The Cost of Flying to the South Pole is…

O ne of my top travel goals is to spend at least one night at the South Pole in Antarctica. I would like to be able to be at the southernmost point on our wonderful planet, which is one of only two spots on earth where you can be in almost every time zone all at once; as well as walk around in a circle and keep heading either east or west. It is also the only place on Earth where no matter which way you look or point, the direction is always north.

Every so often, I like to check on how much it costs to go to the South Pole. To fly as a passenger on an airplane from Punta Arenas in Chile to the South Pole with either PolarQuest, PolarExplorers and Adventure Travel International, the cost is $45,800.00 — and that does not include travel to or from Punta Arenas…

…and with Adventure Travel International, the cost for the trip for next season is $47,200.00.

If you would rather ski to the South Pole instead of fly, plan on taking anywhere from 32 to 55 days to ski and cost you anywhere between $58,900.00 and $86,500.00 with Icetrek.

Summer is approaching in Antarctica. As I write this, the temperature there is 31 degrees — below zero, that is — and at that temperature, Fahrenheit and Celsius are almost the same. The average high temperature in January is almost a balmy 21 degrees below zero Fahrenheit — not including the wind chill, where the wind speed can reach hurricane strength — perfect for lounging around outside in your bathing suit whilst sipping on an iced tea.

I prefer lemonade, personally — but I digress.

There is a way to go to the South Pole and get paid to do so: if you are qualified, healthy, and willing to stay for a minimum of four months, the United States Antarctic Program has opportunities in the form of jobs not only at the South Pole, but also at other areas in Antarctica…

…and I confess to having applied to the program more than once. Yes, that is how much I would like to go to the South Pole.

Someday…I will get there someday…

…but in the meantime, have you been to the South Pole? If so, was it worth the trip? Would you recommend it?


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