Lately many industries found out about the many benefits that blockchain technology can bring to their business. Security and loyalty programs are just a part of these benefits. Last week FedEx announced plans to integrate blockchain technology into its daily operations. They want to secure data exchange between customers and thus increasing efficiency.
Tickets for Bitcoin
Another one of these industries are the airline operators. News came out that Peach Aviation, Japanese low-cost airlines, have confirmed plans to allow Bitcoin as a payment method. The airline has partnered with the Japanese cryptocurrency exchange BITpoint Japan to make the new BTC payment system.
The first time they announced the news was in May 2017. The final deadline was by the end of the year, but the plans were postponed until March 2018. This means that the initial announcement wasn’t canceled just delayed. Also they have plans to open Bitcoin ATMs at airports around Japan. Bitcoin is a legal payment method in the country since April 2017. Rumors emerged about the cancellation but Peach Aviation denied such a cancellation on their website:
“There have been some reports today on our company retracting its plan to enable airline tickets to be purchased with Bitcoins; however, this is not something that was announced by our company and is not a fact. We are currently considering our start period in aiming to introduce such a service.” – Peach Aviation
Blockchain in Airlines
This is not the first airline to accept Bitcoin for tickets. In July 2017 AirBaltic added option to purchase flights with Bitcoin. There are other use cases too. Russian airline S7 began using the Ethereum blockchain to sell flight tickets last year. Air New Zealand confirmed its research about using the public Ethereum blockchain for a number of potential use cases.
Lufthansa invested in a Swiss blockchain startup through an ICO last year. They said that they have intentions to plug in to a B2B blockchain marketplace, based on a public Ethereum blockchain. Last month Brisbane international airport began accepting cryptocurrencies at retail stores in their terminals.
Singapore Airlines blockchain application
Singapore Airlines, one of the world’s leading airline operators announced plans to launch a blockchain-based loyalty digital wallet to reward frequent flyers. This was announced for the company’s KrisFlyer frequent-flyer program to allow customers an easier experience of exchanging and spending their miles to retailers. A small amount of information was released for the public, but Singapore airlines will deploy its own private blockchain in a proof-of-concept trial.
This is a great adaptation and endorsement of blockchain technology by a giant like Singapore Airlines. Their CEO Goh Choon Phong stated:
“This groundbreaking development in which we will be using blockchain technology to ‘digitalise’ KrisFlyer miles is a demonstration of the investment we are making to significantly enhance the digital side of our business for the benefit of our customer.”
The application is expected to roll out in six months. The airline is currently partnering with retail merchants, initially in Singapore for its blockchain wallet.
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