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You Can Now Earn Bitcoin Rewards For Most Purchases (#GotBitcoin?)

Food delivery is about to get a little sweeter for the users of the bitcoin rewards platform Lolli. You Can Now Earn Bitcoin Rewards For Postmates Purchases (#GotBitcoin?)

The startup announced Wednesday that is has partnered with delivery service Postmates, making the popular app the latest partner for Lolli’s rewards program. One of the most popular food services, Postmates mobile app saw 2,094,920 downloads in the last 30 days alone per Crunchbase.

Launched in September 2019 on a seeding round $2.35 million. Lolli has added a range of new partners this summer including national grocery chain Safeway in July and Hotels.com in June. Lolli claims over 750 online retail partners including Walmart and Sephora, among others.

Lolli has said that about 40 percent of its users are new to the cryptocurrency scene.

Speaking with CoinDesk, Lolli co-founder and CEO Alex Adelman says Lolli remains committed to making bitcoin more mainstream.

“This is another step towards the mainstream adoption of bitcoin as Postmates is used daily by people across the US,” Adelman said. “One of Lolli’s objectives to make bitcoin a part of people’s everyday lives. Our partnership with Postmates achieves this.”

“Everybody eats and now you don’t have to feel guilty about ordering in when you’re stacking sats on each order,” Adelman added.

Updated: 8-27-2019

Bitcoin Rewards App Lolli Partners With Major US Pet Store Chain Petco (#GotBitcoin?)

Lolli, an app that provides Bitcoin (BTC) rewards to users when they shop with partner stores, has teamed up with major American pet retailer Petco.

The Rewards Deal With Petco

Lolli announced the new partnership in an official blog post on Aug. 23. In the announcement, the company notes that there are two new veins of rewards that come with the partnership. One is that Lolli users can earn up to 3.5% satoshis (sats) of their purchases on Petco’s website, Petco.com.

Another is that Lolli users can earn a flat 5,000 sats payment for sharing a photo of their dog and commenting on the partnership. A satoshi is 0.00000001 BTC. Therefore, these users would earn 0.00005 BTC for promoting the partnership with their dog photos. At press time, this amount of Bitcoin is equivalent to a little over $0.51.

Petco is the second-largest pet chain retailer in the United States, controlling nearly 20% of the market according to data from Statista.

Lolli’s Expansion With Other Stores

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Lolli partnered with the American grocery chain Safeway near the end of July. As is the case with the Petco partnership, Lolli announced that they would offer 3.5% back in BTC for their total purchases.

Lolli also partnered with the booking service Hotels.com back in June. This website apparently lists over 325,000 properties in approximately 19,000 locations globally.

Crypto.com: Buy, Sell and Pay With Crypto

You Can Now Earn Bitcoin Rewards For Postmates Purchases (#GotBitcoin?)

Updated: 9-5-2019

Coincheck Survey Service Allows Users to Trade Reward Points For Crypto

Cryptocurrency exchange Coincheck, a subsidiary of Japanese financial services firm Monex Group, partnered with marketing research company Macromill Group to launch the Coincheck Survey service that allows its users to exchange reward points for digital assets.

Survey Participants Can Earn Bitcoin

According to Monex Group’s official press release published on Sept. 4, customers will be able to “exchange Macromill Points, which are offered as compensation for participating in surveys,” for Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and Ripple’s XRP starting Sept. 10. The announcement states:

“In partnership with Macromill, a leading marketing research company that offers marketing solutions best suited for clients, Coincheck is expanding opportunities for an increase in the number of people who start investing in cryptocurrencies. […] Macromill typically offers Macromill Points to Macromill Monitors who participate in the surveys conducted by the company.

The launch of Coincheck Survey makes it possible for monitors to exchange those Macromill Points to cryptocurrencies.”

Crypto Loyalty Programs Are On The Rise In Japan

Per the release, a Coincheck account is required for “Macromill Monitors” to participate in the program.

