When seniors start nearing retirement age, many consider moving to a place with warm weather and mild winters. Moving can be one of the greatest benefits of retirement and allow for a new lifestyle. Some of the most popular retirement destinations for Americans include Costa Rica and Florida, but soon there might be a new hot spot. It may soon be possible to travel to Mars as part of a retirement colony.
Mars is the limit
As an idea born from billionaire Dennis Tito, "Inspiration Mars" is mission that aims to send two Americans into space to orbit 100 miles around the red planet. For this mission, Tito is ideally looking for a male and female married couple 50 years or older. Inspiration Mars is due to launch Jan. 5 2018, when the planets are aligned with the shortest distance between them. The trip to the red planet would take just 501 days.
Tito made headlines in 2001 as the first person to visit space as a tourist when he bought a seat on a Russian space mission. Reportedly, the trip cost Tito $20 million. His latest idea is meant for those who are nearing retirement age. The thought is that after years of marriage, an older couple would be able to make better judgment calls and get along better on a long journey through space.
"When you talk about the science of how you support people for 500 days, people get really interested and inspired to go into the sciences, to go into technology fields, and that's what America needs," Chief Technology Officer for Inspiration Mars, Taber MacCallum, told Yahoo News. "We are not going to be competitive as a nation in a global economy unless we are the best scientists and the best technicians on the planet."
While Tito had hoped to initially conduct the entire voyage as a private enterprise, a joint partnership with NASA may soon be in the works. Seniors are no strangers to space, as former astronaut John Glenn made his second trip in 1998 at the age of 77. His first space mission was in 1962 as an orbit around the Earth. He reportedly experienced no negative side effects from his space trips.
While Tito's Mars idea is not a space colony for retirees just yet, it is certainly a step toward American expansion in space. However, even the most adventurous seniors should still consider a place on Earth for retirement living.