AirBaltic Becomes First Airliner to Fly Away with Bitcoin

baltic crew

The Latvian flag carrier, airBaltic now accepts Bitcoin as payment for tickets on its website.

Valid for tickets to 60 destinations across Europe, the Middle East, Russia and the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States), the Bitcoin payment option is available when purchasing the cheapest tickets – airBaltic Basic Class.

To make accepting the virtual currency possible, airBaltic partnered with Bitpay, a third-party payment processor to handle the conversion into Euros (at the current exchange rate).

The low-cost airline’s CEO, Martin Gauss, commented: “AirBaltic has been ranked among the top ten most innovative airlines globally.

“Introducing the Bitcoin payment option is part of our innovative approach to service with a central focus on our customer.”

Bitcoin is a software-based payment system that was introduced in 2009. The currency uses peer-to-peer technology to operate with no central authority or banks; managing of transactions and the issuing of Bitcoins is carried out collectively by the network.

Those behind Bitcoin state that it is open-source, its design is public, nobody owns or controls it and everyone can take part. However financial authorities have warned that Bitcoin lacks the consumer protections that exist for traditional forms of payment, such as credit cards.