According to Cointelegraph Japan, the program’s exchange rate will be 1 yen per point. It is also noted that “in addition to cashing for 1 yen per point, it can be exchanged for products, T-points, and Amazon gift certificates.”

As we reported on Aug. 20, Japanese cryptocurrency exchange bitFlyer and technology services company Tpoint Japan also announced a partnership that allows local customers to exchange loyalty program points for BTC and earn rewards for paying in crypto.

Updated: 11-12-2019

Alibaba Partners with Lolli to Allow US Shoppers Earn ‘Free Bitcoin’

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has partnered with Bitcoin (BTC) rewards shopping app Lolli, enabling its shoppers to earn 5% back in Bitcoin. Alibaba customers can now get Satoshis (sats), the smallest unit of Bitcoin currency, worth 0.00000001 BTC, when shopping “thousands of items online,” Lolli says.

World’s Biggest Retailer And Biggest One-Day Shopping Event

The partnership was announced on Singles Day, a shopping holiday that is celebrated in China on Nov. 11 and is considered to be the world’s biggest one-day shopping event. According to Lolli, Alibaba shoppers spent more than $31 billion on Singles Day in 2018.

Alex Adelman, CEO and co-founder at Lolli, pointed out that the new move is a milestone partnership for Lolli as Alibaba is the largest retailer and e-commerce company in the world.

He Stated:

“Our partnership allows our users to earn free bitcoin on millions of products online every day. Arguably the most important piece of this partnership is that it supports our mission of connecting the entire world through commerce.”

Feature Is Only Available In The United States

According to a Coindesk report, the new program will only be available for purchases in the United States. Aubrey Strobel, Lolli’s head of communications, reportedly claimed that residents in China will not be able to participate, and products would be shipped from China to U.S. users.

In the report, Adelman highlighted the firm’s plans to expand globally in 2020 and emphasized that the partnership is a great first step to connect China and the U.S. through Bitcoin and commerce.

Earlier today, Cointelegraph reported on Fold, one of the oldest Bitcoin shopping rewards apps, launching support for home-sharing giant Airbnb today. With the new feature, Fold users can get 3% back in Bitcoin on every stay and experience booked on the platform. The app works in selected countries including the U.S., Australia, Canada, Ireland, Mexico and the United Kingdom, depending on the specific brand.

Regarding Alibaba, the Chinese retail giant has not been friendly to Bitcoin to date. On Oct. 10, Alibaba’s digital payment arm Alipay reiterated its negative stance to Bitcoin, confirming that it will be banning all transactions identified as connected to Bitcoin.

Updated: 11-15-2019

Alibaba Denies ‘Partnership’ With Lolli, Highlighting Crypto Industry Pitfalls

On Monday, CoinDesk reported the shopping app Lolli was offering bitcoin rewards to U.S.-based Alibaba shoppers for Singles Day.

Alibaba Group representatives have since denied the “partnership” touted by Lolli CEO Alex Adelman. The fissure revealed a common misconception in the blockchain industry.

“One of Alibaba.com’s contractors hired a subcontractor who brokered an affiliate marketing program with Lolli. This was done without the knowledge of Alibaba.com,” an Alibaba spokesperson told CoinDesk. “Alibaba.com’s contractor is terminating the relationship with the subcontractor who was working with Lolli. As a result, Lolli should no longer promote or bring traffic to Alibaba.com.”

He added that Lolli “never had the right to claim a partnership with Alibaba.com or imply one with Alibaba Group.”

In response, Adelman said, “There has to be an integration for us to send sales to someone’s site.”

However inflated the promotion of this Singles Day campaign may have been, Adelman’s team wasn’t completely off-base. Contractual agreements seen by CoinDesk appeared to permit the usage of “Alibaba related keywords” in online materials. The startup had already been processing bitcoin rewards for AliExpress shoppers since May 2019.

According to Lolli’s head of communications, Aubrey Strobel, Alibaba.com itself trialed Lolli’s services for 24 hours during the Singles Day campaign, then deactivated “the partnership” after publicity drew attention to the trial.

