The Voyager crypto trading app was released in mid-January 2019 and has been growing steadily in popularity since then. It is available in the U.S. (except New York) and expects to add access for Canadian users and European users in the coming months.
The increasing popularity of the app is due to the ease of use, and the Smart Order Routing engine that finds the best prices and passes them along to the trader. Unlike many other exchanges Voyager has no added fees and commissions, but simply takes a small portion of the spread.
Voyager actually began in 2018 when the firm began an institutional trading service. That allowed it to make the necessary connections with a number of cryptocurrency exchanges, broker-dealers, and trading platforms and to create the retail trading platform that takes advantage of all those early connections.
“It’s extremely difficult to put together a network for crypto trading, but we’ve done it.” – Voyager CEO Steve Ehrlich
The Voyager Mobile App
The Voyager mobile app is the star of the platform, and as of February 2021 it is the only way for most people to trade with Voyager.
The mobile app gives traders the full features and capabilities needed to successfully trade in the cryptocurrency markets. Some of the features traders really appreciate are:
- Intuitive order placements. Placing orders in the mobile app is simple and straightforward. Simply enter your order information, swipe up and wait for your order to be completed. Voyager has made every effort to ensure that order placement is easy and quick, requiring just a few taps on mobile.
- Custom chart views. The Voyager mobile app will work in both horizontal and vertical chart views. The vertical positioning is best for getting an idea of the bid and ask spreads, while turning the phone to a horizontal position will make it easier to use the advanced charting and analysis tools that are included in Voyager.
- 2-factor authentication. The addition of 2-factor authentication (2-FA) was a big deal as it provides an added layer of security to ensure no one can access your account but you. While it is SMS/Email 2-FA, which isn’t the best, it is still an improvement over the simple password protection that Voyager began with.
There is a desktop app planned that is currently in beta-testing, but there has been no release date announced.
Voyager Ease of Use
As a mobile-based crypto-investing app Voyager has been designed to provide traders with a wide range of crypto-assets in a user-friendly interface. Whether you’re an experienced crypto trader or brand new to the activity, you’re going to find the Voyager app is very easy to interact with and use. Some additional Voyager features that contribute to the value of the platform are:
- Smart Order Routing. The Smart Order Routing engine is the heart of Voyager’s inexpensive trading. It connects with 12 of the largest crypto-exchanges in the world to deliver the best exchange rate every time. In many cases you’ll even see positive slippage and get a better rate than what’s shown in the bid/ask. This also increases the liquidity and gives tighter spreads, while also making it easier to enter and exit positions.
- Simple signups and an intuitive platform. You probably already know how complex registrations and sign-ups can be when you need to go through the whole KYC/AML process. As part of its push to be one of the easiest exchanges, Voyager has streamlined the registration process to make it as quick and user-friendly as possible. This means you can start trading sooner.
- Simple order submissions. Another area that’s been made as easy as possible is the order system used by Voyager. It’s as easy as selecting the coin you’d like to buy, choose an order type, enter the amount to buy, and swipe up. The Smart Order Routing system takes over and quickly fills your order at the best possible rate. Soon after the coins will appear in your wallet.
Getting Started with Voyager
The first step in getting started with Voyager is to download the app from the Google Play Store or from the Apple App Store. You’ll then be presented with the screen to log in or sign up. As a new user you’ll choose Sign Up which will bring up the simple registration form.
Enter your email and a chosen password, check the box to agree to the terms and click “Continue”. On the next screen you’ll enter your name and click “Continue” a second time. Next you’ll be asked to enter your mobile number so that Voyager can send you an SMS code to verify it’s really you. Enter the 6-digit PIN sent to your mobile device and click “Continue” once more, which will take you to a screen asking for your address. Enter that and click “Confirm” to finish the process.
It might seem like a lot of information, but it really isn’t too different from opening any other financial account. The Voyager team understands the regulations surrounding trading in equities and feel that the crypto industry will soon move in that direction as well.
“We put a lot of credibility into the know-your-customer process, and we are making sure we are abiding by existing broker-dealer rules,” notes Ehrlich.
After you’re done registering your account you can connect your bank account to Voyager through their partner Plaid. This allows for secure fiat transfers between your bank and Voyager. To access the Banking settings simply click the small icon of a person in the upper right of the Market or Portfolio screens.
