Fly me to the Moon

Mega-rich tourists are being offered the ultimate holiday destination – the MOON.
It will cost them £60million for an eight to ten-day trip on a Russian rocket.
Starry-eyed trippers will not land on our celestial neighbour. Instead they will get a close-up view of its mountains and craters as they sail round the back of the Moon and then head for home.
Russian space chiefs yesterday admitted they are planning the missions for passengers with large wallets. The trips would subsidise the cost of their space programme.
Alexei Krasnov, head of the Russian Space Agency’s department of piloted programs, said: “A project for a flight around the Moon really exists and we are currently studying it.
“This flight may cost some $100million for a tourist.”
Krasnov said that a cosmonaut pilot will fly on or two tourists aboard a re-fitted Soyuz cargo spacecraft to dock with the International Space Station in orbit around the Earth.
A separate rocket will then be launched from the Baikonur space centre to link up with the Soyuz.
Krasnov said: “The power of this rocket will provide the flight around the Moon and return to Earth.”
The first Moon holidays are unlikely to take place for some years – and they won’t be “turn up and go” trips.
Tourists will have to undergo months of training and pass stringent medical and psychological tests. They will also need to speak fluent English.
US financier Dennis Tito became the first sace tourist in 2001, paying £14million for a trip to the space station.

Paul Sutherland

Paul Sutherland

I have been a professional journalist for nearly 40 years. I write regularly for science magazines including BBC Sky at Night magazine, BBC Focus, Astronomy Now and Popular Astronomy. I have also authored three books on astronomy and contributed to others.
Paul Sutherland

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Paul Sutherland

I have been a professional journalist for nearly 40 years. I write regularly for science magazines including BBC Sky at Night magazine, BBC Focus, Astronomy Now and Popular Astronomy. I have also authored three books on astronomy and contributed to others.

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