Using #bitcoin to Book Hotels | hotel, expedia, bitcoins, bitcoin, litecoin, dogecoin, bitcoin mining, free bitcoin, bitcoin pakistan, pakistan bitcoin, bitcoin in pakistan, lahore, karachi, islamabad, noshera

My Hotel Bookings With Bitcoin for Turkey

Most of the times people use bitcoins for trading or store of value purposes. Often even the people who have been using these in exchanges to trade havent really used bitcoins to make purchases in day to day life. One might ask “what is the point of buying bitcoins just to use them to make purchases?” The answer to this question lies within how you are able to acquire bitcoins and at what price. In this blog I will lay out how I went about buying bitcoins in Pakistan then using them to purchase hotel bookings on the go from Expedia while on my trip to Turkey (Istanbul, Izmir and Antalya). Not only was it a great experience it made me realize the true power of the technology that Satoshi Nakamoto was able to bring forward. Many people talk about how blockchain the underlining tech running over bitcoin is what’s more important to them I say use bitcoin once and you will realize why bitcoin is what it is.

Buying the Bitcoins:

This was fairly simple I deposited funds in urdubit and put up buy orders at a bit lower then market rates. I was to buy them at around 101 to the dollar. What that means is if I had purchased USD directly from the market it would have cost me Rs. 101 = $1. If I had purchased the USD directly which I had to go through a local exchanger it would have cost me Rs.102.50 which is around 1% over charge. The risk of carrying such huge amounts in cash just to pay for hotels has its own risk plus the limit imposed of not carrying more than $10000 per person was also a problem. The other option I had was to use a credit card. I used agoda to book my first hotel for 3 days if I remember correctly in Istanbul and paid with credit card to see what the cost difference was. The charges were as follow:

102.50 Market Rate + (3%) Bank Charges * $400 Cost of hotel for 3 days = Rs42230

After purchasing this I was still a bit reluctant to use bitcoin as I was scared. The other advantage I had in using bitcoin was that no credit card details or information would be sent to Expedia while it being a secure platform it is still not unhackable. Still a bit scared I went a head and pulled the trigger purchased the bitcoins from urdubit and made my first purchase of a hotel on Expedia (I can’t thank them enough for what they are doing)
bill

So here is the breakdown of the above receipt:

Rs.101 * $959.80 + 2Rs (Btc transfer fee roughly) = 96941.8

Same calculation if I had done with Credit Card:

Rs102.50 + 3%(bank charges) * 959.80 = 101330.885

Instant saving of Rs 4389.085

The whole process was a lot faster than credit card as most banks require us to call the bank firs tell them that we are making an online purchase get the card activated and then have to enter a lot of information such as address, phone number card details etc, with bitcoin purchase, Expedia redirected me coinbase payment gateway and it asked me to pay equaling amount in bitcoin. While I don’t recommend paying from an exchange directly I added the withdrawal fee of bitcoin from Urdubit which is 0.0001 btc which I mentioned (rs 2 at the time of the purchase) and sent the btc to coinbase. The coinbase receiving address was active for 15 mins. One of my fears was what if the address expires before confirmations. To my delight the payment was accepted on 0 confirmations. The booking was held until the network confirmed the payments to coinbase however and I received a confirmation email that the invoice had been paid and my hotel booking is done from Expedia in about 30 mins. The screen shot of the receipt is attached above.

Now lets be honest here, this above booking was for a wonderful resort in Izmir and I would defiantly recommend anyone to visit this resort, I was still fearful what if the hotel goes we wont accept this books? So I didn’t book rest of the hotels at that point. And I decided to travel to Turkey with these 2 bookings and book the rest when I get to Izmir and checkin.

After my wonderful stay at Istanbul I took a flight from Istanbul to Izmir. I was easily able to check into the resort without any problems. The resort itself was magnificent with 2 private beaches, a private water park and a whole lot of other activities. The package including full food and all activities so I didn’t have to pay a dime. The first thing I did after this experience was to book the next hotel with bitcoin in Antalya and then another in Istanbul as my flight back to Pakistan was from Istanbul.

