As the world's most popular cryptocurrency, bitcoin, keeps taking steps to go mainstream, tourists in Germany can now spend it as legal tender. This move is made amidst mixed gloal reactions to crypto, causing some countries to regulate them, and in some cases ban specific cryptocurrencies.
In what's being seen as a positive development, the German National Tourist Board (GNTB), has just announced that bitcoin will now be accepted as legal tender in the country's tourism sector. It's noteworthy that European countries have generally been more tolerant of cryptocurrencies, with some legalizing them. This as opposed to their American counterparts, where crypto users are burdened with heavy taxation for their crypto transactions.
This decision may have considerable impact, taking into account that the GNTB is currently operating in 32 countries. This will likely help champion the adoption of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies, while supporting the tourism sector. GNBT's CEO, Petra Hedorfer, stated:
“We want to be a global innovation driver in the tourism industry. In the course of our digitization strategy, we are constantly reviewing the latest technology and trends, [and] their applicability in our company.”
Germany has conducted deep research on the beneficial use cases of Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). Its transparency, immutability and security attributes are applicable to several areas from education to governance. However, while everyone admits DLT is a disruptive technology, it's first use case, cryptocurrency, has for various reasons been having a hard time being widely accepted.
In Germany, steps are being taken to integrate innovation that will transform and revolutionize the tourism sector.
“With the acceptance of cryptocurrencies as a means of payment and the possible medium-term implementation of the blockchain, we want technology in our finance as a global company set a sign as an innovation driver and driver of the tourism industry.”
Just last month, the German Ministry of Finance published a report containing details on how bitcoin will be used. According to the document:
“The use of Bitcoin shall be equated with the use of conventional payment instruments, insofar as they serve no purpose other than that of a pure payment instrument.”
GNTB intends to kill two birds with one stone. By adopting crypto as legal tender in the country's tourism sector, it effectively increases the attractiveness of Germany as a holiday destination while also establishing itself as a strong player in the business world.