One of the main advantages of using cryptocurrencies over fiat money is their level of privacy. Blockchain technology makes every transaction visible for everyone on the internet. However, we don’t really know who the sender and the receiver are. The people behind Bitcoin addresses pretty much remain anonymous.
Aside from Bitcoin transactions taking so long to be confirmed, online payments are quite easy when using cryptocurrencies. But what about real world? One of the main difficulties for digital currency users is that they can’t use their coins to cover day-to-day expenses. You can’t (yet) simply go to the local grocery store and buy something for dinner using Bitcoin. Very few retailers and services accept cryptocurrency as a payment method.
Can we “teach” retailers to accept Bitcoin?
As of now, almost all Bitcoin businesses happen to be online. That being said, cryptocurrencies are looking for a way to expand outside of the virtual world. Cryptocurrency debit cards were invented as a possible solution to this issue.
The concept is pretty easy: cryptocurrency debit card is a plastic card, similar to those already in your purse. It’s very much real and tangible. I bet you’ve always wanted to touch your digital money. Well, now it is finally possible.
As you may have guessed, the main purpose of such card is to enable day-to-day transactions with direct usage of cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrency debit card allows you to make payments without the middle step, such as converting your digital currency to fiat money.
Debit cards or Point-of-Sale Terminals?
Cryptocurrency debit card isn’t the only solution available to make your Bitcoins much more useful in everyday life. Another possible option is a so called Point-of-Sale Terminal. Such terminal needs to be installed at a shop, so that it can interact with your cryptocurrency mobile wallet. Point-of-Sale Terminal make clients’ life easier, but requires a certain investment from the merchant.
Unlike Point-of-Sale Terminals, rechargeable debit cards don’t cause any additional expenses for the merchant. Such cards can be used at any store where the regular plastic cards are already being accepted. The merchant may not even know that you are using a cryptocurrency debit card. The provider converts card holder’s coins to fiat money, making it available for the merchant.
The earliest prototypes of cryptocurrency cards are the prepaid cards and the debit cards. The first option is pretty much outdated in 21st century. As the cryptocurrencies evolve with regards to transaction fees and processing times, the debit cards will be the ones gaining popularity.
Where can I get a cryptocurrency card?
Cryptocurrency debit cards are being provided by many online companies. There are also cards that allow you to use not only Bitcoin, but a wide range of altcoins. A simple online search will help you find various options and order yourself the one you like. Don’t forget to check out user reviews and recommendations before purchasing a card. It will help you see whether your provider can be trusted.
The technology behind cryptocurrency debit cards is on the verge of the digital and the real world. Therefore, it is impossible to avoid the involvement of regulators. You will almost always be asked for some sort of ID verification when ordering a card. If such requirement is acceptable for you, it should be fairly easy to obtain a cryptocurrency debit card.