Future Space Travelers Buying Tickets For Out-Of-This-World Adventure

Friday, November 19, 2010 - 10:52pm

What was once a thing of childhood dreams and science fiction movies, is now yours for a price. For the first time, private citizens are plopping down big bucks to fly into space from a desert airstrip in Sierra County, New Mexico.

Your $200,000 adventure of a lifetime starts with the space capsule racing above the atmosphere and into space. Space tourists can then unbuckle and float and look outside at planet Earth, but only for a few minutes.

A packed room in Florida wanted to hear more. Most were only curious.  "It's doable. But I don't want to be first," said travel agent Enrique Lopez.

David Mendal, who owns Forest Travel and has a contract to sell tickets, plopped down the $20,000 down payment himself.  "I'm going to space!" said Mendal.

The iconic leader of Virgin Galactic is Sir Richard Branson, the swash-buckling visionary. He's already completed a test flight but it's yet to climb into space for a full test flight. When it returns to atmosphere, the risk with any space flight increases. It's the perceived risk of a new venture that has some hesitating. But Sam Penthouse is going to pay his deposit.

Space flight is something millions have dreamed of. Now, for the first time, it lies within reach of the average person. Well, the average rich person. The CEO of Branson's Travel Consortium puts it simply:  "People say it's changing your life. For me, It is an amazing opportunity," said Travel Co. CEO Matthew Upchurch.

Once you get a ticket, you're enrolled in a three-day course to teach you about everything you would see in space. The whole flight is expected to be about three hours. However, the actual time in space would be just a few minutes.

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