Carry on, check or transport your pets
Depending on the animals' breed, size and requirements, they can travel as a carry-on, be checked or transported with American Airlines Cargo. With the exception of a few breed restrictions, you can only travel with cats and dogs.
Please contact Reservations in advance so we can notify you of any requirements or travel changes that may affect you and your pet.*
- Service animals
- Transport your pet with cargo Opens another site in a new window that may not meet accessibility guidelines
*Checked pets cannot travel to / through / from Phoenix (PHX), Tucson (TUS), Las Vegas (LAS) or Palm Springs (PSP) May 1 – September 30.
We don’t accept brachycephalic or snub-nosed dogs of any 'mix' as checked pets, such as:
- American Staffordshire Terrier
- Boston Terrier
- Boxer (all breeds)
- Brussels Griffon
- Bulldog (all breeds)
- Cane Corso
- Chow Chow
- Dogue De Bordeaux
- English Toy Spaniel
- Japanese Chin
- Lhasa Apso
- Mastiff (all breeds)
- Pit Bull
- Presa Canario
- Pug (all breeds)
- Shar Pei
- Shih Tzu
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier
- Tibetan Spaniel
Dogs must be at least 8 weeks old when traveling within the U.S. and Puerto Rico. If you're traveling into the U.S., your dog's age and vaccine requirements depend on your origin country's rabies risk. Dogs arriving from high-risk countries need to be at least 16 weeks old and have their rabies shots before traveling into the U.S.
To check if your origin is a high-risk country, please visit the U.S. Center for Disease Control.
We don’t accept brachycephalic cats of any 'mix' as checked pets, such as:
- Exotic Shorthair
Cats must be at least 8 weeks old when traveling within the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
Which destinations allow travel with pets?
You can travel with a pet on most flights up to 11 hours and 30 minutes or flights to / from:*
- Within the 48 contiguous United States
- The U.S. and Canada**
- Central America**
- Puerto Rico
- St. Croix
- St. Thomas
The Australian Department of Agriculture and Water Resources does not accept applications to import assistance or service animals of any species other than dogs.
An assistance or service dog which is accredited by an Australian State or Territory Government will also qualify. In most cases these animals are returning to Australia.
Note: You’ll be responsible for fulfilling all entry requirements and must notify the department of the dog’s intended arrival at least three (3) working days prior to export.
You cannot travel with a carry-on pet when traveling to Jamaica.
American Eagle does not accept pets as checked baggage for Priority Parcel Service between San Juan (SJU) and St. Kitts (SKB).
When traveling with a pet to Trinidad and Tobago (POS), you cannot arrive on a flight before 8 a.m. or after 4 p.m.
Within the U.S.
Pets traveling within the U.S. and Puerto Rico must be at least 8 weeks old.
To the U.S.
All dogs (carry-on and checked) traveling to the U.S must meet government regulations on vaccinations.
You cannot travel with a carry-on pet when traveling to / from Hawaii.
You can travel with your pet to Hawaii as checked baggage if you:
- Only connect via Honolulu (HNL)*
- Follow Hawaii’s quarantine rules
*No pets are accepted on departures out of Honolulu prior to 8 a.m. HT between March 5 and November 1.
You cannot travel with your pet to Hawaii:
- On nonstop flights to Maui, the Big Island of Hawaii or Kauai
- If your pet is pregnant and past 45 days gestation
All pets traveling to Mexico must meet government regulations on vaccinations.
You cannot travel with a carry-on pet when traveling to / from:
You cannot travel with a carry-on pet when traveling transatlantic.
When traveling to the European Union (EU) with a checked pet, you’ll be responsible for fulfilling all entry requirements. Your pet must have a tattoo or implanted microchip that matches the identification number on their vaccination card.
Apart from service animals, you can't travel with a checked pet to the U.K. or Ireland, but you can transport dogs and cats to London (LHR) and Manchester (MAN) via American Airlines Cargo.
You cannot travel with a carry-on pet when traveling transpacific.
Although, you can travel with a checked pet from Japan to Los Angeles (LAX), pets are not allowed as checked baggage to Japan. According to USDA restrictions, animals should be offered water every 12 hours, so for travel with a checked pet to Los Angeles, you must book a flight less than 11 hours and 30 minutes. This allows time for you to check your pet and clear customs at your destination city.
If you’re traveling with a checked pet for travel from Japan, you’ll need to:
- Make sure your pet has a microchip and documents required by the country you are traveling to
- Notify the Japanese Animal Quarantine Service at least 7 days prior to departure to arrange an inspection
*11 hours and 30 minutes allows time to clear customs at the arrival city.
**Additional special restrictions may apply when traveling with pets to / from these destinations.
On American flights you can bring 1 kennel as your carry-on bag if:
- You pay the carry-on pet charge
- Your pet stays in the kennel and under the seat in front of you the entire flight
You can travel with your pet carrier and one personal item, but you won’t be permitted to bring a carry-on bag in addition to a pet carrier and personal item. Instead, the kennel will replace your carry-on bag.
Pet strollers must be checked at the ticket counter, and all checked bag fees apply.
Kennel guidelines for carry-on pets
We assume no liability for the health or well-being of carry-on pets. These rules are enforced:
- Pets must be able to stand and sit erect, turn around normally and lie down in a natural position in their kennel (without touching any side or the top of the container)
- Non-collapsible kennels can’t exceed the under seat dimensions of any aircraft included in your journey. Please contact reservations to verify maximum dimensions for your journey.
- Soft-sided collapsible kennels can be slightly larger but still need to fit under the seat without having to excessively collapse the kennel, have to be secure, padded, made of water-repellant material and have nylon mesh ventilation on 2 or more sides.
