After software developer Felix Weiss from Luxembourg attracted worldwide attention two years ago, by traveling the world with Bitcoin at his disposal, Hard Fork asks the question: Has this feat become easier in 2018?
When Weiss left on his world trip in January 2015 Bitcoin had crashed to around $200 per BTC, but started to slowly climb back en-route which he said had helped him to complete his 18-month journey. He said that the easiest country had been the US, particularly San Francisco, where Bitcoin acceptance was widespread around the city.
He struggled in Cuba having to revert to cash. In Asia, he said his cash usage again was high and found a higher degree of Bitcoin acceptance in South America.
Hard Fork’s Neer Varshney researched how this picture might pan out in today’s crypto space by contacting airlines: the first port of call for any travelers. He found that there are multiple airlines accepting cryptocurrency payments including CheapAir.com, who started accepting cryptocurrency payments as far back as 2013. The company now accepts Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Dash payments.
Other companies offering cryptocurrency booking services included Expedia, BTCtrip.com, Destinia.com, Japan’s Peach Aviation, California’s Surf Air, and Latvia’s airBaltic, and A Bit Sky.
Finding a placed to stay has become even easier as most of these companies also allow you to pay in crypto for accommodation too, although it depends on exactly which part of the world the traveler chooses.
Eating is not quite such a simple affair with limited restaurants and cafes around the globe accepting Bitcoin and other currencies. Although, CoinMap can help travelers find a Bitcoin-accepting venue for the next meal. La Sirene in Manhattan now accepts Bitcoin. Some companies now offer a gift card service which can be used to purchase food coupons for Bitcoin.
Shopping has become easier with many online stores now accepting the popular cryptocurrency, and as revealed in the last week if you land in Brisbane, the International airport there will be welcoming crypto payments in all its terminal shops and cafe’s this year.
The last resort, of course, is to hunt down a Bitcoin ATM. This is good news for the traveler, as there are now over 3000 such ATMs worldwide, and if South America is the list, then Argentina must be a destination for the discerning Bitcoin traveler, with its plan to install 30,000 machines in that country alone. Europe and the US are increasingly installing machines to keep up with customer demand, most machines offering Bitcoin and often a choice of other major digital currencies.
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