USDT, or Tether, is a stablecoin that is pegged to the value of the US dollar at a ratio of 1:1. The popularity of USDT stems from its stable value. Your Bitcoin can lose value in a day if its price drops, but one USDT will always be equal to one United States dollar.
Let’s take a closer look at the costs involved in sending USDT, so you can make more informed decisions about using USDT for transactions.
Factors that affect the cost of sending USDT
The cost of sending USDT is usually between 0.29 and 25 USDT. This is because the total transaction fee is an aggregate of two primary factors, including:
Network fees refer to the amount charged by the blockchain network to process a transaction. These fees are paid to miners, who are responsible for verifying transactions and adding them to the blockchain.
Network fees are usually calculated based on the size of the transaction in bytes and the current congestion level of the network.
Plus, the type of blockchain matters as well. In our experience, the ERC-20 Ethereum blockchain has the highest network fees. On the other hand, the TRC-20 Tron blockchain offers consistently low fees for most cryptocurrency exchanges.
Crypto exchanges that support USDT transactions — like Binance, Coinbase, and Kraken — charge an exchange fee. These fees are a revenue stream for crypto exchanges as they charge users for the convenience of using their platform to buy, sell or trade USDT.
From our time with different platforms, we also know that the actual amount can vary wildly between exchanges.
Average costs of sending USDT
The average cost of sending USDT (Tether) is roughly 4.92 USDT as a whole, at the time of writing.
Let’s analyze how this average spreads out between different exchanges and USDT sending methods.
Comparison of fees across popular exchanges:
Binance is our personal favorite exchange for sending USDT due to its extremely low transfer fees across the board. On its BEP-20 blockchain, you only have to pay 0.29 USDT for each transfer.
Binance also offers SOL and TRC-20 blockchain transfers for 0.8 USDT. Lastly, sending USDT through the Ethereum ERC-20 blockchain has the highest cost on Binance at 3.2 USDT.
KuCoin is a mixed bag for us. On the one hand, it offers a 1 USDT transfer fee for TRC-20 and SOL blockchain which is fairly reasonable. But, on the other hand, its fee for the ERC-20 blockchain is a whopping 25 USDT — way outside the range of most retail crypto traders.
Kraken is a solid middle-of-the-pack option with a 2.5 USDT fee on TRC-20 and a 3.5 USDT charge for ERC-20. This isn’t as low as exchanges like Binance, but it is still plenty viable for most.
Coinbase is a unique case on this list as it does not have a fixed fee. Instead, it charges a 1% transaction fee which scales with the amount of the transaction. So, you’ll have to pay 10 USDT + network fees when sending 1,000 USDT to another account.
Comparison of fees for different methods of sending USDT:
A direct transfer of USDT between two wallets on the same blockchain network — like Ethereum or Tron — incurs a small network fee. The fee amount depends on network congestion and the gas price set by the user. At the time of writing, the average gas fee on Ethereum is around 38 Gwei per transaction.
Through a wallet
Some wallets offer the option to send USDT through their platform. These wallets may charge a fee for the convenience of using their service. For example, Trust Wallet charges a 1% fee on top of the fees charged by third-party exchanges.
Through a payment processor
Payment processors like PayPal and BitPay allow users to send USDT as a form of payment. Different platforms charge a different fee for this service. BitPay, for example, charges a 1% fee on USDT transactions.
How to minimize costs when sending USDT
Here are our top tips and tricks to help you avoid unnecessary fees and find the lowest options when sending USDT:
- Compare exchange fees: Different cryptocurrency exchanges charge different fees for sending USDT. Compare the fees charged by various exchanges directly to find the most cost-effective option for you.
- Check network congestion: Network congestion can cause transaction fees to increase significantly. Check the current state of the network and choose a time when congestion is low to send your USDT.
- Choose a low-fee wallet: Choose a wallet that has low transaction fees to minimize costs. Some of the best examples of this include Binance, Crypto.com, and Robinhood.
- Avoid unnecessary transactions: Sending USDT multiple times unnecessarily can result in higher fees. Consolidate your USDT before sending it to avoid extra transaction fees.
- Consider your transfer amount: How much USDT do you expect to send with each transfer? If the amount is low (say below 100 USDT) then an exchange with a percentage-based fee like Coinbase is the better option for you. But, if you’ll transfer over 1,000 USDT at a time, exchanges with low flat fees will prove to be more profitable in the long run.
Sending USDT can cost you as little as 0.29 USDT with Binance or as much as 25 USDT with KuCoin. This fee may not feel like much if you’re transferring hundreds of thousands in USDT tokens, but these expenses add up over time.
So, if you want to succeed in the cryptocurrency market, we recommend you to pay close attention to fees and charges. Check out different exchanges and compare their fees with one another. You can also look into alternative sending methods like wallet transfers.
In short, do your research and minimize your additional expenses to ensure maximum profit.