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To encourage this initiative, users who make payments in BTC on all footlongs, and meatball marinaras would have a 10% discount.
Subway, the largest franchise in the world, is reportedly tapping into the huge fanbase of Bitcoin by recognizing it as a payment option. In this case, it is using the Bitcoin lightning network. Technically, the lightning network is a second layer added to Bitcoin’s blockchain to enable off-chain transactions. As of now, trials have begun for Bitcoin payment in three subways in Berlin, Germany.
According to reports, the Berlin Subway franchise owner Daniel Hinze observed 120 Bitcoin transactions in the past few months. It can be recalled that Bitcoin was first experimented with by Subway in Moscow, Russia, about 13 years ago. Hinze disclosed that he desires to see digital asset become a medium of exchange.
“Five years ago, I started to deal with cryptocurrencies; and in the last two years, I have dealt very intensively with the topic of Bitcoin. With that in mind, I’ve decided that [Bitcoin] could be the better money system,” said Hinze.
To encourage this initiative, users who make payments in BTC on all footlongs, and meatball marinaras would have a 10% discount. In addition, Hinze has offered a 50% discount on all payments for a week.
“Around the week, there was, of course, extremely high demand. Our three restaurants were frequently visited by people who liked to pay with Bitcoin.”
A partnership was sealed with a Bitcoin company based in Switzerland, Lipa, to enable an easy-to-use point-of-sale solution. This is said to have been highly patronized by enthusiasts with hashtag #usingBitcoin taking over german-speaking social media.
According to Bastien Feder, CEO of Lipa, Bitcoin is a currency and their mission is to make sure that it becomes irresistible to use. Lipa installed merchant devices on subways that allow customers to scan QR codes to enable fast payment at a cheaper cost. It is reported that merchants pay only a 1% charge for the service.
“It’s 2.5% to 4% depending on the contract from the merchant. If it’s a business card, there’s 0.5% on top of that. […] And if it’s a foreign business credit card, you pay up to 7%, and you don’t know until the end of the month,” explained Feder.
Feder added that there has been an exponential increase in the Bitcoin community in Germany, Switzerland, and other parts of the world. It is believed that the experience of paying over the lightning network is completely different from when subway franchises first accepted Bitcoin payments in 2014 when customers had to wait for several minutes for payment to be processed. With the lightning network, customers also enjoy faster settlements than Visa and Mastercard.