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Cryptocurrency for Travel and Bitcoin is now accepted-But what should you do ?

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Cryptocurrency for Travel

Cryptocurrency for Travel and Bitcoin is now accepted-But what should you do?

Cryptocurrencies are paving its way in tourism

“Cryptocurrency is making several inroads into the travel space,” says Daniel Sloan, co-founder of Future Tech Software Labs, a blockchain and cryptocurrency investment firm in Austin, Texas.

The integration of tourism with cryptocurrencies has skyrocketed in a matter of months. People today use cryptocurrencies as they have for centuries. The gateway to using cryptocurrencies to book more things is open and running at an extremely high pace. You can book flights, hotels, pay in restaurants through crypto wallets. Let’s take a deep look at what benefits you can get from cryptocurrency and who allows you to make cryptocurrency payments.

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A Travala.com survey this year concluded that 22% of US travelers plan to use cryptocurrency to pay for part of their next trip. In the second quarter of 2021, the latest period for which figures are available, 70% of the nearly $10 million in bookings made on Travala.com used cryptocurrency.

“ The number of bookings using cryptocurrencies has grown steadily month after month to record highs, even during the pandemic,” says Juan Otero, CEO of Travala.com. “It’s a sign that more people have cryptocurrencies and want to spend them on travel. “

Web search statistics suggest he’s right. In June 2021, there were 3,200 searches for keywords related to travel and cryptocurrency, compared to almost none a year ago, according to Similarweb, a web analytics company. It’s a “special” area of ​​interest, says Alisha Kapur, travel consultant at Similarweb.

What is called Crypto tourism?

Cryptocurrency tourism is a form of tourism that caters to cryptocurrency enthusiasts by offering travel tours that can either be paid for with digital currency or offer lectures or courses on cryptocurrency as part of the tour.

How do you book your travel through cryptocurrency?

Among the first movers in cryptocurrency payments:

Online travel agencies– In 2013, CheapAir.com was one of the first online travel agencies to accept Bitcoin payments. Online travel sites like Travala.com now allow you to book more than 3 million travel products worldwide.

Airlines- In 2014, Latvian flag carrier airBaltic became the first airline in the world to accept Bitcoin payments. Several other airlines have since joined the cryptocurrency revolution, including LOT Polish Airlines and Virgin Galactic.

Hotels– For the hotel industry, cryptocurrency is still a marginal payment method. Luxury hotel brand Kessler Collection recently announced that it will accept Bitcoin, Dogecoin and Ether, among other payment methods. Kessler’s hotels include the Beaver Creek Lodge in Beaver Creek, Colorado, and the Elliot Park Hotel in Minneapolis.

Advantages of using crypto for traveling

For travelers, the biggest benefit of using cryptocurrency is avoiding foreign exchange fees. If you’ve ever been abroad, you know this: You have to exchange your dollars for another currency, often paying an exorbitant fee or dealing with an unfavorable exchange rate. Cryptocurrencies eliminate a lot of these problems.

“A bitcoin ATM can allow you to convert your dollars into bitcoins at a gas station in Pennsylvania — and then convert them into euros in France,” explains Bryan Routledge, associate professor of finance at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business. He says you can reduce or avoid any fees altogether, saving you money.

Cryptocurrencies also offer some price stability in countries where currencies are unstable.

“Crypto Payments can also potentially help travelers avoid exchange rate fluctuations,” explains Siyu Wang, an assistant professor of economics at Wichita State University’s Institute for the Study of Economic Growth.

But while countries like El Salvador have embraced cryptocurrencies, others have banned them. According to Wang, Algeria, Bolivia, China, Egypt, Nepal and Vietnam do not allow you to use bitcoins for your purchases. And currently it is a grey area in countries like Russia and Pakistan where it is not banned but also not accepted as payment.

Some disadvantages

Unfortunately, even cryptocurrencies can be volatile. And this is one of the biggest disadvantages of using a digital tender. Your Bitcoin and Ether can pay for a plane ticket one day, but can only buy you a meal at a restaurant the next.

Also, there is virtually no consumer protection when you pay with cryptocurrency. Unlike credit cards, which allow you to dispute certain charges under the Fair Credit Billing Act, you have no such rights when you pay with cryptocurrencies. The Federal Trade Commission received so many complaints from consumers that it issued a warning against paying with Bitcoin a few years ago.

However, the part about booking with cryptocurrency being easy – it’s not for everyone.

For some bookings, the user experience can be “highly technical and requires a lot of confidence,” says Pedro Renaud Anderson, COO of Winding Tree, a blockchain company that specializes in travel. “Booking travel using cryptocurrency is still quite unusual and provides very little real value to travelers.”

Sites that accept cryptocurrencies often charge more than those that don’t.

Here are some reasons for you to book your next trip through cryptocurrency;-

Before you open your digital wallet, you need to consider the pros and cons of booking a trip with Bitcoin. More people are doing it now than ever before. But the best reason to pay for your next flight, hotel or tour with cryptocurrency is that if enough people do it, it could reverse a badly broken system.

Imagine a world without credit cards, where you have to pay ridiculous fees to access your own money, and where we are no longer slaves to a loyalty program. Digital currencies promise to end a system that has forced half of America deeper into debt, while enriching a select few who have learned to play with points and miles. Isn’t it time we freed ourselves from these bonds?

Tips for booking your trip with cryptocurrency

How to get your hands on cryptocurrency- Check out a cryptocurrency exchange like Binance, Coinbase or Gemini. If you have a PayPal account, you can buy Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash.

What to do with your rewards- New blockchain technology “tokenizes” rewards and turns them into a form of digital currency. You can cut your credit card and stop worrying about that ridiculous annual fee. “Tokenization of rewards programs will have a big impact on increasing the flexibility and security of loyalty programs,” predicts Sloan of Future Tech Software Labs.

What to do if they don’t accept bitcoins- If your favorite airline or hotel doesn’t accept cryptocurrencies, give it a few months. “In the future, larger companies and tourism services will become more interested in accepting cryptocurrencies as payment,” predicts Andrew Hacker of Harrisburg University of Science and Technology.

Contributed by Ankit Raj Sharma

Edited by Imtiaz Ullah

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