The World’s First Crypto Airport — A Test Case For Crypto Adoption
Many businesses have been jumping onboard the Bitcoin marketing hype, but what we are doing at the Brisbane Airport is more than just a gimmicky news article.
This is an ambitious project to enable genuine blockchain payments across several prominent cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Dash, Litecoin and Ethereum, with new integrations coming soon.
We want to shift the focus away from financial speculation and onto the underlying technology behind cryptocurrencies. This is not merely another method to pay for your coffee. The technology behind this new system is fundamentally different. It has the power to change the world, disrupt existing systems and spearhead innovation.
The project will highlight the benefits of blockchain enable payment technologies as an alternative to the current Visa/MasterCard system, and will provide much needed competition to the financial services sector.
What is involved?
The project is focused on innovation and education. Users will have to use digital wallets like Coinomi, Loaf wallet, Dash wallet, Jaxx, Edge, Bitcoin.com and others.
Merchants will need to be aware of the various cryptocurrencies and the concepts behind digital currencies that take no physical form.
Every transaction at the airport will be recorded on a public ledger and published on a live webpage for the world to see. Users can choose to remain anonymous or log in to leave their mark and comment on their transactions.
Why an airport?
Over 20 million people are expected to pass through Brisbane Airport terminals this year. Most Bitcoin transactions take place online, out of the public eye. Having physical stores that accept cryptocurrency brings an increased level of visibility and a wider audience. If these stores are based in an airport, the visibility effect is multiplied due to the large numbers of travelers. This brings mainstream exposure and legitimacy for our growing movement.
Why the travel industry?
It makes a lot of sense for travellers to move around the globe without having to deal with multiple nation-based currencies. No need to deal with exchange rates or leftover currencies after a trip. No risk of credit card fraud. Australia, and Queensland in particular, is rich with natural tourism assets like the Gold Coast beaches and the Great Barrier Reef, which makes it a perfect tourist destination. You can even choose to travel anonymously into the Australian Outback.
What other blockchain features are being implemented at the Airport?
Payments is the first step. We are very excited to be working with several airlines who are exploring loyalty points on the blockchain and integrating their booking engine directly into our system.
Another great use case for blockchain technology at the airports is to help trace the origin of goods and build consumer trust in retail products. In Brisbane Airport the retailers are finding there is a strong market for premium natural Australian products like wine, honey, abalone and natural supplements. Overseas consumers want to know that when they buy a jar of premium honey, that the honey originates from a local farm in Queensland and not mass produced from a factory overseas.
What are the some of the challenges?
Visa and MasterCard payments are very much ingrained in our lives. Blockchain payment systems at retail fronts is a new type of technology to the general public. A key challenge is educating both users and merchants on how to use digital wallets. The businesses we work with support the cryptocurrency movement and invest the time to train their staff to embrace this new tech. We hope the crypto community will make an effort to try this tech and support the businesses in return.
We officially launch in mid April~!
But Brisbane Airport is just the beginning. It is the start of a network of tourism providers which we have built across Queensland Australia that take payments in digital currencies. From airport transfers, to hotels, services from restaurants and cafes to barbers and spas. See our growing list of crypto merchants that take payments in Bitcoin and other crypto currencies. You can find some of them here: https://www.travelbybit.com/merchants
What about the rest of Australia?
We receive over 10 new merchant sign up request a week from all over Australia. We have merchants now in Darwin, Noosa, Cairns, Byron Bay, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and even down in Tasmania. There is a ground swell of community support behind this digital movement. We are currently working to raise investment to scale up for growth. Most importantly we will continue to work with local crypto community groups in each area to grow this initiative from a grass roots level.
Are there regulatory challenges with your system?
Our merchant system is a web based application. There is no special hardware required. It is simple to use and roll out. We help merchants hedge against price volatility by providing a fiat gateway option and we provide tax and accounting reporting functionality to help merchants remain compliant to Australia regulations. We want to take this technology mainstream and we continue to work with regulators through FinTech Australia. As with most innovation fronts, we can not afford to wait for regulation, we the build the network first and then help shape regulation. It is up to us the community to let legislators know what we the people would like to see.
What digital currencies do you currently facilitate?
We currently support Bitcoin, Dash, Litecoin and Ethereum. We are working on integration with new coins which show the most potential for payments. In fact we are currently going through a community vote to add NEM.
Our official launch will be in April 2018 !
“At the heart of it- cryptocurrencies is a social movement. There are those who believe and will support us and there are those who would like to see us fail. We are inviting Crypto Believers from all over the world to come visit Brisbane Australia and show the rest of the world what’s possible.”
This is very much a community initiative. We are seeking donations to provide airdrops to airport merchant staff so that they can familiarise themselves with digital currency transactions. All funds donated will be redistributed to airport staff in the currency they were donated in.
We appreciate your support. Please donate to:
CEO of TravelbyBit