Which Trading Account? How to Choose the Best Demo and live Forex Trading Account

17 Min read

Before you open a live Forex trading account or a trading demo account, as well as ensuring you choose the right broker, it is also very important to make sure you choose the right type of account, as it can have a direct impact on your profit and loss. As the financial markets are full of a diverse range of people, there are many different account types on offer. So, how do you choose the right Forex trading account for you?

In this article we will discuss everything you need to know about choosing the right Forex account!


What to Consider Before Opening a Forex Trading Account

There are many things to consider when opening an online Forex trading account. Whether you are interested in opening the best Forex trading account in the UK or elsewhere, many of the main points you will consider will be the same. This is partially because today trading is accessible online.

Many of your decisions will be influenced by things such as your experience, starting capital and trading style. However, there are some core considerations that apply to choosing the best Forex account, no matter the level or status of the trader. They include:

  1. Transaction costs, spreads and commissions
  2. Trade routing: Straight Through Processing (STP) or Electronic Communication Network (ECN)
  3. Trading software and platform
  4. Range of markets available

Let's discuss each of these in more detail before we summarise the different Forex account types that are available.

The Importance of Transaction Costs

Most individuals are trading the market to make a profit. However, while making the right trade to turn a profit is important, holding on to that profit is even more important. That's why your transactions costs, spreads and commissions are an important thing to consider when you open a Forex account.

The 'spread' is a cost of trading that is defined by the difference between the buy price (or ask price) of a market and its sell price (or bid price). For example, if the quote of EUR/USD is 1.1500/1.1501 then the spread would be 1 pip. If you were to buy the currency at 1.1501 and sell it immediately at 1.1500 you would be down 1 pip.

The spread, therefore, is a transaction cost. Spreads vary throughout the trading day depending on liquidity and the supply and demand of the instrument you are trading.

Simply having the right Forex account type can help an individual trader stay ahead of the game.


Dealing desk brokers, which are also referred to as 'market makers', often have business models that may not act in the trader's best interest. That's because in this type of execution the broker usually takes the opposite side of your trade. Therefore, they have a vested interest in seeing you lose on the trade.

However, both STP accounts and Admiral Markets ECN accounts are referred to as non dealing desk accounts. This means they route your order straight through to their liquidity provider (usually a top tier bank) or straight into the interbank market.

The benefit of this is that they are simply matching your orders with other orders in the market, rather than taking the other side of your trade.

So what's the difference between an STP account and an Admiral Markets ECN account, and why does it matter when deciding which Forex trading account to open?

  • STP, or Straight Through Processing, is where all orders are routed directly to the broker's main liquidity providers. These tend to be the big banks, hedge funds, and so on.

In most cases, the STP broker will have their own internal system which links to their different liquidity providers who compete for the best prices (bid/ask orders). This helps the individual trader get the best possible price.

  • An Admiral Markets ECN, or Electronic Communication Network, is similar to the STP technology. However, the biggest difference is how trades are routed. Essentially, the ECN network is a place where individual Forex traders can trade directly with the liquidity provider, without any intermediaries.

Accessing the Best Trading Software and Platform

The last thing any trader wants is to spend time researching their trade, wait patiently to execute it and then have their trading platform let them down. That's why most brokers offer to use MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 as their trading Forex account format.

Both platforms offer charts and broker integration for one-click trading, as well as many other features such as:

  • Free indicators and charting tools
  • Real-time market data
  • Volatility protection settings
  • Expert advisors for customised indicators and automated trading strategies
  • Mobile trading
  • MetaTrader Supreme Edition add-on (exclusive to Admiral Markets) including a built-in economic calendar, market analysis tools, advanced order types, correlation matrix and more

Admiral Markets offers trading on both MetaTrader 4 (MT4) and MetaTrader 5 (MT5), as well as MetaTrader WebTrader which allows trading direct from your browser. One of the main differences between MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5 is the range of markets available to trade.

Trade With MetaTrader 5

Did you know that Admiral Markets offers traders the number 1 multi-asset trading platform in the world - completely FREE!? MetaTrader 5 enables traders access to superior charting capabilities, free real-time market data & analysis, the best trading widgets available, and much more! To download MetaTrader 5 now, click the banner below:

Range of Markets Available

Accessing international markets has never been easier. More and more traders diversify their Forex trading account by accessing other markets such as trading CFDs on indices, stocks, bonds, commodities as well as direct investing in Stocks and ETFs. All of this can be done by opening an account with Admiral Markets.

While the Trade.MT4 account offers 64 major Stock CFDs, the Trade.MT5 account offers access to over 3,000 Stock CFDs and 300 ETF CFDs.

Whereas, our Invest.MT5 account allows you to use the MetaTrader 5 platform to invest into more than 4,000 stocks and over 200 ETFs, making it a great way to diversify as a trader.

