You Can Now Buy Bitcoin at Some Grocery Stores in the US

Supermarket kiosk chain Coinstar will allow consumers to buy up to $2,500 in bitcoin at select grocery stores.

Jan 18, 2019 at 5:00 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 8:49 a.m. UTC

The crypto curious will soon be able to dip their toes into bitcoin while grocery shopping.

Bitcoin ATM company Coinme is partnering with coins-to-cash converter Coinstar to allow bitcoin purchases through Coinstar kiosks in a number of U.S. states, the companies announced Thursday.

At launch, only customers at certain Safeway or Albertsons stores in California, Texas and Washington state will be able to purchase bitcoin through the kiosks, though there are "plans to extend this offering to additional U.S. markets and retailers following a successful launch," a press release said.

Coinme cofounder and CEO Neil Bergquist said the new partnership would provide consumers "a convenient and easy way to buy bitcoin" while going about their daily lives.

This in turn should make it easier for consumers to "participate in this dynamic new economy," he added.

In a separate statement, Coinstar CEO Jim Gaherity similarly highlighted the anticipated ease consumers with which should be able to buy bitcoin with, saying:

"Coinstar is always looking for new ways to offer value to our consumers when they visit our kiosks, and Coinme’s innovative delivery mechanism along with Coinstar’s flexible platform makes it possible for consumers to easily purchase Bitcoin with cash."

Coins (the metal kind) not accepted

Though Coinstar kiosks are primarily known for converting coins into cash, Amazon gift cards or other equivalent balances, Thursday's press release noted that at present, "coins cannot be used for bitcoin transactions."

The kiosks will only accept U.S. dollar bills, with a $2,500 limit.

To purchase bitcoin, users would have to input their phone number to the kiosk and insert their paper bills.

They would then receive a code, which the customer would be able to use to redeem bitcoin by creating a Coinme account online.

Coinstar image via Ijon / Wikimedia Commons

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