Subway—a popular restaurant chain and the world’s largest franchise in terms of restaurant numbers— has started accepting Bitcoin payments in some of its eateries in Berlin.
To begin with, three of its outlets in Berlin will accept BTC. Interestingly, Subway was one of the first in the restaurant business to have experimented with Bitcoin—13 years back—in Moscow. The recent move from Subway is meant to test Bitcoin’s famed L2 solution — the Lightning Network.
Franchise owner Daniel Hinze said that he first used crypto five years back. However, it has only been two years since he delved deeper into the concept of bitcoin. Hinze says he would like to further Satoshi’s vision by deploying BTC as a mode of payment across his outlets. What’s more, he is running a weekly discount offer of 50 percent to incentivize customers to make payments in BTC.
Who is facilitating the Bitcoin payments?
Lipa, a Bitcoin firm based out of Switzerland, is working closely with Hinze to facilitate Bitcoin payments over the lightning network. Hinze has set up a PoS (Point-of-Sale) payment solution using a Lightning-enabled QR code. The payment process is simple: the user can simply scan the code, and the payment happens instantaneously.
As of now, Lipa charges 1 percent on every payment, which is cheaper than other traditional methods, according to Bastien Feder, CEO. Feder believes that despite the volatility, he expects crypto payments to rise. Switzerland and Germany have also taken the lead on this front.
Over the past few months, Hinze’s outlets have recorded over 120 transactions. Hinze, in an interview with Cointelegraph, mentioned that he wishes to make BTC akin to fiat money.
The new Bitcoin payments initiative using Bitcoin’s L2 network seems to be making waves in Germany. The #usingBitcoin hashtag has gained popularity, with customers posting videos on their Twitter handles.
Kicking off the 7-day #usingbitcoin week with Lunch at Subway, Chausseestrasse in Berlin! 👏
— felix (@felixbillert) October 19, 2022
However, it appears that the Bitcoin lightning network’s reach is not limited to store payments. Jack Mallers, founder and CEO of Strike, said the lightning network can be used to make subscription payments courtesy of the near-free and instant approach. Mallers’s statement comes as Elon Musk has proposed to monetize Twitter’s blue tick.
Here is a tweet thread that talks about the same:
Lightning (instant + near-free #bitcoin payments) should be an accepted payment method.
Would allow for global, inclusive, private payments (important for pseudonymous users) that are cash-final (no chargebacks).
Services like @CashApp already support these payments
— Jack Mallers (@jackmallers) November 2, 2022
Despite the popularity of Bitcoin payments across Subway outlets, Bitcoin price hasn’t seen the desired pivot from the lows. Currently, BTC is trading at $17,178, down 14.74% week-on-week.