How Much Money Would It Take For You to Go To Mars?

Screen Shot 2013-04-29 at 10.55.33 PMThere has been a lot of news lately about Inspiration Mars, a private, non profit project that is raising money to send a couple to Mars.

In case you haven’t read the deets, basically this company wants to train and send one man and one woman, preferably a married couple, on a trip to the planet and back.

The trip will take 16 months, and the couple will be in a small living space the entire time. (Basically they won’t be jumping out on Mars and eating marshmallows.)

The couple would be trained very well to endure such conditions, and the selection process would be extremely rigorous.

So, I ask you, friends, how much money would it take for you to go?

Let’s weigh the pros and cons.


1. You would get to be like Lewis and Clark, making history and seeing something no one else will get to see.

2. You would be one of the very few people on the planet to see the Earth from outer space.

3. You will be able to collect valuable data, making it possible to propel science forward.

4. You would get to experience this with your spouse.

5. If you make it back, you will likely be able to live a life of leisure, giving talks at college graduations and shaking the hands of presidents.


1. Let’s be honest. Does anyone really want to spend 16 months in a small space capsule with their spouse? I mean, I love the hubs. Really, I do. But, that’s a long time!

2. According to the articles I read, you would be exposed to a lot of radiation, so you can’t go if you want to get pregnant one day, and it might make you very sick.

3. You could die. Unfortunately, as with most space missions, this one is not guaranteed to work.

4. The food is likely not very good, and I don’t care to comment on the waste disposal situation. You’ll have to read about that for yourself!

5. You will probably be unable to blog or use Twitter in outer space, and for me, I think that’s a deal breaker.

I should mention that no one has really commented on whether or not these astronauts will get paid. I wonder if they even will or if it will be like winning the Triwizard Cup (a la Harry Potter) with the reward being eternal glory.

How much would it take for you to even consider applying for a mission like this? Or, would you never even think about it because of your job/kids/grandkids/future?

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

About Catherine Alford

Catherine Alford aka "Cat" is a personal finance freelance writer who currently lives in the Caribbean with her husband and spoiled pup, Julep. To learn more about her writing services, please visit her Hire Me page or e-mail her at Cat[at]BudgetBlonde[dot]com. Follow her on Google + to get all the latest updates.

Lovely comments:

  1. Haha, pretty interesting. This is one of those things that I could spend some time daydreaming about, but would never really consider. At least not anymore. Too much pregnancy/kids in my life to go to Mars. Does sound pretty cool though. And I do think you could probably come up with at least a few original blog posts from it!

  2. I have traveled around Europe and the US with my BF for a total of a year or so, and already with the great outdoors being 24/7 together was challenging, can’t imagine in a small tin can off to Mars.

  3. Money would really be no object to me in making that kind of decision! The benefit would be completely in being a pioneer and experiencing something mind-blowing. I asked my husband if he wanted to go and he said no. :(

  4. One of my life long goals is to go into space and orbit around the earth. I’m actually in the middle of saving $200K for this future journey. But I wouldn’t want to go to Mars because that sounds too far lol. It certainly sounds like an interesting challenge to be in zero gravity for so long. I’m not sure how my body would react. Maybe I would come back looking like one of those fat people from the future in WALL-E lol. I would like at least $1 million if I were to do it today. They would have to provide me with a spouse though since I’m currently single ;) Hey, if someone got pregnant in space would their baby be considered an extraterrestrial being? :P

  5. I would have to say no. It would be awesome but no amount of money is worth the risk. Plus you would ha e to pay me years in advance because I can’t spend a dime in space!

    • I know, right? I mean how would their taxes work? Will they be able to buy stocks from outer space? These are important considerations!

  6. While this would be cool, I just don’t think I would want to become the guinea pig in this one. I wouldn’t need to be paid because it would be an experience of a lifetime, maybe many lifetimes. I wouldn’t be able to handle the 16 month journey though. That would really test even the best relationship.

