Every week another company tries to make a splash by saying it accepts bitcoin but, most of time, the “news” feels more like a marketing stunt rather than a revolution in consumer payments. Is Expedia any different?
On Wednesday, the company said it will begin letting customers use bitcoins to make reservations at its more than 29,000 hotel partners around the world. In practice, this will mean that some consumers will use the virtual currency to pay Expedia, which will then forward the payment to the hotel in local currency.
As with any other “you can pay with bitcoin” story, the question is why someone would use the currency to pay Expedia. After all, it’s equally or more convenient to pay with a credit card and, in many cases, a traveler will receive a reward from the card that they wouldn’t receive if they used bitcoin.
Michael Gulmann, Expedia’s VP of Global Product, acknowledged in a phone interview that…
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