Space tourism

Space tourism is human space travel for recreational purposes.[1] There are several different types of space tourism, including orbital, suborbital and lunar space tourism. Work also continues towards developing suborbital space tourism vehicles. This is being done by aerospace companies like Blue Origin and Virgin Galactic. In addition, SpaceX (an aerospace manufacturer) announced in 2018 that they are planning on sending space tourists, including Yusaku Maezawa, on a free-return trajectory around the Moon on the Starship.[2][3]

The first space tourist, Dennis Tito (left) aboard the ISS

During the period from 2001 to 2009, seven space tourists made eight space flights aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the International Space Station, brokered by Space Adventures in conjunction with Roscosmos and RSC Energia . The publicized price was in the range of US$20–25 million per trip. Some space tourists have signed contracts with third parties to conduct certain research activities while in orbit. By 2007, space tourism was thought to be one of the earliest markets that would emerge for commercial spaceflight.[4]:11

Russia halted orbital space tourism in 2010 due to the increase in the International Space Station crew size, using the seats for expedition crews that would previously have been sold to paying spaceflight participants.[5][6] Orbital tourist flights were set to resume in 2015 but the one planned was postponed indefinitely and none have occurred since 2009.[7]

On June 7, 2019, NASA announced that starting in 2020, the organization aims to start allowing private astronauts to go on the International Space Station, with the use of SpaceX's Crew Dragon spacecraft and Boeing Starliner spacecraft for public astronauts, which is planned to be priced at 35,000 USD per day for one astronaut,[8] and an estimated 50 million USD for the ride there and back.[9]