Pets on Airplanes

Many Americans keep pets as companions; what happens when they go away on vacation or a very long business trip? They have the choice to either leave their companion at home or take it with them. Many pet parents choose to travel with their furry children, especially on private jets.

People who choose to travel with an animal on a private jet do not face the same problems as their commercial counterparts. All pets, no matter what size they are, travel in the cabin with their human caretakers – but we do require that they are secured or crated for everyone’s safety. We also require a $500 non-refundable security deposit for cleaning and repairing any minor damage that a pet onboard an airplane may cause; and in the unlikely event that a pet causes more extensive damage, the pet owner is responsible for paying to repair the aircraft. For various reasons some of our aircraft owners will allow pets and some do not – talk to your Client Services Representative when you are booking your trip to find out if the airplane you are interested in will allow your pets onboard.

When traveling internationally with an animal companion we must follow additional rules. The Bahamas, for instance, will allow pets to come into the country – but they do require proof of vaccinations, a recent vet visit and the owner to fill out an application to import a domestic animal. All foreign countries have different requirements – so make sure to find out what rules you have to follow before you plan to take your pet internationally. FlightWorks is happy to assist you in finding these types of details, so let us know if you will have a pet onboard when you book your trip.

Please realize that the requests made by FlightWorks’ corporate office or pilots all serve a reason. Here are a pair of real life stories from our pilots that illustrate why we ask for all animals to be secured through an entire flight:

“I have had the pleasure of traveling with an interesting variety of animals. The worst was a HUGE German Shepherd I flew on a regular basis while in Michigan, who was actually from Germany and only knew German commands. He was very well behaved but SHED like crazy. It would take 2 hours of cleaning to get that needle like hair out of the carpet after only a 30 min flight.”

“From my pilot perspective, and on the airplanes that I have the most time in, light jets and Hawkers, those big plastic kennels just don’t fit anywhere on the airplane unless it is for a really small dog or cat and you can strap it to a seat. We had this big pit bull who really wanted to hang out with us up in the cockpit and kept trying to get in our laps while we were flying. We finally had to sternly but professionally tell the passengers that they needed to restrain the dog.”

 

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