Expedia And SimplyTravelOnline.com Let's You Book Reservations At 300,000 Hotels Worldwide Using Bitcoins
Simply Travel’s Ceo, Gregor Amon Says, “There Will Be Lots Of Improvements Over The Coming Weeks, With Conversion For Additional Currencies, Added Suppliers, Partnerships, Etc.. However, We Are Ready To Accept Bitcoin For Hotel Reservations In Over 300,000 Hotels.”
We are pleased to announce a new sponsor in SimplyTravelOnline.com. Simply Travel performed the heavy lifting, and helped us with airline tickets and hotel reservations for the Crypto-Currency Conference coming up in Atlanta on October 5th. And yes, we paid with bitcoin.
Can a newly married couple survive when every living necessity can only be purchased with "cryptocurrency"? Married less than two weeks, and fresh off their honeymoon, Austin and Beccy Craig embark on an adventure to find out. Life on Bitcoin is a film documenting their history-making quest.
For 100+ days from late July to the end of October, 2013, this intrepid couple place themselves in a social experiment where they are compelled to evangelize the controversial and fascinating bitcoin to survive.
Simple purchases most people take for granted become complicated or even impossible. It is a strange and challenging paradox in the modern world, where getting gasoline requires 100 miles of driving, planning, and several hours. Forgetting to take lunch to work means not eating at all. Getting cell phone service means meeting someone to swap a payment for bitcoin. Even the most mundane purchases go down like a drug deal. After two months and considerable effort to achieve normalcy, living and working in their hometown while living on bitcoin, the newlyweds set out to circumnavigate the world.
Meet the believers and the skeptics, the entrepreneurs and the cryptographers, those who just want to get rich and those who want to change the world. Is bitcoin the future of money? Does it mark the reordering of the global financial system? Or is it an internet fad destined to implode? Life on Bitcoin explores the stateless monetary upstart which wants to be a revolution.
Simply Travel - MEM Services is a global wholesaler of hotel rooms, airline tickets and rental cars. Our solutions involve a back office booking tool, B2C engines that can be fully customized to your layout and a free API. As a Simply Travel client you can easily create as many sub agents as you want and work with them on a net or gross rate basis. Contact us now via the sign up link or via live chat.
Customers and interested persons from the bitcoin community are welcome to contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Travel bookings giant Expedia will start accepting bitcoin for hotel reservations, becoming the first major travel company to accept payments in cryptocurrency.
“Bitcoin is a great example of how Expedia is investing early in an array of payment options to give our customers and partners more choice in the ways they interact with us,” the company said in a press release announcing the move.
Expedia said bitcoin will be integrated into the payment options for customers at check-out, sitting alongside payment methods like PayPal and Visa.
“Customers simply indicate bitcoin as their method of payment and then follow a few steps to safely and securely complete each transaction,” the company said.
The company’s entry to the bitcoin economy could have a significant impact due to the size of its business. Consumers booked 146 million room nights through Expedia last year, for example. Expedia competes with firms like Priceline in the online booking space.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Expedia will adopt bitcoin acceptance in other areas depending on the market response to hotel bookings for bitcoin. The company will be processing transactions through Coinbase, but won’t hold any of the bitcoin it receives – rather cash out a daily settlement of US dollars.
The San Francisco company currently handles transactions for over 32,000 businesses worldwide.
Expedia joins other major retailers and service providers in the US who have started accepting bitcoin. This group is led by electronics retailer Overstock.com, which reported more than $1.6m in bitcoin sales for the year in May.
At the end of May, pay TV provider DISH Network became the largest company by market cap to accept bitcoin. The firm, which is valued at $27bn and has 14 million subscribers, will begin accepting the cryptocurrency in the third quarter of the year.
If the reception is good, the company said it expects to bring bitcoin to its other service lines as well.
“This is one of those ideas that seemed to have sprung from three different places all at once,” said Michael Gulmann, Expedia’s vice president of global product, explaining how the company arrived at the decision. The company’s engineers were starting to think about bitcoin, and the company’s product and business developers were as well, he explained. They also were hearing from customers.
The company is starting with hotels essentially as a test of the system, he explained. “We want to start at a reasonable, small place,” he said, and see if it will be feasible to expand it to other parts of the business. If the trial works well, and if customer support is there, he expects the company will start taking bitcoin for other bookings as well. “Absolutely, absolutely, absolutely,” he said.
Expedia, which is using Coinbase for bitcoin processing, won’t hold the digital currency it receives, but that’s not “a statement on bitcoin, pro or con,” Mr. Gulmann explained. Rather, Coinbase’s default setting is for a daily settlement back into U.S. dollars.
Bitcoin has grown over the past 18 months beyond the small band of enthusiasts, libertarians, and anarchists who had been using it since its inception in 2009. More than 60,000 retailers now accept it world-wide, and it is attracting more venture-capital funding, which is running at a pace 30% higher than last year.
Mr. Gulmann said the company isn’t expecting a groundswell of bitcoin-related business, despite the internal optimism about it. But they do see it as part of their future, primarily because they see it as another way to serve their customers. “If we’re solving a customer need then we’re going to take it,” he said.
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