Tired of transporting your pet in the cargo hold? Pet Airways may be for you.
Pet Airways is, yes, a pet-only airline -at the moment, pets are limited to cats and dogs – and the inaugural flight is set for July 14.
One of my colleagues spoke with Pet Airways co-founder Alysa Binder, who told us the airline’s reservation site has already crashed once due to demand – in fact, they had to take bookings over the phone for awhile, but so far, so good (“We just got our first Great Dane!” said a clearly thrilled Binder). There will be two cross-country flights per week – the first originates in New York, and continues on to Baltimore, Chicago, Denver and finally, Los Angeles. Two days later, they fly the reverse route.
The “introductory price” is a flat $149 one-way – whether the animal flies one or two legs or all the way across the country. Pet lovers know, you could pay much more on a “human airline” (see our Domestic Fee Chart for details) – and of course, if your pet is more than 15 pounds, the animal will travel in cargo (and sadly, not all pets get out of cargo alive).
Pet Airways “guests” will fly in a twin-engine 19-seat Beechcraft 1900 – but most of the seats will be removed, and special strapping put in the protect the pet carriers provided by the airline. Binder estimates they’ll be able to carry up to 50 animals – plus pilots and an attendant.
She also says Pet Airways “will provide all the amenities people enjoy – except for cocktails.”
Why Pet Airways? Binder says she and her pilot husband saw a need for this service after a miserable experience flying cross-country flight with their 17-year old Jack Russell, Zoe, in cargo. Their goal is to make travel for pets “safe and comfortable.”
Readers, what do you think – is Pet Airways going to fly?