You Can Now Buy Your Big Mac With Crypto in Lugano, Switzerland

Plan ₿ wants to scale bitcoin and stablecoin adoption in the city


Source: Shutterstock


key takeaways

  • Lugano citizens will be able to pay merchants in bitcoin, tether and LVGA
  • The city wants to onboard over 2,000 businesses before the end of October

Asset-backed cryptocurrency stablecoin, Tether, is collaborating with GoCrypto to bring bitcoin, tether and LVGA to the Swiss city of Lugano.

The initiative, dubbed Plan ₿, is designed to scale bitcoin and stablecoin adoption in Lugano and accelerate the use of cryptocurrencies.

A memorandum of understanding was signed earlier this year between Lugano and Tether to integrate existing payment services with bitcoin and vetted stablecoins, Tether Chief Technology Officer Paolo Ardoino said in a statement.

“We have been working together to ensure the technological infrastructure is in place to support this and today we watch all of that hard work come to fruition,” Ardoino said.

Merchants participating in the initiative so far include fast food giant McDonald’s, a handful of art galleries and others. 

Loading Tweet..

Over the course of the next month, the city plans to onboard more businesses to accept cryptocurrency payments and has plans to service over 2,000 customers prior to the Bitcoin World Forum conference taking place in the city from Oct. 28 to 29. 

Tether has been working closely with the Lugano government to transform the city into a major European blockchain hub — and use the city as an example to exhibit blockchain capabilities, with the hope of eventually expanding global cryptocurrency adoption.

Apart from onboarding merchants, the initiative wants to extend crypto payments to later include parking tickets, public services and student tuition. Residents of Lugano will also be allowed to pay taxes using cryptocurrencies. 

To support the rollout, Tether created multimillion-dollar funds to help finance blockchain startups in the region and collaborate with local universities and research institutions to educate younger generations on cryptocurrencies.

Switzerland was early to construct a regulatory framework for cryptoassets. The Canton of Zug, also known as Crypto Valley, is home to 433 out of 960 crypto startups in the country, albeit with many operating as shell companies

Regardless, Switzerland remains a global leader in blockchain technology adoption, and Lugano’s latest moves to roll out large scale crypto payments will likely keep the country ahead of the crowd.

Start your day with top crypto insights from David Canellis and Katherine Ross. Subscribe to the Empire newsletter.

Explore the growing intersection between crypto, macroeconomics, policy and finance with Ben Strack, Casey Wagner and Felix Jauvin. Subscribe to the On the Margin newsletter.

The Lightspeed newsletter is all things Solana, in your inbox, every day. Subscribe to daily Solana news from Jack Kubinec and Jeff Albus.


Upcoming Events

Salt Lake City, UT

MON - TUES, OCT. 7 - 8, 2024

Blockworks and Bankless in collaboration with buidlbox are excited to announce the second installment of the Permissionless Hackathon – taking place October 7-8 in Salt Lake City, Utah. We’ve partnered with buidlbox to bring together the brightest minds in crypto for […]

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research



Aerodrome is a "MetaDEX" that combines elements of various DEX primitives such as Uniswap V2 and V3, Curve, Convex, and Votium. Since its launch on Base, it has become the largest protocol by TVL with more than $495M in value locked, doubling Uniswap's Base deployment.


The SEC has signaled a timeline to issuers that could lead to a July 23 launch for the ETH funds, people close to the process told Blockworks


PayPal has unequivocally made a name for itself as a crypto adopter among fintech giants


Also, a look into how the highly-debated SAB 121 could end up shaking out for crypto custodians


Vance, an Ohio Republican, is largely seen as crypto-friendly


Plus, all the world is green as prices across the crypto space rally, with solana reaching a nearly two-week high


Investors add to crypto positions after “turnaround in sentiment due to lower-than-expected CPI,” CoinShares research head says