As long as your bank is supported by Plaid it shouldn’t take more than a minute to add and verify your checking account. You can make a transfer immediately after linking the bank account, however you should note that you cannot withdraw the funds until they clear, which takes 5 business days.
It is also possible to fund your account using cryptocurrency and Voyager supports BTC, ETH, and over a dozen other altcoins for deposits and withdrawals, including ADA, DAI, USDT, and YFI. See the full list here. More coins are added based on user demand.
When you log into Voyager you’ll be presented with the Market screen that shows all the cryptocurrencies available to trade. As of February 2021 there are 57 coins and tokens available, with new coins being added all the time. Voyager provides access to some coins that U.S. traders have difficulty accessing on other platforms.
Each of the listed coins shows the market data including the price and 24-hour trade volume, and the market cap. You can also see the price change over 1 hour, 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, or 1 year. Price and percent change columns can also be sorted from high to low, making it easy to see which coins are trending over a given time period.
Prices are updated constantly and there are arrows next to the price change indicating strong upward movement, modest upward movement, flat price, modest downward movement, and strong downward movement.
You can tap on any of the coins listed to bring up more detailed information, including a price chart, bid/ask prices, high/low values over various time periods, a description of the coin, and recent news regarding the coin. It also brings up the all important “Buy” button for purchasing the coin. Voyager currently supports both market order and limit orders, so you can simply buy at the current market price, or you can place an order to execute at a specific price later.
When you do press “Buy” you’ll be presented with the trade ticket. This is where you’ll specify market or limit order and how much you want to buy. There’s a calculator that will show you how much coin you’ll get for your trade too. Note that there is a $10 minimum for all purchases.
Once you have everything set as you like just swipe up and the trade will be sent for execution. This is where the Smart Order Router takes over and searches all the exchanges connected to Voyager to get you the best price for your trade.
Ehrlich says, “Beating the market price is our core competency, and what we want to bring to this market.”
Once you own a coin you’ll also get access to a “Sell” button when bringing up the coin detail screen. Choosing “Sell” will allow you to close out the entire position, or to choose a percentage of your position.
Voyager has no commissions or fees on trades, however they do take a small part of the spread. This is similar to how traditional forex brokers work, so should be familiar to anyone who has traded fiat currencies. It’s a very fair and inexpensive method for trading.
Voyager Crypto Education
Voyager is more than just a simple broker. They also include informational and educational tools to help their clients understand the cryptocurrency markets better before and while investing. These tools likely come about as a result of the extensive experience the founding members have with traditional brokerages.
Some of the educational tools available include:
- Node by Voyager. This is the company blog, but it is a great source of education, particularly for beginners. It includes a great number of articles focused on the coins available to trade on Voyager and goes into details regarding what makes each project unique. It also explains how to easily trade the tokens. And it’s an important read too keep up with the changes at Voyager as it continues to evolve.
- Up-to-the-minute newsfeed. The Voyager app has a continually updated newsfeed that provides traders with the most recent and relevant information about the cryptocurrency markets as a whole, and about each individual coin. Clicking on any of the coin symbols with the Markets screen will bring up the details about that coin, including all the recent news headlines.
Another interesting educational tool is The Golden Record broadcast that was started back in October 2020. This live broadcast is published monthly and features Voyager CEO Steve Ehrlich and host Charlie Shrem.
The broadcast discusses the trends in the cryptocurrency markets, and answers any questions viewers might have. They cover a wide range of topics, including what’s hot in the crypto market and the most up to date information and clarity on what’s to come for Voyager.
The live broadcast can be found on Twitter by using #TheGoldenRecord on Twitter (@investvoyager) to let us know all of your pressing questions for our next episode. You can also find out about new broadcasts on Steve’s Twitter and you can view past episodes on the Voyager Youtube channel.
Voyager Customer Service
Voyager has a number of customer support options, but none of them includes speaking directly with another human. There’s no online chat option, and no telephone option. This has been quite contentious among the community, who feel there should be better customer support options.
