Peter Harrison- Hill CCO of Borrow A Boat Group analyses the impact and future of cryptocurrency on the world of yacht charter

Group Team

 “In February 2021 our premium bespoke charter specialist HELM – part of the Borrow A Boat Group announced it had started accepting crypto currencies as payment for yacht charters, becoming the first yachting holidays business globally to do so. The decision provided a fast, secure and seamless way for clients to pay for charters, with many other charter companies following in their wake.

Now, just over a year on, we, at Borrow A Boat, have announced that we too will accept payment by cryptocurrency. The decision will likely cause some debate as to why now? Why now when the long-term future of crypto currencies is so uncertain? 

And the answer

We want to make getting on the water easy and accessible for everyone, and Crypto helps make that happen. The speed and simplicity of a crypto transaction helps us take payments from international clients without waiting for days like we would with traditional banking. This means we can be more agile, reduces friction and leads to happier clients and smoother processes. Cryptocurrencies also attract a younger client base, who we’re keen to get interested in yachting holidays – once they’ve tried one, we know they’ll be hooked! 

Embracing new technologies is just one of the ways we can work to future-proof the world of boating. We, as an industry, need to ensure that we are constantly embracing new ways to make chartering a yacht more accessible, flexible and inclusive for all. All the while doing our utmost to shake off old-fashioned elitist connotations so that even more people have the opportunity to discover the joy of boating.

The opportunity presented by crypto currencies

The fact that 94 percent of crypto buyers are 18-40 years old¹ presents a huge opportunity for any business wanting to adapt and appeal to a wider audience. 

On average traditional charter clients are around 45-60 years old, many of whom have been boating enthusiasts since childhood but in order to continue fuelling future growth, we need to be drawing in the next generation of travellers – Millennials and Gen Z. An audience who likely hasn’t chartered a yacht before, put off by misconceptions about booking flexibility and affordability.

One of the ways we can tackle these misconceptions is by embracing crypto currency. Widely lauded for being a speedy and efficient payment method, ideal for a customer base that has grown up in a world of near instant gratification and where at the touch of the button, they can buy what they want, when they want. The appeal really couldn’t be any clearer.

And far from alienating our existing audience, the speed of transaction is also attractive to wealthier clients who tend to make last-minute decisions – a position that was brought into even sharper focus over the last two years by the unpredictable nature of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The future of cryptocurrency payments in the charter industry

Whilst the long-term future of cryptocurrency is admittedly unclear, it’s undeniable that in this time of global economic uncertainty, when many traditional currencies are diminishing in value, bitcoin – one of the world’s best-known cryptocurrencies – is not, meaning it still holds a vast amount of appeal to Millennials and Gen Z, who continue to invest in it.

So, for now, at least, businesses, investors and brands should all be doing their utmost to explore all of the possibilities presented by crypto currencies. 

The opportunities might be greater than you realise.”


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