Subsequent coverage of the announcement misrepresented the deal as Alibaba accepting bitcoin directly. As CoinDesk reported on Friday, Chinese regulators appear to be gearing up for a renewed crackdown on cryptocurrency exchange-related services.

“It seems as though there was a miscommunication on Alibaba’s end and while that’s unfortunate, we look forward to the possibility of working with Alibaba.com again in the future,” Strobel said in a statement. “In the interim, Alibaba Group’s AliExpress is still live on Lolli.”
Faux pas

As it stands, the root cause of the mixed messaging is unclear.

Blockchain companies often claim to have “partnerships” with brands when they really have an indirect affiliate contract or are merely working on a proof-of-concept. On the other hand, some paperwork with representatives from both parties had already been finalized and payments to shoppers were processed before the now-controversial announcement.

This also underscores the challenge of defining what a “partnership” really means at the intersection of e-commerce and crypto.

What the Lolli team saw as expanding on an existing client relationship during a mainstream holiday campaign by the flagship brand, Alibaba Group viewed as a private and “transactional” deal mediated by third parties, according to the Alibaba spokesperson. From Alibaba’s perspective, this was not an official partnership.

The spokesperson claimed there was no direct contact between Lolli and the Alibaba Group, despite the AliExpress rewards processed. The spokesperson added that Alibaba Group does not work with any bitcoin-related companies.

Updated: 11-27-2019

Can Crypto Platforms Help Loyalty Schemes In Shops Make A Comeback?

Retailers have been offering loyalty schemes for decades — but ensuring they are attractive enough to generate repeat customers is easier said than done.

Bond’s Loyalty Report, which surveyed 55,000 consumers in 2019, exposed these challenges in a stark way. Although 73% of those polled said they were more likely to recommend a brand with a good loyalty program, personalization is proving crucial for keeping these shoppers engaged — and just 22% are very satisfied that the rewards they are offered are matched to their individual interests.

Overall, retail initiatives are failing to keep up with customer demand. Just 44% are very satisfied with the programs they use. There are recurring issues that even the biggest companies are failing to address. Sometimes, their schemes are simply too complicated for users to get their heads around, leaving them unsure about what the points they have accrued are actually worth. In other cases, shoppers abandon programs because the returns are disappointing. With hundreds and even thousands of brands offering their own cards and accounts, the process of registering for each one individually and remembering to use them all can be overwhelming. And, on top of all this, too many retailers are failing to reach their target market on smartphones — either through instant messaging, social media or custom-built apps.

This led professional services firm KPMG to release a report calling for loyalty schemes to be given a wide-reaching rethink. Almost two-fifths of consumers polled encountered a problem with a loyalty program they used over a six-month period. But here’s the thing: Businesses can hit a lucrative sweet spot if they get their proposition right. KPMG’s research also revealed that 2 in 3 shoppers end up making special trips to earn a reward on a compelling loyalty program — and better still, 3 in 5 shoppers would actually be prepared to pay a little more for goods and services if they had the chance to accrue points, discounts or free products.

Transforming The Loyalty Market

What’s the solution for giving consumers what they want and ensuring that loyalty programs are viable for businesses? Well, with crypto and blockchain already upending countless other industries, it seems inevitable that this one would be ripe for disruption too.

Digital tokens are beginning to gain momentum, attracting younger audiences who may not be interested or engaged with credit-card loyalty programs or frequent-flyer initiatives. Plus, given how many schemes in the fiat world offer rewards that end up expiring all of a sudden, cryptocurrencies have the benefit of being more permanent. Major players such as Rakuten are exploring this potential, developing a coin that loyal users could convert into cold, hard cash if they wanted to. Other brands are building platforms where customers are rewarded for frequent purchases with points that can be exchanged for Bitcoin.

Businesses are starting to get fed up with investing so much in offering loyalty schemes that end up inactive. Retailers and merchants are paying tens of billions of dollars a year to companies that provide the infrastructure for such initiatives — and research suggests that blockchain could slash these costs dramatically.

