Did you hear? Bitcoin has gone mainstream. While you can’t spend your precious cryptocurrency at Starbucks just yet, there are destinations where many establishments will. The following cities are out in front of the rest of the world, which – lets face it – is working just to keep up. If your bitcoin is burning a hole in your virtual wallet, consider travel to one of these digital currency hotspots.
Amsterdam has a bit of a renegade quality to it, so it should come as no surprise that this city welcomes digital currencies at more than 40 businesses and an ever-expanding number of bitcoin ATMs in service. You can visit the Bitcoin Embassy in Amsterdam, dedicated to promoting bitcoin around the world, or take a stroll down Bitcoin Boulevard – the street where nearly all merchants accept the currency.
New York, New York
New York has more than 100 businesses that accept Bitcoin like La Sirene on Broome Street. Come for the delicious French Southern menu, stay for the passionate chef who loves crypto almost as much as he loves cooking. Intrepid parents at two Manhattan Montessori’s (one in the Flatiron district and the other in Soho), lobbied the school’s administrations until they started accepting the currency for tuition (which can be upwards of 30k a year).
Hong Kong, China
While technically a part of China, Hong Kong is largely able to operate unencumbered by the rules of its parent. So when China recently cracked down on cryptocurrencies (there’s a complete ban at the moment), the crypto scene moved to Hong Kong. Many retailers around the city accept bitcoin for payment, and a lot of high profile conferences (most notably the Blockchain Global Summit), now call Hong Kong home. The heavy hitters in crypto pass through Hong Kong every day.
San Francisco, California
San Francisco looms large on any list of crypto-friendly cities. Not only are there 60 bitcoin ATMs around the city, but there are also more than 100 businesses accepting bitcoin, many of them dining establishments. Hit up Curry Up Now (specializing in Indian street food), Ocean Beach Deli, and Underground Ramen among many, many others. The reason San Francisco is so friendly to crypto is that there are many crypto and blockchain businesses in the neighborhood.
Ljubljana has shown its dedication to bitcoin and blockchain technology by opening the world’s first Bitcoin-friendly mall, “Bitcoin City.” More than 1.56 million square feet of commercial space are inhabited by merchants that have all agreed to accept bitcoin for payment. Bitcoin City also has a strong commitment to technological innovations like Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality.
In the early days of bitcoin investment and adoption, Vancouver made its mark by being the first city in the world to install a Bitcoin ATM. These days, there are closer to 50 with about 90 merchants accepting the tokens for payment. What can you spend your bitcoin on Pierogi (At Old Country Pierogi), a coffee (at Waves Coffee House among others), and even Marijuana seeds (at MJ Seeds Canada).
Switzerland as a country gets a special shoutout for having an active bitcoin ecosystem, with the little town of Zug allowing residents to pay their taxes in bitocoin. But Zurich stands out because, as one of the most important financial cities in the world, it’s crucial to have Zurich on your side. And with a relatively small population, the city has eight ATMs and close to 50 merchants accepting Bitcoin for payment.
London also has merchants that accept bitcoin and many ATMs around the city. But what gives London a special spot on our list is the vibrant crypto community it has. The London Bitcoin meetup group is currently the largest in the world, with more than 2,300 members.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Buenos Aires took a more practical route to its love affair with bitcoin. With the country in a deep recession and the fiat currency seriously devalued, enterprising citizens turned to cryptocurrency. These days more than 150 businesses in Buenos Aires accept bitcoin. Look for ATMs in Buenos Aires starting this year.
Singapore is another city that Chinese crypto investors turned to when China ceased to allow the currency to thrive. You might find that Singapore’s crypto ecosystem stays laser-focused on innovation and the future. It’s an exciting place to be if you fancy yourself an innovator with a big idea.
Need more baller ways to spend that coin? You can pay for your flights and accommodation in Bitcoin with us! And don’t forget to check out recent posts that’ll walk you through some of the best high-end flight options and including more aspirational ideas. Happy travels!