  7. I was going to say….I thought you couldn’t come back once you landed! I’m with Matt…I totally would have done this pre-kids. Now there’s too many people depending on me not just for those 16 months, but in the event that we don’t make it back…

    • Ha well there seems to be some conflicting journalism on the coming back thing. Some articles are saying it’s a 1 way trip and others are saying it’s a round trip. That would be important to know, right? Can you imagine getting there and having them say, “Oh sorry! You only bought a one way ticket!”

      • I think it’s probably a case of ‘nobody really knows’ since it’s never been done before. If you even survive, there’s probably no way to guarantee that you could make the return trip – even if it is a round trip they can’t make promises about your survival or the ship’s survival, right?

  8. You’d be immortalized. How cool would that be? I’m not sure I could go for it, but I think there are lots of people who have the desire and would see the downsides as mere inconveniences, not show stoppers.

  9. I hadn’t heard of this, but I would totally be on board. This would be the ultimate camping adventure and I know Mr. PoP would want to do it, too! (He already wants to go to Antarctica someday, which I’m not nuts about because of the cold… but the adventure of Mars would make me a bit more willing…) If we don’t get paid, I’d want to set up a nice book deal before we would go or alternately wait a few years until we have more in savings to be able to take the financial hit. As long as Mr. PoP’s parents are on board with looking after Kitty PoP, I would totally jump on that.
    As for getting along 24/7, as long as we had books I bet we could do it. And my cooking is bad enough already that space food might even be an upgrade! =)

  10. Okay this is different than the Mars mission I had read about. There’s another company/organization that wants to send something like 6 people to Mars, but it would be a one-way ticket. They’d fund the trip by making it a reality show. It sounds super interesting and a lot of people have applied, but I would have a hard time stomaching the fact that the people I’m watching were never going to come back. I would never go on the trip you described, though, because I couldn’t stay in that sort of confined space that long.

  11. Pretty much nothing could induce me to go. 16 months is a VERY long time for nothing really bad to go wrong. Plus, even if the radiation doesn’t mean that you’ll get cancer later, the low gravity will mean you’ll have the bones of someone 20 years older by the time you come back.

  12. I don’t know that there’s really enough money to get me to go. I’m afraid of planes, and get claustrophobic pretty easily. It sounds interesting, but definitely not for me. Plus, with my luck I’d get lost out there due to a malfunctioning chip or something.

  13. I have no desire to leave Earth. I’m claustrophobic and prefer to stay where oxygen is plentiful! There is no amount of money that could get me to go to Mars.

  14. I would never be that adventurous to go in the first place. I don’t think you could pay me enough because I don’t think I’d be coming back to spend it. lol!

  15. I think that would be awesome to do one day, but not before someone else goes first. I’ve seen Predators and Aliens, they don’t play! ;)

    • HAHA that’s so funny. I didn’t even THINK about Predators & Aliens. I’m going to have to rethink this. ;)

  16. I agree about spend too much time with the hubs! lol! I like my free time by myself thanks! haha!

  17. I think I’d rather just watch a DVD of someone going to Mars and use the extra money to go to Disney World.

  18. Well, my husband and I love to travel and experience new cultures, but I think this is even too extreme for us. Minus the fact neither of us would want to leave our girls behind for that long of a period. But from the “Hollywood” version, I’d love to jump on a big ‘ol space ship with my family and go to Mars (where, of course, it would be lovely and safe).

  19. Once you say the words radiation + you might die, I’m definitely out. There are other ways to make an impact on this world!

  20. Ya, I don’t really like heights so I don’t think a trip to Mars is in the cards for me haha. Cool though if they actually end up sending someone there.

  21. REALLY not my thing. Never wanted to go into space, so money doesn’t come into it! Have you read A Space Odyssey? Space travel sounds like it would be so painfully, mind numbingly boring. The pioneering factor for me <<<<< comforts of normal life.

  22. Love it! I am going to share this post next week on the Dinks Finance weekly roundup. Enjoy your time left in Grenada!!!


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