McDonald’s to Begin Accepting Bitcoin, USDT in Swiss City of Lugano

| Updated
by Tolu Ajiboye · 3 min read
McDonald’s to Begin Accepting Bitcoin, USDT in Swiss City of Lugano
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McDonald’s is one of the first businesses to accept Bitcoin and USDT as a form of payment in crypto-friendly Lugano.

McDonald’s has reportedly begun to accept Bitcoin (BTC) and Tether (USDT) as payment in the Swiss town of Lugano. This development is part of an ongoing crypto-friendly experiment in the Italian Switzerland province.

Bitcoin Magazine recently revealed the McDonald’s Bitcoin and USDT payment initiative with a one-minute video upload to Twitter. The video shows the process required to order food at McDonald’s digital kiosk and pay at the regular register. In the video, the featured customer at the fast food giant uses a mobile app to pay. Furthermore, next to the BTC symbol on the credit card machine is the Tether logo, suggesting payment compatibility. However, the USDT development is hardly surprising, given that it is Lugano. This is because the 63,000-populated Swiss city announced in March this year that it would accept Bitcoin, Tether, and the LVGA token as legal tender.

The city of Lugano also set up two funds in association with Tether Operations Limited as part of their “Plan B” initiative. The first fund contains a $106 million (or 100 million Swiss francs) investment pool tailored toward crypto startups. Meanwhile, the other fund is worth 3 million Swiss francs, earmarked for increasing crypto adoption at shops and businesses.

McDonald’s Bitcoin and USDT Scheme Ties to Broader Lugano Crypto Agenda

The city of Lugano signed a memorandum of understanding with Tether Operations Limited on March 3rd, 2022. Pursuant to this agreement, Lugano residents could opt to pay for taxes, goods, and services, using the prescribed digital currencies. Furthermore, with Tether’s help, the Italian-speaking city is set on becoming a major blockchain hub. In fact, this so-called “Plan B” initiative saw both partners establishing a Center of Excellence for Blockchain Adoption in Lugano.

Speaking at the “Plan B” commemorating event at the time, Tether’s chief technical officer Paolo Ardoino touched on Lugano’s crypto initiative. According to him:

“We want to show that these tools, these instruments, these currencies that were created can actually be put to work in a [locally-controlled] vibrant environment like the city of Lugano.”

In addition, Ardoino stated that Lugano sought to lure talent from the broader crypto industry into its city. He also further revealed at the time that the platform had established a 3 million-Swiss franc fund in collaboration with Lugano city officials. This capital would go towards the facilitation of crypto adoption throughout the crypto-oriented Swiss city.

Also in March, Lugano Mayor Michele Foletti said the city’s involvement in blockchain technology is a few years old. As he put it:

“Lugano is investing in its future. In recent years, we have already implemented blockchain-based solutions including the MyLugano app and its LVGA Points payment token, the Lugano digital franc and the 3Achain blockchain infrastructure.”

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