Have you heard of Felix Weis who travelled the world for 18 months spending only Bitcoin? As challenging as it sounds, he managed to visit 50 cities in 27 countries. His experience also made me think about how such a trip would look like in my hometown, Budapest.
As popular as Bitcoin has been recently, its widespread use in everyday life in Hungary is still a bit farther away. Despite the fact that our neighbours - Austria and Slovakia are ahead of us in terms of products and services that could be bought with Bitcoin, there are still quite a few businesses in Hungary which accept payments in Bitcoins.
So, if you were determined to organize such a short Bitcoin getaway to Budapest, don’t give up on it just yet. Here are a few tips how to spend time in Budapest only paying with Bitcoin.
Travel to Budapest and within the city
Purchasing a flight ticket with Bitcoin is quite simple with CheapAir being the most well-known website for flight reservations in the Bitcoin world. Booking a flight with them only takes a few minutes, and your trip to Budapest is already underway.
When you land at Liszt Ferenc International Airport, the fastest way to get to the city centre is by taxi. In February 2016, the first taxi company in this aspect, Budapest Taxi introduced Bitcoin payments to their passengers.
No need to worry about exchanging currencies with high fees at the airport, just order a taxi and enjoy the ride. Bitcoin payments are facilitated by CoinPay, and ensure that you are charged the correct amount as you receive a proof of payment in form of a print receipt, e-mail, or text message.
The first and currently still the only hotel in Hungary to offer payment with Bitcoin is Paprika Hostel, located in the city center.
Another establishment listed as accepting Bitcoins is a lakeside apartment in Tata, some 100 km away from the capital. The upside is that you are able to make a direct reservation with these properties.
However, if you are looking for a wider range of options, Expedia will be your ultimate guide. Listing more than 400 hotels in Budapest, everyone can find their ideal place to stay in the city.
Restaurants and bars
Budapest has plenty of famous restaurants, not to mention the so-called ‘ruin pubs’ which have become a must-see for visitors. As of now, Bitcoin payments are only possible in few of them. After a tiring day of sightseeing, HQ Café in the 7th district is your (possibly only) chance for a Bitcoin-paid coffee and dessert.
If you decide to spend a night out in the city, chances are that you will be in the vicinity of Deák Ferenc square so you can easily check out these two bars.
Bitcoin ATMs in Budapest
If you decide that there isn’t enough variety of Bitcoin accepting places, there is always the possibility to visit a Bitcoin ATM and withdraw some Hungarian Forints from your Bitcoin wallet. Currently, there are two options to do that: at Klub Anker or at Stop Shop Mall (3rd district).
The first ever Bitcoin ATM was established at Klub Anker more than two years ago, gaining ample publicity for this initiative. The club is a central venue for Bitcoin enthusiasts so you might even join conversations on how to use the Bitcoin ATM or discussing the future of cryptocurrencies– such an easy way to make new friends!
Things you never thought you could buy with Bitcoin
Even though the list of Bitcoin-friendly establishments in Budapest is short, the range of services they offer is surprisingly wide. And remember that most of these companies even offer discounts for Bitcoin payments.
For example, you have the option of paying with Bitcoin for classes at a dog training school (available in Hungarian and English). You can also invest in 18th century gold or silver coins at a numismatics company, donate for a good cause or bid on various auction items at an auction house. Buying jewellery or water filters with Bitcoin is also possible at certain local companies.
But why would these businesses even think of offering Bitcoin payments? The answer is that most of them see the option to pay with Bitcoin as a unique way of promotion and positioning themselves as forward-looking businesses. They have never actually had a Bitcoin customer; still this offering distinguishes them from the competition and brings additional publicity.
At the moment, Hungary is only starting its path of adopting Bitcoin payments and businesses with Bitcoin payment options are still considered to be pioneers in this aspect. So, while travelling to Budapest using just Bitcoins could be challenging, but it’s definitely possible – and the number of businesses joining will only continue to grow in the future.
Prepared with the help of http://www.bitcoinbazis.hu