World View Enterprises allows you to ALMOST be an astronaut

World View Enterprises

Can’t find the spare $250,000 to get yourself into Sir Richard Branson’s rocket plane glider thingamajig? Well thanks to World View Enterprises, you have options.

World View Enterprises has gotten FAA approval to take budget-minded space enthusiasts up into near-space in an over-sized soda can with windows, suspended by a high-altitude balloon. Passengers will spend two hours gawking and gasping at views of both the blackness of space and the curvature of the Earth from an altitude of 19 miles (98,000 feet). Be sure to watch the video below. World View Enterprises marketing people did not skimp on the special effects.

Can World View Enterprises really take you into outer space?

Technically, no. An altitude of 19 miles is nowhere near “outer space” – generally considered to start at an altitude of 62 miles (100 km) – but there’s no denying that this extreme balloon ride looks like a pulse-quickening, jaw-slackening thrill ride, in so much as gently floating can be a thrill.

I feel compelled to point out that the parachute return to Earth seems a bit dubious. I don’t see any maneuvering thrusters in the video, so in the event sudden bad weather, or even if the wind picks up a little, your landing may be the most exciting/terrifying part of the whole experience. Will you land at the designated airfield or in the middle of a Denver Broncos game? And I hope the passenger chairs have serious shock absorbers, or people are going to be rupturing discs in their spines left and right.

No information was provided on the critical topic of how over-stimulated passengers will discreetly void their bladders or if they’ll be able to go live on Instagram at that altitude. Also, there’s no footage of the seating arrangements, but worst middle seat ever?


Is this budget near-space journey worth the money? Please leave a comment.