Entertainment

Zero-gravity flight experience brings space travel thrills to NYC

For space travel hopefuls in NYC, the weight is over. 

Zero Gravity Corporation, or Zero-G, is giving New Yorkers an otherworldly opportunity to experience weightlessness like an astronaut — or like billionaires Richard Branson, 71, and Jeff Bezos, 57 — floating through outer space. 

“We’re giving you the same incomparable feeling that Bezos and Branson just felt during their recent flights,” Zero-G CEO Matt Gohd, 65, told The Post. 

For $7,500 a person, the space entertainment and tourism company will take passengers on a 90-minute flight in a specially modified Boeing 727-200 aircraft, dubbed G-Force One, later this summer. 

The plane, devoid of seats or furniture, flies in 15 parabolic arcs — aerobatic maneuvers similar to rollercoaster arches  — between 24,000 to 32,000-foot altitudes. The parabolas create a weightless environment for flyers inside the aircraft’s padded 30-foot cabin. 

The Zero-Gravity experience is coming to the city to give New Yorkers a weightless, astronaut-like experience similare to that of Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos.
The Zero-Gravity experience is coming to the city to give New Yorkers a weightless, astronaut-like experience similare to that of Richard Branson and Jeff Bezos.
Steve Boxall

“Overall, passengers will experience about eight minutes of weightlessness,” Gohd said, adding, “That’s twice the amount of time Branson and Bezos experienced it for a fraction of the cost.”

Both tycoons spent millions on their respective extraterrestrial joyrides. But Branson, who took flight on July 11, enjoyed five minutes of weightlessness. And Bezos’s July 20 trip only afforded him four minutes of complete freedom from gravity.

Branson (left) and Bezos (right) both spent millions to spend less than 6 minutes of total weightlessness during their respective outer space excursions this year.
Branson (left) and Bezos (right) both spent millions to spend less than 6 minutes of total weightlessness during their respective outer space excursions this year.
Virgin Galactic/UPI/Shutterstock, Joe Raedle/Getty Images

“There’s literally nothing in this world like the feeling of being in no gravity,” said Gohd. 

A native of Oakland, California, Gohd has overseen his team of highly trained flight coaches on more than 40 gravity-free flights around the US since leaving his job as a Wall Street investment adviser to helm Zero-G, based in Virginia, two years ago. Flight coaches will be aboard G-force One to facilitate flyers on each weightless expedition.

“You’re flying, floating, doing somersaults and back flips in mid-air with minimal effort,” Gohd added. “It’s like magic.”

G-force One is set to take off in Westhampton on August 21. And city dwellers will get their taste of outer space from September 12 through the 18th. The experience will also be available to escape-to-space enthusiasts in Rochester on Sept. 19. 

G-Force One will be taking flight out of the New York area between August and September.
G-Force One will be taking flight out of the New York area between August and September.
Steve Boxall

Each Zero-G flight accommodates up to 28 passengers, and folks ranging from ages 8 to 98 are welcome. Flyers with special needs and severe medical conditions are also free to join in on the floating fun, but they should consult a healthcare professional for permission before boarding.

Big Apple adventurers will be transported by BLADE helicopter from Manhattan to Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey, where their anti-gravity excursion will begin. 

“Before the weightless experience even gets started, passengers will get a helicopter ride out of midtown to the Statue of Liberty for some aerial sight-seeing then to Newark Airport,” Gohd said. 

Zero-G passengers in New York City will be treated to a special helicopter tour of the Statue of Liberty before their weightless experience begins.
Zero-G passengers in New York City will be treated to a special helicopter tour of the Statue of Liberty before their weightless experience begins.
Steve Boxall

After undergoing a rapid COVID-19 test and going through TSA security screening, passengers will receive their FAA-approved flight suits to be worn atop their regular clothes during the astronaut-like mission. 

Guests will also be fed a breakfast of bagels and other light fare because it’s “important to have something neutral on your stomach before experiencing zero gravity,” Gohd noted, adding that flyers typically don’t get nauseous during the flight. 

Then just before liftoff, travelers will sit through a safety orientation during which the Zero-G team will explain the “Do’s” and “Don’ts” going weightless. 

“People get very excited about being unrestrained by gravity. And we love that,” Gohd said. “But it’s important not to jump or make major movements during the flight because it takes very little effort to move around the cabin.”

Flyers will get the full gravity-free experience, including eating candy that's floating in mid-air.
Flyers will get the full gravity-free experience, including eating candy and drinking water droplets that are floating in mid-air.
Steve Boxall

He added that people can float from one end of the aircraft to the other simply by pushing themselves off of a wall with their forefinger.

At the time of launching, Newark Airport air traffic control will give the G-Force One pilot coordinates to a secluded 100-mile airspace where the plane can fly without interrupting any commercial flights. 

Once at altitude, guests will experience varying levels of reduced gravity, including the different sensations of weightlessness on Mars, the moon and in the cosmos. 

“When we reach the altitude that mimics the gravity level of Mars, you feel about one-third your bodyweight,” Gohd said. “On the moon, you’ll feel about one-sixth your bodyweight.”

Then there’s total weightlessness. 

“Once you’re absolutely untethered by gravity, you can’t tell the difference between the floor and the ceiling. It’s incredible,” Gohd gushed. “You don’t even feel dizzy or lightheaded because blood isn’t rushing to your head like it would if you were hanging upside on Earth.”

G-Force One passengers will experience the varying gravity levels on Mars, the moon and in free space.
G-Force One passengers will experience the varying gravity levels on Mars, the moon and in free space.
Steve Boxall

While levitating in the sky like NASA’s finest, passengers of G-Force One will have the chance to eat skittles and drink water droplets that are suspended in mid-air, show off your acrobatic skills by doing floating flips and gain bragging rights that’ll last a lifetime. 

Professional pictures and GoPro camera footage of the experience will be available to guests within 72 hours of each flight. 

“It’s a bucket list experience that everyone absolutely loves,” Gohd said, adding that Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, 91, businesswoman Martha Stewart, 79, and late science giant Stephen Hawking, who died in 2018 at 76, have all participated in the Zero-G experience.    

“Anybody can do it,” Gohd added. “All you need is the dream of being an astronaut.”

nypost.com

New York Post

The New York Post is a daily tabloid newspaper in New York City. The Post also operates NYPost.com, the celebrity gossip site PageSix.com and the entertainment site Decider.com.

Related Articles

Back to top button