Bitcoin Couple Travels the World Using Virtual Cash
Austin Craig,30 years old and his wife Beccy Bingham-Craig, 29 decided to travel the world on a tri-continental odyssey. What separates their vacation from yours you ask? They set out on this journey limiting themselves to only 1 bitcoin for their travels. With a film crew documenting their travels, the Craig’s saw this as an adventure as well as an opportunity at anunderground movie career.
They began their trek in October by driving east from Utah in Ms. Bingham-Craig’s 2004 Volkswagen Jetta. After arriving in New York on Oct. 17, they flew to Stockholm, Berlin and Singapore before eventually returning to Provo. In the end, they lasted 101 days, from July 23 to Nov. 1. Its pretty damn impressive getting by on 1 bitcoin during those 101 days. On Wednesday bitcoins reached records at 400$ per Bitcoin.
“I’m really excited about bitcoin and its future,” Mr. Craig said. “It’s a reimagining of money.”
In the past 12 months, the Bitcoin’s has taken on a life of its own. The currency is discussed at investing conferences now. The Winklevoss twins, known for their fight with Facebook Inc. founder Mark Zuckerberg, have started a bitcoin fund. It also has gained the attention of regulators who worry it can be used to launder money.
During the trip, they had to not only introduce a number of people to the mysterious currency but to persuade them to use it. After a few weeks of persuading, their landlord, Justin James, agreed to the plan—with the sweetener of a small premium over the rent—and set up his own bitcoin account. “In the end,” Mr. James said, “it hasn’t been as much of an inconvenience as I thought it would be.” While he hasn’t become a convert, he did say he thought the experiment sounded like fun and was “happy to be a part of it.”
After scouring Utah, they found one grocery store, LoLo’s Fresh Food Warehouse, that would accept the currency. They found one auto insurance company that would take bitcoin. The single hardest thing to get regularly, Mr. Craig said, was finding gasoline. Early on, they hardly drove their car.
With help from the two German travel agencies, SimplyTravelOnline.com and 9flats, they booked flights and hotels.
“We didn’t know how much the duration of it would wear us down,” Mr. Craig said. “Totally average things became monumental challenges.”
In the end, despite skepticism from friends, family and the bitcoin community itself, the Craigs managed to live on bitcoin for over three months. “We really didn’t cheat,” Mr. Craig said. “Everybody thought we would.”
Hats off to this couple for their accomplishments and paving the way for future bitcoiners trying to budget and get by.