How to Use a Paper Wallet

"I received a paper wallet at the ATM. What do I do now?"

-common support request

Athena Bitcoin Paper Wallet – Note that the public address begins with and the private key begins with 5

Athena Litecoin Paper Wallet – Note that the public address begins with L and the private key begins with 6

1. Use a compatible wallet application to scan or enter your private key from your paper wallet in order to move the bitcoin, litecoin, or bitcoin cash into that app.

2. Once the digital currency shows in your wallet app, you may send your bitcoin, bitcoin cash, or litecoin anywhere you like!

 

We normally recommend the Edge app for our customers who need to move funds off of a paper wallet. If you have bitcoin (BTC) on a paper wallet you’d like to move with Edge, please see our more detailed instructions here:

Below is a list of recommended wallet apps for each cryptocurrency type along with brief instructions for how to use paper wallets with each one.

Bitcoin

If you don’t have one of the following apps already installed, download one and setup a new wallet.

Android Mobile Phone or Tablet

  • Edge wallet
    Main Menu > Sweep Paper Wallet

  • Coinomi
    Select Bitcoin > tap the three dot menu > Sweep wallet

  • Exodus mobile
    Select Bitcoin > Settings > Add Bitcoin from Private Keys

  • There are others that will also work, including BRD, Mycelium, Jaxx, GreenAddress, or even Sentinel.

Apple iPhone or iPad

  • Edge wallet
    Main Menu > Sweep Paper Wallet

  • Coinomi
    Select Bitcoin > tap the three dot menu > Sweep wallet

  • Exodus mobile
    Select Bitcoin > Settings > Add Bitcoin from Private Keys

Desktop or Laptop PC

  • Exodus (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    Specific instructions on this page

  • Electrum (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    Wallet > Private Keys > Sweep

    Note: Hardware wallets (Ledger, Trezor, KeepKey) can not currently handle external private keys. Please use another app to move bitcoin to your hardware wallet.

  • Blockchain web (browser-based)
    Settings > Addresses > Import Bitcoin Addr.

  • Bitpay / Bitcoin.com
    Press Scan to open camera
    Note that you may not be able to type in the private key manually in these three wallets unless it has already received funds

Bitcoin Cash

If you don’t have one of the following apps already installed, download one and setup a new wallet.

Android Mobile Phone or Tablet

  • Edge wallet
    Bitcoin Cash wallet > Scan button

  • Coinomi
    Select Bitcoin Cash> tap the three dot menu > Sweep wallet

  • Bitpay
    Wallets screen > Scan

Apple iPhone or iPad

  • Edge wallet
    Bitcoin Cash wallet > Scan button

  • Coinomi
    Select Bitcoin Cash> tap the three dot menu > Sweep wallet

  • Bitpay
    Wallets screen > Scan

Desktop or Laptop PC

  • Exodus (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    Specific instructions on this page

  • Electron Cash (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    Wallet > Private Keys > Sweep

    Note: Hardware wallets (Ledger, Trezor, KeepKey) can not currently handle external private keys. Please use another app to move bitcoin to your hardware wallet.

  • Bitpay / Bitcoin.com
    Press Scan to open camera
    Note that you may not be able to type in the private key manually in these three wallets unless it has already received funds

Litecoin

If you don’t have one of the following apps already installed, download one and setup a new wallet.

Android Mobile Phone or Tablet

  • Edge wallet
    Litecoin wallet > Scan button

  • Coinomi
    Select Litecoin > tap the three dot menu > Sweep wallet

  • Loafwallet
    Menu > Settings > Import Wallet

Desktop or Laptop PC

  • Exodus (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    Specific instructions on this page

  • Electrum-LTC (Windows, Mac, Linux)
    Wallet > Private Keys > Sweep

  • Note: Hardware wallets (Ledger, Trezor, KeepKey) can not currently handle external private keys. Please use another app to move litecoin to your hardware wallet.

Apple iPhone or iPad

  • Edge wallet
    Litecoin wallet > Scan button

  • Coinomi
    Select Litecoin > tap the three dot menu > Sweep wallet

  • Loafwallet
    Menu > Settings > Import Wallet

What are paper wallets?

“Paper wallets” in the context of ATMs are single pairings of a public address and private key that print out on receipt paper before you insert cash. When you press “Create New Wallet” at the ATM the machine will print you one of these. Paper wallets are useful as a temporary transfer medium if you are using a desktop computer at home or haven’t yet setup a mobile wallet. They are also useful in cases when you can’t scan your mobile address. Some customers will also tap “Create New Wallet” by accident, usually when trying to type an address in manually.  Note: Paper wallets from an ATM are printed on thermal paper intended for temporary handling and transfer only. Do not use these for long-term storage of digital currency.

You can identify one of our paper wallets by the large QR codes that take up most of the available space, plus the labels “Public Key” and “Private Key”. These are good terms to know as the “Public Key” (actually the public address) is where the bitcoin or litecoin was sent. It’s also how you can look up the balance in any block explorer: See our guide to looking up an address for Bitcoin or other coins.

Make sure that the paper wallet prints correctly before inserting cash! QR images and text should be clearly visible. If it isn’t, press the red X to cancel this session and choose another delivery method.

 

The “Private Key”, on the other hand, is the secret random number that was generated at the ATM. The private key is what you will need to spend your coins from this address. ONLY the holder of that private key can spend those funds; Athena does not store or have access to that key and cannot spend the contents of that paper wallet. Therefore, DO NOT LOSE or damage your paper wallet and do not let anyone else see the private key! We are unable to refund any digital currency purchases, including those sent to a paper wallet, even if they have been lost or stolen. Also, please make sure the paper wallet prints correctly (images and text are visible) BEFORE inserting any cash into the ATM.