When people hear about cryptocurrency, most often they automatically relate it to investments and digital trading. A large part of this is caused by how bitcoin, the first cryptocurrency established, was able to gain its popularity. The world got to know bitcoin as the internet money that created millionaires out of a bunch of lucky and techy millennials. Many of them were unaware of just how good an investment it was when they bought their first few bitcoins. Now, the story of these bitcoin millionaires has gotten thousands of people interested in investing in cryptocurrency. With the countless new blockchains being developed, they have a wide range of investment options. However, aside from giving people the chance to try their luck in the digital investment game, cryptocurrencies can be used in many other ways.
Here are the Top 5 Alternative Uses of Cryptocurrency
1. To get an Education
What’s the best way to get ahead in the world of digital currency? Learn as much as you can about it. Some colleges are offering degrees in digital currency and are even giving their students a discount if they pay in bitcoins. Other colleges and universities like King’s College in New York, Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, University Business School ESMT Berlin, University of Cumbria and the University of Nicosia are now accepting bitcoins or altcoins as a way for students to pay for their tuition fees. Aside from the use of cryptocurrency to pay for learning, the possible application of blockchain technology to improve the current academe has been actuated by several sites that provide an online platform for skill sharing and learning. Dissemination of the ever-growing knowledge base is made easier through Academy Token, BitDegree, TeachMePlease, Knowledge.io, EduCoin, LiveEdu, NTOK-X tokens, and ODEM. Along with others, these have been developed to bring the school system into the digital age by providing education online but also focus on developing courses related to cryptocurrency. Blockchain development, Smart Contract Development, Web development Theory, and Coding Fundamentals are just some of the courses available to help create a workforce to support blockchain technology.
2. To Travel
Travelers lose too much money when they exchange currencies on their trips. Payments through bitcoin or altcoin minimize these losses while providing a quick and secure way to cover their traveling needs. Online flight bookings can be made through CheapAir, Expedia, BTCtrip, and Destinia where they accept crypto to get you the flights you need. You could even pay for your accommodation through cryptocurrency with some of these online travel agencies or use the crypto AirBnB - CryptoCribs. There are numerous benefits of holding your assets in crypto over traditional bank accounts. When you need cash on the go, bitcoin ATMs in the area could help you avoid the costly international bank fees every time you withdraw cash outside your country. Another way to do this would be to take advantage of how crypto has incorporated itself as an actual form of payment in major shops. Quite a number of people have embarked on travels with only their digital coins and have found this to be a possible adventure. Surely, as the popularity and use of crypto increases, more opportunities for its use in daily commerce will also arise. A few places such as Switzerland, Antigua, Amsterdam, and Malta have become so crypto-friendly that the governing bodies have enacted regulations to monitor the use and trade of cryptocurrency.
3. Donate to Charities
Invested in cryptocurrency and got lucky? One way to share your investment earnings would be to help those in need by donating to a charity. This is made easier through the establishment of online charities that receive crypto payments through Coingate or BitPay. Nonprofit organizations such as Thewaterproject.org, Humanityroad.org, Redcross.org, and Savethechildren.org present donors with the chance to send in their choice of cryptocurrency to help fund their causes. The creation of crypto charity presents a lot of advantages in terms of transparency, anonymity, and management. Having a decentralized and public ledger to help donors stay anonymous while still accounting for all the assets given provides almost no chance for people to embezzle or take advantage of the system which is often times a problem in conventional charity organizations. There is also much less hassle when donating across borders since crypto is an international currency. By making it convenient for anyone in the world to send what they can almost anywhere, this widens the scope of potential contributors to a project.
4. Real Estate
If you’re still not convinced that bitcoin and altcoins have an actual monetary value, take a look at crypto real estate sites. Here, people can purchase their own piece of real estate by paying with cryptocurrency. Through a process that is almost identical to how we all shop for future houses online, these sites provide a wide range of real estate in various locations and allow an individual to set up a viewing of the location, calculate its value in crypto and choose the coin of your choice. Blockchain technology has easily found its way into the real estate market not just as a mode of payment but also through the development of real estate cryptocurrencies. Further improvements could be made to this industry through the better incorporation of the concept of decentralized public ledgers in keeping the records of the properties. The current system makes it easy for potential homeowners to be tricked into purchasing a piece of property at a much higher value than it’s worth due to how easy it is to tamper with the documents. Keeping these records in a blockchain closes the door to the possibility of scam in the sale of such properties since all records are verified and are immutable.
5. As an Actual Coin
Alright, you might not be able to actually use the bitcoin coin to pay for something in a shop, but it’s pretty cool how you can have an actual bitcoin in your pocket. The coin is able to maintain its value by keeping its private key embedded in a tamper-evident hologram on its backside. These coins were developed by Casascius in 2011 and are still available for sale up to date. However, as of November 2013, physical coins with actual digital coin value are no longer on sale but these little coins used to stand as real and tangible cryptocurrencies.