Space tourism company sells 100 tickets for US$ 450,000 each


The space tourism company Virgin Galactic announced this Monday (8) that since August it has sold about 100 space travel tickets, for US$ 450,000 each.

The current price is well above the $200,000 to $250,000 paid by 600 customers between 2005 and 2014.

The new fare “has been well received,” the company said in a statement, noting that its goal is to sell 1,000 tickets before the launch of the first commercial flight, scheduled for the end of 2022.

“We are entering a period of fleet improvement with a clear path to increasing the durability, reliability and predictability of our commercial service aircraft,” said Virgin Galactic CEO Michael Colglazier in the statement.

“Demand for space travel is strong and we are selling seats faster than we expected,” he added.

The company’s founder, Briton Richard Branson, was the first billionaire to fly into space, on July 11, in a spacecraft owned by his private company, days before Jeff Bezos did so on a spacecraft owned by his company, Blue Origin.

However, Virgin Galactic’s spacecraft was temporarily immobilized by US authorities in September after exiting authorized airspace on its inaugural mission.

Virgin Galactic announced in October that it would delay its first commercial flight from the third to the fourth quarter of next year to make safety improvements. The company confirmed this Monday that it maintains the forecast.

Competition among billionaires for space tourism is fierce. In addition to Branson and Bezos, Elon Musk and his SpaceX sent four space tourists in September for three days around the Earth.

Virgin Galactic says it still has nearly $1 billion in cash to fund its operations until it becomes profitable.

In the third quarter of 2021, the company posted a net loss of $48 million, less than the $92 million it lost in the same period in 2020.


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