In conclusion I would like suggest to everyone who use bitcoin to use bitcoin once to make payment for their purchases and they will realize its power especially cross boarder payments are bank free, fee free and its almost stupid not go the bitcoin route if booking directly. The one thing I would please request is for expedia to start accepting bitcoins for flights and car bookings too. Thank you Satoshi Nakamoto and Expedia for making this possible and much lower rates.

 

With New Tax Proposition Bitcoin becomes more important in Pakistan. | Mr 0.6%, Isac Daar, Bank, tax on bank transactions, banking, bitcoin, litecoin, dogecoin, bitcoin in pakistan, pakistan, btc in pakistan, pakistan btc, bill payments, pay bills online,

With the problems and corruption in Pakistan going uncontrolled. The govt is trying to tax each and every bank transaction. There are alot of problems with current tax laws in Pakistan of which I am not going to get into much details. But bear in mind that each and every Pakistani is taxed through Cellphone home phones, electric bills, tv bills, gas bills etc. Most of this sector which is below the poverty line doesn’t even know that they are the ones that are suppose to receive a refunds. This in return causes the richer to get richer and divert taxes while the poor get poorer. With recommendations of the new tax law if implemented every banking transaction in Pakistan will be taxed hence causing more burden to existing taxpayers and causing double taxation. While this could be avoided if our systems worked properly then this wouldn’t be a problem but the returns are hardly paid and have to go through alot of problems before you actually receive the payments. This may even propel the use of Bitcoin In Pakistan.

As mentioned before btc or bitcoin is a peer to peer system that works like utorrent and hence is equivalent to digital cash. While the leading world countries are now starting to accept this crypto currency and realize its existence (now evident by the acceptance of big players such as Paypal, Microsoft, Expedia, Namescheap, Goldman Sachs and entities such as NYSE) Pakistan still remains far behind. But with the law as proposed by Mr Isaq Daar it may cause people to look for alternate ways to transact with one another in order to avoid this hefty tax. Bitcoin/btc/xbt maybe the answer here and propel people to actually start storing money in bitcoin. It is now clear that Pakistan is a growing economy in the bitcoin era as Urdubit trade volumes have reached 3 btc avg daily. Paybill which is still very new and still building has seen an increase in mobile topups. Paybill has been designed for payment of bills in Pakistan.

I do hope that this tax is not implemented, but at the same time this does show us how important a true p2p currency is. The fact that all the funds of any person in any country can be blocked or controlled by any sort of external force at will can just call shivers. I leave the readers of this blog to comment and share your thoughts on this.

What and Why? | Bitcoin Pakistan

I figured it was time to update and give some information on what excatly is bitcoin and blockchain to my fellow country men. This is my view of what it is and why it is. Please realize that bitcoin in my opinon was created to make money truly yours. Currently all financial systems work through centralized banking, anyone living in Pakistan already know the problem with the control the banks have right now on our accounts. The idea is what I believe was in the head of satoshi that led to the creation of the first true peer to peer (similary to torrent) type currency known as btc or bitcoin. He laid the foundationg of an opensource ledger(database) for the general public where every entry was single entry and could not be removed.  But all the ledger was synced with the other users running the software on the network. This software was known as a wallet which can be considered like a bank account of sort for the comman man. While you can have many wallat addresses in a single wallet it resides in public ledger. This is also why it is important to backup the wallet.dat file of your wallet if you have the full software running. There are now online wallets and paper wallets you can also store your bitcoins on online exchanges or bitcoin trading platforms. Do remember if you lose your wallet on your pc or paper wallet for any reason its gone forever. I believe that bitcoin is still in its infancey and has a long way to go, think about how internet came about:
There was Fax–> Bullitin Board Service or BBS–> email –>internet
It took it a long time, it wasent an overnight revolution. Similarly bitcoin is very new. While it has captured a huge market it still has a long way to go. There are benifits of the blockchain and bitcoin as both are being innovated upon. Some companies are working on blockchain(ledger, or database) such as voip (p2p) coins such as korecoin and viorcoin then there rare coins such as bay, blk etc that support smart contrants and p2p markets. Then there is the ripple gateway that is trying to replace the current swift system.

