Cheapair, an online travel agency, announced on Friday that Coinbase has stopped supporting payments for the company. Jeff Klee, CEO of Cheapair, wrote a blog post where he explained that they had been accepting Bitcoins for hotel and flight bookings since 2013. However, they recently came across a problem.
[T]oday we face some challenges and we’re asking for your help in finding solutions. We were recently informed by our processing partner, Coinbase, that they will no longer support “custodial” solutions for merchants, and are removing a number of the tools and features that we rely on to accept Bitcoin from CheapAir.com shoppers. These changes are scheduled to occur in a matter of weeks.
Klee wrote that the company will add more cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin Cash, Dash, and Litecoin for its customers in the future. They will also improve their call centre services by hiring people who are more knowledgable about virtual currencies. Furthermore, Cheapair will allow customers to confirm their bookings with Bitcoin and create invoices over the phone and/or email.
Cheapair converts BTC to cash since airlines and hotels have yet to enter the crypto world. “Coinbase has been providing that service for us, but at the end of the month they are getting out of that business, leaving us scrambling for an alternative,” said Klee. Due to these reasons, the company has been looking at BitPay for providing payment solutions.
[O]ur one giant concern is that Bitpay does not support “non-payment protocol wallets” (wallets that aren’t BIP-70 compliant). So if you do not have a compatible wallet, you would have to get one and use it as an intermediate stage for your Bitcoin payment.
Klee said BitPay’s decision is understandable, however, it will require their customers to “do more work or change wallets just to be able to transact with us.” He ended the post by asking customers whether they have used BitPay before, and whether they want to use BIP-70 compliant wallets.
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