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Author Topic: swapping gold for bitcoins when you travel?  (Read 368 times)
jeanb
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December 10, 2016, 09:18:44 PM
 #1

Hi
I haven't purchased bitcoins so far, although I read some stuff about it. Let say that one has gold/silver but wish to exchange it for bitcoins in order to cross a border, is it possible to "test" the validity of a bicoin that an individual propose you?
I know that you can purchase gold online (from a company) with bitcoins but above the spot price, maybe there is such an operationnal network where individuals simply swap it? If so how would I proceed to test if a bitcoin is valid?
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OnkelPaul
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December 10, 2016, 10:17:29 PM
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You receive bitcoins in the form of transactions. Once a transaction has been confirmed (put into the bitcoin blockchain) it is valid, and you did in fact receive the amount of bitcoin transferred in the transaction.
As a security precaution, for higher amounts you should wait for a number of confirmations (additional blocks built upon the block in which the original transaction was recorded.) A typical confirmation count is 6, although that is pretty arbitrary, 3 would be pretty safe in the current blockchain environment.
If you want to check whether someone actually has the bitcoins they offer you for a trade, you can let them sign a message using the bitcoin address with the balance.
As an example of such a signed message, here is one that I signed using my signature address:

Address:
1HvaoWCtvG2pvd8B9nvr9DjiErnSmjCqAY
Message:
I don't want to buy gold.
Signature:
HBxJ6x/QwG4W8a+uCwtMt56f9AaXzMOP/pJdyUNxBskKN0rG4WqjzpIH2992nZl/C4BImeZ/t2AcQgJWMPobTxM=

(you can verify the message at https://coining.com, and you can check the current balance at https://blockchain.info/address/1HvaoWCtvG2pvd8B9nvr9DjiErnSmjCqAY?sort=0 so if I proposed to buy gold from you you'd know that I don't have enough bitcoins at this address for an ounce of gold)

Directly exchanging bitcoin for gold and vice versa is probably not very efficient, as there are few companies offering this service, so they can charge a premium for it due to missing competition. Trading with private (possibly anonymous) persons is pretty risky, especially when buying gold with bitcoins, as verifying the gold is much harder technically than verifying a bitcoin transaction. You also need to consider that you risk getting mugged, or if you want to do the trade due to legal reasons (India comes to mind) that you might get caught in a law enforcement sting operation.

Onkel Paul

jeanb
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December 10, 2016, 11:01:28 PM
 #3

Thank you. I had a second though before  to read your message and I realized that any individual can keep a copy of his bitcoin and 'cheat me' if he uses it before me, so I thought that 'buying nearly a bitcoin' immediately with another bitcoin (his) in order to cancel the value of the first one was a solution. I'll try to buy a fraction of bit coin to practice and study your solution. But yes, if there is a currency collapse/banking crisis swapping bitcoins for silver/gold and vice-versa could be useful. You can't take the chance to cross a border with lots of gold, you can't purchase online with physical silver, but plumbers, mecanicians and other non 'tech savy' people may prefer traditionnal money
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December 11, 2016, 06:47:27 AM
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~I realized that any individual can keep a copy of his bitcoin and 'cheat me' if he uses it before me, so I thought that 'buying nearly a bitcoin' immediately with another bitcoin (his) in order to cancel the value of the first one was a solution.~

i think you misunderstood how bitcoin works. https://bitcoin.org/en/how-it-works or generally https://www.google.com/search?q=how+bitcoin+works

there is no such thing as bitcoin there is only bockchain (the public ledger) that holds all the transactions history. and you spend those transactions using your private key.

when you create a bitcoin address you create a private key that you use to cryptographically sign away ownership of bitcoin to another public key. and when this result called a transaction is mined (included in a block) there is no way of reversing it (no way to cheat). you see this as the number of confirmation on a blockexplorer.
example https://blockchain.info/tx/93c2720ea64c07fad0d1c821860b75911c761f836f38020564a3136e1bedc80f
Confirmations
0 means it has not yet mined, it can be reversed (there is a chance of cheating)
1 means it was recently mined in the last block (chance of cheating is very small)
3 and more is a sure thing.

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December 11, 2016, 07:22:41 AM
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OP, I don't think you have fully understood bitcoin yet. You better do a bit of research first before dealing with anybody regarding bitcoin. And why are you asking can it be traded for gold when crossing the boarder? Are you on the run? And you need to trade your stolenhard earned gold over the boarders?

If you want those traded, then probably you have to first put all your gold on a trading platform or sell it to one, and just buy bitcoins. I think you will have problems finding a person that would trade directly for your gold and his bitcoin.
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December 11, 2016, 11:33:21 AM
 #6

Bitcoins do make it much more convenient to travel across borders with extra funds available, but there is a small risk that the bitcoins you buy could lose a lot of their value in a short time. Gold is a much more reliable store of value but you will have to fill out all appropriate paperwork at customs.

CryptoItems.com - Your source for detailed information, specifications and photos on lots of crypto-collectibles.
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December 11, 2016, 01:05:06 PM
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Bitcoin will be valid once it arrives in your wallet and it will gets some 6 or more confirmations. Buying bitcoins could be done by swapping anything, so paying for it with gold also an option but my suggestion would be 'buying bitcoins my be done at a convenient time and place and not in hurry when you are in travel'.

Fluctuations of bitcoin will not harm you with any losses. So, buy it well in advance and plan up your travel accordingly.
jeanb
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December 11, 2016, 01:39:28 PM
 #8

Thanks to all, I'm not in a hurry. And regarding one previous post, no, it is not 'stolen gold', rather an inheritance, but if I have to move to another country in a year or two I have not a total confidence of several institutions. I'll study more bitcoins
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December 11, 2016, 03:09:09 PM
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Thanks to all, I'm not in a hurry. And regarding one previous post, no, it is not 'stolen gold', rather an inheritance, but if I have to move to another country in a year or two I have not a total confidence of several institutions. I'll study more bitcoins

If you do have gold then just sell it instead. Or probably you are avoiding the government from knowing that you have that much gold. Then you want to use Bitcoins as a vessel so you can get out of the country without the government, again, from noticing you have that much money/gold. I would say it is possible. If you can find someone willing to take gold and exchange it for bitcoins. I would say it would be a face to face transaction as there would be problems sending gold over mail.
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December 11, 2016, 04:19:42 PM
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Thanks to all, I'm not in a hurry. And regarding one previous post, no, it is not 'stolen gold', rather an inheritance, but if I have to move to another country in a year or two I have not a total confidence of several institutions. I'll study more bitcoins

Selling it to your regular currency and exchanging that to BTC when moving to a different country would be the best scenario. But as "Qartersa" said, if you don't want to show the government that you have that much gold then it would be a little tough but possible. Or you can make pieces of that gold in small amounts and sell it for BTC, so that you can get all your gold into Bitcoins.

 
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