We can only accept:
- 7 kennels on American flights, excluding service animals
- 5 kennels on American Eagle flights; 1 in First
Contact Reservations to make arrangements for your pet in advance.
Flying in First / Business on an A321T?
- Pets need to remain in their kennel during your flight and will need to be placed in a dedicated animal friendly compartment at the front of the plane during taxi, take-off, landing and turbulence
- The combined weight of the carrier and your pet can’t exceed 20 lbs, weighed at check-in
Due to the lack of underseat storage space, carry-on pets are not permitted in First or Business on:
You can travel with up to 2 checked pets that meet the minimum age and health requirements of your destination. Please note that as capacity is limited, we accept checked pets on a first-come basis. When checking a pet, you’ll need to:
- Contact Reservations at least 48 hours prior to travel
- Check in at the ticket counter
- Allow extra check-in time (can't check pets more than 4 hours before your flight)
- Complete a checklist with an agent
- Provide a health certificate
To ensure the health and safety of your pet, the health certificate you provide must be issued by a vet within:
- 10 days of your travel
- 60 days of your return (travel on the same ticket)
- 10 days of your return (travel on a separate ticket)
Checked pets cannot travel on:
If you’re traveling on a connecting flight, checked pets will only be able to connect through these cities:
- Charlotte, NC (CLT)
- Chicago O'Hare, IL (ORD)
- Dallas / Fort Worth, TX (DFW)
- Los Angeles, CA (LAX)
- New York Kennedy, NY (JFK)
- New York LaGuardia, NY (LGA)
- Miami, FL (MIA)
- Philadelphia, PA (PHL)
- Phoenix, AZ (PHX)
- Washington Reagan, DC (DCA)
If you’re connecting between American and another airline, you’ll need to claim and recheck your pet and pay applicable charges to each carrier.
When checking in your pet, there are specific requirements for their kennel:
- Large enough for your pet to stand, turn, sit and lie down in a natural position (without touching any side or the top of the container)
- Must not exceed maximum size requirements of the aircraft you're traveling on
- Be made of wood, metal, plastic or similar materials
- Have a door made of welded or cast metal
- Secured at the top and bottom with bolts or screws
- Secured by yourself with release cable ties on all 4 corners (we’ll provide complimentary ties)
- Be rigid and secure enough so the animal cannot escape through gaps or poke any body part through the container
- Be leak and escape proof with a secure fastened door
- Have ventilation on at least 3 sides for domestic U.S. travel and 4 sides for international travel
- Have separate food and watering dishes attached securely inside the kennel
- Have a small bag of food for a 24-hour period attached to the top
- Be clean and have absorbent material or litter (no straw, hay or wood shavings)
If you travel with 2 of your pets in the same kennel, they must be:
- The same species (2 cats or 2 dogs)
- A similar size and weigh less than 20 lbs each
- Between 8 weeks and 6 months old
Aircraft restrictions for kennels
|Aircraft type||Acceptable kennel||Maximum kennel height|
|A321T||500 series kennel or smaller||46 inches|
|B737-800||400 series kennel or smaller||28 inches|
|B777-200 / 300||500 series kennel or smaller||63 inches|
|B787-800 / 900||500 series kennel or smaller||63 inches|
Due to Federal Regulations, you’ll need to provide written certification that:
- Your pet has been fed and offered water within 4 hours (with the specific time noted) before you deliver them to the airplane
- Is securely and visibly attached to the outside of the kennel
- Has your signature with the date and time you signed it
You’ll also need to provide feeding and watering instructions for a 24-hour period. Unless specified by a vet, you cannot leave instructions saying 'no food or water.'
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, due to respiratory and cardiovascular problems caused by altitude pressures, in most cases, you shouldn’t give your pet any sedatives or tranquilizers before flying.
If your pet is sedated, at check-in, you’ll need to give one of our agents the name of the medication, the amount and date and time the animal took it.
If you’re traveling on an American Airlines itinerary, you can pay your charge at the airport or at a travel center with cash, credit card or voucher, where accepted.
We don’t collect pet charges for other operating airlines in your itinerary (even if it has an AA flight number). You’ll need to check in with each airline and pay your charge at check-in. To find out if you're on a partner airline, look for the words, "Operated by..." on your ticket.
|Checked pet*||Not available||Not available|
|Carry-on pet||Within and between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean (based on specific country's entry policy)||$125 per kennel|
|Service animals||All destinations||No charge|
*Charges shown above apply for each destination without a voluntary stopover/connection of 4 hours or more. If your itinerary includes a voluntary stopover/connection of more than 4 hours, charges apply for each connection segment. All pet charges are non-refundable and apply per pet, each way. Due to increased flight changes, we’ve stopped checking pets for now. Charges for transporting your pet with American Airlines Cargo may vary depending on the trip details and size of the animal and kennel.
We have temperature restrictions to make sure your pet isn’t exposed to extreme heat or cold:
- In the animal holding areas
- At terminal facilities
- When moving the animals between terminal and an airplane
- On an airplane awaiting departure
You cannot travel with a pet if the current or forecasted temperature is above 85 degrees Fahrenheit (29.4 degrees C) at any location on the itinerary.
You cannot travel with a pet if the ground temperature is below 45 degrees Fahrenheit (7.2 degrees C) at any location on the itinerary.
We may waive the cold temperature restrictions if you have a written letter from a licensed vet that includes:
- Your name and address
- Your pet’s name
- Your vet’s name and signature
- Your vet’s accreditation date and number
- The temperature your pet is acclimated to
The letter must be dated:
- Within 10 days of the first flight your pet will be on
- Within 30 days of any other trips in the same itinerary
You may need an additional letter for lengthy trips. If the temperature is below 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-6.6 degrees C), your pet cannot be checked even with a letter from your vet.