25 Jun

United Airlines Pet Policy

United Airlines welcomes pets on board their flights. To travel with a pet, you’ll need to comply with their rules for pet travel and make a booking for you and your pet. 

Preparing for Travel 

Only pet dogs and pet cats are allowed to travel in-cabin with passengers, provided there is space available on your flight. Pets are also permitted to travel in the temperature & pressure-controlled cargo hold if their carrier does not fit under a seat in the cabin.

There are no weight or breed limitations for pets travelling alongside passengers. However, pets must travel in a pet container; this container can be soft-sided like a SHERPA bag or hard sided like an IATA-approved pet crate.

Only one pet is permitted per crate/carrier. Pets must be able to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably while inside their crate/carrier. Here are the maximum dimensions your pet carrier can have for in-cabin travel: 

  • Hard Sided Carrier: 17.5 x 12 x 9 inches (L x W x H) 
  • Soft Sided Carrier: 18 x 11 x 11 (L x W x H) 

Important Notices: 

  • There is a $150 fee each way for traveling with your pet. There is also a $125 fee for each layover of more than four hours for flights within the U.S. and more than 24 hours internationally. You cannot use travel credits to pay this fee.
  • Some countries have stringent laws regarding pet travel. To make sure you have a smooth trip, always ensure you’re in compliance with the laws of your destination country regarding import requirements, testing, and vaccinations. 

Airport & Travel Guidelines 

  • Once you’ve reached the airport with your pet, Check in for your flight at the ticket counter. You’ll need both your own and your pet’s confirmation numbers, which you can find in your email. United Airlines will also provide a special bag tag for your pet’s carrier.
  • Pets can be relieved while you're waiting at the airport. 
  • Your pet must stay in their carrier with the door closed, and under your seat for the duration of the flight. They need to be able to stand up and turn all the way around while in their carrier comffortably.


Provided your destination allows pets, you can take them with you on any flight operated by United or United Express. If you’re flying internationally, you’ll need to add a pet to your reservation. If you’re traveling on multiple airlines, you’ll also need to check with each one to see what their pet policy is.

United Airlines do not allow pets to fly to, from or even through this list of states and countries.

  • Australia
  • Barbados
  • Cuba
  • Guam**
  • French Polynesia (Tahiti)
  • Hawaii
  • Hong Kong
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • Marshall Islands
  • Micronesia, Federated States of
  • New Zealand
  • Northern Mariana Islands (Saipan)
  • Norway
  • Palau
  • Panama
  • Philippines
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • South Africa
  • Sweden
  • Tahiti
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • United Arab Emirates (Dubai)
  • United Kingdom

**You can bring a pet on flights from Guam to Tokyo-Narita. You cannot bring your pet on the flight back to Guam.

United States Rabies Vaccination & Travel Restrictions 

For pets travelling to the United States, United Airlines requires rabies certificates and health certificates for dogs and cats travelling internationally. The rabies certificate must be completed at least 8 days before your arrival in the U.S (for both dogs and cats). Any additional rules for traveling to the U.S. depend on whether or not you’re traveling from a country the CDC considers to be high risk for rabies.

If you’re traveling within the U.S. with your pet, it is a good idea to get a certificate of health from your vet. Some destinations may request this certificate on arrival. It should include:

  • Your name, phone number and address
  • Info about your pet, including breed, sex, age, color and markings
  • List of recent vaccines, including names, dates issued and expiration




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