Then there are services that belive in bitcoin itself and are using its financial power to change the way we bank or use money today. Think about the fact that you own one currency that works throughout the world you dont have to worry about Pakistani ruppee price fluctuating aganist the USD (this is an example) as PKR is not accepted everywhere in the world. It is a true boarderless curreny that I believe is brining people closer together. The launch of https://www.coinpip.com is one such gateway which lets companies pay their developers anywhere in the world. Its a singaporian startup that is doing alot of work in this feild. They take the bitcoin out of picture but use bitcoin in the backend. Then there are exchanges and atms and user acceptance poping up everywhere around the world, such as microsoft, dell, paypal, namescheap, overstock etc. There are physicall vendors in Pakistan too. There is a shop in Gunjarawallla, a petrol pump/ gas station in Karachi, then http://www.paybill.io where you can pay your bills for Malaysia and Pakistan and also do mobile topups, or easy loads http://www.a2zlawn.com that are accepting bitcoins for payment,  you can also check http://www.coinmap.org for a few other locations that accept bitcoins.

I have also witnessed the power of bitcoin recently and how user to user interaction increases adoption.  I was contacted by a person who wanted to buy stuff from a vendor in another country wanted to learn about bitcoin and how it could benifit him. After consultations with us he wanted to give it a go. But his vendor was also fearfull of the price fluctions and how bitcoin could be risky as he believed it cant be real. The user here after consultation convinced his vendor that he would be taking this risk so there was no worries at his end. The first transation they did took all in all 15 mins and the cash was transfered in the vendors bank account while saving the payee money as compared to if he had used a credit card or wiretransfer. When the vendor saw this his response was: “This is really very easy, will you make more payments like this?” This is what I believe money should be, a truely boarderless medium with worldwide acceptance. The bad policies of some countries have left them in poverty, this doesnt mean that that the citizen of that country should not even have control over their funds/money and acceptablity etc. If the currency is truely boaderless he doesnt have to worry about local exchangers even.

I do believe this is only the begining of the future what the future holds, can only be witnessed in time. I do believe there is a need for one global international currency even the world powers such as china, russia and UN want this. There is an interesting article that was put out back in 2009 http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/currency/6152204/UN-wants-new-global-currency-to-replace-dollar.html and I think bitcoin is the answer for that.

 

Bitcoin Acceptance in Pakistan Moving Forward | Bitcoin Pakistan

Its been a great week with urdubit picking up trade volume. And now a new website a2zlawn opening its door to welcome bitcoin acceptance in Pakistan for designer and Replica stores. While the awareness about bitcoin is not up to par in Pakistan, we are seeing new users come onboard.

Pakistan I believe is a land of opportunities bound and held back due to lack of knowledge. New start-ups lack funding great ideas get shot down time and again. What people dont realize is that with bitcoin the world is now open to them. And in due time it will be the currency of choice. Sites like bitlancerr , onewallet are popping up everywhere and making it easier for Pakistanis to tender their services and get paid without boundaries. At present I am also in talks with http://www.sakamaonline.com to introduce bitcoin acceptance as they are very interested.

Going forward what we must all realize is that bitcoin is here to stay and will grow in due time. What I look forward to see is that people accepting bitcoins like they accept PKR.

How to Use Urdubit | bitcoin, bitcoin pakistan, buy bitcoin in pakistan, sell bitcoins in pakistan

Updated: Oct 14,  2014

I have seen alot of people asking around how to use this exchange to buy bitcoins. So I figured this would be the ideal time to write this tutorial. Since I have already registered with the site I wont be giving screenshots of the signup but its pretty straight forward. Just a word you dont have to be verified to start trading at Urdubit. Verification only comes in handy if you want to cash out PKR. The information that Urdubit asks for verification is strictly to comply with KYC of State Bank. We dont disclose your identity or information to anyone. The information will only be provided to a government institution if requested by them on account of fraud or terrorist activity. Urdubit wants to safeguard its customers from any illegal activity and/or scam hence the verification is required. Do take note that under current Pakistan Law you dont have to pay any Taxes for selling or buying software. Bitcoin is basically a protocol hence termed as software therefore there is no requirement to report this to any tax authority.

