From the beginning of next year, Vueling will accept 13 digital assets as payment.
Starting in 2023, Vueling, one of Spain’s leading airline firms, will partner with BitPay to allow customers to pay for tickets in various cryptocurrencies.
With Vueling, crypto takes off
The Barcelona-based airline will leverage Universal Air Travel Plan (UATP) technology (a worldwide settlement network in the sector) to further integrate the service, according to a recent press release.
Vueling will initially handle 13 cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC), Dogecoin (DOGE), Shiba Inu (SHIB), and others, which are among the most popular by market capitalization.
If the move goes through as planned in January 2023, the Spanish company would be the first low-cost carrier in Europe to accept digital assets as a payment mechanism.
The move, according to Jess Monzó, Vueling’s Manager of Distribution Strategy and Alliances, “reaffirms the company’s identity as a “digital airline.”
Vueling acknowledges the potential of cryptocurrencies to revolutionize the airline business, making payments faster, more secure, and less expensive worldwide scale, according to BitPay’s Vice President of Marketing, Merrick Theobald.
Regarding fleet size and number of destinations, the firm is Spain’s largest airline. It has flights to more than 120 destinations in Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.
Vueling also entered the Metaverse earlier this year. It allowed customers to envision and schedule their journeys with the carrier using virtual reality distribution channels.
The Airline Industry and Crypto
Last year, Venezuela’s largest airport, Simón Bolivar International Airport (also known as Maiqueta), announced its plans to take digital assets as payment. According to director Freddy Borges, the program can potentially increase the domestic tourism sector.
Emirates Airlines, based in Dubai, has similar goals. The company announced a month ago that it would accept crypto as a payment mechanism and would also add NFTs to its website for trading.