Entrepreneur Dennis Tito and his wife Akiko purchased seats on a private trip with SpaceX’s Starship rocket, the third such spaceflight Elon Musk’s venture has announced to date.
Tito – 82, and famous for becoming the first private space tourist after flying with Russia to the International Space Station in 2001 – bought two seats on a SpaceX mission that would fly a Starship to the moon and back on a week-long mission.
“I’ve been wanting to go to the moon since my first trip to space,” Tito said during a press conference on Wednesday.
Akiko, 57, is a real estate investor and pilot, who married Dennis Tito in 2020. Together they’re expected to be the first married couple to fly around the moon.
Unlike the other two private Starship flights previously announced, the first one purchased by billionaire Jared Isaacman and the second by billionaire Yusaku Maezawa, Tito and his wife did not buy the entire flight but rather two seats. That means the lunar flight is “open for 10 others to sign up,” he said.
Tito declined to comment on the cost of the seats, and a brief SpaceX blog post did not reference any financial arrangements.