MILAVIA Forum - Military Aviation Discussion Forum

Author Topic: Pet Airlines, New York.  (Read 6239 times)


  • Hero of Flight
  • ******
  • Posts: 821
  • Country: au
Pet Airlines, New York.
« on: July 15, 2009, 11:26:05 AM »

On Tuesday, the first flight for the husband-and-wife team's Pet Airways, the first-ever all-pet airline, took off from Republic Airport in Farmingdale, New York.

All commercial airlines allow a limited number of small pets to fly in the cabin. Others must travel as checked bags or in the cargo hold - a dark and sometimes dangerous place where temperatures can vary wildly.

Binder and Wiesel used their consulting backgrounds and business savvy to start Pet Airways in 2005. The last four years have been spent designing their fleet of five planes according to new four-legged requirements, dealing with FAA regulations and setting up airport schedules.

The two say they're overwhelmed with the response. Flights on Pet Airways are already booked up for the next two months.

Pet Airways will fly a pet between five major cities - New York, Washington, Chicago, Denver, and Los Angeles. The $US250 ($A314.70) one-way fare is comparable to pet fees at the largest US airlines.

For owners the big difference is service. Dogs and cats will fly in the main cabin of a Suburban Air Freight plane, retooled and lined with carriers in place of seats. Pets (about 50 on each flight) will be escorted to the plane by attendants that will check on the animals every 15 minutes during flight. The pets are also given pre-boarding walks and bathroom breaks. And at each of the five airports it serves, the company has created a "Pet Lounge" for future fliers to wait and sniff before flights.

The company will operate out of smaller, regional airports in the five launch cities, which will mean an extra trip for most owners dropping off their pets if they are flying too. Stops in cities along the way means the pets will take longer to reach a destination than their owners.

A trip from New York to Los Angeles, for example, will take about 24 hours. On that route, pets will stop in Chicago, have a bathroom break, play time, dinner, and bunk for the night before finishing the trip the next day.

The company, which will begin with one flight in each of its five cities, is looking to add more flights and cities soon. In the next three years, Binder hopes to fly to 25 locations.

Among the big US carriers that offer pet services, AirTran, Spirit, Southwest and JetBlue only allow pets to fly in the cabin. Most US airlines charge between $100 and $125, but Delta and Northwest charge $US150 ($A188.82) for cabin trips. AirTran is the cheapest among big carriers at $US69 ($A86.86).

The charge is more to fly in the cargo or check-baggage holds. Delta and Northwest are the most expensive at $US275 ($A346.17). Alaska Airlines and Midwest charge the least, at $US100 ($A125.88). Frontier prices its checked pets fees between $US100 ($A125.88) and $US200 ($A251.76) and only takes pets as checked baggage.

Offline Webmaster

  • MILAVIA Webmaster
  • Administrator
  • General of Flight
  • *******
  • Posts: 2842
  • Country: nl
Re: Pet Airlines, New York.
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2009, 12:47:00 AM »
The two say they're overwhelmed with the response. Flights on Pet Airways are already booked up for the next two months.

Amazing, I always knew the "pet market" is not to be underestimated. But dedicated Pet flights didn't pop up in my mind. There's a lot to say for it, even though it's also kinda ridiculous when you think about it. Nevertheless, well done for the couple for spotting this new opportunity in the airline industry.
  • Interests: Su-15, Su-27, Tu-22, Tornado, RNLAF
Niels Hillebrand
MILAVIA Webmaster


AVIATION TOP 100 - click to vote for MILAVIA