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  • Writer's pictureMelody Fork

The Ultimate Guide for Flying with A Pet

two dogs in a plane

Flying with a pet can be daunting for pet owners and furry companions. However, careful planning and preparation can ensure a smooth and stress-free journey for both of you.

This comprehensive guide will provide everything you need to ensure a safe and comfortable travel experience when flying with a pet.

Flying with A Pet

You can enjoy the thrill of exploring the world with your beloved pet with our ultimate guidance. However, maintaining all the necessary things before flight is also frustrating especially if you're flying with dogs.

In that case, we can take care of everything you need during your journey. We - Global Paws will ensure flying with your pet is the best possible, pleasant, and worry-free flight experience together.

Preparing for Your Flight

While flying with a pet offers the opportunity to travel together, it also comes with challenges. But before we start, find out more about pet travel and relocation on our blog

The next time you hear about a beautiful place to visit, please let us be your professional pet travel companion!

1. Choosing the Right Airline

When considering flying with a pet, several factors must be considered. Here are the critical factors you need to know:

Airline Policies

Each airline has its pet travel policies; it’s crucial to understand these before booking your flight. Here are some common aspects to check:

  • Pet Acceptance Policy: Not all airlines allow pets in the cabin or cargo hold. Check whether your airline allows pets and what types of pets are permitted.

  • Cabin, Excess Baggage vs. Cargo: Determine if your pet can travel with you in the cabin or if they must be transported in the cargo hold. Smaller pets are usually allowed in the cabin, while larger pets may need to travel in the cargo hold.

  • Breed Restrictions: Some airlines have restrictions on certain breeds, especially brachycephalic (short-nosed) breeds like bulldogs and pugs, due to their increased risk of breathing issues during flights.

  • Age Restrictions: Ensure that your pet meets the age requirements set by the airline for travel.

Our services can handle all policy checks for your furry family so that you don't have to worry about complicating your flight with a pet.


Airline fees for pet travel can vary widely, so it’s important to budget accordingly. Here are some costs to consider:

  • Booking Fee: There may be an additional fee for bringing your pet on the flight. Depending on the airline and destination, 


  • Crate or Carrier Fee: If you don’t have an IATA-compliant crate you must purchase one, which can add to your expenses.

  • Health Certification Most airlines require a health certificate from a veterinarian, which might come with an additional cost.

How annoying would it be to check them all? With Global Paws, you and your pet can book a flight together to simplify your check-in process. Learn more!

Pet-Friendly Amenities

These can include:

  • Special Handling: Some airlines offer special pet handling services, ensuring they are loaded and unloaded safely and kept in temperature-controlled environments.

  • Priority Boarding: Airlines may offer priority boarding for passengers travelling with pets, allowing you extra time to settle your pet in the cabin.

  • Pet Relief Areas: Check if the airport has designated pet relief areas where your pet can relieve themselves before or after the flight.

  • On-Board Comfort: Look for airlines that allow you to keep your pet’s carrier under the seat in front of you and provide sufficient space to move around comfortably.

Additional Considerations

  • Health and Safety: Ensure your pet is healthy enough to travel. Visit your vet for a check-up and required vaccinations. Some airlines may require a recent health certificate.

  • Comfort and Acclimatisation: Get your pet accustomed to its travel crate or carrier well before the flight. Include familiar items like a blanket to help it feel secure.

  • Flight Duration: Consider the length of the flight and any layovers. Direct flights are usually less stressful for pets.

  • Travel Documentation: Ensure you have all necessary documents, including health certificates, vaccination records, and any required permits for your destination.

  • Microchipping: If you decide to microchip your pet, have it implanted before it is vaccinated.

2. Booking Your Flight with Global Paws

illustration of plane take off

To book a pet-friendly flight as we already explain to you above, you must understand the requirements and procedures for reserving space for your pet. 

  1. Research the airlines and accommodations early.

  2. Confirm the airline's pet travel policies.

  3. Choose direct flights.

  4. Book your pet's spot as early as possible.

  5. Ensure you have all the necessary documents.

  6. Look for pet-friendly hotels or rentals and verify their specific pet policies.

  7. Call ahead to confirm your pet’s stay and any additional fees or requirements.

  8. Lastly, bring a travel crate, food, water, bedding, and any comfort items.

It is recommended that you book flights as soon as possible using an experienced pet travel service like Global Paws to reduce stress and prevent potential problems.

3. Preparing Your Pet for Travel

travel stuff

Check these tips to prepare your pet for travel!

1. Acclimate to the Carrier

Introduce the carrier weeks before the trip to help them get used to it. You can use our crate training service for the easy way.

2. Maintain Routine

Stick to regular feeding schedules but avoid feeding right before travel.

3. Pack Essentials

Bring enough food, water, a blanket, up-to-date ID collar tags, pet health certificates, and any necessary medications. 

4. Plan for Stops

Schedule breaks to stretch and relieve themselves.

5. Stay Calm

You don’t have to panic! Consult your vet about sedatives, but avoid them unless necessary.

With the following tips and guidelines, flying with a pet can be a comfortable, safe, and unforgettable experience.

For expert assistance in pet travel, consider Global Paws. With over 20 years of experience in pet travel and relocation, we ensure personalised services and a stress-free experience for you and your furry friend. Get a quote today!

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