How Much Does It Cost to Fly Your Dog?

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Are you planning a trip but worried about the cost of taking your furry friend along in the flight? Navigating airline pet policies can seem like quite a task, with domestic flights for dogs ranging from $150 to $1000 based on several factors.

This article aims to unpack these costs and simplify those perplexing airline rules. Let’s discover how we can make sky-high journeys lighter on our pockets while bringing our beloved pets along!

Key Takeaways

  • The cost of flying a dog can vary based on factors like the type of flight, size and weight of the dog, and any additional costs to consider.
  • Domestic flights for dogs can range from $150 to $1,000, while international flights may be even more expensive.
  • In – cabin pet travel is generally cheaper than cargo transportation, with fees ranging from $150 to $125 on domestic flights and up to $319+ on international flights.
  • Additional costs to keep in mind include purchasing an airline-approved pet carrier ($30-$250), health certificates ($50-$200), pre-flight grooming expenses, sedation or calming aids ($10-$50), and special service fees.

Factors Affecting the Cost of Flying a Dog

The cost of flying a dog can vary depending on factors such as the type of flight, size and weight of the dog, and any additional costs to consider.

Domestic vs. International flights

Flying your dog on a plane costs more for international flights than domestic ones. For a short trip within the country, you might pay between $150 and $1,000. This price changes when you fly to another country.

The cost can be as low as $125 or over $319. Also, some airlines charge extra fees that range from $50 to $500+. These numbers tell us that it’s often cheaper to fly with your pet inside the U.S. rather than going overseas.

Cabin vs. cargo

When flying with your dog, you have the option to choose between cabin and cargo. In-cabin pet travel allows your furry friend to stay with you inside the plane’s main cabin. This can be a more comfortable and less stressful experience for both of you.

The cost of flying in-cabin with a dog can range from $150 to $125 on domestic flights, and $125 to $319+ on international flights. On the other hand, if your dog is too large to fit under the seat in front of you or if the airline doesn’t allow dogs in-cabin, they will have to be transported as cargo.

Cargo fees for larger dogs can range from $35 to $200+, depending on the airline. It’s important to note that some airlines may have restrictions or limitations when it comes to flying with pets in either cabin or cargo, so it’s always best to check their policies before booking your flight.

Size and weight of the dog

The size and weight of your dog can affect the cost of flying. Larger dogs usually need to be transported in cargo, which can be more expensive than having them in the cabin with you.

The fees for transporting a large dog in cargo can range from $35 to $200 or more, depending on the airline. Smaller dogs, on the other hand, may be allowed to travel in-cabin with you for a lower fee ranging from $150 to $125 for domestic flights and up to $319+ for international flights.

Keep in mind that each airline has its own restrictions and guidelines regarding pet sizes and weights, so it’s important to check with them before booking your flight.

Additional costs to keep in mind

There are some additional costs to keep in mind when flying your dog:

  1. Pet carrier: You will need to purchase an airline-approved pet carrier, which can range in price from $30 to $250 depending on the size and brand.
  2. Health certificates: Some airlines require a health certificate from a veterinarian stating that your dog is fit to travel. This can cost anywhere from $50 to $200.
  3. Pre-flight grooming: If your dog needs grooming before the flight, you may need to budget for this expense, which can vary depending on the size and breed of your dog.
  4. Sedation or calming aids: If your dog gets anxious during travel, you might consider using sedation or calming aids. These can range in cost from $10 to $50 depending on the product.
  5. Additional fees for special services: If you require any special services such as priority boarding or extra assistance with handling your dog, there may be additional fees involved.

Airline Pet Policies and Fees

Learn about the various pet fees, carrier requirements, and documentation needed for flying with your furry friend. Read on to understand the policies of different airlines and what you can expect in terms of costs.

Pet fees for in-cabin and cargo

The cost of flying your dog can vary greatly depending on whether your pet travels in the cabin or in the cargo hold. Below is a table summarizing some of the typical costs you might expect.

Airline In-Cabin Fee Cargo Fee
Typical Airline 1 $150 – $125 (domestic) $35 – $200+
Typical Airline 2 $125 – $319 (international) Varies
General Average $125 (one-way) Subject to airline policy

Bear in mind that these prices are estimates, and actual costs can vary based on factors like your dog’s size and weight, as well as the specific airline’s pet policy. Some airlines may also charge additional fees for pet transportation, which can range from $50 to $500 or more. Be sure to consider these expenses when planning your travel budget.

Requirements for pet carriers

To fly with your dog, you will need a suitable pet carrier that meets the airline’s requirements. Here are some important things to keep in mind when choosing a carrier:

  • The carrier should be well – ventilated to ensure your dog can breathe comfortably during the flight.
  • It should be sturdy and secure to prevent any escapes or accidents.
  • The size of the carrier should comply with the airline’s regulations. Most airlines specify dimensions for in-cabin carriers, so make sure your carrier fits within those limits.
  • Some airlines may require specific types of carriers, such as soft-sided carriers or hard-sided crates. Check with the airline beforehand to confirm their requirements.
  • The carrier should have a waterproof bottom in case of any accidents or spills.
  • Make sure the carrier has secure fastenings and locks to ensure your dog cannot escape during the flight.