For many crypto-based loyalty scheme providers, it’s also about placing the power back in the hands of consumers. Attitudes are beginning to change. Back in the day, it used to be the case that points accrued from a coffee shop would have to be spent at that same chain. But now, multiple brands are coming together under one roof — enabling them to attract a wider audience and welcome shoppers through their doors who may not have made a purchase before.

“A Token Of Discovery”

One company that’s making a foray into the crypto-focused loyalty market is MozoX, which bills itself as a “token of discovery.”

Although its concept is firmly rooted in the future, the company has taken a novel approach by blending the realms of e-commerce and brick-and-mortar retail. It is aiming to motivate shoppers to return to offline stores — driving footfall in malls. The platform’s vision is to entice the public by enabling them to receive MozoX tokens through airdrops established by participating retail outlets, malls and venues simply by visiting their offline locations or by making a purchase. Over time, these tokens can be accrued and redeemed against products and services at any of these venues — “giving shoppers choice, flexibility and convenience,” according to the company.

MozoX says that its cryptocurrency will be easy to transfer and trade on major exchanges, storable in major wallets and purchasable using fiat currencies, including U.S., Hong Kong and Singapore dollars. The company estimates that the worldwide loyalty market is worth a cool $300 billion, with 91 million stores using loyalty schemes to some extent. Executives say they have already signed memorandums of understanding to roll out its technology in 90,000 stores over the next three years — potentially reaching 13 million shoppers — and that its app value proposition to merchants compared favorably to the likes of Facebook and Uber Eats because MozoX guarantees foot traffic.

Round one of an initial exchange offering is set to take place on the LAToken platform from Nov. 25 to Dec. 25, and MozoX tokens can be purchased using Bitcoin, Ether or Tether.

Updated: 11-28-2019

Binance to Launch Crypto Travel Rewards Card with Startup TravelByBit

Major cryptocurrency exchange Binance announced in a blog post on Nov. 28 that it partnered with crypto travel startup TravelByBit to launch a rewards card that facilitates crypto payments on major travel websites.

Per the announcement, the card will function like a traditional prepaid card with access to additional discounts and rewards that users will be able to load with Bitcoin (BTC), Binance USD (BUSD), Binance Coin (BNB) and Ontology (ONT).

The card will be released early next year and will initially target travelers in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Australia and Europe, with plans to gradually expand.

Traveling With Crypto

The service will reportedly allow its customers to book flights and hotels through major booking sites including Booking.com, Expedia, Agoda, and Ctrip, as well as TravelByBit’s own platform.

TravelByBit is not the first service enabling its users to travel with cryptocurrencies. As Cointelegraph recently reported, crypto booking firm Travala announced that it will now let its customers reserve any hotel that is bookable through Booking.com with cryptocurrency.

Earlier this summer, the co-founders of Scandinavian air carrier Norwegian Air announced plans to launch their own cryptocurrency exchange, which will subsequently facilitate the airline’s acceptance of cryptocurrency payments.

Updated: 12-25-2019

Rakuten Customers Can Use Their Loyalty Program Points to Buy Crypto

Japanese retail giant Rakuten now lets its customers convert its Rakuten Group loyalty points to major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC).

According to an official announcement on Dec. 24, this capability is immediately available for Rakuten users in Japan who have an account with Rakuten Wallet, a crypto exchange subsidiary of Rakuten.

The company says its clients can convert their loyalty points to three different cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ether (ETH), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).The minimum crypto purchase is $0.90

With one Rakuten Super Point worth one Japanese yen (approximately $0.009), users need to have at least 100 such points to meet the minimum for an exchange. Crypto assets cannot be converted back into Rakuten Super Points, and the amount of daily and monthly transactions are capped at 30,000 points and 100,000 points as default, respectively.

Cointelegraph contacted Rakuten to find out more details about the scales of its loyalty program but had yet to receive a response as of press time. This article will be updated pending any new comments.

