El Salvador’s new bitcoin legislation demands that all businesses in the country accept bitcoin as a form of payment, providing that they have the appropriate technology and infrastructure.
Volaris stated in an emailed statement provided to The Block that “the Volaris website is accessible from anywhere in the globe and complies with the laws of the jurisdictions in which we operate.” As a result of the company’s operations in El Salvador, it stated that it is working to give its customers with the option of paying with Bitcoin services at the airport.
However, according to Reuters, while El Salvador’s presidential Twitter account claimed that Volaris will be the “first airline in the world to take Bitcoin and, of course, Chivo Wallet,” other airlines have previously said that they will accept Bitcoin.
A notable example is Latvia’s Air Baltic, which announced in 2014 that it would be the first airline to accept bitcoin and has since expanded its cryptocurrency acceptance to include Bitcoin Cash, Ether, and Dogecoin, among others. Openpay, a payment service provider, announced in 2015 that TAR Airlines, a tiny Mexican airline, will be the “first Latin American airline” to accept bitcoin. TAR Airlines is the “first Latin American airline” to accept bitcoin. It was recently reported that Surf Air, which is situated in Los Angeles and provides charter flights through membership programmes, would begin accepting Bitcoin in 2017.
The booking engine Alternative Airlines allows travellers to purchase aircraft tickets using bitcoin, even if their preferred airline does not accept bitcoin as a form of payment directly.
Bukele was speaking during an event to mark the official inauguration of Volaris’ new El Salvador-based airline, which took place earlier in the day. Volaris is most recognised for its extensive activities in Mexico, but the company also has operations in Costa Rica and, most recently, El Salvador, among other countries.