Having your furry family member as a travel companion in the skies is no longer a far-fetched flight of fancy.
That’s because our four-legged friends are now able to join their pet parents on planes with a wide range of airlines.
So whether you’re planning on emigrating, holidaying, traveling or adventuring, it’s now possible for your high-flying fur babies to accompany you.
Some airlines allow pets to travel in-cabin though others will only open up the cargo hold for their special guests.


The complete list of pet-friendly airlines in 2022

There are plenty of pet-friendly airlines out there now, meaning it’ll be ‘plane-ing’ cats and dogs, rather than ‘raining’. Here’s the lowdown on some of the airlines that are prepared to take your pets on trans-Atlantic journeys, in no particular order.

1. American Airlines

One of the biggest and most pet-friendly airlines in the world. Pets and pet parents are invited to fly together as long as passengers’ furry travel companions are kept in a small carrier under the seat in front for the duration of the flight. For long-haul flights, pets must be checked in as cargo to ensure they’re safe and sound. Prices are usually around $125, though they vary, with fees confirmed at the time of booking.

2. United Airlines

Cats and dogs are allowed to fly in the cabin within their travel bag, which will be stowed in the under-seat space in front. Pets must be able to stand up and move freely within their confines. Pets, other than military dogs, are not permitted to fly in the hold as checked baggage. An option for larger pets to travel in the hold as cargo with PetSafe had existed, until the service was suspended indefinitely in April 2021. It would cost around $125 one way to pay for your pet as additional carry-on baggage.

3. Delta Airlines

Delta allows small dogs, cats and household birds to travel in their cabins for a one-way fee, which can range from $75 to $200 depending on the destination. Pets must be able to fit in a ventilated carrier with recommended maximum dimensions of 18″ x 11″ x 11″. Four-legged flight partners must be at least 10 weeks old for domestic travel, 16 weeks old if traveling to the U.S. from another country and must be at least 15 weeks old when traveling to the European Union.

4. Alaska Airlines

Dogs, cats, rabbits and household birds are allowed in the passenger cabin. The airline also accepts most small, domesticated pets in the baggage and cargo compartments as well. They include cats, dogs, ferrets, guinea pigs, hamsters, household birds, non-poisonous reptiles, pot-bellied pigs, rabbits, and tropical fish. Pet fees are $100 each way, or $105 for flights departing from Canada.

5. Hawaiian Airlines

Only cats and dogs, which can’t weigh more than 25lbs while in their travel carrier, are permitted in the passenger cabin for inter-island flights ($35) and flights between the State of Hawaii and North America ($125). Cats, dogs and birds are also welcome to fly as checked baggage in the hold, though the combined weight of the pet and kennel can not exceed 70lbs. Travel fees are $60 for inter-island flights within the State of Hawaii and $225 for travel between Hawaii and North America. Pets can also travel as cargo if considered too large to fly in the cabin.

6. Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines allows small vaccinated domestic cats and dogs to travel with passengers in-cabin, though pets are not allowed to travel in-cabin on international flights. The combined weight of your pet inside the carrier must not exceed 20 pounds while any pets traveling with the airline are subject to a $95 Pet Fare each way per pet carrier.

7. Breeze Airways

This new US-based airline might boast low costs, but it’s high on the list of pet-friendly airlines. Breeze, the brainchild of the founder of JetBlue, charges $75 per one way flight per pet carrier, of which the weight, inclusive of the pet, must not exceed 25lbs. Reptiles, birds and fish are not allowed to travel with Breeze Airways.

8. Sun Country Airlines

Small dogs and cats, which can fit comfortably in an approved carrier that fits under the seat, may travel in the passenger section of the plane on flights within the 48 contiguous United States. The airline charges a fee of $75 per flight segment providing the reservation was made in advance, though this price increases to $100 for walk-up requests if there is still room on the aircraft.

