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The Top US Airlines for Traveling with Your Dogs and Cats

Abstract

If you’re traveling with your pet, it’s important to choose an airline that is pet-friendly. Not all airlines allow pets in the cabin or cargo area, and some have restrictions on the type of pet that can be brought on board.

In this blog post, we will discuss the most pet-friendly airlines in the United States. We’ll look at how they rate in terms of allowing pets in the cabin, cargo area, and lounges; as well as the cost of bringing a pet on board and any restrictions that may apply.


The Best Airlines for Flying with Pets in the United States


Alaska Airlines

Alaska Airlines is one of the most pet-friendly airlines in the United States. Pets are allowed in the cabin and cargo area, and there are no restrictions on pet size or type. In addition, Alaska Airlines allows passengers to bring up to six pets per flight. The cost of bringing a pet on board is $100 for each leg of the trip, and there is a limit of two pets per passenger.

Apart from being able to bring your pets in the cabin, you may also place them in cargo. Alaska Airlines is open to not just dogs, cats, birds and rabbits in checked baggage or cargo, but also ferrets, guinea pigs, hamsters, non-poisonous reptiles, pot-bellied pigs and tropical fish. The fees depend on the route and pet’s size, and starts at $250.

Cabin Friendly Pet Carrier

Alaska Air cabin’s requirements 

  • Maximum of 2 pet carriers in the main cabin if the adjacent seat is your companion
  • Dogs and cats must be at least 8 weeks old and accustomed to take solid food
  • Animals with offensive odors or those that create a noise disturbance re not allowed in the cabin
  • Pet carrier must be clean and leak-proof with absorbent bedding made of material that is safe and non-toxic to the animal. It is fully enclose the animal and be escape-proof with adequate air ventilation. The pet travel bag must be free of tears, cracks, or breaks.
  • Soft-sided pet carrier should be below 40lbs and the dimension do not exceed from 17″ x 11″ x 9.5″

Reference

Allegiant Air

Like Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air allows pets in the cabin and cargo area, with no restrictions on pet size or type. Pets are also allowed in the lounge, but there is a limit of one pet carrier per passenger. The cost of bringing a pet on board is $125 for each leg of the flight.

For bringing pets into the cabin, they strongly suggest using a soft-sided pet carrier that measures no larger than 9”H x 16”W x 19L” with no more than 2 pets per carrier. They are open to transporting only dogs and cats. A pet health certificate is not required while a non-refundable fee of $50.00 per segment per carrier should be paid at the ticket counter 1 hr prior to departure. All pet are required to be harmless, oderless and non-disruptive.

Allegiant Air complete requirements

Air Canada

Pets are allowed in the cabin and cargo area on Air Canada, with a pet fee of $50 per flight. Only cats and small dogs may be taken with the passenger to the cabin, with a limit of one per passenger. There is no limit to the number or size of pets in the cargo, but certain breeds (such as pit bulls) may not be able to travel in the cargo hold.

Air Canada cabin’s requirements 

  • The pet must remain in the bag at all times.
  • You must have a plane ticket for your dog while the dog bag is deducted from the carry-on luggage allowance.
  • The human passenger must be an adult (18+) and you cannot bring more than one dog aboard the cabin.
  • You cannot be in an emergency exit row and you cannot fly in economy plus.
  • Your dog must be at least 3 months old.
  • Soft sided pet carrier size requirements: Height: 27 cm (10.5 in), Width: 40 cm (15.5 in), & Length: 55 cm (21.5 in)

American Airlines

Similar to Air Canada, American Airlines allows pets in the cabin and cargo hold with a pet fee of $125 per trip. Pets are also allowed in Admirals Clubs and lounges for an additional cost of $25 each way. The pet must be carried in a kennel that meets airline requirements.

  • The airline does not assume any liability of your pet’s health.
  • Pets must be able to stand and sit erect, turn around and lie down normally
  • Soft-sided collapsible kennels can be slightly larger but still need to fit under the seat
  • Pet carrier bag must be secured, padded, made of water-repellant material and have nylon mesh ventilation on 2 or more sides

Reference

Delta Airlines

Like American Airlines, Delta charges $125 for each pet traveling in the cabin. There is no pet fee for pets traveling in the cargo hold, and there is no limit to the number of animals that can travel. Pets are also allowed in Delta Sky Clubs and lounges with an added fee of $25 each way. Pets must be carried in kennels that meet airline requirements. The Delta Airlines recommend a soft-sided kennel with maximum dimensions of 18” x 11” x 11” since this fits most aircraft types. The other requirements are similar with American Airlines.

Reference


United Airlines

United Airlines charges $125 per pet for traveling in the cabin, and there is no pet fee for pets traveling in the cargo hold. There is a maximum of five animals per passenger, and only certain types of animals are allowed (such as cats, dogs, birds, rabbits, hamsters). Pets are not allowed into United Club or Star Alliance Gold Lounges. The recommended dimensions for soft-sided kennels are 18 inches long x 11 inches wide x 11 inches high (46 cm x 28 cm x 28 cm) and it can exceed slightly if the pet carrier is collapsible.

Reference

Hawaiian Airlines

Hawaiian Airlines charges $125 per pet for main cabin flights within North America as long as the pet travel carrier fits under the seat and it weighs less than 25 pounds with the pet inside. For pet transport to and from Hawaii, the fee is $175. Pets are not allowed in first class or business class cabins, but they can be transported in the cargo hold for an additional $50.

Hawaiian Airlines requires animals to

  • travel with an animal health certificate with no more than  (14) days period.
  • you do not have a connecting flight operated by another carrier
  • Dogs and cats may be quarantined for up to 120 days upon arrival in the State of Hawaii unless they meet all the State’s 5-Day-Or-Less program requirements, which include certain pet vaccinations, a blood test, and waiting periods.
  • Working kennel with dimension 16 inches (40 cm) long by 10 inches (25 cm) wide by 9.5 inches (24 cm) tall

Reference

When traveling with your pet on the cabin, we have two recommendations from our line the Flying Pal Foldable Pet Travel Carrier and Ultralight Pro Cat & Small Dog Airline-Approved Carrier Backpack. These two items are lightweight, soft-sided, comfortable for your pet, and can fit on the seat in front of you, which is required by airlines.

Have other questions about other Ibiyaya items that can help you with air travel? Send us your inquiry at pet@ibiyaya-usa.com!

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