Airbnb Users Can Now Use Cryptos for Rentals
According to an announcement made via Twitter by the mobile phone refill and cryptocurrency gift card provider Bitrefill, users can now pay for their Airbnb rentals using cryptocurrencies.
Paying for Airbnb Bookings Using Cryptos
Bitrefill’s Tweet stated that customers could pay for their Airbnb bookings using one of five cryptocurrencies – BTC (Bitcoin), ETH (Ethereum), LTC (Litecoin), DASH (Dash) and DOGE (Dogecoin).
The company clarified that this did not mean that Airbnb would directly accept or even handle any cryptocurrency transactions. Instead, customers could use the Bitrefill platform to purchase gift cards (vouchers) with the 5 cryptos and then use those cards to book their rentals with Airbnb. Customers would be able to buy these cards in denominations of $25, $50 as well as $100.
Bitrefill stated that at this time, this facility was available only to residents of the United States and that only a US-based payment method could be used to buy those gift cards. Added to that, these gift cards could only be applied to bookings that were for less than 28 nights.
Last week, the gift card provider also announced that it would support subscriptions for Netflix, where customers could pay using the same 5 cryptocurrencies.
Besides these two major companies, Bitrefill also has gift cards other merchants such as Hulu, Amazon, eBay and others, depending on the location.
Cryptocurrencies Entering the Travel Space
Cryptocurrencies have seen a gradual adoption in the travel industry. For example, in August 2018, the state government of Queensland in Australia announced a grant to a crypto startup as part of its $8.3 million innovation fund. The government was hoping to boost tourism for the state by offering travel bookings using cryptocurrencies.
Next, in February this year, the state public transport card in Argentina, Sistema Unico de Boleto Electronico (SUBE) announced that the card could be topped up using BTC. The step was taken to give people greater access to new technology.
However, not all inroads into the travel space have been positive. Last year in June, the major travel booking platform Expedia.com stopped accepting BTC as a payment option. However, the company had done so quietly, not announcing this change on either social media or on its website.
The company was one of the early adopters, and had started accepting BTC as a payment option as far back as 2014, when it had entered into a partnership with Coinbase.