What is available is an extensive FAQ section that has mostly brief answers to common questions. It’s ok if you have a basic question. Also available is contact through a support ticket, which is the most common method for reaching support. Support tickets can be opened from the support website or from within the app by navigating to your account setting, then to Help and finally to Support.
Note that you cannot get support if you don’t have a Voyager account.
Voyager Crypto Offerings
With a mission to “provide every investor with a trusted and secure access point to crypto asset trading” the Voyager app has been adding new cryptocurrency assets at a good rate. When the app launched in October 2019 there were just over 20 cryptocurrencies available, but as of February 2021 there are now 57 cryptocurrencies available on the platform, and Voyager is adding more all the time based on feedback from their customers.
To see a full list of the cryptocurrencies offered you can visit the Supported Coins list on the Voyager website. Note that Voyager is always adding coins and is planning on expanding through 2021, so this list should grow regularly.
Voyager Fees & Account Minimums
Voyager was created as a commission-free crypto broker, so there are no fees when trading through them. You pay only the quoted price when executing any order with them. Voyager can do this because like traditional forex brokers they take their profits from the spread charged on the exchange of the coins. This is a small amount, and is not taken from the trader’s profits.
There is a small $10 minimum for opening an account at Voyager, and a $10 minimum on all trades.
Fiat deposits can be instantly available to trade, but are not available for withdrawal for 5 business days.
In terms of fiat deposits new clients are limited to $10,000 daily. In addition, there is a limit of $20,000 on the instantly available deposits. This effectively means that only $20,000 worth of deposits will be instantly available to trade. Any amount above this will need to wait for the five business day clearing period.
In terms of cryptocurrency deposits there are no limits on the amount that can be deposited, and any crypto deposits clear as soon as the network block confirmations are completed.
For fiat withdrawals there is a limit of $25,000 max total market value within a 24 hour period and/or a max total of 20 withdrawals in a 24 hour period. In addition there is also a $25,000 per ACH transaction limit. Fiat withdrawals will typically take 3-5 business days to be fully credited to a client’s bank account depending on the bank.
And for cryptocurrency withdrawals clients are restricted to $25,000 max total market value within a 24 hour period and/or a max total of 20 withdrawals in a 24 hour period. Also note that all crypto withdrawals are subject to review based on KYC/AML requirements and may take up to 24 hours to process.
Voyager Interest Rates
One of the additional benefits of using Voyager is the interest available on cryptocurrencies held at the broker. These interest rates range from 1% up to 8.5% APR depending on which asset you’re holding in the broker wallet. As of February 2021 there are 21 different coins that offer interest.
Voyager Interest Program Details
- To participate, users must maintain a minimum monthly average balance of each coin.
- Subject to qualifying criteria, Voyager pays interest on certain assets and accounts.
- Interest is calculated based on average daily holdings.
- Interest is paid out in the interest-bearing asset by the fifth business day of the month.
- Rates are subject to change and will be announced each month in-app and on this page.
- All Voyager users will be automatically enrolled in the Voyager Interest Program, but you can choose to opt-out by navigating to “Account” – “Crypto Interest” and selecting “I want to opt-out.”
For any questions about the Voyager Interest Program or to report any issues, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Voyager Team
Crypto Trading Technologies, the mother company of Voyager Token, is led by a group with experience in online brokerage services. The project was jointly founded by Stephen Ehrlich, Philip Eytan, Gaspard de Dreuzy and Oscar Salazar.
The founding members of the Voyager team come from Lightspeed Trading, E*Trade, and Uber, among other previous employers. As you might imagine the team has extensive experience in creating trading platforms and in managing exchange activities.
Stephen Ehrlich, the chief executive officer of the foundation, is a veteran in the brokerage and financial market specializing in developing trading platforms for equity and options traders. He is the founder of Lightspeed Financial and former CEO of E*TRADE Professional Trading LLC.
Chairman of the Voyager Foundation, Philip Eytan, started as a telecom M&A analyst at Morgan Stanley and portfolio manager at Cerberus Capital. He is the co-founder of the digital healthcare startup, Pager. He is one of the founding investors of Uber, Source and Livestream.
Gaspard de Dreuzy serves as a board member for the Voyager Foundation. A veteran in the brokerage and financial market, he started his career as an advisor to Warner Music. He is also the co-founder of Kapitall, Trade.it and Pager.
