Back in 2014, location independent entrepreneurs and freelancers joined Hubud, a co-working space in Ubud, Bali — rated one of the top 10 most beautiful in the world — accepted Bitcoin for membership payments.
In 2017, Michael Arrington, Founder of TechCrunch bought a $60,000 flat in Kiev, Ukraine, on the Ethereum blockchain using cryptocurrency. He was the first person in the world to buy property using cryptocurrency, according to The New Scientist.
you could buy a Tesla using Bitcoin.
For several months in 2021, you could buy a Tesla using Bitcoin. Tesla founder, Elon Musk, is a noted cryptocurrency and Bitcoin enthusiast and investor. However, for the moment, Bitcoin is no longer a payment method Tesla accepts. There’s a chance it will be accepted again in the future.
In 2022, these are no longer isolated examples. No one makes it into the media for buying something with Bitcoin. According to recent data, over 18,000 businesses accept Bitcoin as a payment method for goods and services. So, let’s dive into what you can buy with Bitcoin?
In theory, you can buy cars (at a few independent dealers in the UK) and property (depending on the real estate agent you work with).
In practice, there are thousands of companies that have started accepting Bitcoin. Here are a few examples:
Home Depot: The largest home improvement chain in the U.S. now accepts Bitcoin;
Newegg: An electronic retail giant accepts Bitcoin for most products it stocks;
Overstock: A prominent electronic retail giant also accepts Bitcoin;
Shopify: Customers on the eCommerce platform (similar to Etsy and eBay) can pay online retailers using Bitcoin;
Microsoft: Users can add funds to their accounts and pay for products using Bitcoin.
Whether a company accepts Bitcoin depends on their cash flow policies and payment processors, providers, and banks.
Businesses and brands that are starting to accept Bitcoin are doing so when enough customers are calling for that option. You can also pay for numerous services in Bitcoin now, including:
AT&T: A U.S. broadband and cellular service giant;
Dish Network: A U.S. TV satellite service provider;
ExpressVPN: A secure VPN provider;
NordVPN: A VPN provider where login isn’t needed, from Malta;
Twitch: A live-streaming platform;
ProtonMail: An encrypted email provider;
WordPress: The world’s most popular website builder platform;
Vultr: A web hosting provider;
Reddit: Buy premium features with Bitcoin;
Namecheap: Web hosting and domain name services;
Chicago Sun-Times, Bloomberg, and other media brands are starting to accept Bitcoin for subscriptions.
Various video games brands, such as Xbox, Humble Bundle, and Big Fish Games also allow users to pay for subscriptions, add-ons, new games, and in-game purchases using Bitcoin.
Numerous other companies are also accepting Bitcoin, including travel brands, restaurants, non-profits, universities and colleges, as well as luxury brands.
AirBaltic: World’s first airline to accept Bitcoin for flights;
Expedia: Now accepts Bitcoin for booking hotels, and plans to roll this out for flights, activities, and other services you can book through one of the world’s largest travel platforms;
Virgin Galactic: Since flights to space (or at least the upper atmosphere) cost millions, it’s no surprise that Richard Branson’s space tourism company accepts Bitcoin.
A handful of restaurants and supermarkets in a few countries are now accepting Bitcoin at the point-of-sale, including:
Whole Foods (an Amazon-owned supermarket chain).
The King’s College, a New York-based Christian liberal arts university;
European School of Management and Technology (ESMT) in Germany, now accepts Bitcoin payments for courses;
Curtin University: A large and prominent university in Australia;
Treehouse: An interactive online education provider also accepts Bitcoin.
Several prominent nonprofits, including the Wikimedia Foundation, Wikileaks, and The Giving Block have made it easy for donors to pay using Bitcoin. Donating using Bitcoin reduces the fees people typically have to pay, and this helps to keep donations anonymous.
A number of luxury brands, including a realtor for high-end properties, now accept Bitcoin, including:
Bithome: The Swiss-based online realtor lists properties in Bitcoin (BTC) around the world. TechCrunch Founder, Michael Arrington, was the first, but now anyone can buy and sell (luxury) properties in Bitcoin—if you have the funds;
BitCars: The online car retailer allows customers to buy cars using Bitcoin;
AutoCoinCars: Another online marketplace for cars lists the prices in Bitcoin;
Prestige Cars Kent: This independent car dealership accepts payment in BTC;
Prestige Time allows customers to buy watches, and if you’ve got the money for a yacht, Denison Yacht Sales also accepts Bitcoin.
If you have Bitcoin in a wallet but aren’t sure where you can spend it, there are several solutions for that. A series of aggregators and listing websites have emerged, making it easier for Bitcoin users to buy products and services around the world.
Retail aggregators include useBitcoins (with 5,000 businesses listed so far), Coinmap, Spendabit, and Spend Bitcoins U.K, a UK-based directory that shows where Bitcoin is accepted across the country, according to Cointelegraph.
Yes, there’s a good chance thousands more businesses will start accepting Bitcoin as a payment method in the future. At present, you can buy, sell and hold Bitcoin on PayPal, but can’t buy using the cryptocurrency. However, as more payment providers and platforms start offering this option, the number of retailers that will have to accept it is going to increase.
As Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies increase in popularity—growing beyond the 300 million current users—we can expect many more retailers will start to accept Bitcoin.