More and more pet owners are choosing to travel with their pets and while only 6% are doing so by plane, the numbers are one the rise. And airlines are stepping up their game offering everything from frequent flyer programs for your furry friend to a recently introduced “pet-only” airline.
Here are some of the highlights:
Frequent Flyer Programs
Pets flying on Continental Airlines – and whose parents are members of their PetPass program – can earn its owner one mile for every dollar spent.
Jet Blue pet passengers earn two points for very flight taken that are added to their owner’s TrueBlue frequent flyer account.
“Guaranteed on Board”
American, Southwest, AirTran, Continental, Delta and Northwest now participate in a program introduced by Sherpa Pet Group called “Guaranteed on Board” outlining all the steps a pet owner must take prior to travel to ensure their pet and its carrier are compliant with the airline rules and regulations. If for whatever reason the pet is denied boarding due to its carrier, Sherpa Pet Group will refund the cost of the owner’s airline ticket and your pet’s travel fee – GUARANTEED!
A “pet-only” airline launched in July 2009, Pet Airways fly its “pawsengers” in secure carriers in passenger cabins whose seat and overhead bins have been removed. Pets are attended by a veterinary technician, checking all cats and dogs on board every 15 minutes.
American Airlines Ranked #1
After a careful analysis of all airlines, Bark Buckle Up – an organization promoting pet safety during travel – selected American Airlines as the winner of their 2009 “Pet Safe Choice Award”. Evaluation factors included how many flights arrived safely, safety rules, and the awareness and reactions of employees regarding their precious cargo.
While many airlines are introducing more programs that will enhance your pet’s travel experience, it’s important to always check with your veterinarian prior to traveling with your pet. When it comes to our furry friends, remember, it’s always SAFETY FIRST!