9. Spirit Airlines

In the ‘spirit’ of all things pet and plane-related, this airline’s opening pitch makes it clear that they want passengers to be able to travel with their favorite furry friends. Small domestic pets, including dogs, cats, household birds and domestic rabbits, are permitted to fly on all domestic flights. Spirit Airlines does not accept animals on international flights, except in the case of service animals, and they do not transport pets in cargo at any time. The combined weight of the pet and carrier may not exceed 40 pounds.

10. JetBlue Airlines

Passengers won’t be given a “ruff” ride when it comes to traveling with their pets on this particular airline. Small dogs and cats may travel in the cabin in an FAA-approved pet carrier – with a combined weight that must not exceed 20 pounds – that fits comfortably under the seat in front of you. The pet fee is $125 each way and can be added in the ‘Extras’ section during booking.


Can I take my puppy with me on an airline?

Though restrictions and guidelines vary from airline to airline, booking your precious puppy on to a flight as your travel companion is like a walk in the park. Age and weight requirements are not universal and are instead specific to each individual airline, so we would advise those wishing to travel alongside their prized pets to check the information well in advance. Companies such as American Airlines and United Airlines, for example, allow our fearless fur babies to fly in the cabin from eight weeks old, while airlines such as JetBlue and Spirit make it a requirement for your ‘plus one’ to be at least 12 weeks old.

Can I take a large dog with me on an airline? Are there any exceptions on size or breed?

Unfortunately, there are exceptions on both counts. While most airlines would love nothing more than to let your dogs off the leash and allow them to spread their wings – size and breed restrictions are a necessity. As it is a requirement for pets to travel in a carrier – that must meet the specifications of each individual airline, usually outlined in their pet travel policy – large dogs are unable to fly in-cabin.

Weight restrictions for pets and carriers combined for in-cabin travel tend to be around 20 to 25 pounds, though airlines such as Spirit allow up to 40 pounds. Pets must be able to move freely within those confines, which will generally be stowed underneath the seat in front. However, if your four-legged friend has shot up in size and is too large to fly in the cabin as a result, there is an option for them to travel as cargo with various airlines. Pet Cargo company, American PetEmbark, makes it accessible for large dogs to travel with American Airlines while Hawaiian Air Cargo is linked to Hawaiian Airlines.

Costs for these services vary while weight restrictions, for pets and kennel combined, tend to be around the 70-pound mark. Finally, many airlines won’t accept brachycephalic breeds of cats and dogs to fly as checked baggage.

These include: Burmese, Persian, Himalayan, Exotic Shorthair, Affenpinscher, American Staffordshire Terrier, Boston Terrier, Boxer (all breeds), Brussels Griffon, Bulldog (all breeds), Cane Corso, Chow Chow, Dogue De Bordeaux, English Toy Spaniel, Japanese Chin, Lhasa Apso, Mastiff (all breeds), Pekingese, Pit Bull, Presa Canario, Pug (all breeds), Shar Pei, Shih Tzu, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Tibetan Spaniel.

Always read over your airline’s full term and conditions

With the list of pet-friendly airlines growing exponentially – and more and more of the recognized names jumping on board – leading companies would be barking mad to show any signs of reluctance in moving with the times. While many are doing their bit to ensure that each and every passenger, whether a pet or pet parent, is bright-eyed and bushy-tailed when welcomed on board, every airline will promote their own individual terms and conditions. It is important to check which animals are permitted to travel on your chosen airline, whether the company imposes any restrictions on certain breeds of cats and dogs, any age implications that may prevent your pet from traveling, or specific weight and size restrictions.

The above will likely have ramifications on the travel options available to your special guests, whether they’re able to join you in-cabin, or whether it will be necessary for them to travel in the hold as checked-baggage or as cargo, if applicable. Certain routes, destinations or flight zones might also make some journeys even more restrictive so we would strongly advise any travelers to check out the finer details with their airline ahead of booking.

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