What is gas?

Gas is a fee you pay to Ethereum miners – here's what you need to know about these fees

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Written by Lauren
Updated over a week ago


What is gas?

“Gas” refers to the fee required of any transaction done on Ethereum. Paid directly to Ethereum miners who validate these transaction and power the entire network, you can think of gas as a sort of toll fee for the Ethereum blockchain. SuperRare does not receive any of this fee, nor do we have influence over its price.

What is GWEI?

‘GWEI” is the base unit of Ethereum for gas. If you see a gas fee being estimated in GWEI, you are basically looking at a calculation of ETH – sort of like how cents are smaller fractions of a dollar.

When do I need to pay gas?

While gas must be paid for actions such as bidding, making offers, or purchases, it is also required for other transactions that don't involve "payment", but still require a committed record to the blockchain: setting an auction, withdrawing an offer, approving a marketplace contract, etc.

Why is gas so expensive?

Gas can get unusually expensive at times when the Ethereum network is busy. If the network has high traffic, miners are overran with requests, therefore making the price for transaction validation more competitive.

This can be pretty burdensome and often times feel limiting. Recognizing this, the Ethereum Organization have been actively working on a scalable solution for bringing gas prices down. Until then, if you want to avoid paying high prices, it is best to wait until prices come down to something you are more comfortable with.

If you want something done urgently, and you're willing to pay a little extra, you can pay more than the estimated average gas price to bump your transaction in priority. You can also submit your ideal price and wait for the transaction to be accepted, but be warned – sometimes, low-priority transactions can fail, and there is no such thing as gas refunds.

Where can I check gas prices?

To reference the cost of gas at any given moment, you can check out sites like Ethgasstation.io or Etherscan to see recent estimations.

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