Prominent Latvian Airline, airBaltic has reaffirmed its crypto stance by allowing consumers to make bookings with various digital assets. It involves Ether (ETH), Dogecoin (DOGE), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). Those tokens have accompanied the list of four USD-pegged stablecoins, including GUSD, USDC, PAX, and BUSD, to its payment options. The Airline has already been receiving Bitcoin since 2014, making it the first airline company to accept cryptocurrency.
The Latvian company has collaborated with BitPay to process its crypto transactions. Moreover, the Airline clarifies that the ticket prices will not be in the supported crypto despite accepting crypto payments. The prices will be available in euros, and the payment processor will convert the received digital currencies into fiat at the current exchange rate. The cryptocurrency payment gateway service BitPay will handle digital currency payments to fiat upon ticket purchase. Crypto payments on airBaltic’s website will not constitute a supplementary transaction cost and are accessible for flights booked at least five days before the scheduled departure.
Crypto Adoption Grows in the Travel Industry
Various mainstream companies are now accepting top cryptocurrencies as payment. However, airBaltic is amongst few to accept Dogecoin, developed from an internet meme. The meme coin has been swiftly growing in popularity recently, possibly led by the constant social media support from Tesla’s Elon Musk. After dozens of his DOGE tweets, the token gained recognition from other personalities. DOGE has become a sensation among renowned individuals. Moreover, Dogecoin even entered the NBA as the Dallas Mavericks approved payments with it.
Crypto adoption is increasing rapidly in the travel and hospitality industry, with travel agencies, airlines, and hotel approving consumers to make booking employing cryptocurrencies. Crypto-friendly travel agencies such as Travala possess an extensive network of supported airlines and hotels that allow digital currency payments. Besides flight tickets and bookings, the aviation industry is also using blockchain technology for various use cases. The requirement for digitalization amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic appears to have also supported a more comprehensive focus on utilizing the emerging tech. In February, Air France advocated a pilot scheme that would include employing a blockchain-based system to confirm the COVID-19 test results of passengers.
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