Well, that didn’t take long! After Alaska Airlines announced they would ban all “emotional support animals” from free in-cabin flights, we wondered who would be the next commercial air carrier to join them. American Airlines announced yesterday that they too would limit service animals to specially trained canines. The policy goes into effect on Monday, January 11 – the same day the new Department of Transportation (DOT) guidelines go into effect.
Travelers are required to document their dog’s temperament, training and health by completing an online DOT form at least two days prior to their travel date. Exceptions will be allowed for tickets purchased last minute.
Non-service animals will be permitted to fly in the cabin so long as the carrier fits under your seat. Animals in this category are flying as pets and are subject to a $125 fee. Make sure you do your due diligence before booking, as some destinations are not currently allowing pets and American has suspended animals in the cargo hold indefinitely due to pandemic modifications.
It seems only a matter of time before the rest of the airlines take the same steps. We’ll keep you posted.