Air Travel with Pets

Sanjit Bakshi
3 min readOct 25, 2021

Do you have to travel by plane soon? If so, are you a pet owner who needs to bring your pet? While most of us leave our pets at home, perhaps your intention or purpose of the trip is not to move, rather than to have a nice vacation. Regardless of the reasons why you want or need to travel with your pet or pets, there are a number of important points to consider.

The first step when traveling with a pet is to make sure you can. While a large number of airlines accept pets on their planes, not all will. You may find yourself in a difficult situation if you plan to depart from a small airport with only one or two airlines. If they don’t accept pets or their rules and restrictions are too onerous for you, we suggest you look at other nearby airports, especially larger ones.

If you are traveling by plane with your pet or pets, it is important to remember that there is an additional charge. Unfortunately, many travelers who travel with pets for the first time think they can use their pets and kennels as carry-on or checked baggage. That’s not how it works. You almost always pay extra for traveling with a pet. This additional cost will probably depend on the airline in question and the location of your pet, such as in the cabin or in the luggage compartment.

This leads to another important point. Even some airlines that allow pets, such as dogs and cats, on their flights, do not all allow pets in the cabin with other passengers. This is especially common on small aircraft where allergies can be a major concern. If you can’t part with your pet, make sure you find an airline that allows you to keep them in the cabin with you. That said, remember that your pet’s size will also play a big role in your options.

Regardless of where your pet is kept for air travel, you will need a carrier or crate for them. Many airlines have specific rules and restrictions on which type can be used. Resections often include the materials used and the dimensions. Most will provide you with this information when requested. Speaking of cages and pet carriers, it’s important to make sure you leave your pet plenty of room to get up and move around a bit. In fact, most airlines will refuse to carry pets they deem unsafe from small crates and carriers.

It is also important to make sure that you have your pet checked by the vet. You must ensure that your pet has all required vaccinations and is fit to travel. In addition, all airlines require you to receive a health certificate stating that your pet is safe and sound for travel.

The points mentioned above are just a few of the many that you will want to consider when traveling with a pet. Additional tips include booking direct flights, making sure your pet’s collar is marked with proper identification, as well as the carrier.



Sanjit Bakshi

Master’s in Business Administration with majors in finance from the Columbia Business School.