Airline travels with your pets

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Do you plan on flying with your pet sometime in the future? The majority of pet owners leave their pets at home when they travel by air. However, if you don’t intend to do so or maybe you have a different reason on why you wish to fly with your pet(s). There are a few things you need to be aware of. Especially on your first airline travel with your pet.

Ensure the airline you want to fly with allows pets on board. The majority of airlines do, but some still do not offer such facility. Destinations with smaller airports are trickier, as some might have only one or two carriers, who have strict rules on pet travel. Such terminals limit your choice. It is best to seek out larger ones nearby, where your chance is higher to finding a friendlier carrier.

There is always an additional fee involved when travelling with pets. Pets do not count as carry-on luggage or checked luggage. The extra money you pay depends on the airline, travel destination, distance and location of your pet on board (luggage compartment or air cabin).

Even some airlines which allow pets on board restrict them to the baggage compartment. This is especially true for smaller airliners concerned with the proximity of pets and passengers within a small cabin and chances of an allergic reaction. So if you are worried about parting with your pet for the duration of your flight, be sure to confirm that pets are allowed in the flight cabin. Although the biggest factor on your pet being let in the cabin is its size.

You also need a pet carrier, regardless of the location of your pet on the flight. The majority of airliners have guidance on the specifications of a pet carrier. This they would readily provide you if you ask. They are strict about this rule, so ensure your carrier is appropriate for your pet, or you would be refused travel.

Your pet must be vaccinated and checked fit for travel by an authorised vet. All air carriers would also require your pet’s health certificate, stating its health condition and fitness.

Where you can, book a direct flight to your destination, make sure your pet’s collar is properly marked along with its carrier.

This list is by no means complete, but it is a good starting point to making air travel with your pet less stressful. Seek further information from your intended airline, as policies, may differ slightly.



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