Blue Origin Launches 4th Space Tourism Mission on March 3126th Apr 2022
On 31st March, Blue Origin launched a successful space tourism mission, the 4th one since its debut last summer. The six passengers on board the New Shepard rocket took off from the company launch site in West Texas. So far, the company has not announced a price for its flight, but it has been confirmed that one of the first-flyer tickets has been auctioned for $28 million.
Bezos’ 4th Space Tourism Mission in Detail
The latest Blue Origin space tourism mission should have included Pete Davidson, Saturday Night Live host, but he had to drop out after the company rescheduled the previously announced launch date. The delay was caused by additional ground tests.
Instead of Davidson, Blue Origin took one of its old-timer employees, Gary Lai, who has been with the company for years. Lai was the only person onboard New Shepard who did not have to pay for the ticket. The other passengers included Marty Allen, Jim Kitchen, George Nield, Marc Hagle, and Sharon Hagle. Traditionally, the whole team of space tourists was live-streamed via Blue Origin’s official channels.
Blue Origin Vs. the Competition
While Blue Origin is clearly making steady progress with its space tourism programme, the niche is not competition-free. Blue Origin’s major competitors in the area include Virgin Galactic, charging $450,000 per flight, and SpaceX, which has not announced prices either. Out of the three space tourism pioneers, SpaceX is the only company that actually takes people to orbit and the International Space Station.
Regardless of the competition, Blue Origin does not give up hope of making space tourism a mainstream activity, offering regular suborbital flights to any interested passengers.