Web3 Watch: Austrian tourism providers want to mint your vacation

The partnership is part of a broader wave of interest in Web3 tourism applications. Plus, tattoos go on-chain and Friend.tech sees higher sell volume

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A host of Web3 firms have teamed up with Austrian regional groups to roll out “Web3 tours” in Salzburg and elsewhere. 

Alex Fedosseev of 1World, which was part of the partnership, said tourists could go to museums and verify their attendance with NFTs, which could then be used for discounts at restaurants and entertainment venues.

It’s not the first attempt to capture crypto-inspired tourism. Travelers looking to transact with digital assets can already visit Bitcoin Beach, Bitcoin Island, Bitcoin Valley, or Bitcoin Lake. But newer Web3 tourism projects are expanding beyond the digital payment sphere.

George Harrap from The Next Billion podcast flew to the Pacific island of Palau to interview the archipelago’s president about its NFT identification card system. In the travel vlog Harrap released this week documenting the trip, Palauan officials say the digital residency program is meant to draw tourists and digital nomads. And as a dollar-based economy in the south pacific, Palau hopes to become cashless.

“Who wants to ship pennies to Palau?” Palauan president Surangel Whipps Jr. asked Harrap.

Palau is in the process of developing a stablecoin with Ripple. 

Fedosseev told Blockworks that blockchain allows for more direct interactions between companies and tourists in a field that is saturated with intermediaries. 

In a recent interview with Forbes, El Salvadorian Vice President Félix Ulloa argued that the ease of transaction fostered by bitcoin use is partly responsible for the country’s tourism growth. A Santander report tweeted by the country’s president, Nayib Bukele, does report a growth in tourism to El Salvador — though the report points to falling homicide rates, not bitcoin, as the catalyst.

Read more: Stablecoins are ‘a better product’ than local currencies in emerging economies, Carrica says

A new way to tattoo

Austin, TX-based Blackdot released an automated tattoo device this week, and the company plans to let clients own tattoos as NFTs in the future. 

The company is also teasing “tradable tattoos,” which would allow tattoos to be inked and then traded or gifted as digital collectibles. 

Blackdot’s store currently lists a range of off-chain tattoos fetching thousands of dollars for those wanting to try out the automated needle. Among the tattoo artists listed is Tyler Hobbs, whose generative art pieces have netted him almost 63,000 ether (ETH) on OpenSea — though Hobbs has only sold one NFT in the past month and a half.

Also of note:

  • Friend.tech sell volume has begun outpacing buy volume as a mid-September rally on the platform dies down
  • As early movers in the space continue to disappoint, transactions on the metaverse platform SecondLive grew by 139% the past 30 days, according to DappRadar, as users await the launch of the platform’s LIVE token.
  • GameFi platform Big Time saw its native token surge over 250% after being listed on OKX and Coinbase. The game also sold a limited drop of 1,000 “mystery boxes” for $750 each within a minute. 

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