Having watched both the Virgin Galactic and Blue Origin tourist missions, I think, as a tourist, I would choose Virgin Galactic over Blue Origin for a ride into space; there is just something about the civility of Virgin Galactic’s approach over Blue Origin’s. One thing Branson knows is tourism and entertainment. Taking off and landing at a SPACEPORT, with all the creature comforts, has such an appeal over something that looks vintage Russian (landing in a dirt field). The long term options seem better for Virgin Galactic with an ability to take off and land almost anywhere. I can see high-speed travel and eventually a transport to a Virgin Space Hotel. Blue Origin’s future seems limited.
That said, my bet is on SpaceX for going beyond tourism.
One of my favorite reads was “THE SPACE TOURIST’S HANDBOOK” by Eric Anderson, who on April 8th, 2001, blasted off in a Soyuz rocket for an eight day ride to the ISS and became the 415 person to enter space and the first person to pay to get there. His account and advice are written in this incredible handbook–– a must read for anyone wanting the see the blue dot from above.
Fortunately, the technology has advanced exponentially since 2001 and going into space with Virgin Galactic makes things a lot easier.
Space X or Blue Origin are said to dominate the Space Tourism Industry, but if you bet on their approach then you will loose.
Understanding Mr. Rubinstein’s philosophy is why Apple dominated the smartphone market and why Microsoft failed.
Would you rather be sitting above a cylinder that is exploding below you for a brain rattling ride straight up into space or take your time to climb to 45,000 ft, then rocket much more smoothly for 40 seconds and glide though space before heading back back down to Earth in comfort? There is one thing Richard Branson understands and that is Tourism. He has brought the future to the present.