As the voice on the radio sings dashing through the snow in a one-horse open sleigh–or passing through a node in a one-horse binary tree–as Bitcoin aficionados would likely belt the Christmas classic (wink), it is never too early to think about gifts to give, as well as, activities and experiences to have with friends and loved ones during the upcoming holiday season.
And if you have some spare bitcoins parked in a wallet somewhere waiting to be spent, we’ve scoured the Internet for you in search of the best places to shop and spend your Bitcoin where it can give you the best bang for the token buck. Here are the 10 places to get a good deal and spend your Bitcoin safely and worry-free.
If you are thinking about doing some home improvement work in the house or buying your spouse a lovely jewelry, or finally buying junior the new iPhone that he has been wishing for, this is the best mainstream retailer to shop using your Bitcoin. The process of paying is fairly straightforward and done at the checkout. As the best place to spend Bitcoin, Overstock.com also accepts other major cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, among others.
Overstock occupies an important place in the history of Bitcoin used for e-commerce. Although, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies account for less than 1% of its total sales, the pioneering act of accepting Bitcoin for payment started in 2014, and has inspired many online merchants to follow suit since then.
It is never too early to think about getting away for the cold winter season. Even if you live in a country with a warm temperature year-round, the thought of relaxing and recharging personal batteries has never been too important, especially in this day and age, where work is almost always just a tap away from a mobile device.
Which means that if you have been dreaming of going to exotic Bali, Indonesia or spending a week scuba diving and frolicking in the sun on the beaches of Palawan, Philippines (voted by Conde Nast travel magazine readers as the best island in the world), CheapAir serves as a terrific place for you to spend your Bitcoin to book for flights and hotel. It is the first online booking travel site to accept cryptocurrencies as a form of payment, and they offer the same level of privileges and protection to consumers who otherwise use other forms of payment.
Expedia is the biggest online travel booking site in the world and it accepts Bitcoins! The caveat though is that it only accepts this form of payment for hotel bookings. Expedia is a good place to spend your Bitcoins, especially if you sign up for their rewards points and want to continue to enjoy the other perks that the travel site exclusively offers to registered members. For the travelers who want to book flights in addition to hotel reservations, Bitcoin holders tend to go to BTCtrip.com and obtain airline tickets via a direct Bitcoin transaction. Travel enthusiasts who rely for assistance from a travel professional tend to use Destinia, a global travel agency headquartered in Spain.
Some people often find it hard to think about gifts to give — much less gifts that the person receives will really like. The safest go-to solution for many is to simply buy gift cards. Fortunately, Gyfts.com accepts Bitcoins to purchase gift cards from a variety of companies such as Hotels.com, Southwest Airlines, Target, and other major retailers. At the checkout, Gyft provides three distinct options in terms of payment using Bitcoins: (1) Copying and pasting the store’s Bitcoin address and paying directly from your Bitcoin wallet; (2) Selecting “pay with Bitcoin” – an option used if you have a desktop wallet installed and; (3) Scanning the QR code — that is — if you have a Bitcoin Wallet on your mobile device.
Similar to Gyfts, eGifter accepts Bitcoins as payment for you to purchase a range of gift cards for stores such as Amazon, Home Depot, Kohl’s, and many others. Purchasing gift cards provides the best option at the moment to use your Bitcoin for online shopping as well as the traditional in-store or brick and mortar shopping. The online store provides a step-by-step guide on how to pay with Bitcoin with this link. It is important to follow their protocols because errors can result in unnecessary delay in processing payment. eGifter has sometimes received some not so great reviews from customers due to unforeseen delays in processing payment or releasing the gift cards.
Okay I get it, you might say that you haven’t found the right person to give a gift to or to travel with to an exotic vacation destination. You might reason that it is hard to find someone to share special moments with especially when you are constantly knee-deep in work, pounding away at the keyboard trying to make a headway for the startup you just launched or trying to close on a deal with a venture capitalist.
Well, as somebody adept in technology and familiar with how machine learning works, you can count on a well-structured algorithm to find a match for you. You just might want to roll in your extra dough of Bitcoins to OkCupid dating site. It is the only major dating service at the moment that accepts Bitcoins. You get a lot of value for your Bitcoins though because the site provides great service – just as great if not better than the leading dating and matchmaking sites like match.com or eharmony.com. OkCupid offers the best option for you to spend your Bitcoins while trying to find the love of your life.
It is nice to know that wherever you are in the world, especially in a major city, there is a familiar fast-food restaurant that you can spend your Bitcoin on in a relatively straightforward fashion — meaning by simply scanning the QR code at the restaurant and paying for your sandwich meal. Subway has implemented the Bitcoin payment option for some time now through their many restaurant franchises with relative success. This video shows how a customer went to a Subway restaurant, made the order, and paid with Bitcoin cryptocurrency for his order.
If you are searching for a gift for yourself, especially for your own growing small business, this service provides the hassle free and ultimate gift of convenience to merchants and customers. This payment service option processes Bitcoin payments, and you can simply sign up for it, then start accepting Bitcoin payments for your businesses or services.
In the spirit of the holiday season, it would be the ultimate display of kindness and generosity if you can spend your Bitcoins via a charitable donation to Save the Children Fund, a highly respected global non-profit organization that promotes and protects children’s rights and welfare. The organization helps transform the lives of children so they can have a better future. Through a partnership with BitPay, your tax-deductible Bitcoin donation will really go a long way in changing the life of a child who is going through tough times.
10. Bloomberg News
If you are a news junkie and always want to be kept abreast of breaking stories — especially the latest market moving news stories — you can spend your Bitcoins by subscribing to Bloomberg News. It is by far the only major news organization that accepts payments in Bitcoin for content subscription. The New York Times and others are still just pondering whether to go the cryptocurrency route.
To those who are looking to spend Bitcoins on gifts, presents, and expressions of gratitude to the people you care the most, the 10 sites that we talked about here can provide major options for you to spend the Bitcoins currently in your possession. Incidentally, there are many big malls now around the world that accept Bitcoins or exchange them for cash. One of the biggest malls in North America (the biggest in Canada), for example, the West Edmonton Mall (WEM) now provides various ATM-like machines where people can exchange Bitcoins for cash.
As Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies grow in use and popularity, the list of merchants and service providers accepting them is also on the rise. The parking service at Denver International Airport, for example, accepts Bitcoin as payment. So is the Dish Network, a leading direct satellite service providers to millions of homes in the US. A popular digital game re-seller, Green Man Gaming, also accepts Bitcoins. Shopify, the biggest and most popular online selling platform for small businesses, also accepts Bitcoin as a form of payment to goods and services.
Let’s assume all the shopping have been done for the holiday season using the Bitcoins which you saved, and all the gifts have been handed out — especially to the nice ones in your family — you might want to think about just kicking back, relaxing, watching football, and perhaps, just ordering pizza for delivery. Well, you might be happy to know that PizzaForCoins accepts Bitcoins and many other cryptocurrencies, so you can pay for your pizza ordered at the nearest pizza restaurant chain (Dominos, Papa John’s or Pizza Hut).
Indeed, the jingle bells are ringing for Bitcoin joy a shopping.