Photo: Virgin Galactic

Virgin Galactic Is Giving Away Two Seats to Go to Space

News Astronomy
by Olivia Harden Jul 13, 2021

If you’re keen to imitate Sir Richard Branson and take your vacation to space, a single seat for a flight with Virgin Galactic reportedly costs $250,000. But if, like most of us, you’re lacking the dough to fly on board the VSS Unity, there might still be a way to get you and a friend 300,000 feet above planet Earth in a spaceship.

Omaze, the charity fundraising platform, and Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Galactic founder, have teamed up to give away two seats on a flight to space on the VSS Unity. All you have to do is to make a donation. Five dollars will grant you 50 entries to the sweepstakes.

The donations will support Space for Humanity, a nonprofit “seeking to democratize space and send citizen astronauts of diverse racial, economic, and disciplinary backgrounds to space,” according to a press release.

“Until now, most people could only dream of venturing beyond Earth. Now, we are incredibly excited to team up with Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Galactic, and Space for Humanity to give two everyday citizens a chance of going to space. Omaze was founded on democratizing access to out-of-reach experiences. It’s an honor to advance this ideal to space travel while partnering with an organization dedicated to democratizing space for the better of all humankind,” said Matt Pohlson, the CEO and co-founder of Omaze.

You and your guest will board the Virgin Galactic spaceship VSS Unity, which is attached to a mothership until its release at 50,000 feet. The mothership takes off just like an airplane, not vertically like a regular rocket. Once the spaceship reaches 300,000 feet thanks to its own rocket engines, the passengers are able to unbuckle, take in the views of our planet from above, and enjoy zero gravity in the ship before coming back to Earth. The entire experience lasts about 90 minutes.

Winners of the sweepstakes will also receive a private tour from Sir Richard Branson of Spaceport America in New Mexico, with flight and hotel accommodations included.

The giveaway closes on August 31, 2021, and the two winners announced on September 29, 2021. The flight is expected to take off in early 2022.

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