Rakuten Intends To Boost Crypto Adoption

By launching this new service, Rakuten Wallet apparently aims to boost cryptocurrency adoption while promoting its loyalty program. The company said in the announcement:

“Rakuten Wallet hopes to reduce the barriers of entry to crypto asset trading by providing an easy and more accessible way for new users to start, including novice users who are interested in crypto asset trading with no prior experience.”

Launching its virtual currency exchange back in March 2017, Rakuten is known for acquiring major Japanese crypto exchange Everybody’s Bitcoin in 2018. Often referred to as “Japan’s Amazon,” Rakuten is estimated to be worth $14.5 billion as of late December 2019.

Rakuten is not the only company that lets users in Japan exchange loyalty program points for crypto. In August 2019, crypto exchange bitFlyer partnered with technology services company Tpoint Japan to enable its Japanese customers to convert loyalty program points to Bitcoin, as well as earn rewards for paying in crypto.

Updated: 4-9-2020

Visa Backs New Bitcoin Rewards Card From Lightning-Friendly Fold

The Fold app — a Lightning-compatible mobile app that offers users Bitcoin rewards (BTC) while shopping — has joined Visa’s Fintech Fast Track Program.

Joining the program will enable the app to launch a new Visa co-branded card, which continues the offer of Bitcoin rewards for purchases made at retailers.

Speaking to Cointelegraph, Fold’s CEO Will Reeves said that Visa would be providing the company with financial support and a dedicated team to bring the new Bitcoin cash-back rewards card to market.

Earn, Don’t Spend, Your Bitcoin

As reported, the Fold app has so far been offering users the ability to spend Bitcoin or fiat at major retailers such as Amazon, Uber and Starbucks, requiring them to synchronize their accounts either with an existing credit card or Lightning wallet.

The new offering with Visa will enable the firm’s users to use an integrated service. At a time when multiple major industry players are exploring the possibilities of various crypto debit cards, Reeves distinguished Fold’s as follows:

“Other cards announced by major exchanges […] require you to spend your crypto triggering taxable events. Our card enables you to spend dollars and earn Bitcoin.”

Reeves clarified that earning rewards denominated in Bitcoin does not trigger a taxable event “as the Bitcoin is not being sold.” The card will be functional at over 10 million merchants worldwide.

Bridging The Old And The New

With major United States crypto exchange Coinbase recently announcing its principal membership of Visa, the field of crypto debit cards continues to diversify, promising users a more flexible and familiar, “legacy” interface to earn and access cryptocurrency.

This February, blockchain popularizer and sports fan token project Socios announced its launch of an integrated membership and fiat-crypto prepaid debit card, which also provides blockchain-based global ID functionality.

Meanwhile, the likes of Amazon have been slow to directly integrate cryptocurrencies, leaving the field open to third-party projects offering either crypto rewards, prepaid debit or gift cards to bridge the gap between established e-commerce and Bitcoin.

Updated: 4-10-2020

Ledger Expands Crypto Payment Options With Crypto.Com Partnership

Leading hardware wallet producer, Ledger, now allows online customers to pay using Crypto.com’s wallet app.

According to an April 9 announcement, the firm has chosen to accept payment in Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), XRP, Litecoin (LTC), and Crypto.com Coin (CRO) via Crypto.com’s application. This is not the first time that Ledger has allowed its customers to pay with crypto. They already accept Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum and XRP via their crypto payment processor, Bitpay.

An Update On An Old Collaboration

Back in December 2018, the two firms signed a memorandum of understanding, which was mean to allow Ledger’s customers to purchase products with digital currency using Crypto.com’s service.

In a separate announcement, Ledger indicated that the first 20 users who make a purchase using this new payment method will receive a limited edition Crypto.com Ledger Nano S. Users who purchase Ledger hardware wallets from now until May 31 using Crypto.com will also have access to 10% cashback. They note that this offer is capped at €50 in CRO per purchase.

Blockchain’s Use In Payments

Payments are among the most important use cases for blockchain technology. Crypto is used for direct payments less frequently than some might suspect, however. As Cointelegraph reported in mid-March, under 1% of Australians used cryptocurrencies to pay for services last year.

