Joe is the points and miles person in our house. I’ve watched him labor over which credit card to get next because this card costs that much and gives us this many miles, while that credit card costs this much and gives us that many of them. When we’re ready to go somewhere, he has my boarding pass printed for me (because he knows that’s what I prefer), and he has his boarding pass on his app. He checks a few times to make sure he has both of those. He takes it all so seriously!
Me? For this latest flight I discovered, I went online, I filled out the info, I got a VERY cool boarding pass, AND I got over 313,000,000 miles for doing so! Take a look…
Of course, it’s not a real boarding pass but my name, at least, will be going places.
NASA’s Mars 2020 Rover is scheduled to head to the red planet in July 2020 and people are encouraged to submit their names. All submitted names will get an electronic version of the boarding pass above, and will be reviewed, approved and then etched onto a microchip that will be placed aboard the Mars 2020 rover, which will land on Mars. An image of the microchip will be put on the Mars 2020 Send Your Name to Mars homepage, and the Mars 2020 mission homepage after it’s installed on the rover, sometime in the Spring of 2020.
This isn’t the first time NASA has offered boarding passes. They’ve also done it for Mars Science Lab, MAVEN, Mars Exploration Rovers, Orion and InSight. Prior to the Orion first test flight, participants got a certificate of participation. The Frequent Flyer program started with the Orion first test flight in 2014, and if you sign up with the same name, your “frequent flyer miles” will accumulate.
They even got Sesame street characters to sign up during the 2014 Orion sign up. It was part of a campaign to teach preschoolers about the space program.
No word on what you can do with your frequent flyer miles but as long as they don’t Bonvoy me, I’ll be happy.
If you’d like to sign up to have your name added to the microchip that will travel to Mars, just click here to get started. The deadline is September 30, 2019.
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary