What Is the Cheapest Cryptocurrency (And Is It Worth Investing In)?

Interested in bitcoin but concerned about its high price? Learn about cheap cryptocurrency options.

Various cryptocurrency coins
Updated May 13, 2024
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Many investors are diversifying their portfolios with cryptocurrency. For some, it’s a strategic move, but others are hopping on the crypto bandwagon due to FOMO when a coin surges in value.

Although some investors choose to buy bitcoin, it has already seen a massive increase in its price over the last few years. Bitcoin is far from the only cryptocurrency option, however. In this article, you’ll learn how crypto prices work, explore cheap cryptocurrency options, and get simple tips on buying crypto.

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How do cryptocurrency prices work?

Cryptocurrencies can behave as currencies and as investable assets. Some cryptocurrencies can be used to make purchases at certain businesses, but many owners of cryptocurrencies view them as investments. As with any tradable security, the price is based on factors like supply, demand, and competition. When a coin makes the news, its value can increase or decrease based on investors’ perception of future value.

Some crypto coins have a finite number that can be created. Once that number is reached, or when the supply gets close, the value may increase because no additional coins can be created.

For example, the bitcoin (BTC) price hit an all-time high at more than $70,000 per coin in March 2024 due to increased demand and higher demand. This followed a lull in bitcoin's price that saw the cryptocurrency trading between $16,900 and $42,000 for most of 2023.

As of March 12, 2024, bitcoin is trading at $70,027 and has a $1,380 billion market capitalization, which is the total value of all the bitcoins that have been mined. Ethereum (ETH), another popular cryptocurrency, is trading at $3,933 per coin with a market cap of $472 billion.

10 cheap cryptocurrencies to buy or use

If you want to begin investing money in cryptocurrencies, you may go for the popular currencies or select a smaller cheap crypto or trending altcoins that your money can buy more of using your U.S. dollars (USD). Let's review 10 cheap coins you can buy on the cryptocurrency market today, along with their prices as of the time of writing.

Keep in mind
There's no guarantee that any of these coins will increase in value or be successful, so make sure to do your research before investing any money.

1. Cardano (ADA)

Cardano is a proof-of-stake blockchain platform that is founded on peer-reviewed research. It is a decentralized network that offers secure and transparent payments. Cardano's coin is ADA, which is named after Ada Lovelace, a 19th-century mathematician and the first computer programmer. Cardano's price is $0.73 as of March 12, 2024.

2. Dogecoin (DOGE)

Dogecoin became very popular in May 2021 with Elon Musk mentioning it on Saturday Night Live. Although it was originally formed as a joke in 2013 with its Shiba Inu dog meme, dogecoin has evolved as an open-source peer-to-peer digital currency that has a loyal following of users and investors. Keep in mind that dogecoin can be quite risky since it is designed to increase supply very rapidly. Dogecoin trades at $0.16 as of March 12, 2024.

3. Stellar (XLM)

Stellar launched in 2014 as an open network focused on boosting inclusion for the world's unbanked populations. Over time, it transitioned to helping financial firms transact business through blockchain technology. The price of its coin is $0.14 as of March 12, 2024.

4. XRP (XRP)

XRP (previously known as ripple) is part of a system that’s designed to help international finance companies send payments to each other more quickly. It can settle transactions in 3 to 5 seconds, which is considerably quicker than major cryptocurrencies like bitcoin, litecoin, and ethereum. XRP is priced at $0.68 as of March 12, 2024.

5. Chainlink (LINK)

Chainlink is a cryptocurrency that encourages users to participate in chainlink’s network. This network sends outside data to the ethereum blockchain and this data is often used to execute smart contracts. Its technology has secured more than $20 billion worth of contracts so far. Chainlink native token trades at $20.25 as of March 12, 2024.

6. EOS (EOS)

EOS technology allows developers to create decentralized apps (DApps) that support decentralized finance (DeFi) and offer scalability, security, and flexibility. The EOS blockchain launched in June 2018. Its coin sells for $1.15 as of March 12, 2024.

7. Polkadot (DOT)

Polkadot's technology enables cross-blockchain transfers of tokens, data, or other digital assets. This allows customers to operate across platforms throughout the polkadot network. Developers can easily create their own custom blockchain and link it to the network within minutes. The price of polkadot is $10.51 as of March 12, 2024.

8. VeChain (VET)

VeChain is a public blockchain that enables smart contracts and is focused on supply chain management. One of its advantages is that it requires low computation power to achieve network security, which saves computing power for other developer tasks. VeChain coins trade for $0.04 as of March 12, 2024.


