World View will take passengers to the edge of space using balloons

Another company has stepped into the space tourism market called World View. World View describes itself as the leading stratospheric ballooning company, and it announced an expansion of its services that includes the global launch of an edge-of-space experience. The company calls its offering the most affordable and longest-duration accessible space experience on the planet.

Affordable is only in relation to the millions of dollars it costs for a trip into space with SpaceX on something like its Inspiration4 mission that ended recently. World View is accepting deposits for edge-of-space trips in a capsule hung underneath a balloon. The deposit is $500 to reserve a place for a commercial flight, but the actual seat costs $50,000.

World View says it has "flexible financing options" for those who can't afford to pay the $50000 in a single lump. Commercial clients are expected to begin in early 2024, with the inaugural flight already secured by a company called Space For Humanity. Space View plans to launch its voyages at locations it calls the Seven Wonders of the World, Stratospheric Edition.

Spaceport locations where flights will originate include the Grand Canyon, the great barrier reef, the Serengeti in Kenya, aurora borealis in Norway, Amazonia and Brazil, Giza pyramids in Egypt, and the Great Wall of China in Mongolia. World View says those locations are in order of how they will open. Each location has a large structure or landmark that can be seen from a very high altitude.

The voyages consist of a five-day fully immersive experience, including excursions from spaceports enabling passengers to experience the locations in multiple ways. Each flight will handle eight participants and a pair of World View crew members. The capsules will climb to an altitude of about 100,000 feet, which is approximately 23 miles. The flights will last between six and 12 hours.