The Details on Rules and Fees by Airline for Traveling with Pets

Take Fido with you on your next vacation, but first check out the rules and fees on traveling with pets on all of your favorite airlines.

Author Image

Hopper Editors - Thu Oct 26 2017

Traveling with a pet on any mode of transportation is always dicey, but perhaps the most harrowing experience is trying to get Snuffles on an airplane – and that’s just getting through all the bureaucracy. For one thing, if you’ve got anything larger than a toy poodle, then you can pretty much cross off most airlines from the list. Only small dogs and cats are accepted on most flights, and reservation must be booked well in advance. A pet fee is de rigueur, and in many cases, so are health documents. But as no two airlines are the same, no two pet programs are either – they’re all just mostly the same. For the details on traveling with pets on certain airlines, check this list below.

Use the Hopper Airline Fees Calculator to quickly see the real cost of your airline ticket, including checked and cabin pet fees

Photo by mikecogh/Flickr.

AirTran Airways only allows cabin pets, but no more than 6 total per flight

AirTran Airways has a pet capacity of 6 animals per flight, so those who wish to fly with their small, domesticated dog or cat should reserve as early as possible, especially because the airline does not allow for an animal to be checked. The carrier must be no larger than 8.5" high x 18.5" long x 13.5" wide – the Pet Fare is always changing, so it’s recommended to call ahead.

Find more information at

Alaska Airlines accepts checked and cabin pets for $100 each way

For a fee of $100 each way, guests traveling with Alaska Airlines are permitted to bring domesticated dogs, cats, rabbits and household birds in the cabin. Two pets of similar size and same species are allowed in each carrier, as long as they are both comfortable, and no body parts protrude from the carrier. Alaska Airlines, for the same fee, also allows most small domesticated pets under 20 pounds (cats, dogs, ferrets, guinea pigs, hamsters, household birds, pot bellied pigs and others) to be stowed away in cargo, with some regulations and breed restrictions.

Find more information at

American Airlines asks for $175 per checked pet and $125 per cabin pet, and all pets need valid health certifications

There are a few little details to keep in mind for visitors planning on taking their pet on a flight with American Airlines. Owners traveling with pets need to present a valid health certification when checking their pet into baggage,and will also need to be prepared to answer a few simple questions at check-in. The fee for checking in a pet is $175 USD per kennel within the Americas, and a cabin pet is $125. Animals must also be able to stand up, turn around, and lie down in a natural position in a kennel that fit the dimensions of 19" long x 13" wide x 9" high.

Find more information at

Delta charges $125 each way for a cabin pet and $200 each way for a checked pet

Delta’s one-way fee are pretty simple: to keep your pet on your lap to any destination in the US, Canada, Virgin Islands or Puerto Rico, it’s a $125 one-way fee, and for anywhere outside the US, it costs $200. Interestingly, the carry on fee to Brazil is only $75. The fee for checking your pet is $200 one way across all flights.

Find more information at

Frontier lets travelers sub their carry-on bag for a pet for $75, but it must be reserved one week in advance

At Frontier Airlines, only domesticated dogs and cats can be carried in the cabin, counting as a personal carry-on item. The fee for such a service is $75 each way and the spot must be reserved in advance over the phone. As well, owners should have health documents when traveling with their pets. Frontier does not accept checked pets.

Find more information at

Hawaiian Airlines accepts checked and cabin pets for varying fees

Hawaiian Airlines permits pets to travel on their aircrafts in both the passenger cabin and as check-in. Within the State of Hawaii, the fee for bringing a pet aboard the cabin is $35 each way, and beyond that, the fee is $175 each way; while the fee to check a pet in cargo is $60 within Hawaii and $225 for points beyond. To check in a pet, the weight of the carrier and pet must not exceed 70 pounds, with specific dimensions, and the cabin allows for a pet that can fit under the seat.

Find more information at

JetBlue allows cabin pets under 20 pounds for a $100 fee (each way), but only 4 pets are allowed per plane

To travel with a domesticated cat or dog on JetBlue on their JetPaws program, owners must register their pet in advance over the Internet or on the phone before the flight to stake a place in line – only four pets are allowed on each flight. From there, it’s a $100 pet fee each way, and owners must show proper pet vaccination and documentation for each destination for international flights. The combined weight of each pet and carrier may not exceed 20 pounds, and there is no option to check a pet in cargo.

Find more information at,Kb=askBlue,case=obj(2032)

Spirit charges $100 each way for cabin pets and allows birds as well as dogs and cats

Passengers traveling with household birds have a home with Spirit Airlines – unless they’re headed to Puerto Rico or St. Thomas, USVI. Also, unlike most other airlines, Spirit allows two pets in one container as long as they are both comfortable, but only one container per customer. Though the airline does not require a health certificate for the pets, the pet must be at least eight weeks old and fully weaned, as well as relatively healthy and inoffensive. The pet fee is $100 per way, and there is no option to transport pets in cargo.

Find more information at

United charges $125 each way for cabin pets and is more flexible than most other airlines on the types of pets it carries

United allows domesticated cats, small dogs, rabbits and birds on their domestic flights, while certain larger or unattended animals – check the pet restrictions of international travel and animal breeds before leaving – can be checked in cargo, on a rate scale that depends on the size of the animal. To carry on a pet in the cabin, passengers must pay a $125 service charge each way, which is subject to even higher fees for stopovers and international travel.

Find more information at

US Airways charges an additional $125 each way for cabin pets

Domesticated dogs, cats and birds are allowed in the passenger cabin for a $125 fee each way, with the exception of flights to and from Europe, South America, the Middle East, Antigua, areas of Barbados and Jamaica and St. Lucia. While they leave no option to check a pet into cargo, US Airlines do permit six animals per flight – however, if a passenger is traveling with a second pet, they must pay for an extra seat.

Find more information at

Virgin America willingly accepts cabin pets under 20 pounds for a $125 fee, each way

Passengers on Virgin America can bring one pet on board the cabin, as long as the total weight of the animal and the carrier does not exceed 20 pounds. A reservation must be ensured and paid for in advance over the phone, and the fee is $125 per way. As always, pet carriers count towards a passenger’s carry-on baggage allowance, and all destination government requirements should be known beforehand. Virgin America do not allow for a pet to be checked into cargo.

Find more information at

The Hopper Airline Fees Calculator can quickly estimate how much travelers will have to pay in added fees