Looking for a holiday gift to take someone's mind off all the problems on Earth this year?
With the pandemic spreading across the globe, wouldn't it be great if you could buy a place on another planet?
Groupon claims you can do just that.
Mel Winter of Northern Kentucky was looking for deals on Groupon when she came upon the most bizarre deal she had ever seen.
"It was, 'Buy an acre of land from Mars,'" she said. "And I thought, 'How would that work?'"
It was listed as just $15 and even comes with an ownership deed.
Winter was perplexed.
"At first I wondered, 'Would my acre appreciate if they land on Mars. Would they put a building on my land?'" she said. "And then I thought, 'Wait a minute, who owns Mars?'"
Reminiscent of "name a star" offers
If this sounds vaguely family, it might be because you remember radio commercials that claimed you could buy a star and have that star named after you or a family member.
Astronomer Dean Regas, outreach director of the Cincinnati Observatory, told us the International Astronomical Union is the only group that can name anything in outer space.
Offers to name a star for a fee don't meet their requirements. Nor does buying a piece of Mars, which no one on Earth owns, meaning you cannot legally purchase a piece of it.
But with a pandemic, protests and anger across the globe these days, Regas thinks Mars might be a great place to visit.
"Going to Mars is one of those things that could bring people together, and make us say this is something that humans have been striving to do, and we can do it," he said.
As for whether this offer is legitimate, the fine print says it all, explaining that it is a novelty gift "for entertainment purposes only."
So it's not a scam: You will get a certificate with your name on it.
But you really don't own any land there, which means you can forget about flying to Mars to visit your new home.
As always, don't waste your money.
Don't Waste Your Money" is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. ("Scripps").
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