Compare the best decentralised exchanges in 2022

Decentralised exchanges offer a wider range of crypto to trade and are becoming increasingly popular. This guide compares the best decentralised exchanges in 2022
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Updated: Jun 21, 2022

This beginner-friendly guide compares the top decentralised exchanges around, helping you pick the most suitable one. We run through everything you need to know before using a DEX, including how much it will cost you and where to sign up. 

Top decentralised exchanges

1. Uniswap: Best overall

If you’ve ever looked into decentralised exchanges before, chances are you’ll have heard of Uniswap. It’s one of the largest DEXs in terms of volume and is built on top of the Ethereum blockchain. You can trade thousands of cryptocurrency pairs using automated market makers (AMM). AMMs use smart contracts to determine effective prices and execute trades. 

In 2020 Uniswap released its native cryptocurrency, UNI. Holders of UNI tokens have lots of benefits like the ability to vote on the future development of the platform and its fee structure. Uniswap is considered on the higher end when it comes to fees – around 0.30% per transaction. However, its platform design makes it easy for anyone to trade and stake crypto.

Pros

  • User-friendly platform 
  • Stake and earn interest on crypto
  • No need to register an account
  • Can link crypto wallet

Cons

2. PancakeSwap: Best for low fees

Pancakeswap is the best decentralised exchange for low fees. Built on the BNB Chain, it has rapidly grown in popularity since it was created in 2020. Crypto traders looking to cut transaction fees have been drawn to PancakeSwap’s low charge of 0.25% per trade – compared to an average of over 0.30% for other DEXs. 

One of the benefits of Pancakeswap is the speed at which proper meme coins are released. It’s easier to release a coin on the Binance chain than Ethereum so during bull runs, Pancakeswap usually is the first to offer new coins. In recent times the platform has expanded to offer a Non Fungible Token (NFT) marketplace and Initial Farm Offering (IFO) functionality.   

Pros

  • Low fees – 0.25% per transaction 
  • Stake and earn interest with high APY
  • Wide range of pairs available 
  • NFT marketplace

Cons

3. 1Inch: Best for prices

1Inch is a top choice to use if you’re looking for the best prices for your cryptocurrency swaps. It is an exchange aggregator that scans other DEXs to give you the lowest rates for your trades. It doesn’t charge additional fees and is available on different blockchains like Ethereum network and BNB Chain. 

In addition to the best prices, 1Inch helps to reduce slippage which sometimes occurs when there is insufficient trading volume available. Users can also earn 1Inch tokens as interest for staking coins on its DEX

Pros

  • Best rates 
  • Supports multiple blockchains 
  • Helps to reduce slippage
  • Stake and earn interest

Cons

4. Curve finance: Best for stablecoins

Curve is our top pick for trading and generating yields on stablecoins. It’s one of the largest decentralised exchanges around and is mainly focused on stablecoins and yield farming. Built on the Ethereum blockchain, its platform is one of the most basic looking and easiest to use on the market. 

One of its biggest reasons it’s such a popular DEX is the interest rates that are on offer. It is possible to get a double-digit yield on a wide selection of stablecoins. Not only does it offer good potential for passive income, trading on the platform is fairly cheap, with 0.04% fee. Curve also supports many of the best crypto wallets like Trezor and Ledger.

Pros

  • Good yields available on many tokens
  • Low transaction fees
  • Can connect to the best wallets
  • Simple to use platform

Cons

5. SushiSwap: Best for yield farming

SushiSwap is the best DEX to use for yield farming. It has a lot of features including high APYs, swaps for hundreds of tokens, and lending and borrowing assets. SushiSwap initially was launched to pull liquidity from Uniswap and is a copy of its platform. It supports both yield farming and staking. 

Most users choose to stake on SushiSwap because the returns are higher. For providing liquidity to a pool, users get rewarded in the SUSHI token. One benefit of the token is holders continue to get a share of transaction fees, even after they’ve stopped providing liquidity. 

