Bitcoin has come a long way from its first real-world purchase back in May 2010 when Laszlo Hanyecz paid a fellow early adopter 10,000 bitcoin to order him two Papa John's pizzas. At the time of the offer, that amount was more or less a fair-value exchange and the bitcoins were quoted at $41. As of the time of writing, 10,000 bitcoin is worth $117 million or so, and one bitcoin will definitely buy you a whole lot of pizzas. But outside of pizzas, what else can you buy with bitcoin? Check out the list below:
1. Online Shopping
overstock.com was the first big online retailer to start accepting bitcoins as far back as January of 2014. Here you can pay for everything from television sets and golf equipment to pet supplies and window treatments with bitcoins. In fact, you can use other major cryptocurrencies, including Ethereum, Litecoin, Bitcoin Cash, Monero, and Dash to pay for your purchases on Overstock.com. Simply select your preferred cryptocurrency at checkout to complete your purchase. You should note that other e-commerce giants like BitPlaza, Newegg, AWBStore, and Bic Camera, as well as some sellers on Etsy and Shopify also accept Bitcoin payments directly
2. NBA tickets
In 2018, Dallas Mavericks owner, Mark Cuban revealed plans of the NBA team to accept cryptocurrency for tickets and merchandise, beginning with CyberMiles Tokens, Bitcoin and Ethereum. This move sees the team join the likes of Sacramento Kings who began accepting Bitcoin back in 2014.
3. Food and Drinks
Feeling hungry? Bitcoin Carnivory lets you buy some great steaks and bitcoin in the same place. Get some super spicy hot sauces for bitcoin at Pex Peppers, while Bees Brothers have a great selection of honey, soaps, and lip balms to choose from and you can pay with bitcoin. The Burger King in Arnhem, Netherlands lets you satisfy your whopper cravings with bitcoin as they started accepting the currency in 2016. Looking to grab some cold beer in Sydney, Australia? Head on to Old Fitzroy, the first Bitcoin-friendly bar in the city. In Prague, the Czech Republic, Bitcoin Coffee serves some pretty good caffeinated delights and only accepts digital currencies.
4. Night out in Sin City
Las Vegas is popular for many things but perhaps soon, we can add universal bitcoin acceptance to the list. Several establishments including the Legends Room, D Las Vegas, the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino, Rocket Fizz, and Ketchup Burger Bar all accept bitcoins and have bitcoin ATMs on-premise. In the case of the Legends Room, they even took it further by stating that they accept anything else traded on the Bittrex exchange as payment for all the club has to offer, including beverages and lap dances. So, how exactly do you use these Bitcoin ATMs? These machines work by connecting your bitcoin account and converting bitcoins into cash.
5. Travel and Transport
The good thing about having so many competing travel-related services is that they are always on the lookout for ways to attract new clients. Offering alternative ways of payment is one of those ways. For long travels, sites like Expedia, Surf Air, More Stamps Global, BTCTrip and Cheap Air all accept bitcoin payments for booking not just flights but also hotels, transfers, and on-site activities. Ships & Trips Travel accepts bitcoin for cruises while you can also book space travel tickets on Virgin Galactic’s future travel line using the cryptocurrency. In 2014, airBaltic became the world’s first airline to accept bitcoin for tickets. Also, if ever you’re in places like Argentina and Hungary, you might be able to get a bitcoin-friendly cab.
6. Gold and other precious metals
On the investment scene, gold, silver, and other precious metals have long served as a hedge against uncertainty, a reassuring and physical store of value compared to today’s volatile securities and currencies. Bitcoin may be anything but physical, but you can use it to invest in gold to hedge and diversify your investments. After all, one BTC is almost ten times the current price of an ounce of gold. You can check out companies like JM Bullion, GramGold, and APMEX where you can use bitcoin to purchase gold coins and other precious metals. At JM Bullion, you can even enjoy a 4% discount on gold and silver purchases with Bitcoin.
7. Real Estate
Real estate, the luxury kind to be precise — has emerged as another sector where you can use bitcoin directly for purchases. Bitcoin Real Estate allows you to use bitcoin to buy or sell your home and it lists properties across the world for sale that can be purchased in the legacy cryptocurrency. Several other real estate companies are jumping on the bandwagon and accepting purchases of properties in Bitcoin. This is due to the growing demand for younger investors to pay via alternative methods.
From gift cards and game services, all the way to earning a Master's degree in Digital Currency from The University of Nicosia, Cyprus, bitcoin payments are fast becoming ubiquitous on a global scale. If you made your fortune with bitcoin, you can check out luxury BTC marketplace BitPremier, where you could buy a villa in Bali or an $11 million yacht. Are you feeling adventurous? Try your luck on one of the many bitcoin online casinos and gambling sites. There's also the mysterious dark web, which is filled with websites and marketplaces that accept bitcoins for a variety of goods and services, but keep in mind that they are completely illegal in most countries.
Of course, you could always earn some good karma by donating any of the bitcoin-accepting charities or crowdfunding sites, such as BitHope, Heifer International, Autism Speaks, BitGive or Fidelity Charitable. Lastly, if you’re ever in Japan, you’ll be able to purchase a whole lot of products and services using bitcoin. This country currently tops the list of countries that accept bitcoin payments.
Important Note: The specific businesses mentioned here are just a few examples and are definitely not the only options available. Rest assured that there are dozens of establishments, both online and offline across the globe that accept bitcoin payments.
The Bottom Line
For the time being, bitcoin’s volatility makes it a hard sell for many business owners to accept it as a viable means of payment. However, for every skeptic merchant, there are those that have gone out of their way to ensure smooth bitcoin payments for their business, and the list is growing. So if you’ve got some bitcoin to spend, you can be sure of finding a merchant who will happily accept your crypto assets in exchange.