Open-source travel distribution platform Winding Tree claims to be the first to process a hotel booking on a public blockchain.

The transaction was tested by Hobo Hotel Stockholm, a member of the Nordic Choice Hotels group. Winding Tree says the booking demonstrates a “real-world use case the space has not seen yet”.

According to the platform, private blockchains “provide companies with a false sense of comfort and regulation”. It says permission-based blockchains would not offer the “immutability, higher security and trust”, which it claims is the goal of distributed technology.

Winding Tree’s platform is open source, which means any entity can deploy the technology and get access to the infrastructure, according to the company. The firm has developed a set of protocols and software solutions that allow travel companies to connect in an open marketplace.

Hotels and travel providers can choose to accept fiat or crypto on the Winding Tree platform, and payments can be in the form of fiat, credit card or cryptocurrency, namely Lif tokens or Ether.

Winding Tree will host its second Hackathon in Lisbon this July. Last year’s event allowed partner Air France to become the first airline to allow external developers from other carriers inside its system.

Pedro Anderson, co-founder and COO of Winding Tree, said: “We’re not just giving customers the option to pay with Bitcoin and saying this is ‘distribution on the blockchain’. We’re providing a platform that allows the travel industry to create real change within an industry traditionally closed that relies on systems established nearly 30 years ago. The core of the platform is open source and distributed, which creates endless possibilities for real customer use, including lower costs, security, connectivity and unlimited innovation opportunities.”

Christian Lunden, director of future business at Nordic Choice Hotels, added: “We’re really excited to be the first hotel to jump onto the blockchain bandwagon, showing real customer use of decentralised technology. We’re committed to supporting Winding Tree as a key player driving innovation in the travel and hospitality space. The ability to make reservations on a public blockchain is a huge achievement, and we’re looking forward to continuing to educate the industry about the importance of incorporating blockchain technology into the space.”;

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