In 2001 U.S. financier Dennis Tito became the first space tourist when he rode in a Soyuz capsule to visit the International Space Station. Mark Shuttleworth, a South African businessman, made a similar trip in 2002.
The particular Soyuz craft dedicated to the future moon voyage doesn't have enough power for the full return trip. Russian engineers therefore plan to send up a booster rocket that would dock with the craft in orbit or be attached at the space station.
Given the high cost of the hundred-million-dollar trip, only the world's superrich could afford such a trip. But Anderson and Spencer both expect prices to drop as interest in privately run expeditions increases.
"Space tourism over the next 50 years will be a unique, expensive proposition," Spencer said. "As the industry grows, we will have hundreds of thousands of people going and costs will go down."
Anderson, of Space Adventures, said, "We have to find early adopters willing to lead the way."
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