Budget airline Ryanair have thrown down the gauntlet to Virgin Galactic this week by officially announcing their own plans to launch a commercial space flight package, named the 'SolarSaver Galaxy Experience', which they claim will offer the public a 'cheaper alternative' to Virgin's 'astronomically expensive' space-travel experience.
With prices starting from as low as £149.99, Ryanair claim that their SolarSaver space flights are 'already oversubscribed', with over five-hundred flights fully-booked just hours after its unveiling. 'We've shaved £159,850 off Virgin Galactic's package', claimed Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary. 'Branson hasn't even filled one flight yet'.
When asked how on earth the Ireland based company was able to undercut Virgin by such a large margin, Ryanair's head spacecraft technician, Tony Burrows, said: 'Rather than building a futuristic and fancy spacecraft from scratch, we've simply adapted one of our existing airliners for space travel. We began by bending the wings into a cooler shape and adding a novelty time-warp thruster to each side of the
plane spaceship, just like on the USS Enterprise. Plus to save on weight, we've removed all the passenger windows'.
One soon-to-be space-bound passenger, Jennifer Hughes, who booked her SolarSaver Galaxy Experience instead of her usual trip to Lloret De Mar, said: 'We've booked the half board option. We have to check-in ourselves online and we don't get to use the onboard toilets, but we get a vacuum-packed meal of cosmic-cauliflower soup. We can't wait!'
Although despite all the initial excitement, Ryanair have already faced heavy criticism from BBC travel expert Simon Calder, who dug-down into the small print of the budget space package to discover that passengers will be slapped with an '£850 anti-gravity tax' and a £159,000 compulsory surcharge for oxygen.