Have you ever thought of buying a star? It may sound like an amazing idea to name a star after yourself or your loved ones, but is it really worth the price? The cost of buying a star can vary from a few dollars to thousands of dollars, depending on the package you choose. While it may seem like a unique gift or a way to commemorate a special occasion, it is important to know the facts before making a decision.
First of all, let’s break down the different types of packages you can choose from when buying a star. The most basic package includes a certificate with the star’s name and location, usually for a cost of around $20. The more expensive packages may include additional items such as a map of the stars, a personalized message, or even a telescope to view your star. However, it is important to note that none of these packages offer any legal ownership or rights to the star, as stars cannot be owned by individuals.
So, what are you really getting when you buy a star? Essentially, you are paying for the novelty value of having a star named after you or someone else. The International Astronomical Union (IAU) is the only organization recognized as having the authority to name celestial objects, including stars. Therefore, any name given to a star by a commercial entity is not officially recognized by the scientific community.
Additionally, while the certificate may list the star’s location in the sky, it is very unlikely that you will ever be able to find your star with the naked eye. Most stars named by commercial companies are very faint and require powerful telescopes to view. In fact, many of these companies admit that the stars they name are random and have no scientific significance.
Moreover, there are other options available if you truly want to leave a lasting legacy in the night sky. For example, several nonprofit organizations allow you to dedicate a tree or plant a memorial garden in honor of a loved one. These options are more tangible, offer environmental benefits and can be enjoyed by future generations.
Finally, let’s talk about the cost-effectiveness of buying a star. Many people who buy a star may not fully realize the cost of the package they are purchasing. While $20 may seem like a small amount for a basic package, the more expensive packages can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars. For example, the International Star Registry offers a “Ultimate Star Kit” for $1,200, which includes a 12-inch globe, a star chart, and other additional items. You could use that money to purchase an actual telescope or fund scientific research, which would have a lasting impact on the world.
In conclusion, while it may seem appealing to buy a star and give it as a unique gift, it is important to understand that this type of purchase is purely for novelty value. The stars named by commercial companies have no scientific significance and cannot be legally owned by individuals. There are many other options available that are more tangible and have lasting benefits, such as dedicating a tree or investing in scientific research. Ultimately, the cost of buying a star may outweigh its novelty value, so it’s up to you to decide if it’s worth the price.