As the calendar flipped to the brand new 12 months, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky requested his 403,000 Twitter followers what his firm ought to launch in 2022. Out of the 4,000 ideas he obtained, the highest request was for the mammoth trip rental firm to simply accept cryptocurrency. He was enthusiastic, noting, “Crypto funds is inclusive of quite a lot of token concepts,” and “Our current funds quantity = $336 billion processed since 2013.”
That his Twitter followers have been clamoring for crypto fee choices didn’t shock Chesky, who’s totally conscious that any Venn diagram of Bitcoin house owners and Airbnb customers would present vital overlap, because of Morning Seek the advice of Model Intelligence. Each teams skew youthful and are typically early adopters of expertise.
“Not solely are Bitcoin house owners extra possible than the final inhabitants to pay attention to Airbnb, however they’re additionally extra prone to maintain favorable views of the holiday rental model than the common American,” in accordance with Morning Seek the advice of’s journey and hospitality analyst Lindsey Roeschke. “The reverse can also be true: Airbnb customers are extra conscious of and extra favorable towards Bitcoin than most people.”
However Roeschke says that commentary goes far past Airbnb customers. Vacationers on the whole are considerably extra prone to personal Bitcoin than most people. About one in six U.S. adults (16%) say they personally have invested in, traded or in any other case used a cryptocurrency, in accordance with a recent Pew Research Center survey. In the meantime, one in 4 vacationers (25%) who take between one and 4 journeys a 12 months personal Bitcoin, per a new Morning Consult study. And notably, frequent vacationers — those that journey a minimum of 5 occasions a 12 months — are greater than twice as prone to personal Bitcoin (33%) than most people.
“Whereas Bitcoin possession might not essentially translate to an elevated urge for food in utilizing cryptocurrency to pay for journey, the correlation between frequent journey and Bitcoin possession might level to alternatives for journey manufacturers, which might place themselves as trailblazers by being early adopters of other fee strategies,” writes Roeschke.
A minimum of one-third (36%) of small to medium-sized companies in the USA now settle for Bitcoin as fee for items and providers, in accordance with a recent survey by Hartford Steam Boiler.
However, as of now, only a few journey manufacturers have expanded fee choices past fiat currencies. No main lodge chain or airline permits crypto funds. In 2014, Latvian airline airBaltic grew to become the world’s first service to simply accept Bitcoin, however the follow has not unfold within the trade.
A standout exception is the net journey company CheapAir.com, which has allowed clients to pay in crypto since 2019 and has steadily expanded its crypto choices ever since. “CheapAir.com is in for the lengthy haul – dedicated to the crypto neighborhood and serving to to foster adoption across the globe,” the corporate famous in a 2020 weblog submit.
And since 2020, vacationers have been ready to decide on between greater than 30 cryptocurrencies to ebook greater than 700,000 Expedia Group motels on Travala.com, because of a partnership with Expedia Associate Options (EPS).
Will 2022 be the 12 months when Airbnb or one other main journey firm hops on the crypto prepare? In November, Chesky hinted on The Verge’s Decoder podcast that he’s weighing it. “We’re positively trying into it. Completely,” he stated. “Just like the revolution in journey, there may be clearly a revolution taking place in crypto.”