Cryptocurrencies and tourism, the new alliance
Cryptocurrencies and tourism play in the midst of a volatile economy immersed in cyclical crises and in full consolidation of technology as an indispensable ally for almost everything, the cryptocurrency grows silently but incessantly. These are virtual currencies (perhaps the most famous are Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple, Dash or Bitcoincash) that, far from being regulated by official, commercial or central banks, have a recent technological infrastructure behind them: the blockchain.
According to statements by Jaime Sánchez, head of Avalbit, at Capital Radio’s tourism news program, Bungalow103, “you can not talk about cryptocurrency without understanding what the blockchain concept is.” According to the expert, it is a “database formed by chains of blocks designed to avoid their modification”. In this way, “each node or computer in the network keeps a copy of all records”, a process that “prevents data from being altered and it is impossible to hack it”.
But how will cryptocurrencies influence tourism?
The expert Alex Preukschat, coordinator of Blockchain Spain, said in the waves of Capital Radio that “asking how blockchain technology will influence companies is similar to when we asked 10 years ago how the Internet would influence the industries.” However, the expert points out that it will be a technology that will revolutionize mainly “the industries that depend on the data”.
Proof that the tourism industry does not live outside the emergence of cryptocurrency was the last edition of Fiturtech 2018, the specific technological event held within the framework of Fitur. The day was marked by virtual currencies, so much so that the company 13tickets.com announced that it would offer the possibility of making the purchase of tickets to such emblematic places as the Alhambra or the Cathedral of Seville through cryptocurrencies, including the ‘Touriscoin’ , one of the virtual currencies that is making its way into the tourism industry and that promises to avoid taxes on transactions, commissions on currency exchanges and that, among many other uses, aims to facilitate payments at the destination.
And they are not the only examples since within the tourism sector there are already many companies that bet on cryptocurrencies. Recently, two casino hotels in Las Vegas were the pioneers in accepting payments with bitcoins (The Golden Gate and The D hotels), but previously OTAs and airlines such as Expedia, Virgin Air or Destinia, also allowed transactions in virtual currencies.
The cryptocurrencies: much more than money
However, in the infinite ocean of cryptocurrencies, money is not only talked about, but also about the future of traditional banking, about capitalism or even about ending poverty.
As explained by Víctor Rodríguez Ventura, head of Canary Cryptocurrency, thanks to virtual currencies in the near future “the global economy will be transversal and will not be dominated by central banks”. In fact, the expert points out that “the uses of cryptocurrencies are beginning to look and are as wide as people inhabit the planet.” For example, it indicates companies of the magnitude of Microsoft that “accepts payments with cryptocurrency within their digital platforms” or Kodak, which “has created its own currency with the aim of promoting the purchase and sale of art”. Added to this are other initiatives such as the Karma cryptocurrency, a decentralized p2p (peer-to-peer) platform that aims to create economic relationships that foster entrepreneurship and create opportunities among people. from around the world, regardless of their geographical location.
However, not all positive news is that there are still great challenges to solve in terms of cryptocurrency. The volatility of the currencies, the speculation, the doubts regarding their taxation or the distrust that they generate are still huge obstacles that they have to overcome in order to be a massive alternative to the tangible money that we know today.
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