Space tourism does not easily compare to other niche tourism products because a space flight in many regards differs from any holiday experience available on Earth. Thus, it has been proposed to coin it “public space travel” instead (Foust, 2004). “Personal space flight” is also used frequently. For the sake of simplicity, these terms will be used interchangeably in this. As can be imagined, space travel involves leaving the atmosphere of our home planet. The degree of technology required for that by far surpasses that of any airplane used in commercial aviation, or any other mode of passenger transportation, for that matter. For instance, the Soyuz TMA-7 capsule (used for orbital flights) was propelled into space by a rocket engines equipped with 20 million horsepower. Another reason why the term ‘tourism’ is unsuitable is because of the exclusivity and uniqueness of a space adventure: only six people to date have taken a trip to the ISS, paying between $20 million and $30 million for a duration of one to two weeks. A space trip is the most expensive ‘holiday’ in the world. Tourism, by definition, is travelling for recreational or leisure purposes whereas comfort and recreation plays no part in orbital space travel. The activities during a space trip are closer related to those of an astronaut rather than those of a tourist - hence, the term ‘space mission’ is used frequently when referring to public flights to the ISS. While such a trip is nonetheless spectacular, most people will probably be unable to afford it in the foreseeable future, and “although orbital space tourism will continue, it is unlikely to grow beyond current arrangements… in the near term” (Crouch et al., 2008).
KeywordsReservation Price Space Flight Space Adventure Ticket Price Space Travel
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