SpaceX founder Elon Musk recently shared his vision to make trips to Mars “available to anyone” and mentioned the problems travelers could face after landing on the Red Planet.
Speaking in an interview with TED Conferences’ Chris Anderson, Musk, 50, suggested that the price for a ticket to Mars could hypothetically be around $100,000.
“I think almost anyone can work and save up and eventually have $100,000 and be able to go to Mars if they want,” he told Anderson. “We [at SpaceX] want to make it available to anyone who wants to go.”
While Musk considers this cost to be in a reasonable range, he warned that early life on the Red Planet “will not be luxurious.”
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The tech billionaire then referenced a fake ad from the 1900s that Sir Ernest Shackleton supposedly posted to invite other explorers to accompany him on his Nimrod Antarctic expedition in 1907.
“It will be dangerous, cramped, difficult, hard work,” Musk said. “It’s kind of like that Shackleton ad for going to the Antarctic, which I think is actually not real, but it sounds real and it’s cool.”
Musk also noted that building a self-sustaining city on Mars would require around 1 million people who would need to buy tickets or “get sponsorship in some manner,” such as through loans or government assistance.
However, living on the Red Planet would prove to be more difficult than living in Antarctica, which is considered to be the coldest, windiest and driest place on Earth. Mars has an average temperature of -80 degrees Fahrenheit while Antarctica has an average temperature of -70 degrees Fahrenheit.
Since finally creating a self-sufficient Mars colony could take decades, Musk believes he will be “long-dead” before his dream becomes a reality.