Celsius was a cryptocurrency saving and lending platform that allowed users to earn interest on the crypto, take loans using their cryptocurrency as collateral, and more.
On June 12, 2022, Celsius announced that they were pausing withdrawals, transfers, and swaps for customers. This is bad news for customers, who may have their assets trapped at Celsius until (or if) Celsius re-enables customers to exit. While the exact reason is unknown, solvency of Celsius is potentially a key issue here, and Celsius is trying to prevent a "bank run" on its assets. Read the Celsius announcement here.
Since that original notice, Celsius has filed for bankruptcy, and has acknowledged that they are facing multiple federal investigations. Furthermore, for customers, their funds are still frozen and many are concerned they may get nothing back.
There are other cryptocurrency savings accounts available for investors, learn more here.
Editor's Note: This review has been updated in the introduction to reflect the current status of Celsius - being in bankruptcy and facing multiple federal investigations. However, given that all deposits and withdrawals are paused, all the features here are outdated.
- Previously allowed users to earn high reward rates on deposited cryptocurrency
- Allowed users to take loans with their cryptocurrency as collateral
- Currently in bankruptcy, and users funds are locked, with concern that many users won't get back their investments in full
Celsius Network Details
Crypto Savings and Borrowing App
Up to 18.63% APY
$10 to $2,000 In Bitcoin Sign-Up Bonuses
Who Is Celsius?
Celsius is a blockchain-based lending platform. It was formed in the summer of 2017 and issued its first coin (CEL) in March 2018. The founders of Celsius are Alex Mashinsky, Nuke Goldstein, and S. Daniel Leon. Celsius is based in London, U.K. The company has raised $93.8 million across five rounds.
“We’re targeting what we take for granted in the United States, access to credit and interest income, and making it fungible across the planet so anybody can start a business. We take the American dream and make it available worldwide,” Mashinsky said in an interview with CoinCentral.
What Do They Offer?
Celsius is a centralized lending solution that is based on blockchain technology. People can borrow from Celcius or leave cryptocurrencies on deposit with Celcius to be lent out. In exchange, they’ll earn interest.
You can borrow in cash or CEL (the native token of Celsius). If you need money to spend, you’ll want to borrow in cash. There are over 40 coins that can be used as collateral. Also, know that Celsius may lend out your collateral to institutional investors.
Loan approvals are instant and there are no credit checks. You also won't have to pay any origination fees.
Rather than putting up all of your crypto as collateral, you can choose how much to put up. This is called the loan-to-value (LTV) ratio. Celsius offers three LTV options: 25%, 33%, and 50%. Interest rates are currently 0% APR for California residents who choose a 25% LTV.
For all other users, rates generally start at 1%. But if you elect to receive your payment in CEL, you can get an even lower rate.
Here are the interest rates as of September 2021 for those who live outside of California:
Paid In CEL
Of course, CEL can fluctuate and you’ll want to take that into consideration. To get the latest rates and an idea of how much interest you may pay over the life of your loan, check out the Celsius loan calculator:
Important Note: Starting April 15, 2022, only accredited US-investors will be able to add deposits and earn rewards. Users located outside of the United States will still be able to earn.
You can earn up to 18.63% APY by keeping your digital assets on deposit with Celsius. As of writing, the platform pays interest on 25+ cryptocurrencies, 10+ stablecoins, and one Gold token (PAXG).
There is no minimum balance or fees to earn on your crypto deposit. And payouts are made on a weekly basis on Mondays.
Celsius recently raised the in-kind rewards APY on the USDC stablecoin to 9.32%. Plus, you can earn $10 to $600 in Bitcoin rewards by transferring UDSC or USDT from another platform or wallet. To claim the bonuses, you'll need to use the promo codes STABLE10, STABLE50, or STABLE600.
The Celsius term for earnings is "rewards." Rewards differ depending on the type of cryptocurrency and if you’re in the U.S. or not. If you don't live in the U.S., you can qualify for one of Celsius' loyalty tiers which pay reward bonuses based on the percentage of your crypto portfolio that is in CEL tokens.
Those loyalty tiers are as follows:
CEL Loyalty Tier
CEL Token Holdings
Unfortunately, CEL rewards are not currently available for U.S. crypto holders. This means that U.S. residents won't able to take advantage of the best rates that Celsius has to offer.
For example, the "in-kind" rewards rate that Celsius currently pays for Synthetic Network Token (SNX) is 14.05% APY. But if you were able to earn in CEL, the APY would go up to 18.63%.
