How Long Does Verification for Bitcoin Transactions Take?

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A man is standing in front of a document with a bitcoin on it, pondering the verification process duration for bitcoin transactions.
Table of Contents
A man is standing in front of a document with a bitcoin on it, pondering the verification process duration for bitcoin transactions.

Key Takeaways:

  • Bitcoin verification times can vary from as little as 10 minutes to several hours
  • Bitcoin transactions require confirmation from miners before they can be added to the blockchain
  • To accelerate Bitcoin transaction times you can use various possibilities

How Long Does Verification for Bitcoin Transactions Take?

Verification takes time because the blockchain processes each transaction. 

It processes a confirmation within 10 minutes, but it can occasionally take longer.

Because of the complex nature of Bitcoin transactions, a longer verification process can make people tense. No one wants to lose his money.

The verification can also be done in other ways, e.g. verifying wallets. In the setup process, you verify for the service you would like to use.

Confirming transactions requires a network of computers to solve complex mathematical problems. As more people use Bitcoin, the network activity increases. Therefore, it results in slower transaction times.

In addition, Bitcoin miners must approve each transaction before they can add it to the blockchain. They don’t approve it directly, but they collect it from a memory pool, also called the ‘mempool’.

The mempool is a temporary queue of every node in the network. Every node tries to put their own mempool into the system. This adds the transactions into the blockchain. The pool clears the transactions if it meets the minimum fees.

The lower the transaction fee, the longer it has to wait to be processed. Why is that? The fees motivate the miners. They get paid with them for their work. The more fees they get, the more likely they will process it.

How Long Does Bitcoin Take to Verify?

As stated, the general use case is about 10 minutes

The above process can lead to longer verification times up to hours. 

This depends on some different factors. The network can verify larger amounts of bitcoins faster than lower amounts. They have potentially higher fees because of their higher amount. This incentivizes miners to process your transaction faster.

Low fees can lead to waiting times of several blocks. Miners create new blocks every 10 minutes, so a confirmation equals a multiple of this timeframe.

The number of included wallets is also a deciding factor. If you are using multiple wallets which every Bitcoin owner should do, there can be dozens of wallets involved in one transaction.

The common practice is to use a new wallet for every transaction. You could deposit your funds on many of them. If you now want to send all your bitcoins, you would use them all for your transaction simultaneously.

Dozens of transactions have to be confirmed simultaneously. Every respective wallet address sends their bitcoins within their own transaction.

So this could mean that larger Bitcoin transactions are not faster, but possibly slower. They can have higher fees. If they split over multiple transactions, then this advantage disappears.

How Long Does a Bitcoin Transaction Take?

Different procedures can cause the verification to take time. The transaction depends on the verification process and the network.

Not Enough Miners (Low Hash Rate)

The amount of currently working miners can differ. 

Instances are available to confirm transactions if there are more miners. 

The amount of miners depends on the fees. If the fees are low, they won’t do the work. If you pay more fees, the miners will add your transaction to the next block. 

Miners use their computational power, which is measured in ‘hash rate’. The more power, the higher the hash rate.

Hash rate is the number of guesses a computer needs to do to solve a problem. The more computational power the computer has, the higher his hash rate is. 

The more miners provide their computational power, the higher the overall hash rate and the faster the process.


Bitcoin offers significant advantages and this kind of potential attracts hackers. 

They can affect the network with spam attacks. 

During such an attack, the network loads with an exorbitant amount of transactions. The network can get congested. 

The backlog of transactions gets higher, which can cause long confirmation times or even rejection of transactions with low fees.

It is important to note that BTC transactions are faster than traditional payment methods. But if the fees are low, they can take hours to execute.

How Many Confirmations Bitcoin Transactions Need?

The amount of confirmations specifies the length of the verification. 

Depending on the service provider you use, this amount differs. 

Some providers only require one confirmation, some others can require up to 6. A miner adds the transaction to a block counting as one confirmation which happens every 10 minutes. 

After the next 10 minutes, they create the next block, which stores the transactions of the previous block in it. This counts as the second confirmation. It can go up to six confirmations where you can safely confirm the transaction final. 

We can put the different lengths of transaction into the following timeframes:

Fast Transactions

You can do transactions even faster than 10 minutes. 

They are called ‘zero-confirmation’ transactions. 

They can execute instantly. These transactions don’t need confirmations. This means that they cannot prove things like double-spending or the real ownership. 

They are risky, but that’s the price you pay for the speed. They are also called unconfirmed transactions because of its state.

Two parties can use it to send each other BTC payments. Bitcoin wants to provide users with trust. This eliminates the double-spending problem.

With unconfirmed transactions, it bypasses this concept, which was not intended by Bitcoin.

Therefore, there was a layer implemented in the Bitcoin network called the ‘lightning network’. With this layer, it processes transactions much faster in a channel without waiting for the slower major network. 

After the channel closes, it goes to the other transactions. Now the users don’t have to rely on this risky concept anymore.

General Transactions

The general Bitcoin transaction time is between 10 to 30 minutes. 

Up to 3 confirmations are required through the creation of 3 blocks. Merchants or exchanges often require at least 3 confirmations.

Slow Transactions

Some crypto exchanges require even more Bitcoin transaction confirmations. 

Some known exchanges, like Coinbase or Kraken, require up to six confirmations taking an hour.

