A lot has changed between the time cryptocurrency was first introduced and now. Two to three years ago, buying things with Bitcoin and the likes was difficult. But the cryptocurrency market has so evolved that you can now make everyday purchases with your crypto funds. Interestingly you can do so easily too.
Today, you can buy Litecoin and other cryptocurrencies, trade them, and exchange them for physical products. I know what you are thinking. You’re thinking, “agreed, but that can only be done online.” Cryptocurrency has gone beyond the virtual world to the real world. So, no, transactions with cryptocurrency are not limited to the online space alone. Many people like Jason Fadlien have already talked about using Bitcoin as a payment.
So, how can you use Bitcoin to make purchases and carry out daily transactions?
- Use Your Crypto Debit Cards
Like regular debit cards issued by conventional banks, you can also get a crypto debit card for your everyday transactions.
Buying cryptocurrency is made easy with crypto debit cards. But more than that, spending cryptocurrency is made even easier. A crypto debit card is one of the easiest ways to spend Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. A type of crypto debit card is a BlockCard Visa Debit Card.
Cryptocurrency exchange platforms like Coinbase and Gemini offer crypto debit card services. The challenge, however, for many people is that they don’t know how it works.
The working of crypto debit cards is pretty simple. When you buy Litecoin or any digital currency, it is stored in your crypto debit card. Then when you make purchases, your crypto is converted to fiat money and used for payments. With this, you can use the card even in places where cryptocurrency is not accepted.
A crypto debit card is just like the normal fiat credit card, maybe even better. You can use it anywhere in the world, especially in regions where Bitcoin ATMs are provided.
- Buy Gift Cards with Crypto Funds
This is one of the oldest ways of spending in the cryptocurrency market. It was the most popular method back when Bitcoin wasn’t as accepted as it is today. You can buy gift cards with your crypto funds on platforms like Butrefill or Gyft. Then you make purchases either in-store or online on sites like Amazon with the gift cards.
- Use Crypto-Friendly Retailers
Much to the delight of the cryptocurrency market, businesses offline have included the crypto feature in their payment methods. This means that there are now businesses that accept cryptocurrency as a payment method for the products and services they offer. The likes of Microsoft, Lush, Overstock are examples of platforms that let you pay with cryptocurrency. Can buying cryptocurrency and using them be any more rewarding?
- Trade with Crypto-Only Vendors
Some vendors are solely dedicated to serving the cryptocurrency market and its customers. These vendors will only accept cryptocurrency for their services. And they also store the funds in digital currency. Some crypto-only vendors you can trade with include Bitifly, the art and merch seller 21X, and OpenBazaar. Unfortunately, there aren’t very many of them. Hopefully, as technology advances, more of these vendors will emerge.
- Transact With Crypto Middlemen
Some retailers allow users to spend cryptocurrency, albeit indirectly. They employ the services of third-party vendors who are popularly referred to as crypto middlemen. The third-party vendor serves as a middleman between you and the platform you want to make purchases from.
Examples of those third-party vendors include Butrefill and Purse.io. You give them your cryptocurrency, and they buy your goods for you with fiat money. Amazon employs Butrefill such that you can make purchases with cryptocurrency on Amazon via Butrefill.
Where to Find Crypto-Friendly Retailers
It is not so easy to find businesses that will accept digital currency in exchange for their products. Some of the major reasons for this include the high volatility of cryptocurrencies and the uncertainties around regulations. Thankfully, sites now exist that make finding them easier.
For example, Coinmap lets you find businesses around you that accept Bitcoin. You have to enter your address, and the search will be done for you.
Another site like that is Spendabit. You can search for businesses that accept digital currency by typing in the products you want to purchase. Then it brings a list of all the businesses that have those products and accepts cryptocurrency as a payment method.
Skepticism about accepting digital currencies as a valid means of payment in the business world is understandable. As much as digital currencies may appear to be the future of money, there is still a lot to be done to get there.
However, many businesses and platforms are doing everything to ensure digital currencies are included as a valid means of payment. It is left to you as a crypto enthusiast to find these platforms and trade with them.