It should be noted that CEL rates are very dynamic. In other words, the rate you see today may not be the same one you see tomorrow.
Are There Any Fees?
No, there are no fees except interest paid on loans. That sets Celsius apart from many of its competitors which may charge withdrawal fees, termination fees, and more.
How Does Celsius Compare?
Celsius has some of the best rates and lowest fees that you'll find today on crypto loans and interest accounts. But it may not be the right fit for everyone. Here's a closer look at how Celsius compares:
Up to 18.63%
Up to 8.50%
Up to 7.25%
How Do I Open An Account?
Note that Celsius is very app-based. They do have a web-app, but you can only access it after you've passed KYC and AML on the app.
Plus, right now, when you open an account and deposit at least $400, you can get a $50 BTC bonus!
Is My Money Safe?
Celsius deposits are not FDIC-insured or SIPC-insured. The U.K. government regulates deposits rather than the U.S. While Celsius says it lends your cryptocurrency to institutional investors, there isn’t a way to know for sure. Certainly, there is a risk with depositing any cryptocurrency with Celsius.
As of June 2022, Celsius has paused withdrawals on their accounts - and reports are they don't have enough assets to payout. This is a serious risk to depositors.
We should also briefly mention crypto key security. All funds that are deposited with Celsius are held with its partner custodian Fireblocks. Fireblocks also provides custody insurance against the loss or theft of your private keys.
How Do I Contact Celsius?
Celsius recently launched its first Care Center in Las Vegas. So you can talk a human being over the phone by calling 1–866–463–5669 from 8:00 AM — 11:00 PM (EST), Monday — Friday. You can also reach out 24/7 by submitting a support ticket.
As of September 2021, Celsius Network has been reviewed over 1,500 times on Trustpilot and has a respectable rating of 4.1/5. But it's currently unrated and has no reviews with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
Is It Worth It?
The CEL token has been on a steady upward trend which is good for Celsius. The Celsius network is large and used by many people. And, overall, it's a safe option within the context of cryptocurrency lending. However, the recent changes that now require you to be an accredited investor does add a big drawback. If you're an accredited investor, the platform is great. Otherwise, you might not get as much out of it.
If you're comfortable with the risk of cryptocurrency lending, Celsius is a top player in this space and could certainly be worth it. If you're wanting to compare your options, check out our full list of top crypto savings accounts.
Here are the answers to a few of the most common questions people ask about Celsius:
Is Celsius Network legit?
Yes, since its founding in 2017, Celsius has quickly grown to become one of the world's largest cryptocurrency earning and borrowing platforms. In August 2021, it announced that its assets under management had surpassed $20 billion for the first time.
Does Celsius have a credit card?
It will soon. While the card is Celsius Credit Card is currently on a waitlist, when it launches it will allow cardholders to earn weekly rewards on their crypto collateral.
What is Celsius Pro?
Celsius Pro provides customized and dedicated Treasury management to businesses, institutions, and high-net-worth clients.
Does Celsius have any signup bonuses?
Yes, new customers can receive $10 to $2,000 in Bitcoin after joining the platform and transferring supported assets. The minimum transfer to earn the $10 bonus is $100, but you'll need to transfer at least $250,000 to earn the maximum bonus.
Crypto savings and borrowing app
Min Balance Requirements
Interest Rate On Deposits
Loyalty Tier Reward Bonus
Interest Rate On Loans
Starting at 0%
Loyalty Tier Loan Interest Discount
Min Loan Term
Credit Check Required On Loans
Deposit or Withdrawal Fees
Supported Payment Types
Mobile App Availability
iOS and Android
Preferred Customer Service Options
Phone, Contact form, Help center
$50 In Bitcoin Sign-Up Bonus
Ease of Use
Safety and Security
Celsius allows cryptocurrency owners to earn rewards on their coins and borrow cash without giving up their assets. Learn how it works!
- Earn up to 18.63% APY on your crypto
- No fees
- No minimum deposit or balance requirements
- Weekly reward payouts
- Highest reward rates unavailable in the U.S.
- Only accredited investors can earn rewards in the U.S.
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him on the About Page, or on his personal site RobertFarrington.com.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
He has been quoted in major publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Fox, ABC, NBC, and more. He is also a regular contributor to Forbes.
Editor: Clint Proctor Reviewed by: Claire Tak