You may want to skip bridging if
- You already have funds sitting in a centralized exchange (CEX)
- You don’t have enough funds in your L1 and want to “top up” your balance via a centralized exchange or fiat on-ramp
When you go to transfer funds from your centralized exchange of choice, you’ll have the option to move your funds directly to Arbitrum instead of to Ethereum.
For fiat on-ramps, you’ll select Arbitrum directly.
How do I choose between a centralized exchange and a fiat on-ramp?
If we’re being precise, CEXs are technically also fiat on-ramps. They allow you to on-ramp your fiat currency, or to use your bank account to get crypto. CEXs generally are given their own category because they also store crypto assets. Other fiat on-ramps don’t store any assets, they just immediately transfer your funds to a crypto wallet.
CEX’s are typically larger and have more oversight. That doesn’t mean they are incorruptible or hack-proof but they do have more eyeballs on them watching to make sure they don’t steal your funds.
Both require you to submit some personally identifiable documentation. This is called KYC (Know-Your-Customer). The government requires this from them.
To decide which one you want to use, it’s best to read into (1) what their fees are and (2) how legitimate they are in the community and how trusted they are.