Interviews 22 November 2018Erik Gibbs
Crypto travel agency TravelByBit takes the world by storm
As cryptocurrency gains adoption worldwide, what’s needed is an expansion of real-life use cases where the digital currency can be spent. Unarguably, the number of merchants—both online and physical—is growing, but there is still a lot of work to be done. One of the most promising solutions for being able to utilize crypto is TravelByBit, an online travel agency (OTA) that is taking the world by storm.
There are several OTAs that now offer crypto enthusiasts the ability to pay for their travel arrangements using their digital assets, but no one has its act together like TravelByBit. The company offers some of the best prices and definitively the best customer service possible. If you find the perfect flight somewhere else, send it to them and they can help you arrange that particular flight, meaning you’re not limited to the small selection offered by most OTAs. In conducting some comparisons, I found that TravelByBit beat its competitors, on average, by about 30% in airfare prices.
TravelByBit’s Caleb Yeoh recently shared some of his time with CoinGeek to answer a few questions about the company and the direction it’s headed.
What is TravelByBit and when did you start accepting crypto
TravelByBit has two business arms… Crypto Travel Agents and a crypto Point of Sale (POS) payment system. First, we are a crypto travel company. We can book your travel and accommodation anywhere in the world with crypto. We get rebates from airlines for selling tickets. And, because we keep the crypto, we don’t have to charge ridiculous conversion rates.
On our point of sale. We don’t charge any fees to the merchant or exchange spreads to the consumer as we want the experience to be as peer-to-peer as possible. We are a genuine crypto company that keeps the crypto majority of the time. We do not put a spread, as we do not use external crypto payment processors.
What is the most common crypto used?
You can see transactions live at the airport on flybybit.com … you may need to refresh the page occasionally. BTC has the highest usage followed by Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin. Ether usage has kinda dropped off.
Let’s talk about you more. How did you get into crypto, and what’s next?
I’ve been into Bitcoin for a while and over the past year, my good friend Daniel from the Living Room of Satoshi and I decided we’ve seen enough speculation. It’s time to build genuine adoption. And, the best place to start is in the travel sector where consumers are hit with so many fees and exchange rate costs.
The key to adoption is users who will pay in crypto in their daily lives. Many companies have built blockchain products out there but there are no users. Everyone is talking about transaction speeds and scalability. All that doesn’t matter if there are no users. Users don’t come because they see [that] these companies themselves don’t use crypto.
Yeoh added that they receive booking requests from all over the world. The site’s traffic varies to some degree, often driven by the price fluctuations of the various cryptocurrencies the company supports. TravelByBit has worked hard to create an OTA that is versatile, safe, secure and private for its users and it has undeniably achieved those goals.
Yeoh noted, “What we do like to encourage though is for people to support locations where merchants genuinely accept crypto. For example you can come to the world’s first crypto airport in Brisbane and travel all the way to the great barrier reef now and pay for your entire trip with crypto… not through us… but directly to a network of local merchants (coffee shops, restaurants, airport transfers, accommodation providers, tour operators, all in crypto).”
TravelByBit is definitely a winner and is leading the way for rapid crypto global adoption. Anyone considering booking any type of travel now has the perfect solution.
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.
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