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Why your business should be using bitcoin

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"Bitcoin, business, tablet, boardroom, ip" (CC BY 2.0) by Whitez

Bitcoin, also known as BTC, is an internet currency that is rapidly growing in popularity. Many are predicting that it could one day take over from normal currencies as the sole currency of the internet. If you have an internet-based company, now could be the right time to start accepting BTC and to get ahead of the curve.

Online casinos are an example of an area of the internet that is booming at the moment. There are hundreds of sites which are all competing against each other and trying to offer customers the best deals. Some sites have now started to operate solely in BTC to try to outdo their rivals. It gives them a unique selling point that can help the sites stand out from other casinos and it also enables them to operate slightly differently.

BTC casino customers don’t have to worry about working out exchange rates if they are playing from a different country, and depositing funds is quicker and easier than with a regular credit card. Players can still double down on blackjack, or enjoy red or black roulette play with BTC, and will also find that there is a unique range of stakes and betting options. The variety is one of the reasons why BTC roulette is one of the best ways for gamblers to wager their money in the virtual arena. Another advantage is that if a BTC casino wins over a customer, they are more likely to keep that customer at their site. With sites that use normal currencies, players can easily switch between sites, but if they convert their money into BTC, they can only use BTC sites.

While giving your business a unique edge in the current climate, getting to grips with BTC now will help set you up for a future in which BTC is more commonly used. More businesses are going to embrace BTC over the next few years for a number of other reasons. By accepting it now, you can be a leader in your industry, rather than someone who joins in just because everyone else is doing it. Using BTC now could also get your site more exposure, as BTC is reported on more frequently.

Having the option of BTC also gives more power to the customers. Instead of being told they have to pay for something in a certain currency, they have the option to pay for it in a different way. Some people enjoy the fact that bitcoin payments are discreet, and can’t be traced back to the customer. Others prefer it because it can be easier to understand than dealing with foreign currencies.

As the world of technology continues to progress at such a fast rate, nearly every business in the world is now based online. The world is becoming a smaller place and it stands to reason that sooner or later there will be a sole currency used for internet transactions. Getting to grips with BTC now could put your business at a distinct advantage over your competitors in the next few years.

Surrey604 is an online magazine and media outlet based in Surrey, BC. Through writing, video, photography, and social media, we secure an intimate reach to the public. We promote local events and causes.

Business

Surrey Board of Trade Receives Over $400,000 in Funding to Build and Support Surrey Employer Capacity to Respond to COVID-19 Workforce Needs

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SURREY, BC | The BC Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction is providing up to $402,105 to the Surrey Board of Trade to deliver a Labour Market Partnership project that will immediately build and support Surrey employer capacity to respond to COVID-19 workforce needs.

With this project, more Surrey employers will have the capacity to manage and respond to workforce challenges and address other COVID-19 related issues. Surrey service providers, the Surrey Board of Trade, employers, and industry groups will be enabled to work together in a more coordinated and collaborative approach on workforce priorities in a real-time, rapid-response structure to help with economic recovery.

“The Surrey Board of Trade is honoured and pleased to have received this funding from the BC Government to deliver on a real roadmap to economic recovery for Surrey employers through this pandemic” said Anita Huberman, CEO, Surrey Board of Trade. “Employers need help to develop capacity to be nimble and agile while responding to ever-changing workforce and economic conditions. The Surrey Board of Trade is pleased to continue its support to the business community in Surrey.”

The project commenced on July 27, 2020 and will conclude on July 23, 2021. Project actions include:

  • More Surrey employers being prepared and able to respond to the workforce-related impacts and opportunities resulting from the pandemic;
  • More Surrey workers impacted by COVID-19 to be connected to re-employment, re-deployment, re-skilling and sustained employment;
  • More unemployed members of equity-seeking groups in Surrey becoming employed.
  • A real-time Back-to-Work Strategies Playbook that can be adapted and used by other communities and tailored to specific industry sectors;
  • Ongoing real-time labour market Intelligence to support employer and service provider decision-making; and,
    Better use of and connections to government supports.

Funding for this and other projects is provided through the Province of BC’s Community and Employer Partnerships (CEP) program. CEP’s goal is to increase employment and work experience opportunities in communities across BC through partnerships, shared information, technology and innovation.

