Space. The final frontier. Or so it was until numerous companies in the 2000s were interested in space tourism. What is space tourism? You can become an “astronaut” for however long said company wants you up in space for a certain hefty price. A professional and qualified crew is on board with the passengers, so all the passengers have to do is pass physical tests to withstand the changes to their bodies when entering and exiting space.
The means for transportation are all different because companies are offering different types of trips. SpaceX is offering to take two people around the moon and back, which is the most prestigious out of the tourist trips. Blue Origin’s “New Shepard” is your standard rocket that shoots you up and brings you back down, which we can assume would be the “cheapest” of the two. Virgin Galactic’s “SpaceShipTwo” launches from a plane already in the sky and brings you and 5 other passengers with two pilots into orbit.
So how much will space tourism cost? It all depends on the company and the kind of tourism that you want. Virgin Galactic is charging $250,000 up front for a seat on their “SpaceShipTwo”. However, many think that trips will initially be in the tens of millions. Eventually though, the price for visiting space will come down as the technology becomes more available and becomes less expensive to operate. So, we recommend waiting until the price goes down and till the services have been used for several years to ensure safety.
Keep in mind that not everyone is fit to travel to space and most people will either have to train to withstand the forces or simply cannot go if they can’t reach the requirements. Astronauts have said that your body adjusts within a couple of hours to a day, but that you will feel nauseous, dizzy, tired, and weak. You will also have a hard time determining which way is up or down and that you will feel all the blood in your head since gravity is not forcing it around your body. Once you are back on Earth, you feel heavy and have a hard time keeping your balance. However, keep in mind that these astronauts are in space for months, so the adjusting period would not take as big of a toll.
We hope that this kind of tourism will be as common as taking a plane to the other side of the world. But for now, we think it is best to wait for companies to develop their technologies further.