Stocks in Virgin Galactic went stratospheric after the company announced that customers would be able to book reservations to go into space. With space travel tickets being reservable with a $150,000 deposit, it has meant that a new space race has well and truly begun.
However, with the total costs of a Virgin Galactic space flight costing $450,000 there are concerns that the project is just too costly to get off the ground. The project is hoping to get 1,000 customers to put down a deposit in order to fully launch its commercial service later on in 2022.
Virgin Galactic had previously been accepting reservations for its flights at a much higher price bracket of $200,000 per reservation. But with a new lower reservation cost and redesigned logo, Virgin Galactic is looking to refocus its efforts on winning the space race. Interestingly the redesigned logo wisely moves away from featuring CEO Richard Branson’s iris to actually feature the brand’s rocket ship.
Alongside the $450,000 for a single-seat ticket, Virgin Galactic is also offering customers the chance to buy package deals to take their significant other or even entire family into space. It’s also worth noting that $25,000 of the initial deposit is not refundable.
Space tourism has gone from being a pipe dream to an almost realizable reality in the past few years. Alongside Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic, Jeff Bezos of Amazon has also been pushing hard for his Blue Origin project to crack the fledgling market.
With Blue Origin already launching three successful missions that included high profile customers like William Shatner, there were fears that Virgin Galactic could be eclipsed in the space race. However, with fully commercial Virgin Galactic space flights looking to go ahead in 2022, it seems that there is plenty to fight for.
The fact that Virgin Galactic has actually survived long enough to actually take space flight reservations will be hugely satisfying for all investors in the company. After all, it was only in January when Virgin Galactic revealed that it was raising $425 million in debt and many feared for the future of the space travel project.
Virgin Galactic had had to raise the debt in order to pay for the huge costs of the space project that had already caused significant delays to the launch of its first commercial space flights.
This caused stocks in Virgin Galactic to plummet by 16% to hit a low of $10.36 at the start of the year – a far cry from when it was worth nearly six times that amount in early 2021. While the share price of Virgin Galactic has struggled since then, the announcement of space travel reservations and a rise in share price suggests that Virgin Galactic may have just turned the corner.
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