Jeff Bezos's space tourism startup Blue Origin will start selling tickets to individuals who want to experience space travel next year.
Blue Origin To Sell Tickets In 2019
Rob Meyerson, Blue Origin senior vice president, made the announcement last week during a keynote address at the Amazon Web Services Public Sector Summit.
"We plan to start flying our first test passengers soon," Meyerson said. "We expect to start selling tickets in 2019."
The company did not reveal the price of the tickets yet, but these won't likely come cheap. It is estimated to range between $50,000 and $250,000.
The ticket price is too prohibitive for most humans on planet Earth but the price range is far cheaper when compared to the cost of a SpaceX spaceflight to the moon set for 2022.
Two tourists have reportedly paid a significant deposit to Elon Musk's space company for this trip around the moon that reportedly costs more than $100 million.
For those who can afford a Blue Origin seat, the New Shepard capsule has a reasonably spacious interior that can accommodate six passengers. The 530-square-foot interior is 10 times bigger than NASA's Mercury capsule.
In April, Bob Smith, Blue Origin chief executive, said that the company is making sure that the rocket's configuration is good and stable and the vehicle is prepared to fly. He said that the company will tackle the prices once the company is confident that this is the case.
Blue Origin expects to conduct the first passenger tests of its New Shepard rocket soon and even showed a video of a previous New Shepard flight at a West Texas test site.
All of the New Shepard flights have so far been performed without passengers onboard but Blue Origin earlier said that it would fly personnel on the reusable suborbital rocket in later tests.
The vehicle has flown eight times, the most recent of which was on April 29. The company did not reveal the schedule of the next flight but Blue Origin's head of advanced technology Dean Kassman said that the next flight may happen in the summer timeframe.
Space tourism company Axiom Space also said that the first commercial space station will open in 2022 and is now accepting reservation for eight-day stays that cost $55 million per head. The first luxury space hotel is likewise set to open in the low-Earth orbit in the same year.