It’s no secret that Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have been experiencing huge spikes in popularity. Now, not only are more people using it for investment, but many are also using it out in the real world—the way it was initially intended to be used. 

One of the fastest-growing uses of Bitcoin is travel or cryptocurrency tourism—with its tourism industry having one of the most comprehensive lists of businesses that accept Bitcoin. Travel agency titans like Travala, Expedia, and CheapAir are a few to accept cryptocurrency payments, with other companies like Air Baltic becoming the first airline to follow in those footsteps. 

Even Airbnb now gets the idea. Earlier this year, CEO Brian Chesky took a poll to his nearly 400,000 Twitter followers, asking them what feature they’d like to see next on the global rental platform. The majority of the respondents, around 4,000, said they wanted to see Bitcoin or other popular cryptocurrencies accepted as a payment method when they rent their next house or apartment. 

Why use Bitcoin for travel?

With Bitcoin making leaps and bounds in traveling, you’re probably wondering why so many people are opting to use it instead of traditional currencies. 

For all the aspiring globetrotters and adventurers out there looking to dip their feet into cryptocurrency tourism, the most significant advantage of using Bitcoin is avoiding foreign exchange fees. We’ve all been there: having to exchange your dollars for another currency and paying fees on top of that can get a little frustrating. If you bring your BTC into another country and find businesses that accept it as payment, there’s no need to exchange anything. 

On top of that, using Bitcoin via the Lightning Network will eliminate all the other third-party fees involved with using traditional currencies. With this network, you can send and receive money almost instantaneously at little to no cost. 

With more and more accepting Bitcoin as a means of payment, you also won’t be too limited in where you can spend your money. Flights, accommodation, food, and more can be purchased with Bitcoin. From start to finish, you can pretty much use Bitcoin to plan your entire trip. 

Lastly, using Bitcoin eliminates the risk of carrying too much cash. Carrying a lot of cash on you is not only dangerous because it could attract the wrong attention, but also because it puts you at risk of losing or misplacing it. If you carry your money in Bitcoin, you’d be able to access it in multiple ways with features like two-factor authentication ensuring that only you can access the funds inside. 

Disadvantages of cryptocurrency in tourism

Now that we’ve talked about why so many people are using Bitcoin when traveling, let’s talk about some of its disadvantages. 

One disadvantage people may bring up is its learning curve and it’s a highly complex thing to use. Although that may have been true years ago, many platforms have since created products and features that simplified Bitcoin transactions. Additionally, with Bitcoin being well over a decade old now, there are a ton of resources you can use to catch up. Cryptocurrency is not as complicated as people think. 

Another disadvantage is that despite its soaring popularity, Bitcoin is still considered a niche market. Yes, the list of businesses accepting it as a means of payment is growing, but the rest of the world still needs a lot of catching up to do. 

Bitcoin-friendly tourist destinations

Ready to start planning your trip? Here are our recommendations for tourist destinations for you and your Bitcoin:

Bitcoin Beach (El Salvador)

Arguably the most popular Bitcoin-friendly destination, Bitcoin Beach in El Salvador got a lot of attention when the country became the first to accept Bitcoin as legal tender. With its warm water and waves that attract surfers from all over the world, it’s safe to say El Zonte has attracted a new kind of tourist—the Bitcoin kind. 

The project itself aims to create a sustainable ecosystem for all the people on the coast of El Salvador—where most businesses in the area don’t qualify to accept credit card payments and many people don’t have access to bank accounts.

Although this area started off as a testing ground, it has quickly blossomed into one of the go-to places for you and your Bitcoin. 

Bitcoin Island (Philippines)

Known for its resorts and pristine white beaches, Boracay is a small island in the central Philippines. It offers gorgeous palm trees, exciting water activities, delicious restaurants, and lively bars that suit any tourist. 

As of September 30, 2022, there are around 160 businesses in Boracay that accept Bitcoin—including accommodations, small convenience stores, markets, tour companies, cafes, transportation, and more. Companies like are even branding themselves as the “e-wallet for foreigners,” meaning you’ll be able to transact with most people via Lightning. 

Although it hasn’t officially earned the title, it won’t be long before people decide to start calling Boracay the “Bitcoin Island.”

Bitcoin Valley (Honduras)

Located in the booming town of Santa Lucia in Honduras, Bitcoin Valley earned its name when the initiative was developed by the Blockchain Honduras organization, Santa Lucia’s municipality, the Guatemalan cryptocurrency exchange consortium Coincaex, and the Technological University of Honduras. 

With the goal of providing training for over 60 businesses to adopt cryptocurrency as a payment for their goods and services, Bitcoin Valley was among the first to follow in El Salvador’s footsteps. 

Bitcoin Lake (Guatemala)

Another project following in the footsteps of El Zonte (Bitcoin Beach) in El Salvador is Bitcoin Lake in Guatemala. Located in Panajachel, a town in the Guatemalan highlands on the shores of Lake Atitlán, the project took off due to its area being famous for Bitcoin mining. Patrick Melder, the founder of the project, thought of it in the spring of 2021, a little bit before Bitcoin was announced as legal tender in El Salvador. 

The area itself is known for its Mayan villages and the town of Panajachel, the gateway to the lake, is the home of vendors selling various traditional textiles. The Atitlán nature also provides trails and beautiful butterfly gardens. 

Using Bitcoin on your next travels

Now that you know all about using Bitcoin in your chapter on cryptocurrency tourism, why not try it out? All you’ll need is a trusted Bitcoin wallet to hold your money, a spirit for adventure, and an open mind.