Also in March, major cryptocurrency firm Bakkt announced a new direct payment integration which allows customers to pay for Starbucks’ coffee with Bitcoin.

Updated: 4-14-2020

BlockCard Cryptocurrency Debit Card Rewards Spike To 6.38%

Crypto debit card BlockCard, built by blockchain company Ternio, has increased user rewards to almost 7%.

“Starting April 14th, all BlockCard users (existing and new) will be entitled to earn 6.38% back in cryptocurrency rewards on all BlockCard purchases – with no ceiling on the amount they can earn,” Ternio founder and COO Ian Kane told Cointelegraph. “You can spend $100 or $100,000 and earn 6.38% on all merchant purchases.”

Many mainstream stores do not directly accept crypto assets as a payment option. BlockCard works like a normal debit card, except with crypto backing. The card allows users to transfer crypto to their account and then spend that crypto in card form at any location that takes major credit card providers.

Kane confirmed BlockCard is only open to U.S. residents at the moment. Ternio, however, has its eyes set on European availability later in 2020.

“In Q2 we will be launching in 31 European countries and the rewards program will be available to those residents as well,” Kane said, also noting planned availability for Asian-Pacific and Latin American regions later in 2020.

The New Rate Is Now The Norm

Kane confirmed the new 6.38% rate applies to new and existing BlockCard users, and is the new normal for BlockCard going forward.

“We want to raise the bar and expectations of cryptocurrency holders,” Kane said. “BlockCard was the first card program to offer Google+Apple pay support and now we want to raise the bar on rewards programs as well.”

Mainstream card providers also offer rewards, although they may not be as good as they seem upfront.

“The devil is in the details,” Kane explained, referencing the fine print from one card provider.

“AMEX Blue Cash is one of the best rewards cards on the market (as voted by NerdWallet) – offering 6%, but only up to $6,000,” he noted, referring to popular card provider American Express. “Best case scenario is $360 in reward,” he said, also pointing to 3% and 1% rewards touting restrictions.

Several other crypto outfits are now working in the card space as well. Coinbase announced work with Visa in February 2020, while Binance unveiled its own debit card near the end of March.

Updated: 5-20-2020

Binance-Backed Crypto Travel Firms Travala.com and TravelByBit Merge

Hotel booking service Travala.com and flight booking website TravelByBit — both of which accept cryptocurrencies as payment — announced the merger of their platforms.

According to an announcement on May 20, Travala.com and TravelByBit will merge to become a platform allowing users to book from over 2 million hotels and 600 airlines.

An Initiative Backed By Binance

Both the companies are backed by the leading cryptocurrency exchange, Binance. The exchange’s CEO Changpeng Zhao praised the firms as he believes they are able to provide a state-of-the-art travel booking service for the crypto community.

Travala.com currently supports payments in fiat and over 25 popular cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Binance Coin (BNB) and Binance Dollar (BUSD) and features a best price guarantee.

Furthermore, the platform also has its own AVA token which grants users access to bonuses and discounts that shortly will be available on TravelByBit as well. A Travala spokesperson explained:

“As the native cryptocurrency of the Travala.com platform, AVA can now be used for payments, receiving loyalty rewards and accessing exclusive discounts and bonuses as part of our Smart Program. […] Every time a booking is completed on Travala.com, the traveller gets 2% of the total booking price back in AVA.”

High Hopes For Adoption

A representative of the firms told Cointelegraph that “the merged platform is forecasting next 12-month revenue levels in excess of US $10 million based on the existing growth traction in travel bookings prior to COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions being put in place.”

The firms claim that the merged platform will be better than traditional alternatives since it will offer tokenized rewards and more payment options. Furthermore, the platform focuses on the underserved niche of blockchain and cryptocurrency enthusiasts.

As Cointelegraph reported in November 2019, Travala.com partnered with Booking.com to allow its users to book any accommodation that is present on the travel giant’s website. January reports showed that the platform has seen a 33% boost in usage after the partnership.

