Are you planning for a vacation? Where do you think is best for you to go? Oops, you’ll need to book trips, pay for the airplane tickets, hotel, food, and some other things that’ll make the journey a memorable one. 

What if you can make these payments with your cryptocurrency instead of having to exchange fiat currency in every country you get to? Would your money be more valuable in the new currency or less valuable? Why not let’s make payments easier by buying crypto and paying for your travel getaways with it?

The travel industry has been in constant evolution and now seems to be an excellent time to remove the currency barrier it has faced and still faces. So, let’s dive into cryptocurrency’s influence in the travel industry and how things can improve. 

Cryptocurrency and the Travel industry

The travel industry has been an ever-increasing one. It houses many sectors from real estate and transportation to tourism, even improving the local economy. With space travel being a norm in the coming years, it would only be a matter of time before everyone starts accepting crypto payments for our travels. Wait! We already do. 

Since its advent in 2009, the fact that there can be a decentralized mode of payment and makes cross-border payment so convenient has not yet sat well with a lot of people. The crypto method of payment is still largely attributed to finance and how it sits nicely in the travel and holiday industry needs to be studied. Perhaps that’s why we’re here. 

Popular Companies that Accept Payment in Crypto

There is an increasing trend in travel agencies that accept bitcoin as a mode of payment. Until 2020 when the coronavirus disrupted life as we knew it and caused a pause in almost all corners of the world, the concept of crypto travel looked well and alive. 

There are quite a number of companies that leverage cryptocurrency for traveling. 

Destina

Destina is a Spanish online travel agency that has been allowing customers to pay for its services with Bitcoin since 2014. Although crypto payments merely account for roughly 2% of the platform’s sales, it has attracted more young and wealthy customers worldwide by giving its customers the option for crypto payment.

Since crypto holders are always looking for ways to spend cryptocurrency to improve its relevance in real life, their plan made sense. However, there was just one problem. 

As highlighted by senior management staff, there was a direct relationship between the number of bookings the company receives and the price of Bitcoin. The more Bitcoin increases in value, the more the bookings.

All these changed with the sudden increase in bitcoin’s price around 2020. Since then, the relationship has been indirect. More people are inclined towards spending on booking when the price is low, and during a bull run, the fear of missing out prevents many from spending their travel tokens. 

Virgin Galactic

The fight for space travel is getting heated.  The top three players, SpaceX, Blue Origin, and Virgin Galactic, have all spent billions of dollars on the daring technology to make space tourism as widespread as commuting from home to work. One of them seems to be ahead of the curve; Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic. 

In 2013, Branson admitted that Bitcoin would be revolutionary, and its supply cap makes it more secure than our traditional currencies. He believed that one revolutionary company should integrate another revolutionary technology into its payment system (referring to Virgin Galactic accepting Bitcoin as a payment model). 

Virgin Galactic’s first Bitcoin payment was from a flight attendant in Hawaii.

GetYourGuide

GetYourGuide is an online travel agency and booking site with a head office in Berlin. They started giving exposure to cryptocurrency in June 2021 via Dogecoin, and the transactions are processed via BitPay as it seeks to gain market share in the USA. 

The CEO believes that the future of travel hinges well on crypto methods and transactions, and Dogecoin is the first of many tokens that the company will accept. 

Since people want to keep their crypto mobile and running, travel seems to be one of the most feasible sectors where this can work. His quote “Take dogecoin now into the real world; get a real-world, kinetic experience” resonates well amongst Gen Z and Gen Alpha

Travala

Travala is the largest travel company to accept cryptocurrency for travel. Fun fact: it also has its travel token ($AVA). The Australian-based company uses Bitcoin, and its governance token, Ava, as crypto payment methods for its over 2 million accommodations worldwide.

The company has its processing platform to convert the travel tokens to cash for its suppliers, and we’re not surprised it does since over 70% of its $1million worth of booking made weekly is done via crypto. 

The company’s management believes crypto journeys are inevitable and has followed up on its word by integrating 25 other cryptos into its payment system. 

According to the CEO of Travala, crypto payment offers you a near to free and an instant alternative to fiat. By paying with crypto, you enjoy everything the blockchain has to offer at no extra cost.

There are also near-zero chances of your transactions being denied, long processing hours, or even substantial processing fees. The payment problems travelers face when on journeys are removed with crypto travel. 

This has been a big plus to the crypto world, as we can have other real-life relevance of crypto.

Risks Attached to Crypto Travel

Volatility

The significant risk with accepting Cryptocurrency for the travel industry is volatility. The prices of Bitcoin or Ethereum accepted might fluctuate rapidly, and other tokens are not spared. This might affect the company’s margin lines. Seeing that most travel agencies operate on thin margins, many of them will have a hard time integrating crypto methods of payment. 

Widespread adoption

Scalability is a significant issue with cryptocurrencies. For example, most travel agencies that accept crypto would need to convert back to fiat to pay their suppliers, and this does not look like changing anytime soon. However, with more cryptocurrencies meeting certain use cases and the issuance of government-backed tokens, which regain their value in relation to the currency they track, there might be a boost in the number of vendors who accept bitcoin cash, tezos, and other cryptocurrencies globally.

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