Updated: March 28, 2022

Amazon Customers Blocked from Using Visa. Hello Lightning!

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Key Takeaways

Bitcoin fixes this for Amazon. This riff calls Amazon to embrace Lightning.

What an unexpected headline. Who saw this coming? “Visa Tumbles on Amazon Ban in the UK” – source.

On January 19th, Amazon customers in the UK can no longer use Visa credit cards. While users can still use debit cards and non-Visa credit cards, Amazon has shared that the cost of accepting Visa credit card payments is an obstacle that is hindering the company from providing the best prices to customers.


Bitcoiners always talk about incentives. While Amazon will likely not be the first mover in the FAANG group to allow Lightning payments, I see the value in offering the optionality to customers. The incentives make sense for Amazon thanks to low fees and fast settlement.

Just a couple of hours ago, it was also shared by Arcane Research that Lightning use will outpace capacity growth. We need more liquidity on the Lightning Network.

What I find fascinating is that we are in this limbo where organizations are stretched to their limits in terms of supply chain costs, transportation costs, and now payment costs. Where can brands create savings for themselves to pass along to customers? I may be biased, but I see how Lightning serves the organization and the user.

At this point in time Lightning is still nascent and clearly lacks the capacity to support Amazon UK. This is where I would challenge Amazon. I encourage Amazon to consider creating infrastructure for themselves while serving the Lightning Network. By doing this they gain a few things:

  • Instant, low fee payment settlement
  • Passive earnings through routing Lightning payments
  • Improved customer experience w/ Lightning Optionality

I already know the critics will say that a behemoth like Amazon has zero reason at all to offer Lighting payments as it would likely make up .000000001% of their revenue and earnings.

I would challenge this thesis and say that Bitcoin is inevitable.  While there still are not perfectly clear guidelines from the SEC and CFTC in regards to crypto, the long-term incentives make sense. Be that innovative first mover Amazon, put your customers first. Give them the options and set the blazing path into the future like you always have.

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