Bitcoin News

One of Japan’s Largest Budget Airlines Begin to Accept Bitcoin, Rise of Japanese Market

One of Japan’s Largest Budget Airlines Begin to Accept Bitcoin, Rise of Japanese Market

One of Japan’s Largest Budget Airlines Begin to Accept Bitcoin, Rise of Japanese Market

Apart from being the third largest bitcoin exchange market, Japan has one of the most active bitcoin communities in the world that is optimistic about bitcoin as digital cash and currency, instead of digital gold.

On May 22, Peach Aviation, one of Japan’s most popular and largest budget airlines, solidified bitcoin’s image in Japan by accepting bitcoin payments for flight bookings.

According to Bloomberg, Peach Aviation is set to become the first Japanese airline to accept bitcoin payments for airline tickets for both domestic and international flights. Peach CEO Shinichi Inoue stated that the integration of bitcoin is an important part of a larger vision of the company to attract more tourists in Asia.

“We want to encourage visitors from overseas and the revitalization of Japan’s regions. This is a real first step in partnerships for Japan and we are aiming for more company and service tie-ups,” Inoue told reporters at a press conference held in Tokyo.

Over the past few years, bitcoin’s public image has transformed from digital cash to digital gold in the sense that a wide range of investors have started perceive bitcoin as a safe haven asset, wealth protection tool and a mandatory asset to protect holdings against economic uncertainty and financial instability, rather than as digital cash.

The mainstream media also played an important role in pushing the “Bitcoin is gold 2.0” narrative to the public, with financial media companies including CNBC consistently categorizing bitcoin as digital gold, as CNBC analyst and BKCM founder Brian Kelly previously said:

Bitcoin can be thought of as digital gold. The upside for bitcoin is so much higher than upside for gold, in my view."

However, the image of bitcoin is quite different in Japan because companies and consumers are looking at and using bitcoin as a digital currency. Some of Japan’s most influential conglomerates including Bic Camera are accepting bitcoin payments for their electronics retail stores across Japan and local publications have reported that more than 260,000 restaurants, cafes and eateries in Japan will soon be able to accept bitcoin payments through AirRegi.

Recruit Lifestyle, a major Japanese conglomerate, has announced its partnership with Tokyo-based exchange Coincheck to enable bitcoin payments for AirRegi-using merchants. AirRegi, a popular Point of Sale (PoS) system in Japan, is used by hundreds of thousands of merchants nationwide.

Local publications including Nikkei reported that the Recruit Lifestyle-Coincheck deal could allow consumers to pay at over 260,000 shops and eateries throughout Japan using bitcoin.

Japan’s rapidly rising adoption of bitcoin as digital currency and a legal currency is significantly affecting the global bitcoin market and has also put pressure on the industry, mining community and developers to activate a viable scaling solution such as Segwit to expand the bitcoin network for larger consumer and user bases.

Author : Joseph Young

Joseph Young is a finance and tech journalist based in Hong Kong. He has worked with leading media and news agencies in the technology and finance industries, offering exclusive content, interviews, insights and analysis of cryptocurrencies, innovative and futuristic technologies.

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