Only after this timeframe you can see your funds on the platform. A higher amount of confirmations ensures the authenticity of the transaction and that they did not spend the funds double. 

Now we know how the verification and transaction times vary. We can look at another verification process for the creation of accounts and wallets.

How Long Does Bitcoin Wallet Verification Take?

The time to verify a Bitcoin wallet varies depending on your wallet provider and your location.

Wallet Provider

Some wallet providers usually have fast verification processes, taking from minutes up to a few hours to verify for most users. 

Other providers can be slower and you could wait several days. 

Common waiting times like e.g. for the cash app bitcoin verification can take up to 48 hours. Which type of account you take also plays a role. If you use the cash app to buy Bitcoin you can contact cash apps customer service if it would take longer.

If you need an advanced account with higher limits, then often you need to verify yourself by providing further documents. A basic account often needs only an email address. 

If you are under 18 and want to buy crypto you would also need further verification from your parents. Advanced accounts could demand documents like Social Security Number where you would need to provide details like the last four digits of your SSN.

More documents needed means a longer KYC process to verify your account. This ensures that all users on this platform have verified account information to prevent fraud and similar activities.


Depending on your country, you can face stricter regulations. 

This requires details provided like a driver’s license, social security number, full name or your date of birth.

It takes a maximum of a few days. The better the provided details, the faster the process.

How Do You Accelerate Bitcoin Transaction Time?

There are some options you can try to send or buy Bitcoin faster.

Network Load

The network has a high impact on transaction speed. 

You can use a blockchain explorer which shows you the current hash rates and the mempool size. 

A period with low usage will more likely speed up Bitcoin transactions. If you see more transactions, you will rather have to wait longer.

Provide Appealing Fees

You can provide better fees to get the miners to prioritize you

Setting fees yourself up when you buy and sell Bitcoin gives you more control about the transaction speed. 

With some wallets, you can set the fee manually. Usually these wallets will suggest different amounts of fees, but you can decide ultimately.

Some wallets provide automatic fees where you cannot control the amount. The wallet will choose an appropriate fee so it can process your transaction, expecting no issues.

Replace-by-Fee (RBF)

Bitcoin core version 0.12.0 introduced this concept in 2016. 

It applies if a transaction is still unconfirmed. 

You can send a new transaction with a higher fee. This transaction replaces the first one. You should try to pick appropriate Bitcoin transaction fees by yourself so you don’t have to rely on this option. 

Not all wallets support this concept, so check if you have this option in your account settings.

Child Pays for Parent (CPFP)

This is another way to speed up the process. 

Compared to the ‘Replace-by-fee’ this method uses a second transaction just for the higher fee. 

It doesn’t replace the first transaction. The miners need to confirm both transactions. This method needs a wallet which supports it. It also needs to be enabled before you do the transaction.

Bitcoin Accelerators

This is a service provided by the miners. 

You provide them with your transaction to process it faster. 

In this service, you pay them an additional fee so they prioritize transactions. Be cautious before using the bitcoin accelerator from providers you don’t know. Scam sites can mimic such providers easily.

Use of Lightning and Liquid Network

Both these networks are a secondary layer protocol for the blockchain. 

Both provide a faster way for transactions. 

The liquid network works with 1 minute blocks so your confirmations are faster compared to the standard 10 minute block.

The lightning network provides a direct channel between the sender and receiver to move funds instantly between them. There are wallets where their app allows the usage of this protocol.


Why is My Bitcoin Confirmed but Not Received?

People have this question without knowing the process. 

The next block mostly doesn’t include the transaction because of low fees. 

If you enter an incorrect wallet address, you will lose your bitcoins. Sending bitcoins to an incorrect address is not reversible. No third party can help you with this problem. You further won’t be able to get the funds back. 

Network congestion can slow down your transaction. If there is high cryptocurrency demand, networks load with many transactions, which slow them down.

Remember that the confirmation does not mean that you can withdraw your Bitcoin until your wallet address actually receives it.

What’s the Longest a Bitcoin Transaction Can Take?

The common timeframe Bitcoin takes to send is about 10 to 60 minutes. 

If your fees are very low, then it could take several days. 

If there is a peak in BTC prices with a high demand and transaction amounts, low fees could lead to such waiting times.

Theoretically, if you would provide a lower fee than everyone else, your transaction could be pending for weeks. This would be an extreme case, but you should just try to ensure your fees are fair so you don’t encounter such problems.

Do Miners Validate Transactions?

Miners are involved in the transaction process to include them into the block, but they do not verify the transactions. 

The nodes running the blockchain are the instances to verify them. 

The miners wait for the nodes and their verification to include valid transactions into the blocks. This process confirms that the transaction is valid and included in the next block.

Conclusion: Bitcoin Verification Times Depend Multiple Factors

The verification process for Bitcoin transactions can vary in terms of time, ranging from as little as 10 minutes to several hours. Factors such as network congestion, transaction fees, and the number of confirmations required can influence the duration.



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About the Author:
Morgan Davis, an expert in digital currency and economic analysis, offers a unique perspective on cryptocurrency within the global financial landscape. With a background in International Economics, Morgan's insights delve into how macroeconomic factors influence the crypto market. Their writing simplifies complex economic and cryptocurrency concepts, making them accessible to a broad audience. Morgan is actively engaged in discussions about the impact of blockchain on finance, and their work empowers readers to understand and navigate the world of digital currencies.