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Airline Pet Travel Rules

By Expert Author: www.cheapfares.com

Cheap travel options such as cheap airplane tickets, discount hotel rooms, discount travel deals, and cheap vacation packages are valued by just about everyone, whereas the desirability of allowing pets to travel in passenger cabins is debatable depending on whether you are a pet lover or someone who suffers from pet allergies.

All major airlines allow pets of a small enough size to be brought into the cabin on domestic flights by passengers for a fee. Some allow only cats and dogs while others also allow birds and rabbits.

Pets must be transported inside carriers that can fit under the seat in front of the passenger bringing the pet aboard. The fee airlines charge for this privilege range from a low of $75 charged by AirTran Airways to $200 on a Delta Air Lines overseas flight. Amtrak prohibits pets on trains.

Congress is considering a bill that would require Amtrak to designate at least one car where pets would be allowed. The bill includes language whereby Amtrak could collect an unspecified fee for each pet.

Millions of pet lovers may be pleased with this proposed legislation but allergy sufferers who travel by train will feel otherwise. Between 15 to 30 percent of people with allergies experience allergic reactions to cats and dogs.

When cat or dog allergens are inhaled by sensitive people, severe breathing problems, such as coughing, wheezing and shortness of breath, can result in as few as 15 to 30 minutes. Intense face, neck, or upper chest rashes are also possible.

Up to 30 percent of people suffering from asthma can suffer a severe asthma attack when exposed to cats.

Airlines should limit the number of pets allowed on planes, and establish policies to enable passengers with allergies to switch seats, according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America.

Alaska Airlines limits a maximum of one pet in a first class cabin and five in the main cabin.

JetBlue reports that it is carrying an increasing number of pets on its planes but limits them to four per flight. If a passenger reports a pet allergy to an in flight crew member upon boarding that person will try to create a buffer zone and place the passenger as far away as possible from any animal on board.

United Airlines has a three pet limit per flight. Pets are required to remain in their kennel throughout the duration of the flight which United claims mitigates most concerns customers have about allergies.

Airlines forbid or restrict pets in the cabin on international flights. While US Airways allows dogs, cats, and birds on domestic flights, they are prohibited on flights to and from various Caribbean destinations, Europe, the Middle East, and South America.

Spirit Airlines follows the same policy on domestic flights but forbids birds on flights to and from Puerto Rico and St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Hawaiian Airlines will not allow pets on flights from outside the state to land in Hawaii because of animal quarantine laws.

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