Pros

  • Transaction fees are very low 
  • You can earn big rewards for providing liquidity 
  • The platform has good support

Cons

What is a decentralised exchange?

It’s a cryptocurrency marketplace that connects buyers with sellers. Decentralised exchanges are non-custodial, meaning they have no central authority. This means a user remains in control of their private keys when transacting on the DEX. With no central authority, DEXs employ smart contracts that record each transaction on the blockchain. 

How does a decentralised exchange work?

Decentralised exchanges connect buyers and sellers through automated algorithms, unlike a centralised exchange that acts as an intermediary between buyers and sellers,. These algorithms are known as ‘smart contracts’, pieces of code written on top of a blockchain. Smart contracts execute when certain criteria are met, for example when a buy or sell order is placed. 

A traditional exchange uses an order book. This is where buyers and sellers are matched based on prices and trading volume. A DEX uses a liquidity pool. A liquidity pool is a large collection of crypto assets waiting for buy or sell orders. When an order is placed on the DEX, its liquidity is provided through the pool. 

Liquidity pools are funded from investors or traders who deposit into them to generate rewards. These rewards are mainly interest yields which come from part of the transaction fee charged by the DEX. There are three types of DEXs: Automated market makers, Order book DEXs, and DEX aggregators. All three offer a slightly different approach. 

How should I choose a decentralised exchange?

When choosing a decentralised exchange there are a number of things you should consider before making your decision. The top DEXs have low fees and the best prices, but there are also other features that can make platforms more desirable. Below are a few features you can consider when selecting a decentralised exchange:

  • Fees. Transaction costs apply to almost all decentralised exchanges and they can vary from platform to platform. Some like 1Inch have zero fees, while others can charge up to 1% and sometimes even more. Fees can quickly add up so make sure the DEX to go with has low fees. 
  • Prices. Due to the nature of being decentralised, each exchange will have slightly different prices for each pair you trade. The best DEXs will have the most beneficial prices which will help you in your trading. Before using a decentralised exchange you can check out its prices compared to other platforms. 
  • Native token. Each decentralised exchange will have its own currency that gives holders additional benefits. For instance, Uniswap offers the UNI token, while PancakeSwap offers CAKE. The benefits can vary, but most tokens at least give you the ability to vote on future platform updates and earn interest for staking. 
  • Choice of crypto available. When using a DEX you’ll usually have a wider choice of crypto pairs to trade compared to a centralised exchange. Each platform has a different number of pairs available so you’ll need to make sure what you want to buy or sell is available.
  • Platform. You should look for a decentralised exchange that has a platform which is easy to use, especially if you’re a beginner. DEX platforms can be quite complex if you have never used one before so it’s a good idea to have a look around before you start using one. 
  • Supported wallets. If you want to use a decentralised exchange you’ll need to connect your wallet to it. Not all DEXs support all wallets so you should make sure that you can connect your wallet before you start. The biggest decentralised exchanges like Pancakeswap and Uniswap accept all of the best crypto wallets. 

Should I use a decentralised exchange?

It depends on your level of experience. Decentralised exchanges can be fairly complicated to use and navigate. That is especially true for those new to the cryptocurrency space. For these types of users, it’s best to stick to centralised exchanges like Binance or FTX.

If you’re well versed in the world of cryptocurrency trading, then using a DEX could be helpful, as you’ll pay lower fees and have a wider range of pairs to trade. You’ll also be able to access additional features like staking and yield farming. 

What are the risks of using a decentralised exchange?

There are lots of benefits to using a DEX but there are some risks to consider too. Here’s a brief rundown of the benefits and risks of decentralised exchanges:

Benefits

  • More tokens available 
  • You can trade completely anonymously 
  • Generally lower fees than a CEX
  • You can stake and earn rewards or interest 

Risks

What are the fees for using a decentralised exchange?

