You have heard about hte Lightning Netowork and want to try it out yourself? Great. As you should know from your experience with Bitcoin, it’s necessary to spend some time researching, experimenting and playing around. Don’t do risky things that you don’t really understand to not lose your money.


So how do you get started? There are in general two ways to approach the whole thing: a very sophisticated pro-user approach or a quick and easy approach.

Let’s discuss the simple ways first. Here is how you can get started with the Bitcoin Lightning Newtork and send your first LN transaction in just a few minutes:

The simple way to use the lightning network

1. You need Bitcoin to top out your Lightning Channel. If you don’t have Bitcoin, buy it on your favorite place. For example bittr:

2. You need a custodial Lightning Wallet.
Try walletofsatoshi

3. Top up your walle with a Bitcoin on-chain transaction, the Wallet will do all the rest in the background. 

4. Done! Now you can pay any lightning invoice you find. For example you can send a tip to the Bitcoin Club



The professional way to use the Lightning Network

This approach requires you to understand more technical details of the lightning network and gives full control to the user. You need to open your own channel and monitor it. Depening on which functionalities you seek to implement, there can me more challegnes you have to master.

With custodial lightning wallet you always have to trust a third party and service provider which you may seek to avoid. Then it’s time to learn how to manage a lightning wallet yourself.

If you are a developer or technically savvy you should defenitely spend some time researching the lightning network and learn how it works.

Here are some good resources to start with:

How does the Lightning Network work?