Bitcoin’s move into mainstream in the US is happening now – and it’s starting with pizza in Reno, Nevada.
The owner of Lamppost Pizza Reno, Jay Watson, has started to accept Bitcoin as a payment method at his restaurant, which was announced on Facebook on Wednesday this week.
A Natural progression
"I have always been interested in technology so it is a natural progression," said Watson in an interview with local news channel KOLO 8.
Lamppost will offer Bitcoin in additional to conventional payment, as Watson believes it is important to give customers choice, especially while Bitcoin is still in its infancy:
"I don't necessarily see it as a replacement for credit cards […] I see it as an enhancement or just another option," he added.
But the advantages of Bitcoin are clear to him, having dabbled in digital currency over the past year or so. As a merchant, avoiding credit card processing fees is highly attractive aspect of Bitcoin, the fee for which is typically around 1% of the transaction total. Payment is also guaranteed, avoiding the occurrence of chargebacks by customers.
Watson converts all payments to USD the next business day, with no need to wait for banks to process customers’ card payments. And while the exchange rate is subject to quite some fluctuation, 24 hours is a risk he’s willing to take without worrying.
“I am only subject to one day of volatility,” he notes.
Cointelegraph sees that Lamppost is just one of a growing number of businesses in Reno which are making the step to Bitcoin acceptance. Six merchants now accept the currency, including a bar, a barber and several software companies.
It will be interesting to see especially how the role of Facebook and other social networks increases consumer curiosity about crypto-currency on a local level, especially when your local pizza place casually announces that you can now leave your bills and Mastercard in your wallet.
One thing is for certain: "I think as Bitcoin itself gains more popularity, goes a little bit more mainstream, you'll see more businesses wanting to get involved," confirms Jay Yerxa, a local Bitcoin expert.