American Airlines updated its pet policy

American Airlines Updates Pet Policy: Pets Allowed in Cabin Alongside Carry-On Bags

American Airlines is relaxing its pet policy. This new policy allows pet owners to bring their pets alongside a carry-on bag into the cabin. 

In the past, pet owners bringing their pets in the cabin not only had to pay a $150 pet fee but also could only have one other small item that could fit under their seat. Anything bigger, such as a carry-on bag that comes with wheels, will have to be checked-in for $35. Another option is that their pet stays in the cargo. 

With the updated pet policy, American Airlines passengers can bring their pets into the cabin and also have a regular carry-on bag or a personal item. The old policy was considered by many pet owners as unfair since they already paid a $150 pet fee.  

In its new pet policy, pet owners still have to pay a fee, but the pet is no longer counted as a carry-on. 

The new pet policy was confirmed by an American Airlines spokesperson on Thursday. However, the spokesperson couldn’t explain the reason for such change since corporate offices were closed for Good Friday. 

Pet Policy Explained

Different factors should be considered if you’re traveling with a pet. Breed and size are some of the factors that affect how a pet travels via American Airlines. Pets can either be transported via American Airlines Cargo or inside the cabin along with their owner. Also, carry-on pets are limited to just cats and dogs that meet the size, age, and destination criteria. 

However, it is worth mentioning that service dogs can fly in the cabin, at no charge as long as they meet the necessary criteria. 

American Airlines defines a service animal as “a dog that’s individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a qualified individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability.”

Traveling with a Pet 

Traveling with a pet requires a lot of planning for pet owners. While there’s a change in American Airlines’ pet policy, there are other factors that could prevent dogs from being in the cabin. For one, there’s a maximum number of pets allowed per cabin. As for the number, it depends on the type of aircraft. 

For instance, United has a policy wherein only four pets are allowed in Economy class on the Airbus 319. However, the Airbus 319 allows up to six pets. 

Aside from American Airlines, other US airlines that allow pets on board are Delta, Southwest, Alaska, and Frontier. As for most airlines, a pet carrier counts as a carry-on. 

Picture of John Michael Jayme
John Michael Jayme
John Michael Jayme is a Travel Analyst for The Jet Set. He writes about news and events affecting the travel industry.

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