IOTA is a distributed ledger technology that enables a secure exchange between parties without any fees. Examples include usage-based car insurance, track-and-trace functionality for supply chains, and a borderless digital identity that can be verified by anyone. IOTA's price is $0.38 as of March 12, 2024.

10. Cronos (CRO)

Cronos is the native coin of the Crypto.com exchange. Crypto.com uses an ecosystem that enables merchants to accept cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. Transactions on the network are seamless, cost-efficient, and secure. Businesses can invoice customers and pay vendors through the platform with instant payments in cronos, stablecoins, or fiat currency. Cronos sells for $0.15 as of March 12, 2024.

Tips for buying crypto

If you're wondering how to buy cryptocurrency, here are some dos and don'ts first so you can trade more safely.

  • Prioritize security. Crypto accounts are secured by public and private keys. If you lose the keys to your crypto, you will lose your investment. Because crypto is unregulated, there is nobody to contact to reset your keys and recapture your investment.
  • Protect your coins in cold storage. Cold storage is the act of taking your crypto wallet offline and storing it on a physical device. With your wallet offline, it cannot be hacked.
  • Make sure that your phone and computer are secure. If hackers are able to access your device, they may be able to steal your cryptocurrency. Use a VPN when accessing public Wi-Fi, anti-virus software, and two-factor authentication to beef up your security.
  • Understand what you're buying. It can be easy to get caught up with the crowd and buy crypto because everyone else is. Before making a large investment, ensure you know what you're buying and how it fits within your portfolio.
  • Diversification is key. As with the rest of your portfolio, your crypto holdings should be diversified as well. This will minimize the impact if a coin goes bust. It also increases your chance of finding the next hot coin that surges in value.
  • Invest only what you can afford. Although it can be exciting to invest in something new and mysterious, make sure that you're handling all of your other financial obligations as well. Continue to contribute to your workplace and individual retirement accounts and keep your emergency fund topped off.
  • Put stop losses in place. Crypto market values can fluctuate wildly in a short period of time. If your brokerage or exchange allows it, consider putting a stop loss in place to limit your downside risk in case a coin crashes when you're away from your account.
  • Low prices don't mean value. Although it may be tempting to buy the cheapest crypto coins, sometimes a coin has a low price for a reason. Do your research and look at a range of investment advice from reputable sources to figure out if there's room for the coin to grow or if it’s just a dud.


What is the cheapest cryptocurrency?

New coins are released on a regular basis and the prices of cryptocurrency change by the minute. Shiba Inu coin (SHIB) is one of the cheapest cryptocurrencies available on Coinbase. Shiba Inu coin price is $0.000011 as of Sept 22, 2022. Keep in mind that less-known cryptocurrencies can have very high volatility and low liquidity.

What makes a cryptocurrency cheaper?

Cryptocurrencies are generally priced based on supply and demand. If there's a sudden increase in the supply of coins, its value will drop. Similarly, if there are more crypto investors selling than buying, the price also drops. In most cases, coins generally have a fixed supply or maximum limit of coins that can be mined, so a devaluation based on supply is less of a risk. As more investors choose to invest in cryptocurrency, demand will increase over time.

What is the cheapest way to buy cryptocurrency?

When you purchase cryptocurrency, the crypto exchange typically charges a fee to process the transaction. Fees vary depending on how you fund your purchase. ACH transfers from your bank generally are cheaper than using a credit card or debit card. 

Can I use cryptocurrencies in the real world?

Yes, you can use cryptocurrencies in the real world in several ways. Some merchants and services accept certain cryptocurrencies as a form of payment. You can also use some cryptocurrencies to buy non-fungible tokens (NFTs). You may also choose to participate in metaverses such as Sandbox or Decentraland and create or trade digital assets. 

Bottom line

Remember that crypto investing is unregulated and doesn't require the same disclosures as public stock investments. Do your research and start slowly.

If you're ready to start investing in crypto or to diversify your crypto portfolio, you'll need to create an account at one of the best cryptocurrency exchanges. These platforms allow you to buy, sell, and convert your coins to invest and diversify your portfolio.

Learn More
Get all of Public's investing features, now with cryptocurrency
Manage crypto in the same app as your stock portfolio
Invest with context and information behind each coin
See which cryptocurrencies others invest in and find out why

Author Details

Lee Huffman

Lee Huffman is a former financial planner and corporate finance manager who now writes about early retirement, credit cards, travel, insurance, and other personal finance topics. He enjoys showing people how to travel more, spend less, and live better. When Lee is not getting his passport stamped around the world, he's researching methods to earn more miles and points toward his next vacation.