Thursday, December 3, 2009
Traveling by plane with dogs or cats
Traveling by plane with dogs or cats: Southwest Airlines Travel Policies - Animals and Pets
(Important Note: This posting at Tips2UsSaveThem is not to be construed as an advertisement or testimonial for Southwest Airlines. It is posted in order to help readers learn "what is out there" in the way of information regarding airline travel with pets.)
"P.A.W.S. - Pets Are Welcome on Southwest"
For a list of key topics please visit our Frequently Asked Questions for Pets!
[Note: One of the Questions / Answers: Does Southwest Airlines accept pet crates/strollers as checked baggage? Answer: Customers traveling with a pet will be allowed to check a pet stroller/crate without charge (this is in addition to the regular free baggage allowance).]
Official Southwest pet carriers now on sale. Get one for your furry friend today!
General information on traveling with pets:
Southwest Airlines accepts small vaccinated domestic cats and dogs.
All in-cabin pets must be carried in an appropriate carrier, as indicated below and are subject to a $75 Pet Fare each way per pet carrier.
The pet carrier counts as the Customer’s carry-on bag.
Reservations for small cats or dogs can only be booked by calling Southwest Airlines at 1-800-I-FLY-SWA (1-800-435-9792).
Pets will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis until capacity is reached.
The Pet Fare must be collected at the ticket counter and is nonrefundable and may not be applied toward future-date travel if unused.
Customers traveling with a cat or dog must check in pet at the airport ticket counter and pay the Pet Fare before going to the departure gate.
Customers can still secure their boarding pass online, at curbside check-in, the airport kiosk, or the ticket counter.
We maintain the right to refuse acceptance of a cat or dog exhibiting aggressive behavior or any other characteristics that appear incompatible with air travel.
The following guidelines apply to Customers bringing a cat or dog:
Southwest Airlines does not accept pets (cats or dogs) traveling without a Customer.
Pets are not permitted to travel with Unaccompanied Minors.
Please note: These requirements do not apply to assistance animals or emotional support animals accompanying a person with a disability.
For more information about assistance animals or emotional support animals, please visit http://www.southwest.com/travel_center/disability.html
All pet carriers are subject to being searched by the Transportation Security Administration, other airport security authorities, as well as searches by Airline personnel.
Note: When passing through security, Customers will be asked to hold the pet and walk through the screening device while the carrier is x-rayed.
In-cabin Pet Kennels:
Southwest Pet Carriers for Sale: Available for purchase at all Southwest airports, or online through our Freedom Shop: http://www.swafreedomshop.com/
Soft-sided and hard-sided carriers specifically designed as pet carriers are acceptable. The carriers must be leak-proof and well ventilated. The pet carrier must be small enough to fit under the seat in front of the Customer and be stowed in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration regulations.
Southwest Airlines allows only one pet carrier per ticketed Customer.
The carrier may contain two (2) cats or dogs and must be of the same species per carrier.
The cat or dog must be completely inside the pet carrier and be able to stand up and move around the carrier with ease.
Pets must be secured in the pet carrier at all times while in the gate area, during boarding / deplaning and they must remain in the carrier for the entire duration of the flight. Failure to follow this requirement may result in denial of transportation of the pet onboard Southwest Airlines.
The under-seat dimensions are as follows:
Window Seat: 19"L x 14"W x 8.25"H
Middle Seat: 19"L x 19"W x 8.25"H
Aisle Seat: 19"L x 14"W x 8.25"H
However, please keep in mind that some seats might be slightly smaller in width.
In-cabin Pet Restrictions:
Customers traveling with a pet may not occupy an Exit Seat or a seat with no forward under-seat stowage.
Southwest Airlines will only carry pets in the cabin; pet carriers are not permitted as checked baggage.
Advanced pet arrangements must be made by calling Southwest Airlines Customer Support and Services at 1-800-I-FLY-SWA (1-800-435-9792).
There will be no more than five (5) scheduled pet carriers per scheduled flight. However, from time to time, circumstances may allow for more (or fewer) than five (5) pet carriers per scheduled flight.
Cats and dogs must be at least eight (8) weeks old for travel.
The animals must be harmless, inoffensive, odorless, and require no attention during flight.
Cats and dogs must remain in the carrier (including head and tail) and the carrier must be stowed under the seat in front of the Customer (Owner) during the entire duration of the flight.
Southwest Airlines will not be responsible if a Customer misses a flight due to the need to take the cat or dog to an outside relief area. Flight departures will not be delayed or held in order for connecting Customers to take a pet to an animal relief area.
If the pet becomes ill during the flight, oxygen or other first aid procedures will not be administered.
In the event of an emergency, an oxygen mask may not be available for the cat or dog.
Southwest Airlines assumes no liability for the health or wellbeing of carry-on pets.
Southwest Airlines will not accept pet remains in the cabin of the aircraft.