Oscar Salazar is an investor and experienced developer of customer-driven mobile applications. He is best known for being the founding architect and chief technical officer of Uber. He is also a co-founder of the digital healthcare startup.
Voyager is a publicly traded and licensed crypto-asset broker, having received approval from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA). For security and regulatory reasons, Voyager is also publicly audited to account for every asset.
The VGX Token
The VGX token is the native token of the Voyager ecosystem, and is used to reward users within that ecosystem through cashback rewards, interest when held in the Voyager wallet, and through other mechanisms in the Voyager Loyalty Program. The use of a broker-issued token is not uncommon and has been seen in use by other exchanges such as Binance (BNB).
The VGX token came about when Voyager purchased the Ethos wallet, which it had been using already, for $4 million in February 2019. The former ETHOS tokens were converted to VGX tokens with a total supply of 222,295,208 tokens. Note that this total supply will increase to 255,491,293 after the merger with the LGO token sometime in early 2021.
The VGX token is an ERC-20 token running on the Ethereum network. This allows VGX to leverage the well-tested cryptographic standards and methods of Ethereum to ensure an extremely high degree of security. In addition, it incorporates public key cryptography as well as elliptic key cryptography for advanced security.
When issued as ETHOS in July 2017 the tokens had an ICO price of $0.03 per ETHOS. Early investors have been well rewarded as the VGX token in February 2021 is trading at $2.54.
Voyager X LGO Token Merger
In October 2020 Voyager merged with the Regulated French Entity LGO SAS. This gives Voyager a regulated entry into the European markets. The two have announced their tokens (VGX and LGO) will also merge into a new ERC-20 token that will keep the VGX ticker. The token swap is expected to occur in early 2021 and will be a 1:1 swap for VGX holders and a 6.7:1 swap for LGO holders.
Once the merger is completed the new VGX token can be staked for a 7% APR. The community will vote after one year on whether to raise, lower, or discard the staked interest rate.
The merger and new token is planned to be the core of Voyager’s global expansion plans, which also include building a larger and more vibrant community, and increasing the rewards for holding the VGX token on the Voyager platform. It will also mark the launch of a new tier-based loyalty system built around the VGX token.
Voyager’s VGX Loyalty Program
Token Utility Rewards Explained:
- Level Up Rewards: Accounts who upgrade their Loyalty Program status and make it to the next higher-tier will receive a bonus reward in VGX tokens.
- Cashback Rewards: Eligible on Basis Points (BPS) based on trading volume, debit card transactions & recurring buys – paid out in VGX. Note that buying and trading of stablecoins is not included in the promotion.
- Debit Card Fee: Small fee for ‘Explorers’ who use the Voyager Debit Card & free for higher-tier loyalty members.
- Referral Bonus: Reward is given to users who refer their friends to Voyager &/or send crypto to their friends that are first-time Voyager customers.
- Withdrawal Fees: Pay with the Voyager Token & save on your withdrawal fees.
- Interest Booster (APR): Receive an additional interest APR boost to standard interest rates on select assets depending on your tier level.
One must hold either one of the below to qualify for Voyager’s Loyalty Program.
- Crypto: Total amount of Crypto Portfolio in USD value
- Voyager Token Portfolio: Total amount of VGX in USD value
Reward payouts, other than referral bonuses, will be deposited to accounts at the end of each month in VGX. Equivalent will be released in local currency once Voyager expands globally.
Judging by our limited experience with Voyager it seems that both beginning and experienced crypto traders could benefit from using the broker. The no-commission structure and excellent job at finding the lowest prices are a breath of fresh air in the crypto industry.
The app is particularly excellent for those who prefer mobile trading, but the imminent release of a desktop app will be very welcome to those who like the power that can be found in desktop trading.
We were also impressed with the variety of altcoins available at Voyager, with several smaller altcoins that might not be easily accessible to U.S. traders through other platforms. And having the option of earning interest on many of the coins offered is also very welcome.
Hopefully Voyager can continue to expand its offerings. It would also be very welcome to see the customer support expanded to include online chat and telephone support.
As it stands Voyager appears to be a good choice for crypto traders who appreciate simplicity and ease of use.
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