20 November 2008

Delta charges more to fly pet than owner

Hello All BlkAv8tor2003 Checking In!!!

As I cruise the net looking for stories to help todays traveler I found this one about traveling with Fido or Morris the Cat. The first part is an account from the original author of the post but after that I went in and posted info from Delta's website regarding traveling with your pets. Most airlines are pretty even on this data but as always "Be Proactive, Not Reactive" and check your airline early so there are no suprises.
Now just a few things you should know that the airline may not tell you when traveling with a pet.

  • Check-in early-The earlier you check-in the better your chances will be that fixable problems can be resolved pretty easy and quickly.

  • Lap or purse dogs-The little dogs are sometimes cute but they are still dogs and not everyone can tollerate an animal due to allergies. Don't be offended and plan your trip with some flexibility in case you can fly because someone has an allergies. The agent or flight crew (pilots or flight attendants) can and may ask you to check your small dog at least but if you don't want to do that then you may need to think of flying another flight. If that is the situation that you run into (after boarding) you may not have to pay for checking the animal but I wouldn't go into it thinking that you may get over and not have to pay anything. If it's before boarding it would be safe in thinking the agents going to charge you so be prepared for it and plan at least $100.00 as a general price.

  • Temperature-Your animal is not sitting out on the ramp for hours baking in the hot sun in Phoenix or the humidity of florida or Georgia! Airline employees are people too and they wouldn't want to see a dog suffering...many times the employees water the animals, walk them around a bit and even just pet and talk to the animals. When preparing for departure the animals are the very last thing to be loaded and the cargo holds are very cold and is a pressure controlled enviroment.

  • Kennels-Choose your kennel wisely. Remember (in case you didn't know), your dog must be able to stand up and turn around in one complete circle inside the kennel without difficulty. Blankets inside are ok and maybe a chew toy or something to keep your pet occupied couldn't hurt.

  • Common Sense-If you have any questions about what pets can handle in this kind of enviroment check with your airline or vet...NOT your friends and other family members because they will fail to tell you important details! Do your own research and ask questions because the only stupid questions are the ones you don't ask!

  • Medicine-Please check with your vet on medications, tranquilizers and flying with a known sick animal. Many people will sedate their pet for the trip but I'm not a pet owner that takes my pet with me so check with a professional.
So choosing to fly with your pet is something that can be done with proper planning but if your not going to be understanding of what the animal will require to travel then you need to leave the animal at home and not be selfish. So have a good trip and think ahead!

By George Gombossy

November 19, 2008 9:58 AM
(From Original Author)
David Botelho, a real estate agent from Rhode Island, emailed me today sayng he is paying $275 to fly the family's 19 pound dog to Florida while his flight is $203.
Not that long ago, he says, it was $50 to fly a pet in the cargo area.
I have never put a pet in cargo, but last year we only paid $50 to $80 (depending on the airline) to have our 10-pound dog with us on board.
When the price of oil went over $100 a barrel, American and Delta jacked up their prices pet travel. Now that its come down 75 percent from the top, their prices have not come down.
Airlines must think we have no alternatives. Well, they are wrong. We and a lot of other people with pets are driving to our vacation spots instead of flying.

From Delta Airlines website:

Weather Restrictions
Summer Restrictions—May 15 through September 15
Pets cannot be checked as baggage on Delta and Aeromexico operated flights.
Pets may be shipped as cargo. See below for year-round temperature restrictions including live birds and snub-nosed breeds.
Prices for shipping pets as cargo are different from shipping pets as baggage. And, cargo locations may not be located in the airport terminal, so be sure to contact 1-888-SENDPET (736-3738) for details.
Year-round Restrictions
Delta will not accept animals as checked baggage but may ship as cargo during extreme weather if at any point during the animal's trip the temperature is forecast to be:
20 degrees Fahrenheit
For temperatures below 45 degrees Fahrenheit an acclimation certificate signed by a veterinarian is required.
85 degrees Fahrenheit for all other breeds.
For temperatures above 85 degrees Fahrenheit an acclimation certificate signed by a veterinarian may be required.

Additional Restrictions for Pug or Snub-nosed Dogs and Cats
Pug or snub-nosed dogs and cats are not hot-weather animals and therefore do not thrive in warm temperatures. As a precaution, Delta will not accept them as checked baggage or as air cargo if the temperature on any part of their trip exceeds 70 degrees F.


American Bull Dog
American Staffordshire Terrier
American Pit Bull Terrier
Boston Terrier
Brussels Griffin
Chinese Pug
Chow Chow
Dutch Pug
English Bulldog
English Toy Spaniel
French Bulldog
Lhasa Apso
Japanese Boxer
Japanese Pug
Japanese Spaniel (Chin)
Mastiff (all breeds)
Pit Bull
Shar Pei
Shih Tzu
Staffordshire Bull Terrier
Tibetan Spaniel


Health Requirements

Health Certificate
A health certificate is required when shipping your pet as air cargo. While Delta does not require a health certificate for carried-on or checked pets, upon arrival, the certificate may be required by the state. For clarification, please call your veterinarian or see the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Veterinary Services.
The certificate must be issued by a licensed veterinarian within 10 days of transport. The certificate must contain:
The shipper's name and address.
Any tag numbers or tattoos assigned to the animal.
The age of the animal being shipped (USDA regulations require animals be at least 8 weeks old and fully weaned before traveling).
A statement that the animal is in good health.
A list of administered inoculations, when applicable.
The signature of the veterinarian.
The date of the certificate.
If the shipper knows that the pet is pregnant, it must be noted on the health certificate.