Each DEX has its own fee structure so it depends on which one you’re using. Unless you use an exchange aggregator like 1Inch, then you will have a fee for each transaction you make. This will vary but is usually in the region between 0.20% to above 1%. You may also have to pay a Gas fee. This is how much it will cost to deposit smart contracts on the Ethereum network. 

What are the alternatives to a DEX?

If you’re a beginner it’s easier to use a regular exchange. These types of exchanges are much more simple to start buying and selling on and you’ll still usually have access to a wide range of crypto coins and pairs. Below are some of the best cryptocurrency exchanges around to use right now:

1
Min. Deposit
$10
Promotion
User Score
10
Accepts customers from the USA
Deposit $100 and get a $10 bonus!* Build a diversified portfolio with crypto, stocks, and ETFs — all in one place.
Trade on the world's leading social trading and investing platform
Start Trading
Description:
eToro offers a wide range of cryptos, such as Bitcoin, XRP and others, alongside crypto/fiat and crypto/crypto pairs. eToro users can connect with, learn from, and copy or get copied by other users.
Payment Methods
Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer
Full regulations list:
CySEC, FCA
Cryptoasset investing is unregulated in some EU countries. No consumer protection. Your capital is at risk.
2
Min. Deposit
$0
Promotion
User Score
9.3
No Hidden Fees
Instant Trading
Secure & Transparent
Start Trading
Description:
World's longest-standing crypto exchange. Since 2011 Bitstamp has been providing a secure and reliable trading venue to over four million individuals and a range of institutional partners.
Payment Methods
Full regulations list:
3
Min. Deposit
$1
Promotion
User Score
8.7
0% deposit fees, 0% withdrawal fees, 0% trading commissions
Set up automated trades and up to 50 limit orders with ease
Buy and sell 90+ cryptos and utility tokens, precious metals and national currencies with as little as $1
Start Trading
Description:
Create your account in minutes and start trading 90+ cryptos and other assets on the most flexible trading platform.
Payment Methods
Full regulations list:
4
Min. Deposit
$1
Promotion
User Score
8.5
The world's largest cryptocurrency exchange with over 2bn daily users
Innovative trading platform offering enormous range of crypto coins
Supports over 60 methods of payment including PayPal
Start Trading
Description:
Binance has grown exponentially since it was founded in 2017 and is now one of, if not the biggest cryptocurrency exchanges on the market.
Payment Methods
1Pay, 2C2P, 3d Secure Credit Card, ACH, ANELIK, Abaqoos, AdvCash, AlertPay, Alfa-Click
Algocharge, AliPay, American Express, Apple Pay, AstroPay, BPAY, Bank Link, Bank Transfer, Bank Wire, Baofoo, BitGold, BitPay, Bitcoin, Boleto, Bonds, Borneo Exchanger, Bradesco, CEX.io Mobile App, CFDs, CSS System, CUPS, CartaSi, Carte Bleu, Carte Bleue, Cash, CashU, Cashier Order, Check, Check (UK only), China UinonPay, China Union Pay, China UnionPay, ClickandBuy, Commodities, Contact, Contact Z, Credit Card, Cryptocurrencies, Currencies, DCPay, DIXIPAY, Dankort, Debit Card, Dengi Online, DineroMail, DirectPay, Dotpay, E-dinar, ELV, ENets, EPS, ETFs, EXCARD, Easy2Pay, EcoPayz, Ecommpay, Ecurrencyzone, EgoPay, Emerchant Pay, Eprotections, EstroPay, Ethereum, Euro Bank Account, Euteller, Express Dotpay, Express Polish Post Office 24/7, Express Zabka Market, Ezeebill, Ezybonds, FasaPay, Fastapay, Fastbank, Faster Payments, FilsPay, Forex, GTBank, Gate2Shop, Giropay, GlobalCollect, GlobalPAY, GlobePay, Gluepay, Google