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Business

Uber expands ridesharing service to Abbotsford, Aldergrove and Langley Township

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Uber is expanding its ridesharing service to Abbotsford, Aldergrove and all of Langley Township. Residents across the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley now have expanded access to a safe, reliable and affordable transportation alternative at the touch of a button, and drivers will have additional flexible earning opportunities.

Uber has implemented new safety features and policies to keep riders and drivers safe as we navigate this new normal together including:

  • Go Online Checklist: Riders and drivers will confirm safety precautions to help stop the spread of COVID-19 including a selfie confirmation to ensure drivers are wearing a face mask or cover
  • Driver Screening: Everyone who drives with Uber is screened before their first trip. In addition, Uber reruns these driver screenings every year and uses technology to look for issues in between.
  • 24/7 Safety Support: If you need safety support or assistance, Uber’s dedicated and trained support team is available at all times to provide help
  • Phone Anonymization: Privacy is a top priority at Uber. The Uber app conceals driver and rider phone numbers so they are able to securely call/text each other through the app without revealing their information
  • Emergency Button Access: Both riders and drivers can contact 911 directly from the Uber app and provide a GPS location and trip details with authorities in emergency situations

In addition to these new features and policies, Uber is distributing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to help keep delivery people and drivers safe as they serve their communities. We are sending in-app notifications to active drivers and delivery people in each city – providing guidance on how to request health and safety supplies (screencap below).

Drivers and delivery people can request those supplies and have them shipped directly to their home. So far, more than 55,000 PPE supplies have been distributed in the Lower Mainland.

To see the updated service area map, please visit here.

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Business

How BC Resorts and Hotels are Reopening for Phase Three COVID-19 Restrictions

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BC premier, John Horgan announced the plan for the province to move to phase three of reopening. This phase includes the reopening of hotels, motels, cabins, RV resorts, etc. According to the BC government website, “The accommodation industry was not ordered to close by the Provincial Health Officer.

Many operators closed voluntarily and are now preparing to welcome guests in Phase 3.” Opus Vancouver plans to welcome back customers in August and released the safety changes that have been made to welcome guests back.

Opus Vancouver mentions that guests are required to stand six feet apart from guests who aren’t travelling with them in all areas of the hotel, they have also installed plexi glass screen at the front desks, and the hotel plans to “introduce a contactless check-in and keyless entry program over the coming months.”

As BC’s Centre for Disease Control advises handwashing and hand sanitizing when water is unavailable, OPUS Vancouver plans to provide guests, employees and visitors with hand sanitizer; as well as providing dispensers around the hotel. OPUS Vancouver has also released a detailed explanation in regards to the cleaning of the hotel amenities.

They mentioned limiting the number of guests in the fitness room to one and cleaning up after each guest is finished. The buffet eating will also be halted for the time being “and replaced [with] alternative service styles such as individually plated and served meals, to customized individual grab and go boxes.”

Other hotels in Surrey are assisting customers with their bookings and reservations. Like Sandman Suites Surrey-Guildford mentions their offering of full credits for future bookings until 2021 for all prepaid non-refundable reservations past July 1.

The Civic Hotel, Autograph Collection is also aiding new customer bookings by allowing “reservation to be changed or cancelled at no charge up to 24 hours before … scheduled arrival date.” This is for reservations “for any future arrival date” and … “reservations with prepaid rates.” According to their website, this is available till July 5.

BC’s phase three reopening also includes travelling within the province so for residents who are planning to visit one of BC’s many beautiful towns and cities, the government has some rules in place. Residents of British Columbia are asked “to be respectful of the communities [they] plan to visit and be safe as [they] enjoy the many beautiful locations across [the] province.”

Visitors from other provinces and territories are also asked to follow the same guidelines in place for British Columbians. The BC government website also includes a list of guidelines for people thinking about traveling this summer. The government asks that residents “consider the health and safety of people in [their] bubble, and whether [they] want to take any extra risks.”

Residents are also asked to follow the safety rules in place. That includes washing of hands, physical distancing, staying in small groups, and cleaning of space. Many RV parks are accepting guests and have put up rules in regards to covid-19. Livingstone RV Park in Langley announced the closing of its office to the public and appointments can be made by calling the number on their website.

They have also closed the showers and washroom to the guests and they ask that guests “have no outside visitors during [their] stay and that [they] maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet between [their] camping neighbors until the ban is lifted.”

Other RV parks like Pacific Border RV Park in Surrey, Burnaby Cariboo RV Park and Campground in Burnaby are also open for guests.

