In possibly the greatest piece of news as far as crypto adoption this week, Norwegian air which is one of Europe’s top budget airlines; has revealed that it will allow passengers to purchase tickets using BTC.
The European airline giant will not just allow BTC payments, but it also plans to open its own crypto exchange according to Norwegian press. According to Norwegian publication Dagens Næringsliv (DN), the airline plans to allow its customers to start purchasing tickets using cryptocurrencies which will include the world’s largest cryptocurrency by market cap, Bitcoin (BTC).
It was revealed that the New Norwegian Block exchange (NBX) was set to be available from august and according to DN, the airline would also be rolling out exchanges in neighboring countries as well over the coming months. The Norwegian Block Exchange (NBX) will integrate the airline’s existing reward program, which will see customers earn points by trading on the exchange; which they can swap for discounts on tickets and other perks.
The exchanges customers also have the opportunity to earn cash points on trades on the stock exchange, as well as on trades made through the payment solution NBX stock for the airline. Norwegian air has grown in leaps and bounds in its 18 years of existence after growing from a company with only 130 employees, to an outfit with 11,000 employees and a fleet of 195 planes plying 500 different routes.
Norwegian airlines is not the only airline that accepts Bitcoin payments, its close competitor AirBaltic, a Latvian outfit became the first airline to offer such services in the world 5 years ago. California’s CheapAir, though not an airline but a travel agency was accepting BTC way earlier than both, while UK-based travel management company, Corporate traveller, revealed in April that it would be accepting BTC payments through a partnership with Bitpay.
Norwegian Air’s decision to accept BTC payments was likely influenced by the firm’s CEO Lars Kjos, who is the son of the airline’s founder, Bjørn Kjos; since he is a big investor in Bitcoin. According to DN, Lars holds about $400,000 worth of BTC which was purchased mostly before November 2017. The move may also have been influenced by the airline’s financial straits, which prompted the need for financial diversification.
With the airline boasting a fleet of 195 aircrafts flying 500 different routes, the move to accept BTC payments cannot be looked as anything other than a positive as far as crypto adoption is concerned. It is also worth noting that with all the airlines now accepting BTC payments, crypto is increasingly gaining a firm foothold in the aviation industry.
Image courtesy of pexels