First Login & Verification:

After you login for the first time you are presented with a verification forum. You dont have to verify yourself to begin trading with your btc you can simply deposit or withdraw btc and also trade them to PKR by listing your order under the order book but you cant deposit money or withdraw only when you are verified. The verification is inline with State Bank Of Pakistan Guidelines.
1. Enter your correct details.
2. Hold your Original CNIC/B-forum next to your face and take a selfie. Then click on Upload button. Now select the file with the selfie. This is to verify this is indeed yours since you are not physically present there.
3. Scan or take a photo in high resolution of your Original CNIC/B-Forum up close so that the entire card is visible and then click on same “Upload File” button again and upload this picture.
4. Follow the above for the back of your CNIC and upload the third file.
5. Now scan or take a screen shot of your bill make sure its under your name if its not you have to submit the copy of the original paid bill.

Dont worry if you make a mistake urdubit will call you for your verification so please make sure the number you provided is correct.

Depositing PKR:

Please look at the down arrow as posted in the following screenshot. Clicking it will let you deposit PKR into your account

urdubit orderbook
OrderBook

If you are using the Whitedev theme you can look for the links as denoted in the following screen:

Depoist PKR Whitedev theme
Depoist PKR Whitedev theme

To deposit funds look at the down arrow as marked by me on the above screen shot. The following page will popup:

Pkr-Deposit

Similarly if you are using a the Whitedev theme a similar screen will popup asking the same information, currently there are only 2 banks listed here for deposit. At this point you just have to enter the amount and select the bank. There after you simply deposit the money in that account take a screenshot and upload it here. Since easypaisa has a limit of maximum Rs25000 per month its acceptance will be manual and on first come first serve basis. Mobicash is not currently accepted. You can call urdubit or email them support@urdubit.com for manual easypaisa details.

After the funds have been deposited please upload a screenshot or the picture of the deposit receipt via the system. To do this first click on My deposits look for arrow with number 1. Then you will see the deposit request as denoted by arrow 2 and then click on Send receipt as denoted by Arrow no. 3. Once you click on that the system will ask you to upload the screenshot or picture of the deposit receipt that you took. Just upload it and wait. Urdubit has a process of 1 business day to realize deposits.

pkr-deposit-recipte

 

 

Send Screenshot
Send Screenshot

Depositing BTC:

Depositing btc or bitcoin into your urdubit is almost as easy as adding PKR. The biggest advantage for bitcoin lovers here is that they can deposit and withdraw btc anytime even without verification. You can anonymously trade bitcoins after depositing them and cashing out via btc. Hence its a safe haven for bitcoin trades that want to just use pkr as a trading pair with bitcoin.

Step 1:
Click on the button as pointed to buy the arrows:

btc-deposit

 

For whitedev theme the following screen will showup:

Whitedev
Whitedev

 

Step 2:
Important thing to note here is that you have to generate a new address every-time you want to deposit funds. Please do not send bitcoins twice to the same address as the system wont realize it and it is very difficult to realize them. Once you click that button the following will appear:

btc-deposit-first

Step 3:
Clicking Yes will generate you a QR code to scan through your cell phone and also give you the wallet address please see image below:

 

 

Wallet
Wallet

Deposits are fully automated and will appear in your wallet once the network confirmations are done. To check the status of the “My Deposit” and will show you the number of confirmations that are currently in progress.

Withdrawing BTC/PKR:

Withdrawing btc is fully automated now. To withdraw btc simply click the following button as shown by the arrows in the image:

withdraw-btc

 

Clicking on this link will give you a popup asking you to enter a wallet address. Just enter the amount you wish to withdraw (remember there is a network fee of 0.0001btc) and  address you want to withdraw. Once again I would like to remind you that this is instant and there are no reversals.

