Broadcast 639 (Special Edition)

17 Dec 2006 Jane Reifert, Derek Webber
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Jane Reifert and Derek Webber were the two special guests for this program to discuss the "The Adventurers' Survey" regarding space tourism sponsored by Spaceport Associates and Incredible Adventures. We began the interview with the basics behind this space tourism survey, how it differed from the study Derek did for Futron several years ago and the significance of many of the findings in this survey. Listeners should listen to this program for the full details and scope of the survey, the conclusions and the relevant suggestions for tourists as well as space plane manufacturers. The study probed for people's likes and dislikes for how they might fly to space, vertical or horizontal and then of course land back here on Earth, horizontal or vertical. Space hotels, EVA's and spaceports were also discussed as was the market for orbital versus suborbital tourism. We talked about risk and questioned Jane about her experiences with risk taking and the regulatory environment in the different countries where her adventures take place. You will want to hear what she has to say about this, especially what is changing about this subject in Russia. We went into detail about how the survey was worded and how the questions were created. We talked about the size of passengers, that is height and weight and what this means for the space tourism vehicle manufacturers and vehicle operators. We discussed age issues and also three relevant points not often discussed. The first was the issue of disposable income versus the willingness of the wealthy to spend disposable income on something like space tourism. The second was the issue of corporate permission for key people to participate in a risk adventure. Here too you will likely be surprised with what you learn. Jane informed us that corporations are even reluctant for their people to be on a Coast Guard approved boat on a shark trip even though the passengers are not in the water and never near a shark! The third issue has to do with taxes. We learned that people probably won't mind paying the price for the suborbital or orbital trip but they are grossly offended paying a sales tax on top of the trip. I received multiple emails on this subject confirming this conclusion. $200K would be ok for the suborbital trip but wow, no way would the person want to pay $14,000 additional in taxes. Also, if the trip is won, there is a tax due on the full price of the trip so while the person may end up with a free trip to space, the tax on what they won may be greater than what the winner can afford. You can learn much about this survey and download the Executive Summary and other important documents from Derek's website which is www.spaceportassociates.com. You can send an email with comments or questions to Derek at the address on his site which is dwspace@aol.com. Check out the Incredible Adventures website for exciting adventure trips, more about space training and space related trips and all around fun, excitement and adventure. Visit www.incredible-adventures.com. You send your email questions or comments to Jane at the website email address, info@incredible-adventures.com.

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