Mars One, a Netherlands-based group, is holding a competition to give 24 people the chance to travel to Mars. This is a one way ticket, and the entry fee was $38. Mars One had over 200,000 applicants. Andrew Tunks, 28 years old, was selected for the qualifying round of 100.  There is one more round which will select the final 24 people. Now Turks is getting ready to decide if he’s willing to leave behind the planet, his family, and girlfriend behind for the rest of his life.

When asked by Vice if he thought it was possible he’d change his mind after departure, Tunks said, “I have thought about that but at that point you’re pretty much stuck with that decision. It’s like, what are you gonna do about it? It’s happened anyway so live with it and be happy.”

The chosen 24 will be divided up into teams of four and put into a decade of full-time training in order to prepare them for what lies ahead. After this has been completed, they will be sent to Mars with a one way ticket.

Tunks is pretty relaxed about the whole process of leaving his family and girlfriend behind forever. He entered the competition on a whim to see how far he could get.

When asked why he thought the trip was worthwhile he said, “Life is kinda shitty a lot of the time. Life is suffering. Everything about being alive is really challenging… At least [on Mars] you’re in control of your destiny, more or less. You have this global platform as well. I think that’s really inspiring. That’s a reason to keep going. You have the entire world watching you and that’s such a powerful thing. I feel like it would be really letting everyone down and letting yourself and the universe down to just be like, Fuck it, this is hard. I want to die. I’m just gonna jump out of the airlock.

Natalie