During the Alpha phase of Star Citizen we will be using aUEC (Alpha United Earth Credits) during testing. This allows for the economy to be balanced, and we reset the servers during major patch launches which resets the aUEC balance and any items bought with aUEC. Eventually, UEC will be used (United Earth Credits) which appear on players accounts via the website.
For further information regarding Currencies, see the Currencies of Star Citizen guide.
Currently there are two major locations for players to purchase ships with their hard earned aUEC - New Deal Ship Shop in Lorville, and Astro Armada on ArcCorp. More shops like these will be added to new places around the 'verse in the future!
For more information on how to get around the Universe, visit our article here: How to Quantum Travel
To buy a ship, simply walk up to it, Hold F and select the ship. You will be presented with a description, your balance, the price of the ship and your remaining balance after the purchase. Go ahead and click Confirm Purchase to complete the purchase of your new ship!
Astro Armada Terminals
With our 3.6 Patch, we've also added Astro Armada terminals to each of the ship shops currently available in Levski, ArcCorp, and Lorville. These are functionally the same as purchasing from the show floor.
Keep in mind that while the game is in Alpha development, progress may not be saved between patches or server resets. Until the game is fully released and out of a testing phase, your aUEC purchases (including ships) will be reset semi-regularly until further notice.
Try before you buy?
If you wanted to test out a ship before spending a big chunk of your aUEC on something you might not enjoy flying, you can try renting a ship first.