In the following sections, we will make a comparison of the main features of our Forex trading accounts, the markets they cover and how much money it takes to open an account.

The Trade.MT4 Account

The Trade.MT4 trading account is a popular account type for those wanting to trade multiple asset classes on one of the most secure and reliable trading platforms on offer - MetaTrader 4. Here are some more details:

  • Minimum deposit: 100 EUR
  • 100 USD
  • 100 GBP
  • 100 CHF
  • Account balance currencies: EUR, USD, GBP, CHF, BGN, CZK, HRK, HUF, PLN, RON
  • Markets available:Currencies (37)
  • Cryptocurrency CFDs (5)
  • Spot Metal CFDs (4)
  • Spot Energy CFDs (3)
  • Index Futures CFDs (3)
  • Cash Index CFDs (16)
  • Stock CFDs (78)
  • Bond CFDs (2)
  • Spreads: From 0.5 pips
  • Commissions:Single Share and ETF CFDs from 0.01 USD per share
  • Platform: MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader Web Trader, MetaTrader Mobile Trading

The Trade.MT5 Account

The Trade.MT5 trading account is another popular account type for multi asset class traders. One of the biggest differences is that the range of markets available on MetaTrader 5 is far bigger than that on MT4. There are some additional benefits as described below:

  • Minimum deposit: 100 EUR
  • 100 USD
  • 100 GBP
  • 100 CHF
  • Account balance currencies: EUR, USD, GBP, CHF, BGN, CZK, HRK, HUF, PLN, RON
  • Markets available:Currencies (37)
  • Cryptocurrency CFDs (32)
  • Spot Metal CFDs (5)
  • Spot Energy CFDs (3)
  • Spot Agriculture CFDs (7)
  • Index Futures CFDs (24)
  • Commodity Futures CFDs (24)
  • Cash Index CFDs (19)
  • Stock CFDs (over 3,350)
  • ETF CFDs (over 300)
  • Bond CFDs (2)
  • Spreads: From 0.5 pips
  • Commissions:Single Share and ETF CFDs from 0.01 USD per share
  • Platform: MetaTrader 5, MetaTrader Web Trader, MetaTrader Mobile Trading
  • Market depth: Exclusive to MetaTrader 5, you can view the order book to assess the liquidity of the instrument you are viewing

The Zero.MT4 Account

The Zero.MT4 is a unique offering for those who want to elevate their trading level. The account is based on Admiral Markets' own STP technology so traders can trade directly with top-tier liquidity providers. Access to this advanced offering also comes with additional benefits:

  • Minimum deposit: 100 EUR
  • 100 USD
  • 100 GBP
  • 100 CHF
  • Account balance currencies: EUR, USD, GBP, CHF, BGN, CZK, HRK, HUF, PLN, RON
  • Markets available:Currencies (45)
  • Spot Metal CFDs (3)
  • Cash Index CFDs (10)
  • Spot Energy CFDs (3)
  • Spreads: From 0 pips
  • Commissions:Forex & Metals - from 1.8 to 3.0 USD per 1.0 lots
  • Cash Indices - from 0.05 to 3.0 USD per 1.0 lots
  • Spot Energies - 1 USD per 1.0 lots
  • Platform: MetaTrader 4, MetaTrader Web Trader, MetaTrader Mobile Trading

One of the major differences with the Zero.MT4 account is the fact the spreads start from 0 pips, which means you can also trade inside the spread value with no requirements on minimum volume (order can start from just 0.01 lot).

Additional Beneficial Features

On top of the offerings above, all three of the above types of trading accounts offer:

  • No requotes - get the price you want
  • Hedging allowed - execute and hold trades in opposite directions on the same trading instrument
  • Expert advisors - use automated trading strategies and customised coded indicators
  • MetaTrader Supreme Edition Add-On - access advanced tools such as a built in economic calendar, advanced order types, correlation matrix, market session maps and more
  • One-click trading - enter the market without any additional confirmations to speed up your trading process
  • Volatility protection settings - access a unique set of advanced tools to help you minimise risk while trading
  • Negative balance protection policy - this means you are covered in the event your account moves into a deficit on an abrupt market move on leveraged positions

The additional features of the four different accounts can be extremely useful. The negative balance protection policy is also available for retail and professional clients across all account types.

What is the Best Online Trading Account?

Which online trading account is best for you? Choosing which Forex trading account to open depends on a number of factors, such as your trading style, level of experience and capital.

While all four accounts discussed have unique benefits, Forex traders may want to consider the advantages of Zero.MT4 due to the spreads starting from 0 pips, low commission costs and lightning fast execution.

