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Information about the upcoming airdrops from cryptocurrency projects appears regularly on thematic resources and forums. Dozens of such proposals are seen every week. Why startups are ready to give out their tokens for free? How can users earn money on this and not walk into the scam? Let’s find it out.

What’s an Airdrop?

Airdrop is a free distribution of new tokens to cryptocurrency wallets. This is what blockchain startups, exchanges and other cryptocurrency-related services do to emerge from the shadows or warm up their clients. The airdrop is at the peak of its popularity, Mike Raitsyn, Ambassador at Snowfox Technologies states:

“For the last three months 7 out of 10 our clients ordering the technical implementation of ICO, focus on airdrop as the main channel for attracting investments. And this goes without attracting thought opinions and spending enormous sums of money – one of cases when the quantity wins the quality. Statistics shows that the activity of users can increase the rate of cryptocurrency in dozens of times”.

Today’s airdrops can be divided into two types: unexpected, when tokens appear in the wallet suddenly, and those announced in advance. The first option is usually selected by already known projects, which place an emphasis on massive attraction of the community in social networks and thematic forums. In this case, the project can credit additional 10-15% to your wallet balance, if it already holds some amount in this cryptocurrency.

On the second path are startups, which have yet to declare themselves. Therefore, they pre-arrange a marketing campaign, inviting users to take part in airdrop. Free tokens are distributed upon request during the ICO. To become a participant of such airdrop, it is necessary to fulfill a number of requirements, like making a repost in social networks, subscribing to the Telegram-channel or registering on the site.

Hard fork or not?

A particular case of the airdrop is a hard fork, when holders of the “mother” coin receive a new cryptocurrency in the proportion of 1:1. There are a lot of examples of such distribution: all Bitcoin and Ethereum hard forks are organized according to this principle, announcing airdrop in advance.

Airdrop is compared by some users to another way to get free tokens – Bounty campaign. Except in the case of Bounty you need to take more active actions: write posts in social networks, test the application, translate whitepaper and so on.

The amount of coins airdropped is usually small and rarely exceeds a few dollars. In addition, among such proposals there are scams – for example, you may be asked to send a private key from your wallet, download and install some software, or to pay money. A private key will give attackers an access to your wallet, and the software may contain malicious viruses. In reality no serious project ever asks to pay for distribution of tokens. But if you follow the security measures, the airdrop is a good way of passive income.

To participate in airdrops, you need a cryptocurrency wallet, active accounts in social networks or thematic forums. And that’s it – you are a part of the target audience of the project and can distribute this information to other interested users.

The Biggest Airdrops

A massive airdrop of 4 billion coins accompanied the launch of the NEM platform in 2015. This campaign allowed the owners of new XEM coins to start trading them on Japanese cryptocurrency exchanges. By early 2018, the XEM rate had risen from almost zero to $ 1.9. After a major hacker attack on Coincheck exchange, which resulted in the theft of $ 400 million XEM, the coin rate fell sharply, but even then the price the price didn’t go below $ 0.164.

Another free distribution, which turned out to be profitable, was the result of the Ethereum hard fork n July 2015. Then all ETH holders received a similar amount of ETC. Since the initiators of hard fork became part of the community, the potential of the new cryptocurrency was high – in July 2018, it’s in Top 20 cryptocurrency list with the price of $ 15.97.

In March 2017 the same Ethereum Classic became the basis for another hard fork inside the network – Callisto (CLO), when holders of ETC received a similar amount of new cryptocurrency. Though the capitalization of CLO in early July 2018 is less than $ 7 million, and the price is only $ 0.017952, for ETC holders it was a pleasant bonus.

Bitcoin forks airdrops were less successful. In August 2017, more than 40 hard forks of major cryptocurrencies followed Bitcoin Cash, each of which distributed coins to bitcoin holders in 1:1 ratio. The benefits of such airdrops are doubtful: at the beginning of July 2018 only three bitcoin forks – Bitcoin Gold, Bitcoin Diamond, and Bitcoin Private, have been included in the Top 200 cryptocurrencies.

Airdrops became so popular that, in the summer of this year, they began to be offered by nine out of ten ICO projects. The platform for their issue was not only Ethereum, but also other platforms like Waves, NEO and so on.

The cryptocurrency exchange sites themselves also actively use the airdrop to encourage their users. One of the first major encouraging airdrop was the initiative of the Byteball platform to distribute a part of the coins to its users on a monthly basis. The distribution began in late 2016 and lasted for 10 months.

At the beginning of 2018, HitBTC randomly distributed to several hundred thousand of its active traders 500 TRX within the framework of a partnership with Tron. A few months earlier the same give away for the same amount was made by Binance.

The platform for cryptocurrency exchange operations Stellar in 2017 conducted two stages of airdrop for bitcoin holders, with the distribution of 19 billion Lumens (XLM) and 16 billion correspondingly.

In February 2018 the Waves’ cryptocurrency platform conducted an airdrop campaign for Bitcoin Cash holders – those wishing to receive free coins had to generate a Waves wallet, in the address of which the letters “B”, “C” and “H” should be in any order.

Do not Miss Upcoming Airdrops

Everipedia (IQ)

The project, which plans to create “Blockchain-based Wikipedia”, announces the second stage of the airdrop for EOS holders. Owners of this cryptocurrency will receive a similar amount of IQ, equal to the EOS balance as of June 2, 2018, when the snapshot of the EOS network was taken.


The project of a personal information storage on blockchain announced an airdrop of 300,000 BTRN tokens (one token costs about $ 0.03). Coins will be distributed proportionally among the participants of the airdrop. To get money, you need to make a post on Twitter. The amount can be increased if you have a big amount of subscribers. Also an additional bonus is paid for the invited friends.


The Prandex platform offers distributing of 200 million special Prandex Bounty Tokens (PRAB), but the conditions for obtaining them are rather similar to the airdrop. Those entered the Telegram channel will get 200 PRAB ($ 2), registered on the site – another 500 PRAB ($ 5), the same amount is levied for each of the attracted friend. Airdrop campaign will last until September 30, 2018.


The American video game company conducts an airdrop for its CasinoLife Poker virtual casino project. KAVA are credited to CasinoLife Poker players for participating in the game. Up to 25,000 participants will receive 10,000 KAVA (~ $ 10) and another 1,000 KAVA  will be distributed for attracting new players.

Fast Invest

The digital investment bank Fast Invest offers users to try investing 500 FIT tokens costing from $ 5 to $ 32. This amount is allocated for 25 000 participants. To do this, you must follow standard procedures – register on the site, subscribe to social networks. For invited friends, you can also get up to 5% of the amount of their investment in ETH.

Airdrops in 2018 is a good way for beginners to get acquainted with the ecosystem of cryptoeconomics and get the first tokens for investment. On the other hand, more or less serious earnings can be received only if participating in dozens or even hundreds of campaigns. Well, at least you will have the choice.

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