Updated: 6-1-2020

Crypto Travel Booking Site Travala Sees 46% Monthly Increase In Bookings Despite Pandemic

Cryptocurrency travel website Travala.com saw a 45.8% increase in the total number of room nights booked in May compared to April.

According to a June 1 announcement, Travala.com also saw its monthly revenue increase by 205% in May compared to April. Still, while the platform is seeing more traction compared to April, May also saw a 60% decrease in room nights booked compared to March.

Travala.com Sees Bookings Surge As Travel Restrictions Are Lifted

Juan Otero, Travala.com’s CEO, told Cointelegraph that the platform is seeing more use as the rest of the travel industry. He explained that domestic travel is seeing growth as the restrictions are being lifted. He said:

“We’re fortunate to see our users coming back as soon as they have the opportunity to travel again, even if it is just locally or for short weekends nearby. […] The increase is mainly driven by domestic travel.”

Data shared by Travala.com also shows that 60% of the bookings made through the platform in May were paid for in cryptocurrency. Bitcoin (BTC) was used for 21% of the payments, the firm’s AVA token for 16%, 23% used other crypto assets.

Otero also explained that people are seemingly more open to spending cryptocurrency now than before. In fact, he said that there has been a sharp increase in crypto payments on the platform:

“Over 60% of our bookings are paid in crypto so we have seen a huge increase in the volume of travel bookings paid with crypto. I believe it’s not just because crypto adoption is growing every day but also because we have built a platform that allows people to pay with [with crypto while removing] a lot of the friction.”

Only 40% of payments on Travala.com in May used credit cards or PayPal. Otero explained that he believes Travala.com would not have grown as much if it supported fiat payments only. He said that the platform’s crypto features play an important role in its business:

“We appeal to a market that has been neglected in travel but is also growing really fast, the crypto enthusiastic so this is helping us grow faster than other [online travel agencies] that rely just on traditional markets.”

Travala.com Seeks Expansion Through Partnerships And Mergers

As Cointelegraph reported in late May, Travala.com merged with TravelByBit to expand its features from allowing to pay for travel accommodations with crypto to also facilitate flight booking with cryptocurrencies.

The merger followed a November announcement that the firm had partnered with online hotel giant Booking.com. The partnership allows Travala.com users to book any accommodation that’s present on Booking.com through the platform. In January the company revealed that following the partnership it saw its revenue grow by over 33.5% month-on-month.

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EU Central Bank Won’t Add Bitcoin To Reserves — Says It’s Not A Currency (#GotBitcoin?)

The Miami Dolphins Now Accept Bitcoin And Litecoin Crypt-Currency Payments (#GotBitcoin?)

Trump Bashes Bitcoin And Alt-Right Is Mad As Hell (#GotBitcoin?)

Goldman Sachs Ramps Up Development Of New Secret Crypto Project (#GotBitcoin?)

Blockchain And AI Bond, Explained (#GotBitcoin?)

Grayscale Bitcoin Trust Outperformed Indexes In First Half Of 2019 (#GotBitcoin?)

XRP Is The Worst Performing Major Crypto Of 2019 (GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Back Near $12K As BTC Shorters Lose $44 Million In One Morning (#GotBitcoin?)

As Deutsche Bank Axes 18K Jobs, Bitcoin Offers A ‘Plan ฿”: VanEck Exec (#GotBitcoin?)

Argentina Drives Global LocalBitcoins Volume To Highest Since November (#GotBitcoin?)

‘I Would Buy’ Bitcoin If Growth Continues — Investment Legend Mobius (#GotBitcoin?)

Lawmakers Push For New Bitcoin Rules (#GotBitcoin?)

Facebook’s Libra Is Bad For African Americans (#GotBitcoin?)

Crypto Firm Charity Announces Alliance To Support Feminine Health (#GotBitcoin?)

Canadian Startup Wants To Upgrade Millions Of ATMs To Sell Bitcoin (#GotBitcoin?)

Trump Says US ‘Should Match’ China’s Money Printing Game (#GotBitcoin?)

