multiple copies of this phrase and keep them in separate secure locations.
4. Configure Your Settings
Configure the wallet display settings to your personal preferences, e.g. valued in USD or NZD. Do you prefer the light or dark mode interface? Would you like to enable face-ID authentication (mobile only)? And finally, which assets would you want to see on the portfolio page (over 100 to choose from).
5. Receive Crypto
Once you have backed up your wallet and configured your settings, the final step is to deposit crypto into your new wallet. Simply click on the asset you would like to deposit, from here you can click on the receive button to view your public key for that asset (receiving address).
Feel free to visit our guide on how to buy Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrency in New Zealand.
Or if you’re seeking something even safer….
How to Buy a Hardware Wallet in NZ
Kiwis can purchase hardware wallets from a number of trusted domestic retailers as well as directly from the manufacturers. It is always recommended to buy your hardware wallet directly from the manufacturer, rather than from places such as TradeMe or Ebay due to the threat of ‘fake’ or tampered-with wallets.
Below is a list of trusted vendors that stock brand new, authentic Hardware Wallets, such as the Trezor model T or Ledger Nano X in New Zealand.
Trezor official website – https://trezor.io
Ledger official website – https://shop.ledger.com/
Easy Crypto NZ Shop – https://shop-nz.easycrypto.ai/
Crypto Store NZ – https://www.cryptostore.net.nz/
Coined NZ – https://coined.nz/ledger/
For more information on Hardware Wallets in NZ – Visit our informative guide.
Where Do I Get Cryptocurrency From in NZ?
There are currently only two ways that kiwis can buy cryptocurrency in New Zealand; either by buying through an exchange or by trading peer to peer (P2P).
Cryptocurrency Wallets Best Practice Tips
- Have multiple paper copies of your recovery phrase – keep them in separate secure locations to protect the phrase from being destroyed by calamities such as fires, floods, earthquakes etc.
- Never disclose your private keys or recovery phrase with anyone – be wary of typing this information into your device.
- Don’t keep all your eggs in one wallet – if one of your wallets gets compromised you don’t want to lose your entire holdings.
- Use a combination of hot and cold wallets – hardware wallets enable the highest level of security, whereas hot wallets allow for a higher degree of accessibility and ease of use.
- Conduct due diligence on cyber security – use antivirus software and be wary of scams.
- Double check the destination address – using the wrong wallet address can result in crypto assets being lost indefinitely, always double check the address when sharing your own wallet addresses or sending funds.
- Keep your holdings private – never brag or show off your crypto holdings because nobody likes that guy, plus it’s the best way to protect yourself from a $5 wrench attack.
- Always use a VPN in public – If you have to use public WiFi to access your crypto, always use a VPN to encrypt your traffic. Ideally you should only ever access your crypto assets from a secure, private network.
- Be extremely wary of scams – Unfortunately in the cryptocurrency world, scammers are everywhere and they’re trying to get their hands on your precious satoshis. You should always use antivirus software and perform due diligence when buying or sending tokens, entering into giveaways, entering or exposing your private keys etc. The cryptocurrency related discord and Telegram groups is where a lot of these scammers enjoy hanging out, it is good practice to always assume you are being scammed when receiving messages from someone you don’t know.
- Don’t use your Bitcoin wallet address when receiving Ethereum tokens – Sounds simple, we know; but it’s actually not as uncommon as you might think. Ensure you double check that you are copying and pasting the correct token’s wallet address, and if purchasing tokens from an exchange ensure that you select to purchase the token that matches the wallet address you have copied to your clipboard.
Commonly Asked Questions
Cryptocurrency wallets are free and cost nothing to set up and use – however you can buy Hardware wallets; the safest standard of crypto wallet in NZ.
You just need a computer or smartphone that can connect to the internet and download applications.
Cryptocurrency NZ believe that you should operate a number of different wallets simultaneously with your holdings spread across them. However we are of the opinion that Exodus wallet is best for mobile and desktop wallets (used in conjunction with the Trezor T ) and that MetaMask wallet is the best chrome-extension web wallet.
Crypto wallets are free to set up and use, however you will need to pay a transaction fee (gas) when sending funds. This fee goes to the network not the wallet provider. Additionally, some wallets offer supplementary features that they receive a fee for providing; such as Exodus’s exchange feature that allows users to exchange between different cryptocurrencies.
Note: the conversion rates offered are far less optimal than the rates offered by typical cryptocurrency exchanges.
The exodus wallet is a safe option for storing your cryptocurrency. It is trusted by thousands of Kiwis here in NZ and is one of the most popular wallets around the world. When proper security measures are followed, the exodus wallet is a textbook example of a secure wallet for day-to-day use.
Investing in cryptocurrency is legal in NZ, therefore using a crypto wallet is also legal in NZ as a wallet is typically the first step in crypto investing. At the time of writing NZ regulations in regards to cryptocurrency are sparse, so it is advised to keep your eyes and ears peeled for when the time comes that the government attempts to regulate the crypto space.
Although you are required to store your Bitcoin in a Bitcoin wallet, your Ethereum in an Ethereum wallet, and so forth, it is possible to have one single ‘mega-wallet’ which allows you to store many various different types of cryptocurrency wallets in the one big wallet.
Congratulations, you're now your own bank!
Your next step is to top up your wallet and join the other 3% of New Zealanders who own Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.