December 31, 2013
A year back, you would have been hard pressed to buy anything with Bitcoins as there were very few people that accepted the virtual currency as payment. A lot has changed since then and there are thousands of websites, car dealers, hospitals, educational institutions and merchants accepting Bitcoin. I have compiled a list of people that have got onto the Bitcoin bandwagon in online world as well as offline world.
Offline Merchants (Physical)
Subway: Back in August, a Subway outlet began offering 10% discount for customers paying in Bitcoin. This was followed by Subway outlets in Bratislava, Slovakia and Allentown.
Latin House Grill Burger & Taco Bar: Miami’s first restaurant to begin accepting Bitcoin payments. The celebrations kicked off with a happy hour this past Friday.
EVR gastro lounge: In April, EVR became the first brick and mortar location to accept Bitcoin in Manhattan. Owner Alex Likhtenstein cites the low 1% processing fee as an advantage over traditional 3.5% fee charged by credit card processors.
Grouper: A Social Club startup Grouper recently launched BitBar.io. It enables Bitcoin users to buy drinks in advance at various locations across 23 cities. A Google map is provided and the user can select a Bar of his choice.
Lamborghini Newport Beach: On its blog, car dealership Lamborghini Newport Beach recently announced that the payment for a Tesla Model S had been made with Bitcoins. 'That's right, an electronic currency was used to purchased a fully electric vehicle.' The car would have cost around 55 Bitcoins as the price was around $1,150 at the time of sale.
Room 77: Joerg Platzer, a bar owner in Kreuzberg Berlin began accepting Bitcoin payments in April 2013.
Overland Park Jeep: Norman Vialle, owner of the Overland park jeep dodge ram Chrysler in Kansas city began accepting Bitcoin payments in April 2013. He was the first car dealer in the U.S to do so.
The University of Nicosia: Students at the largest private university in Cyprus can now pay their tuition fees with Bitcoins. It is the first university in the world to accept the virtual currency according to the university's Chief Financial Officer.
Cups and Cakes: Jennifer Longson, the owner of Cups and Cakes in San Francisco began accepting Bitcoin payments for her products in early 2013. We just bring up the BitPay app and we type in how much they owe us. Up pops a QR code, and they scan it with their online wallet with their phone,' she said.
Kolonial Pizza: Tarun Thadani, owner of a Pizza outlet in Worli, Mumbai recently announced that customers could pay their bill with Bitcoins. This makes Kolonial the first eatery in India to accept the virtual currency.
Merchant Websites (Online ones)
Overstock.com: It is one of the largest online discount retailers. Overstock announced plans to integrate Bitcoin payments in their platform by June 2014.
WordPress.com: WordPress has been accepting bitcoins since November 2012. WordPress is a provider of a free and paid blog based website templates, plugins, etc.
OkCupid: In April 2013, OkCupid a social networking site with themes such as friendship and dating allows users to pay with bitcoins for some of the site’s bonus features.
Shopify: On 27th November 2013, Shopify announced that more than 75,000 merchants that are registered with their platform can start accepting Bitcoin payments. The integration is available through BitPay. It can be used along with other payment services such as PayPal & Shopify payments.
The Pirate Bay: Since April 2013, The Pirate Bay accepts Bitcoins as part of donations for the free torrent based service the site offers.
Mega.co.nz: Through Bitcoins users can upgrade their private packages of storage space since December 2012. The site offers users 50 GB of free private storage space.
Reddit: In February 2013, Reddit announced that they will be accepting Bitcoins as fee to their Reddit Gold Membership service. Reddit is a user generated news and entertainment site.
4chan.org: The site introduced Bitcoin based premium subscriptions in December2012. The site is popular for its simple image based bulletin boards. Any unregistered user can post comments and share images.
EZTV: The site provides an online platform for watching Television shows. A user has an option to pay out donation to EZTV through Bitcoins since April 2013.
The Internet Archive: the site has opened up to accepting donations through Bitcoins and it also pays its employees in bitcoins. They have started accepting bitcoins since February 2013. The site is part of a nonprofit organization which provides a digital repository of past version of most of the websites.
Lumfile: Users can upgrade their free package to a premium package through Bitcoins at Lumfile. Lumfile is a free cloud-based file server where users can back up their work for free or pay for Lumfile’s premium back up service.
Namecheap: In March 2013, Namecheap offered its uses to pay through Bitcoins for its services which include domain name registration, domain parking, SSL certificates, etc.
Some Other Bitcoin Merchant Pioneers
Virgin Galactic: Richard Branson announced in November 2013 that his company, would be accepting Bitcoins as payment for space Travel. Virgin Galactic is a bold entrepreneurial technology driving revolution – bitcoin is doing just the same, he said.
Melanie Brown: Fomer Scary Spice, Melanie Brown partnered with CloudHashing and BitPay to enable Bitcoin payments on her website homepage.
Snoop Dogg: HipHop Royalty, Snoop Dogg tweeted My next release will be available in Bitcoin and delivered in Drone.
International Academy for Musical Arts: Founder of IAMA Zou Lunlun became the first business owner in North Point to accept Bitcoin payments for her online music lessons. She began accepting the virtual currency in September 2013.
Sean’s Outpost: This charity began accepting Bitcoin as early as mid-march in 2013. It has been successful in raising the number of meals served to homeless people from 50 per week in March to 900 per week in November. They also have a project called Satoshi Forest underway, which is a 9 acre property for its clients to live in a completely self sustained environment.