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American Airlines Lets Dogs Fly Cuddle Class In Luxe Pet Cabins
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For dogs who just don’t do “coach,” American Airlines offers a more sophisticated way to fly… first class pet cabins.
Have you ever travelled with your pet? I’m not talking about schlepping Rover up to the cottage in the back of the minivan; I’m talking about serious air travel to a foreign country.
For those who have, you know that watching your little guy’s travel crate disappear from sight is like watching your four year old head into school for the first time; you’re sure everything will be alright, but that doesn’t make for less angst (or the proverbial breath-holding) till you reconnect.
Related: Safety Tips: Flying With A Dog
While most airlines will allow smaller, well-behaved pets to sit with their owners as “carry on” (don’t you just hate referring to our fur-kids as a piece of luggage?) this can quickly be a non-starter for those whose pets make strange with new faces, get motion sickness, or become stressed in unfamiliar surroundings.
Well, one airline gets it and has introduced the first of its kind pet cabin called “Cuddle Class”. Okay, work needed here, but it’s the thought that counts, right? Although the privilege of packing poochie closer to your own seat is only offered to first class passengers and on select flights (so far), it’s definitely a move in the right direction and acknowledges the concerns of those travelling with their pets – whether they be dogs or cats.
How does it work? The pet cabin is two berths at the front of the bulkhead that has a space with a vented door to hold your pet’s kennel or carrying case during take-off and landing. Your seat would be adjacent to this space.
You book your pet cabin at the same time you book your flight, and compared to the average cost of a round-trip longer haul flight in First Class (think $8,000 and up), the $125 carry-on fee for this service is a walk in the dog park! Because of limited availability and with a first-come-first-served philosophy, you need to think fast and book your pet’s seat at the same time you book your own.
Your little feline or canine will require veterinary documentation, a 9” x 13” soft- or hard-sided waterproof carrier, and sufficient food to last a 24 hour period. Other airline requirements surrounding check-in times (no more than 4 hours before your flight) still apply, so should be reviewed prior to heading to the airport.