Virgin Galactic Holdings (NYSE:SPCE) announced Monday that it has rescheduled a space flight planned for Nov. 19-23 due to COVID-19 restrictions in New Mexico.
What Happened: Virgin Galactic had scheduled a test flight from New Mexico for later this week. But in accordance with new guidelines from the New Mexico Department of Health, this plan was disrupted due to the spread of COVID-19 in the state.
“With the health and safety of our team members in mind, and in accordance with the recent direction from the New Mexico Department of Health, we will be minimizing our New Mexico operations to the greatest degree possible,” said CEO Michael Colglazier.
“While these new restrictions cause us to adjust our flight schedule, we take this pause in stride and will be prepared to resume our pre-flight procedures and announce a new test flight window as soon as we can. Our team members at Virgin Galactic, our Future Astronauts, and our fans around the world remain incredibly excited for our upcoming spaceflight.”
Why It Matters: The pressure is on, as it is estimated Virgin Galactic has around 600 customers on standby, all of whom have signed up for a suborbital flight at $250,000 per ticket.
In the meantime, SpaceX and Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) CEO Elon Musk launched another mission from Florida to the International Space Station this weekend. Four astronauts from the U.S. and Japan made up the crew and rode to orbit in a rocket and capsule provided by the SpaceX company.
According to the U.S. space agency NASA, we are entering a new era in which routine astronaut journeys are being conducted by commercial providers.
SPCE Price Action: Virgin Galactic stock was trading down 9.34% at $20.19 at last check Monday. The stock has a 52-week high of $42.49 and a 52-week low of $6.90.
Photo courtesy of Virgin Galactic.