Air travel with pets 7 Top tips

22 Sep, 2023

Air travel with pets 7 Top tips

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Many pet owners love holidays and need to travel for work. Few take their pets with them because air travel with pets is not always appropriate or easy. However, if you choose to or need to take your pes with you then you need to prepare. Read our pro tips to navigate air travel with pets as smoothly as possible.

Jet-Set Paws: Navigating Air Travel With Pets Like A Pro

air travel with pets
Some pets travel easier than others – You need to consider air travel with pets carefully before you start

As jet-setting globetrotters, we’ve all been there—the moment when the wanderlust hits, and you’re just itching to pack your bags and take to the skies. But what if your beloved Fido or Whiskers want to join in on the adventure?

A holiday begun via air travel with pets can be a joyful experience, yet it demands meticulous preparation and execution. From choosing pet-friendly airlines to navigating through security checks and ensuring your fur baby’s comfort mid-flight, there’s a lot to consider. 

In this blog post, we break down the essential aspects of mastering the art of air travel with pets.

1. Plan Early: Don’t Wing It

When it comes to pet travel, the worst thing you can do is leave arrangements to the last minute. Unlike traveling solo, bringing a pet along requires a slew of extra measures. 

Start by researching airlines that are particularly pet-friendly and compare their pet policies. Look into the types of pet carriers allowed, restrictions on breeds and sizes, and whether pets can travel in the cabin or have to go in the cargo hold. Make sure you also check the availability of pet relief areas at your chosen airports.

Once you’ve gathered all the pertinent details, book your tickets well in advance to ensure a pet-friendly space for your four-legged friend.

2. Visit The Vet: Get The Green Light

vaccinations for pets
Make sure your vet gives your pet a thorough check and is happy with your plans for air travel with pets

Before setting off on your journey, flying with a dog or cat, consult your veterinarian for a thorough check-up to make sure your pet is fit for travel. You may need health certificates, vaccination records, or even medication for motion sickness or anxiety. 

Given that different countries have their specific entry requirements for pets, verify that you have all the necessary paperwork to avoid complications during your journey.

3. Choose The Right Pet Carrier: Comfort Is Key

A proper pet carrier is essential for ensuring your pet’s comfort and safety during air travel. Check the airline pet policies. Airlines often have specific size and weight requirements for carriers, so make sure you comply. 

Your pet should be able to stand, turn around, and lie down comfortably in the carrier. Add a familiar blanket or toy to help ease your pet’s nerves during the journey.

4. Prep For Takeoff: Essentials Checklist for airt travel with pets

As you prepare your travel checklist, include pet essentials like collapsible water bowls, a leash, poop bags, and enough food for the duration of the trip. It’s also a good idea to pack some familiar toys and treats to keep your pet engaged. 

Most airlines don’t allow pets to be taken out of their carriers during the flight, so prepare accordingly.

5. Navigate Security Like A Pro

Going through airport security can be stressful, even more so with a pet in tow. Be ready to take your pet out of the carrier as it needs to go through the X-ray machine separately. 

Hold your pet securely during this process to prevent them from getting spooked and running off. Keep your pet’s leash and collar on at all times to ensure full control.

6. Onboard Etiquette: The Do’s And Don’ts of air travel with pets

Once onboard, place your pet’s carrier under the seat in front of you, unless airline policy states otherwise. Keep the carrier closed and resist the temptation to let your pet out, as this is against airline regulations. While it might be tempting to offer a treat or two, avoid feeding your pet right before and during the flight to minimize the risk of digestive upset or accidents.

7. Upon Arrival: Sniffing Out The New Territory

The journey doesn’t end when the plane lands. Once you reach your destination, find a quiet spot where your pet can stretch, drink some water, and relieve themselves. 

Take out their favorite toy or treat as a reward for their good behavior during the trip. Before leaving the airport, double-check that you have all your pet’s essentials, such as the leash, collapsible bowls, and any leftover food or water.

Air travel with pets in conclusion

Traveling with pets doesn’t have to be a turbulent experience if you plan well. From the early planning stages and vet visits to choosing the right carrier and mastering onboard etiquette, being well-prepared can make the journey as smooth as possible for both you and your pet.

With proper preparation and a sense of adventure, jet-setting with your four-legged friend can be a rewarding experience that strengthens the bond between you and your pet. So the next time wanderlust calls, you’ll know how to navigate the skies with your furry companion like a true pro.

pet owners interviewing a pet sitter
Finding a pet sitter can help you if you choose not to go on air travel with pets

Finding an ideal petsitter

Finding an ideal petsitter for your domestic animals when planning to travel requires careful consideration and preparation. You can register with a pet sitting network like HouseSit Match and search there. You can also search in the national association of professional pet sitters for a solution.

By taking the time to find an ideal petsitter for your situation will provide you with peace of mind during your travels. Knowing that your pets are in capable hands will allow you to stay worry free on holiday.

Remember, a well-cared-for pets will thrive, and by following these steps, you can enjoy your trip while ensuring the well-being of your aquatic companions.


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Founder and Director of HouseSitMatch - I'm a hands-on Admin on the site. Please ask any questions and as soon as I can I'll happily answer and assist where I can.

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