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Business

Support Our Surrey (SOS): Team of Justin and Trace

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I’ve seen so many members of our community helping each other out during COVID-19, that it makes my heart swell. I’m so happy to be giving another Support Our Surrey shout-out to longstanding members of our Fraser Valley community – the real estate team of Justin and Trace, from Macdonald Realty.

Justin Glasser and Trace Sowerby have been active realtors in the Fraser Valley for over 15 years. Maybe you’ve seen their friendly faces in the mail? As downtown Surrey began to grow and burgeon approximately 15 years ago, Justin and Trace have not only been growing with the city, but they’ve been growing with many of the young residents and families that call Surrey their home.

During COVID, they’ve used their marketing platform and resources to support and highlight other local businesses in the community, by hosting an Instagram series called QUARANTINE 15 – a “weekly segment updating our community on local business in 15 minutes or less”. You can follow Justin and Trace on Instagram at justin_traceteam to find these segments, as well as here.

Businesses they've featured are:

If you ever get the pleasure of meeting Justin, Trace, or their colleague, Bethany, you’ll know immediately that the care and respect they have for their community and fellow residents, runs deep. It’s their personal care, whether as their clients or someone living in the same community as them, that really make the Justin and Trace Team, shine and standout. Get to know them a bit on Facebook: facebook.com/justinandtracehomes

You can also learn more about the Justin and Trace Team on their official site, here, and be sure to check out the businesses they’ve highlighted so that we can all continue to keep this spirit of community going!

Dear readers: As BC begins to re-open, it’s a great opportunity for business to welcome us back – please reach out to share local businesses that are now open so we can feature them and make sure our community knows how we an Support Our Surrey.

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Business

How Barbershops and Retailers are Welcoming Customers during BC’s Phase Two Re-opening

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Giant Retailers, Hudson Bay and Sephora have opened their doors to customers in Surrey. While both companies spoke about their excitement to welcome back customers, they have also released information on the new store hours and how they plan to enforce safety guidelines and social distancing rules. Sephora released a post which detailed the changes they planned to make to their stores while ensuring the safety of their customers. The company plans to maintain the two metre distancing rule and limit the amount of customers in the store.

The company is also making sure hand sanitizers are made available “at the front entrance and key areas throughout the store” They also plan to “sanitize baskets before giving them to [customers], disinfect products and tools, and clean surfaces every two hours or after every use.”

As the beauty company is known for having testers made available, this will no longer be the case and the company also plans to take the temperature of their staff at the beginning of their shift and in the middle of their shift.

Hudson Bay, another retailer that has opened its doors to residents of Surrey has introduced a way for customers to receive their items in a safe way. The company has introduced curbside pickup. The company mentioned the pickups being ready in “as little as 3 hours”

This is made available everyday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and when customers arrive, they are asked to remain in their car while an associate helps them load the item. The customer can also “advise” the associate on where to place the item if they do not want it loaded in their car, according to the company. Some other new changes from the store is, allocating Tuesdays for senior shoppers and Thursdays for frontline workers.

Along with other retailers and businesses, Hudson Bay has introduced sanitizers around the stores, increased cleaning, physical distancing, and touchless pay. BC’s second phase of reopening doesn’t include only retail stores. Barbershops and salons are now open to the public with guidelines in place.

Lookin’ Sharp Barbershop is based in Richmond BC, and it recently opened doors to customers. Co owner and founder of the shop, Bebo, spoke about the safety guidelines in place as he and his staff welcome back customers.

“Right now we are not allowing [anyone] without a mask and [we also] have … guidelines and protocols before the client [enters the shop],” says Bebo.

Some of the new guidelines Bebo spoke of was having clients make appointments before their haircuts, as before the pandemic, the shop took walk-ins only.
“We removed all the chairs [in] the waiting area, so there’s no waiting inside the shop,” says Bebo.

“When [a] client comes, they need to wait outside until their scheduled appointment, and [we also] put … a hand sanitizer station [for clients],” says Bebo.

Bebo also mentioned his shop giving out masks to customers who come without one. He spoke about the safety guidelines for his staff, saying they had to wear masks and gloves, and disinfect their whole workstation before and after each client. Bebo also mentioned his shop terminating 80 per cent of their services.

“… Hair [wax], threading, face masks, and facials … are no longer available,” says Bebo. “Basically right now we are only providing the haircuts and hair wash,” he added.

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