Bitcoin News – St. Pete man uses bitcoin for daily living expenses

ST. PETERSBURG —
A St. Petersburg man said he uses bitcoin almost exclusively to pay for all of this daily living expenses.

“Luckily, my landlord lets me pay in bitcoin,” said John Dreyzehner, 24. “I get paid in bitcoin and I use it everywhere I go.”

Dreyzehner gets paid in bitcoin because he works as a regional commerce director for Bitpay. He said he moved to St. Petersburg about three months ago to help convince local businesses to accept the internet currency in anticipation of the Bitcoin Bowl being held at Tropicaa Field on Friday.

Dreyzehner said more than 100 businesses in the Bay area now take bitcoin.

“I’ve already gotten calls from business owners saying, ‘hey, we had somebody come in last night and pay with bitcoin,'” he said. “So, it’s happening now and they’re getting really excited.”

Bay News 9 followed Dreyzehner as he used bitcoin to pay for lunch at Lucky Dill Deli and for a haircut at The Shave Cave. The president of The Shave Cave, Max Glazer, said he was one of the first businesses in Sundial to accept bitcoin.

“It’s very simple to use. We do it right through an app on our phone,” he said. “The most important, there’s no processing fees.”

Glazer said banks typically charge a 2 percent processing fee on all plastic swipes. Bitcoin customers pay by scanning a transaction code with their smartphone.

“If you imagine that the Internet is a country. bitcoin is the currency of the internet,” Dreyzehner said. “So to us it’s like a foreign currency. You get it on a currency exchange the same way you’d get pounds or euros.”

But unlike normal currency, the Federal Reserve does not back up bitcoin. Glazer said he doesn’t worry about that because Bitpay guarantees he gets paid the proper amount.

“With Bitpay I am confident that the transaction will go through,” he said. “The money will be in my account the next day.”

Dreyzehner said the only places he can’t make purchases in St. Pete with bitcoin is at gas stations and grocery stores. The regional commerce director said he believes many of the Bitcoin Bowl fans will only shop at businesses that accept bitcoin.

“If there’s a restaurant that accepts bitcoin, I’ll go to them over one that doesn’t,” he said. “Because it’s easier for me.”