New Delhi — Is your SM timeline filled with cutesy photos of pets accompanying hoomans? For doggos and pets taking vacay in style is a legit thing now. And at a time when most people love to travel with pets, it’s important to have a safe space for your furry companions as well. Right?
And having an airline that supports all your needs is of prime importance, too. Air India is the only airline in the country which accepts a wide variety of pets on board, both as carry-on and checked baggage.
“In today’s world, passengers are very keen to travel with their pets, especially when they are going on a long vacation or tour,” says Sameek Bhattacharya, DGM, Corporate Communications, Air India, adding, “Also, people almost always take their pets along with them when they are relocating. It is extremely important to provide maximum safety and comfort to the pets during the flight, whether they are travelling in the cabin or in the cargo hold. Pets are carried in our cargo hold and also in the cabin with passengers as per our Carriage of Pets policy available for reference on our website.”
For safety travel, cats, dogs, household birds and other pets can travel need to be properly crated, and all the necessary documentation need to be in order by their owners.
So, if you’re planning to take your adorb pet in your next vacay, your pet must be properly carried in soft ventilated bags/kennel in the prescribed size (kennel size not to exceed 18″ x 18″ x 12″).The weight of the pet including the container should not exceed five kgs for carriage in the cabin. Pets of larger size/weight will be carried in the cargo hold. The maximum of two pets are permitted per flight in the cabin and passenger accompanying such pets will be seated in the last row of booked cabin class.
“Air India follows the IATA guidelines for carriage of pets as cargo. The pet dog must be properly muzzled and leashed. Pets/guide Dogs will not be allowed to occupy a passenger seat. Pets can be carried as an accompanied baggage or shipped as Cargo. Bookings can be made for pets as Accompanied Baggage/Excess Baggage through Air India Reservations. Pets will be carried at an additional charge and will not be included in the Free Baggage Allowance, even if the passenger has no other baggage. However, a Trained Guide Dog or a service dog when properly muzzled and leashed and with health /vaccination certificate, may be carried free of charge if the dog is trained to lead the passenger with impaired vision/hearing and the passenger is dependent on such dogs. Only one service dog per flight is permitted,” says a spokesperson from the airlines.
Did you know the airways carried over 4000 pets on our domestic flights since May 25, 2020, when domestic flights resumed in India after the lockdown? From Mumbai alone, they have been carrying on an average four-five pets per day now. The numbers are pretty much the same in Delhi.
With these many success travels, there must be interesting anecdotes of pet parents, too? A source, shares: “An Ad professional Mayank moved between Delhi and Bengaluru twice. He owns two cats Zozo (male) and Zara (female). Both times the cats accompanied him. And, then there are passengers who would book two seats to travel with their pet along with them in the cabin. There would be so many anecdotes considering the long period of time Air India has been carrying pets. One hears about the scion of a royal family insisting on carrying his leopard cub with him inside the cabin, back in the day, and how finally he was dissuaded to do so.”