An airlines guide for travelling with pets

  • An airlines guide for travelling with pets

    This article originally appeared on Karryon written by Shaun Busuttil

    Let’s face it: Aussies are in love with their pets.

    But we certainly are partial to our furry friends, and it’s a fact that many Australians will alter their travel plans just so they can take their little friends with them.So to help you understand the intricacies of pet travel, we thought we’d create a nice little airline guide on four of the most popular airlines in Australia for you to check out.But first, it’s important to understand that airlines are pretty strict when it comes to allowing you to take your pets onboard, especially when it comes to the pet’s health.

    Before you even consider travelling with them, make sure you take him or her to your local veterinarian for a check-up to ensure they’re in full health. Not only will this ensure a safe flight for your pet, but some airlines require a certificate of health before they allow any pet onboard.



    Besides authorised assistance dogs, all pets flying with Qantas must be carried as cargo in International Air Transport Association (IATA) approved containers. Don’t worry: the cargo department has the same temperature and pressure as the passenger cabin.


    Passengers intending on travelling with their furry friends domestically must book and lodge their pet through Qantas Freight before commencing their travel. Bookings can be made online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, for travel within 24 hours, you must contact Qantas Freight Customer Service on 13 12 13. Importantly, if you want to travel on the same flight as your pet, you need to confirm the pet’s booking prior to making your own reservation.

    It’s also possible for your pet to travel unaccompanied through Qantas’ Q-Go Pets programme.

    Prior to travelling with your pet, passengers are asked to visit the Quarantine Domestic website before making their booking. This website will tell you whether your pet is able to travel to your intended destination.

    Fees for travelling with your pet onboard a Qantas flight are as follows:

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    If you are flying internationally with your pet, you will need to consult the country’s specific quarantine regulations to ensure you are compliant and that your pet will be able to enter the country.

    Click here for more information on travelling with pets on Qantas.




    Unfortunately it’s not possible to fly with your pet on Jetstar flights.

    However, the airline can organise your pet to fly as cargo with Qantas Freight or Jetpets – Australia’s leading pet transportation provider.




    On Emirates flights less than 17 hours, pets (including cats, some dogs, falcons and birds) will need to fly as cargo in the hold section of the aircraft (click here to get a quote on applicable fees).

    Pets must be at least 4-months-old to be allowed to travel.

    As with all international pet travel, you must check with a country’s specific quarantine regulations before making any bookings to determine whether your pet will be allowed inside the country.


    Virgin Australia


    For Virgin Australia, all pets (not including authorised assistance dogs) must travel in the cargo hold of the aircraft. Customers must contact Virgin Australia’s Guest Contact Centre on 13 67 89 as early as possible to book a spot for their pet on their flight. Please note that check-in for your pet closes 90 minutes before your scheduled departure.

    As with Qantas, passengers are advised to consult the Quarantine Domestic website before booking any travel to ensure that their pet will be welcome at the destination.

    Fees payable to the airline are based on the size of the pet: a small pet weighing no more than 10kg is $75; a pet weighing between 11kg and 20kg is $95; a pet between 21kg and 30kg is $120; and a large pet over 31kg (max 65kg) is $150. Fees are payable per sector.

    Click here for more information on travelling with pets on Virgin Australia.

    Source: Karryon

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