Well, that’s just inspirational. Private space company SpaceX will be sending several “civilians” to space at the end of 2021, as part of a mission called Inspiration4. It will be “…the world’s first all-civilian mission” to space, helmed by one Jared Isaacman, the founder and CEO of a company called Shift4 Payments.
There’s… sort of a point to this –and that’s to raise money for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and it’s doing that by making the two available seats accessible to folks who engage in fundraising. Specifically, giving folks the opportunity to become one of the “…crew members who will be selected to represent the mission pillars of leadership, hope, generosity and prosperity.”
Going to SpaceX
Isaacman will make up one of the four crew, while St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital controls two more seats. The final seat is already reserved, for an unnamed ambassador of the hospital who embodies ‘Hope’. The remaining two will exemplify generosity and prosperity, we assume. In fact, if you’re keen to get onto SpaceX’s Crew Dragon this year… you’re out of luck unless you’re an American.
If you are an American, however, then there are a couple of ways to become eligible for the multi-day trip to space. If you’re after the Generosity path, donating to St. Jude will get you there. Taking the Prosperity route, setting up a Shift4Shop and punting it on social media will get you in the running — but you’ll have to hurry as crew selection takes place by the end of this month.
Those who eventually take this trip to space will be given training by SpaceX, in everything from zero-gravity training to full mission simulations. And before you go wondering if you can just buy a seat, SpaceX has another commercial mission planned for 2022, where a few folks will head to the International Space Station for ten days. The cost of a seat? $55 million. Not exactly pocket change.