In Queensland, Australia, Crypto Pays For Holidays
Australians have been paying with crypto for a while now, including the use of bitcoin on the Living Room of Satoshi to pay for utility bills.
But a town in Queensland has taken that a notch higher, with more than 30 businesses said to accept crypto payments from holidaymakers. Residents in Agnes Water and the Town of 1770 now refer to themselves as the first “crypto-friendly” tourist destination in Australia.
Businesses in the town say that the main goal is to attract a growing number of international tourists, some of whom have found it easier to pay for goods and services using cryptocurrencies. Local people then leverage payment processors to instantly convert the crypto to Australian dollars.
According to Gordon Christian, a real estate agent with influence in the town, local businesses have gradually begun supporting crypto technology as a way of encouraging more tourists to visit the locality to boost its main economic attraction.
The initiative got the support of several cryptocurrency groups from Japan, whose visit to the town has greatly promoted by the “pay with crypto” campaign.
Even though the Australian government hasn’t officially recognized crypto as money or any other currency for that matter, adoption has continued to gather speed.
Currently, you will find all types of businesses with the “Bitcoin Accepted Here” sticker—be it online shops or brick-and-mortar retailers. Local cafes, hairdressers, and jewelers have embraced crypto payments in numbers that keep growing.
Christian noted that crypto was getting big because once people begin to use coins like bitcoin, it becomes like a “social movement” and users tend to support those businesses that accept such payments.
He added that blockchain technology and crypto had opened up a “whole new way” in which businesses presented and offered their services. Other advantages like data storage and supply chain management had led to a new world of possibilities.
The same excitement saw by the Queensland start-up TravelbyBit launch its point-of-sale (POS) app through which travelers can pay with crypto at the Brisbane Airport.
The startup’s CEO Caleb Yeoh has previously said that although uptake has been slow, the promise is there as its website has seen increased visits by users who inquire about its services.
He noted that paying with bitcoin or crypto is a lot easier and saves time, including the hassle of having to go through multiple currencies. Sometimes the exchange rates confuse, or simply travelers are conned by money changers.
But if one travels with bitcoin as a “global currency” things become a lot easier, transparent and efficient, with merchants also enjoying protection from credit card fraud.
In total, 31 businesses in Agnes Water and the town of 1770 have registered to accept bitcoin payments, and these include restaurants, world-class resorts, tour companies, local pubs, and spas.