Cryptocurrencies are gradually becoming accepted by more enterprises as one of the payment methods. It is possible that they will be as popular as credit and debit cards in the coming years. The list of businesses that welcome clients who want to pay with Bitcoins or Ethereum has already reached an impressive size.
The industries of taxi services, ride-sharing, and car rentals were among the first adopters of the new technology, which certainly contributed to their customer experience. Implementation of cryptocurrency payment systems by taxi providers is a win-win situation for both them and their clients since everyone is interested in safe, secure, and fast transactions that are made possible by blockchain.
Taxi and Ride-Sharing Companies
Pay for Uber Rides with Bitcoins
Despite being a technologically-advanced company, Uber still has not added a cryptocurrency payment feature to its app. Nevertheless, in 2018, the ride-sharing giant teamed up with Fold, an app that allows the user to convert their Bitcoins into a gift card balance in dollars. The gift card can then be redeemed when paying for a ride in the Uber app. Moreover, people using Fold earn rewards in Satoshis (0.00000001 BTC) for each transaction and which they can freely spend as they wish. The app uses lightning network technology which facilitates rapid, low-fee transactions using Bitcoin. Thanks to Fold’s cashback feature, paying for Uber rides using Bitcoin and the app becomes even more advantageous than simply using fiat currencies.
Yet, perhaps, soon, this method of relying on third-party services will become redundant since there is a possibility that, in the near future, Uber will start accepting Bitcoins directly from the customer. Recently, the ride-sharing company’s CEO. Announced that Uber would consider allowing users to pay for rides with their coins. He said, “Just like we accept all kinds of the local currency, we are going to look at cryptocurrency and/or Bitcoin in terms of currency to transact.” This decision will be a move in the right direction since cryptocurrencies have experienced swift growth in popularity over the past years, and there are many people willing to exchange their coins for services.
Lyft and Healthcare-Related Transportation
Lyft, the biggest competitor of Uber in the sphere of car-hailing, also offers its customers a chance to use a cryptocurrency, but it is limited only to a particular group of clients. In 2019, the company partnered with Solve.Care, an IT start-up that focuses on building healthcare infrastructure based on blockchain. One of its products is Care.Wallet, an app that helps people manage their doctor appointments, access information about the pricing of medical services, and track and share their vitals. Individuals using this app can schedule Lyft rides to go to a hospital or a pharmacy and have an option to pay with the Solve coin, the start-up’s own cryptocurrency.
Singaporean Carpooling Company That Accepts Cryptocurrency
While Uber and Lyft still have not managed to present their clients with an option to use coins as a payment method directly in the app. Ryde, a company from Singapore, introduced a feature that allows its users to convert their Bitcoins into the company’s own cryptocurrency called Ryde Coin. The idea behind this is simple, Ryde’s app has a built-in crypto wallet that provides the customer with an opportunity to exchange their cryptocurrency for the Ryde Coin, which is worth one Singapore dollar. Ryde is a good example for other car-hailing services to follow since it has managed to take advantage of the growing trend and has earned a fanbase of crypto enthusiasts in Singapore, Australia, and Hong Kong, where it operates.
Other Taxi Companies Around the World
Some transportation service providers go beyond their basic functions and add features that ultimately grant them their competitive advantage. For example, a Slovenian company STM Transfers, apart from offering standard rides, provides a chance to hire a car with a driver who will also act as a client’s bodyguard. To ensure security in all aspects, the company accepts several kinds of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin. The transaction is carried out using GoCrypto, the platform which facilitates the process of crypto payments.
Cooperativa Radiotaxi 3570 is a company that has the largest taxi fleet in Italy with more than three thousand cars in Rome alone. Despite its long history, it still manages to stay at the bleeding edge of technological advancements and accepts Bitcoins as one of the payment options. The transaction is processed through the Chainside platform, which connects the client who uses Bitcoin and Radiotaxi, which receives the fee in euros.
There are also local taxi companies accepting Bitcoins in England; one of them is HeXCars which operates in Bristol and provides several types of services, including airport transfers, food delivery, and even pet taxi. It has facilitated the payment process for its customers. People who book a ride on the company’s website after selecting Bitcoin as their payment method will be redirected to a page with a QR code that will allow them to send the fee. This is a simple but reliable method that gets the job done.
Rentals That Accept Crypto
Taxi services are not the only providers in the transportation industry which have adopted cryptocurrency payments, there are also car rental companies that utilize the technology.
Lurento is a business that has an extensive selection of exotic and sports cars all over Europe, including in Munich, Milan, Monaco, and Florence. Customers can rent Ferrari, Porsche, Mercedes, and cars from many other brands. Apart from traditional payment methods, the company also welcomes clients wishing to pay in Bitcoins and accepts this cryptocurrency.
Qeek is a global car rental company that is a good fit for those who seek less expensive options but still want to pay with Bitcoin. The payment process is managed with the help of BitPay, another platform that exchanges crypto for fiat money.
Private Jet Rental
Yet, the pinnacle of luxury transportation is, of course, a private jet, and there are companies involved in the jet rental business accepting crypto. PrivateFly was the first private jet company to offer its customers the Bitcoin payment option, and today its clients also can use Ethereum and Bitcoin Cash to hire an airplane. The company quotes a sum for its services in euros and then uses BitPay to process the transaction.
A Growing Trend
The adoption of cryptocurrencies as a payment method in the sphere of transportation by companies ranging from conventional taxi services to private jet rentals shows that there is a demand for this technology. It is certain that in the near future, even more businesses will accept Bitcoins, Ethereum, and other coins making them even more valuable.