Billionaires Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos are ready to start offering trips to outer space.
But, it could be some time before space travel is truly available for anyone who isn’t a millionaire or billionaire.
Space flights that cost only four-figures, or even in the low five-figures, are not going to be available anytime soon.
Experts agree it’s impossible to give an accurate target date for when “affordable” space flights will be available to the masses, but most agree they are decades away, at best.
One of the biggest challenges is the difficulty of getting enough would-be amateur astronauts into space at one time to spread out the costs.
Virgin Galactic’s well-publicized test flight with Branson aboard carried just four passengers in addition to the two pilots.
Bezos, his brother and two other passengers are scheduled to be on the first Blue Origin rocket to carry tourists this week.
There also needs to be significant demand for space travel to fill those seats, no matter the price.
The first space tourist was U.S. millionaire Dennis Tito, who paid Russia $20 million in 2001 to fly him to and from the international space station.
He is the first of seven travelers to date who have paid millions to fly in space.
Unfortunately, making affordable space flights a reality will take time and all types of technological advances which are not possible today.