San Fran on 0.714 bitcoins a day

Forbes tech writer Kashmir Hill tries going for a week living on nothing but bitcoins.

AccessTimeIconMay 2, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 10, 2021 at 10:43 a.m. UTC

Yes, bitcoin fans have more places to spend their money every day. But can the currency sustain real, daily life, as opposed to -- say -- someone who's looking for a unique Hogwarts library, reddit gold or the world's smallest solar-powered car?

That's what Forbes tech writer Kashmir Hill hopes to find out over the next week. As of May 1, she's embarked upon a seven-day personal experiment to see if she can get by living by bitcoin alone, starting with five purchased with the help of Coinbase.

So far, the San Francisco-based Hill has had to walk the two-and-a-half miles from home to work (no bitcoins for BART), waited two hours for a bitcoin-enabled delivery of Indian food via Foodler, cheated a bit by using her Verizon iPhone and relied upon the free coffee at the office (no bitcoins for Starbucks either).

With four bitcoins remaining at the end of day one, Hill had already started to worry about a possible crash in bitcoin value. She closed her first day's post with a bitcoin address and the message, "Will work for bitcoin for food. Taking tips here."


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.

Read more about