Yusaku Maezawa is a billionaire from Japan, who managed to pay a significant amount as a deposit for SpaceX, in order to become the very first private tourist who is going to fly around the moon when the time comes. According to Elon Musk, the CEO of SpaceX, they are currently working on developing a Big Falcon Rocket that’s going to reach the moon and then safely return to Earth.
This type of rocket is actually the basis for Musk’s idea of starting a self-sustaining and a permanent human colony on Mars, and he’s planning to begin testing the Big Falcon Rocket as soon as next year, while the trip to the moon is planned for 2023. It was back in February of last year that SpaceX announced that they would be taking two passengers around the moon on their Crew Dragon capsule, which was launched by the Falcon Heavy rocket, however, early this year Musk said that they were arranging to use the Big Falcon Rocket instead. He also mentioned that they were planning on taking more than two passengers to the moon.
Maezawa is one of Japan’s richest people, and he has made his fortune by being the founder of two notable online retailers named Zozotown and Start Today. The amount he has paid in order to be a part of the trip to the moon is currently unknown, as Musk declined to reveal the exact amount. However, Mawzawa did state that he plans to visit the moon with a bunch of artists from all around the world, even though he’s unsure who exactly he’s taking yet. He said that since visiting the moon is such a rare and an amazing experience, he didn’t want to do it all by himself. And since he’s a very serious art collector, who has been inspired by various artists, he’s looking forward to the things they are going to create once everyone returns safely to Earth.
Both Musk and Maezawa are very optimistic about this trip to the moon, despite there being safety risks even with all of the routine trips that astronauts take to and from the International Space Station. And given the passengers' lack of technical training, things could be even more complicated. Nevertheless, this trip is going to have a lot more long-term implications for the future space ventures of our planet.