However, all accounts offer something slightly different and many traders will hold several different types of account for different purposes. For example:

  • If you are a short-term Forex trader who enjoys scalping and day trading, and want to transact direct in the interbank market with the lowest spreads available then the Zero.MT4 account is worth considering.
  • If you are a trader looking to trade multiple asset classes like Forex, Index CFDs and Commodity CFDs then you may want to consider the Trade.MT4 account.
  • If you are looking to diversify your trading into over 3,000 different Stock CFDs from around the world and access more Commodity CFD markets, then the Trade.MT5 account is worth looking into.

As the choice is yours, you should review your trading goals to make sure you start your Forex trading journey the right way.

If you are interested in learning more about Forex trading, check out our beginner's guide to Forex!

There's one last account type that any beginner trader may want to consider: a trading demo account. A trading demo account is beneficial for beginner traders for some very specific reasons, such as learning how to trade on live markets with real data without risking your money.

In the next section, I discuss the details of a trading demo account and help you decide which is the best demo trading account.

Trading Demo Account With Admirals

With Admirals, you can trade without risking your own capital on a free Forex trading demo account! It is one of the best Forex trading platform demo accounts available. You can trade with real market data, test stop limits in different scenarios and try out different trading strategies to see if they work before trading your money on the real markets.

What's more, your Admirals trading demo account can be your Forex trading demo account app, since it can be accessed by mobile via the MetaTrader 4 app download for iOS or Android.

Also, a trading demo account with Admirals gives you access to trading CFDs on various markets. Your Admirals trading demo account can be your demo account for futures, options, stock trading, day trading, forex and more and it's all online!

Demo accounts are one of the best ways to practice trading before heading over to the live markets. Click the banner below to open your Forex demo account today:

Once you decide on an account, live or demo, you may ask, how do you set up a Forex trading account? In the next section I will explain how to open a Forex trading account and answer other questions related to opening a trading account

How to Open a Forex Trading Account

I will now discuss how to set up a Forex trading account. You'll simply need to follow these 3 steps:

  • Choose a MetaTrader 4 or 5 broker
  • Download MetaTrader 4 or 5
  • Create a MetaTrader 4 or 5 Account

Here are these steps, in detail:

1. Choose a MetaTrader 4 or 5 Broker

The first step to opening a Forex trading account is choosing a Forex broker that offers the MT4 or MT5 trading platform. Choosing a broker can be an overwhelming task due to the number of choices out there. Be sure to do your research carefully and, if you need some help, have a look at our guide on 'How to Find the Best CFD & Forex Brokers'. This will help with the process.

At Admiral Markets UK, we offer customers the opportunity to trade with either the MetaTrader 4 or the MetaTrader 5 trading platforms for absolutely free.

2. Download MetaTrader 4 or 5

Whether you're interested in opening a live or demo trading account, you'll have to download the MetaTrader 4 or 5 software to your computer.

If you're using Windows, you can visit the MetaTrader 4 download page, submit your details and start your download! For those of you with Macs, you may be interested in reading our article 'How to Install MetaTrader 4 For Mac' to help you begin. Or you can visit the MT4 or MT5 download page for Macs and try it.

Once you've downloaded the installation file, open it to start the installation. When the download is complete, move to the next section to learn how to open a MetaTrader 4 or MetaTrader 5 account.

3. Create a MetaTrader 4 or 5 Account

Now that you've downloaded the MT4 platform, you'll have to open an MT4 or MT5 trading account with your chosen MetaTrader broker.

For those who are new to trading, we recommend practicing on a demo account before trading on a live MetaTrader 4 or 5 account. The process for opening a live account doesn't differ much from that of a demo account.

If you would like more detailed instructions with all the above information and more on how to set up a Forex trading account, you may be interested in our article, How to Choose the Best Forex Trading Account.

Once you've done some trading, you may also need to know how to withdraw money from a forex trading account.

How to Withdraw Money From a Forex Trading Account

With an Admiral Markets account, you can withdraw funds from within the Traders Room. This process is outlined in the video below:

Trade With Admiral Markets

Admiral Markets offers the ability to trade with Forex and CFDs on 40+ currencies, with the latest market updates and technical analysis provided for FREE! Click the banner below to open your live account today!

About Admiral Markets

Admiral Markets is a multi-award winning, globally regulated Forex and CFD broker, offering trading on over 8,000 financial instruments via the world's most popular trading platforms: MetaTrader 4 and MetaTrader 5. Start trading today!

This material does not contain and should not be construed as containing investment advice, investment recommendations, an offer of or solicitation for any transactions in financial instruments. Please note that such trading analysis is not a reliable indicator for any current or future performance, as circumstances may change over time. Before making any investment decisions, you should seek advice from independent financial advisors to ensure you understand the risks.

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