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This lunar mission - a flyby, not a landing - represents "an important step toward enabling access for everyday people who dream of travelling to space", SpaceX said in a tweet.

SpaceX is set to send a private passenger on a spaceflight around the moon soon, as it's now signed up its first customer for the trip.

No one has flown to the moon since the final mission of NASA's Apollo program.

The webcast is embedded below. The original plan called for two paying passengers to fly around the moon this year, using a Falcon Heavy rocket and a Dragon crew capsule.

SpaceX declined an AFP request for more details, but said further information would follow Monday at an event lasting from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm (0030 GMT to 0200 GMT).

Now, the Hawthorne, Calif. -based company says it's ready to unveil the name of the first person to take the trip and the reason for the journey.

After someone responded to the tweet by jokingly suggesting that Musk himself will be the passenger, the SpaceX CEO offered a hint about the person who is traveling, responding with a Japanese flag emoji.

The names and identities of those two tourists - and how much they meant to pay - were never revealed. "And we believe we can do this with the revenue we receive from launching satellites and servicing the space station".

The Falcon Heavy debuted one year after that announcement was made.

"We've been approached to do a crewed mission beyond the moon from some private individuals", he said at the time.

He introduced the BFR, composed of a rocket and spaceship, in 2017, saying it was aimed at allowing people to colonise Mars and that the company wanted to land two cargo ships on the Red Planet in 2022.


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