Documentation and health certificates

To fly your dog, you will need certain documents and health certificates. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Proof of Vaccination: Your dog must be up-to-date on vaccinations, including rabies. Make sure you have all the necessary documentation to show this.
  • Health Certificate: Some airlines require a health certificate issued by a veterinarian within a certain timeframe before the flight. This certifies that your dog is healthy and fit to travel.
  • Microchip: It is recommended to have your dog microchipped with identification information. This can help in case your dog gets lost during the journey.
  • Identification Tags: Ensure that your dog is wearing proper identification tags with your contact details. This is important for safety and in case there are any issues during travel.
  • Additional Requirements: Depending on the airline and destination, there may be additional requirements such as specific types of crates or carriers, quarantine periods, or inspections at customs.

Cost Comparison of Different Airlines

Compare the pet fees of various airlines and explore any additional services or amenities they offer.

Cheapest airline pet fees

The cost of flying with a dog can vary depending on the chosen airline. When it comes to finding the cheapest airline pet fees, it’s important to do your research. Some airlines charge a fixed fee for dogs flying in-cabin, ranging from $50 to $250 per one-way trip.

On the other hand, larger dogs are typically transported in cargo, which can cost between $35 to $200 or more depending on the airline. It’s worth noting that these fees may not include additional charges for the pet’s ticket and other services.

So if you’re looking to save money when flying with your furry friend, comparing different airlines’ pet fees is an essential step to take.

The estimated cost of flying a dog in the plane’s cabin is around $125 one way. Additionally, some airlines may charge extra fees for pet transportation, with prices ranging from $50 to over $500 or more.

Additional services and amenities offered

Some airlines offer additional services and amenities for flying with your dog. These may include options like priority boarding, extra legroom or a dedicated pet section on the plane.

Some airlines also provide pet relief areas and water stations at the airport to make your dog more comfortable during travel. It’s important to check with the specific airline you plan to fly with to see what additional services they offer and if there are any associated fees.

Tips for Reducing the Cost of Flying Your Dog

To lower the cost of flying your dog, consider traveling during off-peak seasons, join airline loyalty programs for potential discounts, and explore alternative transportation options.

Travel during off-peak seasons

To save money when flying with your dog, consider traveling during off-peak seasons. Many airlines offer lower fares and pet fees during times when there is less demand for travel.

By choosing to fly during these quieter periods, you can potentially reduce the cost of flying your furry friend. Make sure to check with the airline about their specific off-peak season dates and any corresponding discounts or promotions they may have.

Join airline loyalty programs

You can save money on flying with your dog by joining airline loyalty programs. These programs offer perks and benefits for frequent travelers, including discounts on pet fees. By becoming a member, you may be eligible for lower pet transportation costs or even waived fees.

Loyalty programs also often provide priority boarding, which means you’ll have more time to settle your furry friend before the flight takes off. Take advantage of these rewards programs to make flying with your dog more affordable and enjoyable.

Consider alternative transportation options

If you’re looking to save money when flying with your dog, considering alternative transportation options could be a good idea. Instead of flying, you can explore other options such as driving or taking a train if the distance is manageable.

This can help eliminate the expensive fees associated with pet air travel. Additionally, driving or taking a train may also allow for more flexibility and comfort for your furry friend during the journey.

So before booking a flight, think about whether there are any feasible alternatives that could help reduce costs while ensuring the safety and well-being of your dog.


Flying your dog can be an expensive affair, with costs varying depending on factors such as the type of flight, size of your dog, and chosen airline. Domestic flights can range from $150 to $1,000, while international flights may cost even more.

In-cabin fees for domestic flights range from $150 to $125, while cargo fees for larger dogs can range from $35 to $200+. It’s important to do your research and compare prices among different airlines to find the most affordable option.


1. What does it cost to fly with my pet dog?

The cost of flying a canine companion depends on many things like the airline, if you’re going far or staying close, and how big your dog is.

2. Is there a difference in price for flying with a large dog?

Yes, the pricing for taking a large dog on flight can be more than smaller pets because they often go in cargo which costs extra money.

3. Are fees different depending on the airline I choose to fly my dog with?

Each airline has its own set of rules and prices; American Airlines might have different pet travel fees compared to Southwest Airlines or any other carrier.

4. How much will it cost me to bring my dog along during an international trip?

International flights can sometimes add more charges for bringing dogs aboard, so when planning, make sure to check these specific prices.

5. Does size of the pet affect air travel prices?

Yes! The bigger your pet is, the higher may be their flight transport expenses due to space constraints for larger animals in cabin areas.

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