Three Dutch bitcoin enthusiasts from Arnhem convinced 100 local companies to accept bitcoin payments. The Burger King branch here now offers one free burger for every whopper bought with the digital currency.

According to the information of the Arnhem BitcoinCity project, the Burger King branch in question is located in the historical centre of the city, on Weverstraat.

“When paying with bitcoins: Second Whopper for free! (excl. bacon and cheese)”

The Arnhem Bitcoinstad project began as a union of three crypto enthusiasts, Patrick van der Meijde, Annet de Boer and Rogier Eijkelhof, who joined their forces to promote the digital currency in one of the biggest cities of the Netherlands.

“Our goal is to be able to pay all expenses in Arnhem with bitcoins. And also outside of Arnhem.”

So far the project is one of the most successful Bitcoin groups in the region. When it started, only 15 businesses in 150-000 city accepted bitcoin. Now their number exceeds 100. The group’s strategy is simple: Patrick, Annet and Rogier give lectures for local business about the advantages of the digital currency, encouraging people to work with local Bitcoin payment provider BitKassa. BitKassa offers software that enables their clients to accept bitcoin payments with a tablet PC.

The scope of services available for bitcoins in the Dutch city is really impressive. Imagine, you have no other money but bitcoin. You can start your day with a coffee at Brownies and Downies, do shopping with Mimint or CycleNation. Many ethnic restaurants provide the broad choice of lunch opportunities, from Indian food to Belgian beers – and they all accept bitcoin. One can spend an evening at Robbers & Van den Hoogen wine bar, do a last-minute shopping at Spar supermarket and then book a room in one of the five hotels that accept digital currency in Arnhem.

Despite the still rather modest amount of bitcoin transactions in the city (total volume per month rarely goes above 4000 euros), the success of the Arnhem project attracted the attention of the press. Main Dutch newspapers mentioned “Arnhem Bitcoinstadt” in their articles on the digital currency. It seems likely that the news about 100 firms accepting Bitcoin in a single town may cause a new wave of interest towards the first “Bitcoin City” in Europe.

Roman Korizky