Acclimation Certificate

If your pet is traveling during winter months and is accustomed to low temperatures, you may be able to facilitate the journey by obtaining two copies of an acclimation certificate from your veterinarian. USDA regulations require that this certificate be issued no more than ten days before departure. The acclimation certificate must contain:
*Shipper's name and address
*Any tag numbers or tattoos assigned to the animal
*A statement that the animal is acclimated to temperatures lower than 45 degrees F
*Lowest temperature to which the animal may be exposed to, but not lower than 20 degrees F
*Signature of the veterinarian
*Date of the certificate

Live Animal Checklist/Confirmation of Feeding

When you check in your pet, you will be asked to complete a live animal checklist. When you sign this checklist, you are confirming that your pet has been offered food and water within four hours of check-in. On the checklist you must also give feeding and watering instructions for a 24-hour period. If in-transit feeding is necessary, you must provide food.


The use of pet tranquilizers at high altitudes is unpredictable. If you plan to sedate your pet, you must have written consent from the pet's veterinarian. This information must be attached to the kennel. Please keep in mind that Delta agents cannot administer medication of any kind.

Kennel Requirements

To transport your pet as checked baggage or cargo, you must use a shipping kennel approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The kennel must have enough room for your pet to stand and sit erect without the head touching the top of the container and turn around and lie in a natural position. These kennels are available at most Delta Cargo locations, as well as many pet supply stores. You should check with the local cargo facility for availability of the size kennel you need in advance of the date of travel. Kennels are for sale for booked Delta passengers and shippers only, not the general public.
Due to seasonal weather conditions, we do not accept pets as checked baggage from May 15 through September 15. You can, however, ship your pet as cargo with our Pet First® program.
All kennels must be capable of loading upright in the aircraft bin as required by the Animal Welfare Act and the International Air Transport Association Live Animal Regulations.
Also, USDA rules state that the kennel must:
Be constructed out of rigid plastic, wood, metal, or material of comparable strength with solid roofs. No cardboard kennels.
Have wheels that can be removed or made inoperable [applies to wheeled kennels only]
Have functional handles on the kennel's exterior to prevent tilting and any direct contact with the animals.
Close securely, but not lock, allowing personnel to open it in case of emergency.
Have labels with the words "Live Animal" in letters at least 1-inch tall on the crate's top and on at least one side.
Have upright arrow labels indicating kennel's correct Delta Air Logistics can provide these labels.
Contain some type of bedding, either shredded paper or towels, to absorb any "accidents."
Contain two dishes (one for food and one for water) attached to the inside of the kennel door. They must be easily accessible to Delta agents without opening the kennel door.
Display feeding instructions and food, if applicable. These instructions should be affixed to the top of the kennel, along with shipper and consignee information.
Not be made entirely of welded mesh, wire mesh, wicker, cardboard or collapsible materials.
The following is a list of kennel sizes, costs, and the types of aircraft in which each kennel can fit. The kennel costs below do not include tax and are subject to change.

Kennel Type Outside Size (inches) Kennel Weight Cost of Kennel Type of Aircraft

SML/100 series 21 x 15 x 16 6lb. $45.00 Any Delta aircraft*
MED/200 series 27 x 20 x 19 12 lb. $65.00 Any Delta aircraft*

MED/300 series 32 x 22 x 23 18lb. $75.00 Any Delta aircraft*

LRG/400 series 36 x 24 x 26 24lb. $80.00 Any Delta aircraft*

XLG/500 series 40 x 27 x 30 31lb. $95.00 Any Delta aircraft*
(except MD-80)

GIANT/700 series 48 x 32 x 35 51lb. Any Delta aircraft*(Accepted as cargo only) (MD-80, MD-88, MD-90, MD-11, or B-737)

Reptile, Amphibian, and Fish Containers
Reptiles, amphibians, and fish are only accepted as air cargo, not as carry-on or checked baggage. Shipments must comply with the container requirements of the current edition of the IATA Live Animal Regulations.
Reptiles, other than snakes, need to be placed in a container constructed of wood, plastic or corrugated material. For flight purposes, animals in this category include:

Kennel Labeling

All animal kennels must display:
Live Animal Checklist (includes feeding and watering instructions)
Live Animal label
Directional arrows
In addition to the above displays, wild animal kennels require a Wild Animal label.
Delta provides these display items when your kennel is accepted for transport.

*Rates apply to Delta aircraft only. For travel on a Delta Connection Carrier, please contact

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