 

To watch videos:

How to use urdubit.com | urdubit

Pakistan’s First Bitcoin Trade Platform Goes Live | Buy Sell Bitcoin Pakistan

Pakistan’s first trading platform has just gone Live. Here you can trade your btc to pkr or vice versa. While still in beta Urdubit is offering first 1000 users a balance of Rs100 to begin trading and learning the platform. It has just been published on Coindesk. This is great news for all Pakistanis. With the current trade deficit we always have to borrow interest bearing loans in USD. This also fills the need for Pakistan’s requirement for a payment processor. Now people can buy internationally by just using bitcoin and not have to worry about USD all together. Its a great initiative as many websites in Pakistan can now find customers abroad with secure payments. I hope to cover this story further and also cover a tutorial on new user signups and how you can trade on this website. This is currently the only known trading platform bitcoins in Pakistan.

CPU Mining | Mining bitcoins

CPU Mining
Note: From this Post onwards I would like to make a few things clear. CPU mining bitcoin or sha coins is useless and waste of power and same goes for scrypt and pretty much all other algorithms out there. I do not take responsibility for any mishap or breakdowns this may or may not cause.

Getting Started:
For the purpose that I believe most people will be new to this we will use windows os and we will be using gui miner. I will not get into sha because you will pretty much see nothing and hence it will create alot of questions. Also take note that I am aiming this article/tutorial for the newbies so I will recommend using a gui interface as many fear the commandline. Additionally I will be teaching how to mine x11 based coins such as darkcoin or drk, ltcx or litcoinX, ureacoin or uro etc on a pool that converts them automatically to ltc.

Why use a pool
As I mentioned before there are a limited number of coins available for each coin(there are some coins like doge that have unlimited coins) and as the competition heats up its harder to solve blocks( or mine new coins). Therefore its better mine in a pool where you get paid for your share of work when a block is found. For this purpose we will be using ltcrabbit. At this point I would simply ask you to go and register at the link.

Adding a Worker
worker

After logging into your account please click on “My Account” followed by clicking on “My Worker”.

This will take you to the following screen:

CPU Mining

 

Under the title New worker please create a worker the password here doesnt really matter. The best way to about this is to name your worker name x11 since we will be mining x11 coins and the password you can put anything for us to continue here I am going to assume you put the password x.
The format for mining here now will become accountname.workername. Where account name is your ltcrabbit account name.

The Cpu Miner
You can download the cpu miner from my dropbox account. After you download this please unzip it.

Running the Miner
If you have followed the above setup right you should be be ready to run the miner. Now go to the folder that says where you unzipped your miner. Now double click on a. A command prompt should open up such as the one on bottom:

Min

 

Let it run for like a min or 2. If you see no hashing or dont see a yay after a bit then you did something wrong and should go back up and follow the instructions from the beginning.

But wait you are not done yet this was just a test. What you now need to do is close this window. And open up a the unzipped folder again and click on a once and then right click on it and select edit as follows:

mine

 

when you select edit please chose notepad to open this file. It will contain the following lines

 

minerd -a X11 -o stratum+tcp://x11.ltcrabbit.com:3332 -u dmz241.x11 -p x
pause

Here you have to change this

minerd -a X11 -o stratum+tcp://x11.ltcrabbit.com:3332 -u accountname.x11 -p x
pause

Please take note that initially when I had you set a worker I suggested you name your worker x11 if you name it something else then please put accountname.workername -p x where -p is followed by the password which I suggested you keep x .
The idea here is to have multiple workers if you have multiple cpus running. This way you can monitor your workers. Please save this file while saving please make sure you save it as all files and not txt files else you wont be able to double click it to run it.

Now just double click on the a file and you should be mining at your account. Please take note that the minimum payout is atleast 1 ltc. The advantage of using ltc rabbit is that it see which coin is easier to mine and giving better payouts when converted to ltc and mines that coin. So you will always mine the most profitable coin.

You will need a wallet address for your coin I have mentioned how to get that in my previous article for bitcoin. For litecoin the best way is to just make an account on an exchange like btc-e or bittrex and use their wallet address as your payout address.

Happy Hashing.