These days, we are constantly advised on the advantages of cryptocurrency as a form of payment – low transaction fees, increased security and an inclusive outlook – and how it will transform the industry for merchants and users alike. But where can we actually spend crypto and what should we be spending it on? Is it not better to hold on to it?
The potentially massive swings in cryptocurrency value might leave some reticent at the idea of buying, spending, or investing in this novel form of money. But really, at the end of the day, it’s still money and a way of exchanging value – an idea that has been around for centuries; long before traditional tender was invented.
Indeed, using cryptocurrencies can be considered an even more secure way to make purchases, particularly online, with cryptocurrency payment platforms offering buyer protection and lower, more transparent fees for both buyers and sellers. With this in mind, we’ve rounded up some ideas for your next purchase with cryptocurrency.
Whether it’s out of necessity due to an appliance breaking, or a desire to possess the latest smartphone, electronics purchases are often at the forefront of our spending. In Europe alone, €56 million was spent on consumer electronics in 2018. It seems pretty logical to use technology to purchase technology and with platforms like Newegg and Phone House now accepting cryptocurrency payments, you can treat yourself to that new laptop you’ve been coveting or replace the washing machine that recently clunked out.
When it comes to booking a holiday, we all want the most elegant accommodation and most convenient flight itinerary at the most budget-friendly price possible. This often leads to us purchasing the best deals we find from third-party vendors and not from an airline or hotel directly. This in itself isn’t a problem, but fraud certainly is.
Not all third-party vendors are to be trusted and sadly, the tourism industry is no stranger to scams. This is why making holiday plans using crypto is a great idea; you can avoid risks with buyer-protected payment platforms that mediate on your behalf if you are scammed by a fraudulent travel company. A number of travel sites now accept major coins when it comes to booking flights (AirBaltic,SurfAir), hotels (CryptoCribs, GoEureka) and car rentals (EZ Rent-A-Car). Cheapair and Bitcoin.Travel are just some of the full-scope travel agents now accepting cryptocurrencies.
3) Sports merchandise and match tickets
Sport unites many from different countries through shared affiliations to specific sports clubs and sporting heroes, just like crypto transcends borders and brings together like-minded people with a common interest. Using crypto to buy sports merchandise and match tickets is becoming increasingly available, with clubs such as Portugal’s Benfica F.C. now accepting cryptocurrency payments on their website. Making match tickets and club merchandise available for purchase using cryptocurrency means that a fan in, say, South America, can buy an authentic jersey from the European club that they support without facing high currency conversion rates and fees.
4) Fashion and beauty
According to Cosmetics Europe, the European cosmetics industry accounted for €77.6 billion in 2017. There’s no denying the amount of time and money we spend on fashion and beauty, so why not start using our crypto to make these purchases? Platforms like Lolli even allow you to earn Bitcoin for free as you spend on glamorous brands including Sephora, Lululemon and Bloomingdale’s.
The gaming industry is one never to be underestimated, with dedicated gamers residing all over the globe. These internationally dispersed gamers can now come together not only while playing online but also in how they buy their gaming essentials. With companies such as Microsoft accepting Bitcoin for its online Windows and Xbox stores, gaming is another way to spend your cryptocurrency and make the once fantastical idea of using decentralised digital currencies a reality.
‘Hodling’ (holding onto your crypto in the hope that it will increase in value) is also an option, and one that many would advocate for at this point in time. It’s true that cryptocurrencies are still volatile but with the fluctuations in geopolitics we’re currently witnessing, traditional fiat currencies such as the British pound, the Argentine peso, and the US dollar are also showing a degree of movement and unpredictability. So to this we say, why not embrace a new universal way of spending money by making everyday purchases using the currencies of inclusion?
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by the author should not be considered as financial advice. We do not give advice on financial products.