Pay, Halcash, I-Account, IPS, Ideal, Indices, Individual US State License(s), Indonesia Exchanger, InstaBill, Instadebit, IntellectMoney, Interswitch, Investmate, Investmate, Itukar, KNET, Klarna, LaoForexBoard, LavaPay, Lion Payment, LiqPay, Litecoin, Lobanet, MOTO, MT4, MT5, Mailing Cash, Market Maker, Masari, Mastercard, MegaTransfer, Mister Cash, Mobile Trading App, Mobile Trading Platform, Moneta, Money Bookers, Money Order, MoneyBookers, MoneyGram, MoneyPolo, Multibanco, NETBANX, Nab, Namecoin, Neosurf, NetPay, OKPAY, OMT, OmahPoin, OnPay.ru, Online Naira, OrangePay, PAYSEC, POLi, POLi & BPay, PYEER, PagoEfectivo, Paxum, Pay Nova, PayCo, PayPal, PayRetailers, PayWeb, Payeer, Payoneer, Payonline, Payvision, Payza, Perfect Money, PocketMoni, Postbank, Powercash 21, Prepaid MasterCard, Prepaid MasterCard (I-Account), Prepaid MasterCard (Intercash), Prepaid MasterCard (Payoneer), Privat 24, Przelewy24, QIWI, RBK Money, Rapid Transfer, RegularPay, SEPA, Safecharge, SafetyPay, SahibExchange, Shilling, SmartPay, Sofort, SolidTrust Pay, SorexPay, Sporopay, Stock Certificate, Stocks, Swish, Teleingreso, Thailand Exchanger, Ticketsurf, Todito Cash, Trade Interceptor, Transact Europe Payment, Trazus, TrustPay, Trustly, UAE Exchange, UPayCard, USD, Ukash, Unet, UnionPay, Unistream, Uphold, Verve, Vietnam Exchanger, Visa, VixiPay, VoguePay, Vouchers, Wallet One, WeChat, Web Based Trading Platform, WebMoney, WebPay, Webtrader, Western Union, Wire Transfer, Wirecard, Yandex, Yandex Money, Yemadai, YuuPay, Z-Payment, Zenith, cTrader, dinpay, eCard, eCheck, eKonto, ePay bg, ePayments Transfer, eToro Mobile Trading Platform, eToro Trading Platform, eTranzact, iPay, mPay, neteller, paysafecard, postepay, skrill, unichange.me
Full regulations list:
5
Min. Deposit
$0
Promotion
User Score
7.9
Earn up to 3.5% back in crypto on every purchase
No hidden fees or minimum balance
Immediate Trade Execution
Start Trading
Description:
BlockFi was created to provide credit services to markets with limited access to simple financial products. BlockFi sets itself apart from other crypto service providers by pairing competitive rates with institutional-quality benefits. BlockFi is the only independent lender with institutional backing from investors that include Valar Ventures, Galaxy Digital, Fidelity, Akuna Capital, SoFi, and Coinbase Ventures.
Payment Methods
Full regulations list:

Methodology: How did we choose the best decentralised exchanges?

Each decentralised exchange listed on this page was evaluated following a strict process. Our cryptocurrency experts selected each DEX and a number of features were considered during the ranking process. This included connecting a wallet, making a transaction, and exploring other tools available. 

We used our own research as well as online reviews during our comparison. Our rankings have not been influenced by any DEX. However on occasion we may make an affiliate commission if you click on a link and use a service. To learn more about our review process click here. 

FAQs

Do I need a wallet when using a decentralised exchange?
Is it better to use a CEX or DEX?
Can I get a sign up bonus for using a decentralised exchange?

Fact-checking & references

Our editors fact-check all content to ensure compliance with our strict editorial policy. The information in this article is supported by the following reliable sources.

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Prash Raval
Financial Writer
When not researching stocks or trading, Prash can be found either on the golf course, walking his dog or teaching his son how to kick a… read more.