Updated: Oct 14
There are a number of airlines that accept pets, and each has their own policies and procedures. Please be sure to check with the airline before you travel to make sure that your pet will be able to come along.
Generally speaking, most airlines will allow small pets in the cabin with their owner, as long as they are in a carrier that meets the airline's size requirements. Larger pets will usually have to travel in the cargo hold, and there may be additional fees for this.
Some airlines also require that your pet has a health certificate from a veterinarian dated within 10 days of travel, so be sure to check on this as well.
Average costs for traveling with a pet can range from $50 to $200, depending on the airline and whether your pet is flying in the cabin or as cargo.
So, if you're looking to travel with your pet, be sure to check out the policies of different airlines to find one that will work for you. And have a safe and enjoyable trip!
Here Is A Quick Checklist to Help you Before Your Trip
-Health certificate from vet
-Pet must be in carrier
-Carrier must meet size requirements
-May have to travel in cargo hold (additional fees may apply)
Common Airline Rules
-The animal must be at least eight weeks old.
-The animal must stay in its carrier under the seat during taxi, takeoff, and landing.
-You are not allowed to open the carrier during the flight unless instructed by a flight attendant.
-You cannot bring more than one pet in the same carrier.
-Only service animals are allowed on flights longer than 12 hours.
Pets in the cabin must be able to fit in a carrier that can go under the seat in front of you. The carrier counts as the one personal item. The maximum dimensions for hard-sided carriers are 17 inches long x 12.5 inches wide x 7.5 inches high (43 cm x 32 cm x 19 cm). The maximum dimensions for soft-sided carriers are 18 inches long x 11 inches wide x 11 inches high (46 cm x 28 cm x 28 cm). Check your airline before you travel to verify.
Pets traveling to the U.S. from another country must have a valid rabies vaccination certificate.
You'll need an import permit from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to bring your pet into the U.S. You must apply for this permit at least 30 days before you travel.
Service animals are always allowed in the cabin. If you're traveling with a service animal, let the airline know when you book your flight. You'll also need to bring documentation of your animal's training, such as a harness, vest, or ID card. Airlines have updated their rules updated in 2021.
Emotional support animals are not considered service animals by the Department of Transportation (DOT). DOT does not require airlines to accept emotional support animals in the cabin. Some airlines choose to accept emotional support animals, but they may have different requirements, such as a health certificate or vaccination records.
If your pet is traveling in the cargo hold, the airline will give you a pet travel form to fill out. This form will have all of the information that the airline needs about your pet. You'll need to sign this form and give it to the airline when you drop off your pet.
You should arrive at the airport early on the day of your flight so that you have time to check in and get your pet settled. When you check in, let the airline know that you're traveling with a pet so they can make sure everything is in order.
When you get to the gate, they will likely ask to see your pet so that they can make sure it is comfortable in its travel carrier. Once you're on the plane, the airline may ask you to move your dog or cat to a different seat if it is blocking the aisle or another passenger's seat.
At the security checkpoint, you'll need to take your pet out of its carrier so that it can go through the X-ray machine. Once you're through security, you can put your pet back in its carrier.
When you get to your gate, the airline will make an announcement about when pets can be taken out of their carriers and put under the seat in front of you. Once the announcement is made, you can take your pet out of its carrier and put it under the seat.
The airline may ask you to move your pet to a different seat if it is blocking the aisle or another passenger's seat.
Have a safe and enjoyable flight with your pet!