Casa Launches Lightning Node Mobile App For Bitcoin Newbies (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Rally Fuels Market In Crypto Derivatives (#GotBitcoin?)

World’s First Zero-Fiat ‘Bitcoin Bond’ Now Available On Bloomberg Terminal (#GotBitcoin?)

Buying Bitcoin Has Been Profitable 98.2% Of The Days Since Creation (#GotBitcoin?)

Another Crypto Exchange Receives License For Crypto Futures

From ‘Ponzi’ To ‘We’re Working On It’ — BIS Chief Reverses Stance On Crypto (#GotBitcoin?)

These Are The Cities Googling ‘Bitcoin’ As Interest Hits 17-Month High (#GotBitcoin?)

Venezuelan Explains How Bitcoin Saves His Family (#GotBitcoin?)

Quantum Computing Vs. Blockchain: Impact On Cryptography

This Fund Is Riding Bitcoin To Top (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin’s Surge Leaves Smaller Digital Currencies In The Dust (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Exchange Hits $1 Trillion In Trading Volume (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Breaks $200 Billion Market Cap For The First Time In 17 Months (#GotBitcoin?)

You Can Now Make State Tax Payments In Bitcoin (#GotBitcoin?)

Religious Organizations Make Ideal Places To Mine Bitcoin (#GotBitcoin?)

Goldman Sacs And JP Morgan Chase Finally Concede To Crypto-Currencies (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Heading For Fifth Month Of Gains Despite Price Correction (#GotBitcoin?)

Breez Reveals Lightning-Powered Bitcoin Payments App For IPhone (#GotBitcoin?)

Big Four Auditing Firm PwC Releases Cryptocurrency Auditing Software (#GotBitcoin?)

Amazon-Owned Twitch Quietly Brings Back Bitcoin Payments (#GotBitcoin?)

JPMorgan Will Pilot ‘JPM Coin’ Stablecoin By End Of 2019: Report (#GotBitcoin?)

Is There A Big Short In Bitcoin? (#GotBitcoin?)

Coinbase Hit With Outage As Bitcoin Price Drops $1.8K In 15 Minutes

Samourai Wallet Releases Privacy-Enhancing CoinJoin Feature (#GotBitcoin?)

There Are Now More Than 5,000 Bitcoin ATMs Around The World (#GotBitcoin?)

You Can Now Get Bitcoin Rewards When Booking At Hotels.Com (#GotBitcoin?)

North America’s Largest Solar Bitcoin Mining Farm Coming To California (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin On Track For Best Second Quarter Price Gain On Record (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Hash Rate Climbs To New Record High Boosting Network Security (#GotBitcoin?)

Bitcoin Exceeds 1Million Active Addresses While Coinbase Custodies $1.3B In Assets

Why Bitcoin’s Price Suddenly Surged Back $5K (#GotBitcoin?)

Zebpay Becomes First Exchange To Add Lightning Payments For All Users (#GotBitcoin?)

Coinbase’s New Customer Incentive: Interest Payments, With A Crypto Twist (#GotBitcoin?)

The Best Bitcoin Debit (Cashback) Cards Of 2019 (#GotBitcoin?)

Real Estate Brokerages Now Accepting Bitcoin (#GotBitcoin?)

Ernst & Young Introduces Tax Tool For Reporting Cryptocurrencies (#GotBitcoin?)

Recession Is Looming, or Not. Here’s How To Know (#GotBitcoin?)

How Will Bitcoin Behave During A Recession? (#GotBitcoin?)

Many U.S. Financial Officers Think a Recession Will Hit Next Year (#GotBitcoin?)

Definite Signs of An Imminent Recession (#GotBitcoin?)

What A Recession Could Mean for Women’s Unemployment (#GotBitcoin?)

Investors Run Out of Options As Bitcoin, Stocks, Bonds, Oil Cave To Recession Fears (#GotBitcoin?)

Goldman Is Looking To Reduce “Marcus” Lending Goal On Credit (Recession) Caution (#GotBitcoin?)

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