How to Spend Bitcoin in 2021
Nowadays, you can’t read the news or scroll through Twitter without someone talking about Bitcoin. The relevance of cryptocurrency has left the realm of finance and entered the cultural sphere.
Getting into Bitcoin is still somewhat confusing to many, regardless of the mainstream acceptance. One of the principal reasons why is not knowing how to spend Bitcoin even if you have it.
Your regular online stores might not have the option to pay with Bitcoin yet, but that doesn’t mean there are no places to spend Bitcoin online and offline. In this article, we’ll talk about how to spend Bitcoin and what you need to do before making your first Bitcoin purchase.
The Story About the Pizza Day
Perhaps you’re wondering when and how Bitcoin was first used for goods or services. Fortunately, this event was well-documented in the Bitcoin community and is referred to as “Pizza Day.”
You would be right to assume that the first item purchased with Bitcoins was pizza – well, two pizzas, actually. If you’re familiar with blockchain explorers, online search tools for all cryptocurrency transactions, you’ll be able to find the exact purchase to this day.
In May 2010, Laszlo Hanyecz offered 10,000 BTC for two pizzas on Bitcointalk.org. Bitcoin was worth close to £18 at the time.
Several days later, one of the users from the platform posted proof that they’d bought the pizzas. There’s even a recording of the event that resurfaced recently. Today, those two pizzas would be worth a little over £4 million.
How to Spend Bitcoin Online
We’ve come a long way since Pizza Day, but spending Bitcoin is still not as simple as you might expect. However, things have changed significantly as of late.
Many online brands see adding Bitcoin payment methods as a way to stay competitive. One of the first companies to allow their customers to buy with Bitcoin was Overstock.
They’re trailblazers in many ways as they allow other cryptocurrencies as well. If you’re thinking about making travel arrangements, Expedia is one website where you can spend Bitcoin to book hotels.
For air tickets, you can use CheapAir and SurfAir, if you prefer to spend Bitcoin instead of traditional currency. Another way you can spend Bitcoin online is by purchasing gift cards.
In fact, many online stores choose to partner with gift card companies to allow customers to spend their Bitcoins. EGifter and Gyft are the most popular current options. These two websites let you buy gift cards and redeem them in many different online retailers such as Best Buy and Amazon.
Microsoft is another place where Bitcoins are welcomed. You can use your digital money to buy games, movies, and apps.
Finally, a well-established way of spending Bitcoin online is for charities and tipping. Your Bitcoin holdings are a great way to show appreciation to the charities you respect or make a donation to someone in need.
How to Spend Bitcoin Offline
You might be wondering if this is even an option. There are indeed very few places where Bitcoins or any other cryptocurrency are a legitimate form of payment offline.
However, some brick-and-mortar stores have included these services as well. These offline payments would still include having a Bitcoin debit card or using a Bitcoin wallet app.
Before you can rely on paying for goods and services with Bitcoin offline, you would need to conduct thorough research on which stores accept this form of payment in your area.
However, Be Careful About Spending Bitcoin
If you’re a novice in all things related to Bitcoin and cryptocurrency, then spending it right away probably shouldn’t be your primary concern.
There’s a lot of potential for scams online, such as people offering fake crypto giveaways. Fake crypto exchanges are another problem you might run into.
Also, common phishing scams aim to steal the user’s private key and drain their wallets. Therefore, it’s essential to be aware of these issues to avoid anything like this happening.
So, Before You Spend a Single Bitcoin
After you’ve done some Bitcoin mining or have purchased Bitcoins, you might be tempted to spend some of that digital money online.
That’s great. But before you do, make sure you’ve taken all the correct steps to set up a positive experience.
Select Your Bitcoin Wallet
You can’t make any purchases with Bitcoin without first choosing a Bitcoin wallet. To create a Bitcoin wallet, first, choose between an online Bitcoin wallet or a hardware wallet. Ensure that the service you use is trustworthy and that they can provide sufficient security.
This wallet is essentially your Bitcoin “bank” account where you’ll store, buy, and receive your digital assets. The set-up is usually pretty simple, especially if you opt for a free Bitcoin wallet.
Using the crypto exchanges, you can buy Bitcoin. Always conduct research regarding the current price of digital currency, as it is known to be volatile.
If you connect your bank account or credit card to the exchange service, you’ll be able to purchase Bitcoins instantly.
All you have to do is provide the crypto exchange service with your wallet address, and the transaction will be done in minutes.
Start Spending Your Coins
If you’ve found an online merchant that accepts Bitcoin payments, all you have to do is copy their Bitcoin address to the designated field on your Bitcoin wallet.
Always double-check that you’ve entered the right amount. Payments that go through on the blockchain network can’t be retrieved.
The Future of Spending Bitcoin
If you’re a business owner, you’ll likely need to start thinking about incorporating Bitcoin payments as an option in the future. As customers, we’ll probably see significant changes in how Bitcoin payments are handled as well.
Many online brands happily include Bitcoin as a way to make a profit, if others are still reluctant. Even now, there are many options for those who wish to spend Bitcoin.
Booking hotels, purchasing air tickets, and buying apps and video games are just some of the ways you can benefit from using Bitcoin. Offline merchants will perhaps follow this trend as well.
Author Bio: Hitesh is a digital marketing strategist and entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in digital marketing, start-ups, branding, and customer acquisition strategies. Hitesh is the CEO and Founder of Reposition Group, which specialises in digital growth strategies for companies in the cryptocurrency market such as Bitamp.com.