Emotional or Service dog on board a Southwest Airlines flight
The policies of airlines including Southwest Airlines are generally quite strict with pets. As a rule, they are not allowed to travel in the cabin with the rest of the passengers. However, there are some exceptions.
People with a certain type of disability, who have a dog as a companion who acts as a guide or assistant, can access the planes with them.
Southwest Airlines allows guide dogs on board, however, to do so they must meet a series of requirements and have the necessary up-to-date documentation. They are usually the last and first to board and disembark, and their owners usually have a reserved seat at the front of the plane, next to the aisle.
The reservation must be made within 48 hours before the flight or more (by phone at 180.043.597.92), and a form must be completed, containing all the information about the animal.
Southwest Airlines does not impose bans on the carriage of pets. However, it lays down certain rules. A dog is transported directly in the aircraft cabin or in the hold. To do this, the owner must have the appropriate documents and authorizations.
When traveling on international flights, a passenger accompanied by a dog must comply with the animal import rules of the country of arrival.
Many states set strict standards for the weight of an animal imported into their jurisdiction. The customs services require not only certificates from an international veterinarian, but also a breed certificate.
Rules for Carrying Dogs on a Southwest Airlines Flight
To travel with your pet, you must first obtain authorization from the airline from which you purchased the ticket. According to the established rules, no more than five animals should be on board the plane. It is necessary to inform the company that the passenger is traveling with a pet no later than 48 hours before departure.
Note that if a traveler arrives at the airport with a pet without having obtained authorization from the air carrier to transport it, he will not be allowed to board the flight.
To transport dogs in the cabin of an aircraft, the following requirements must be met:
– Mandatory accompaniment of a pet by an adult;
– The weight of the animal must not exceed eighteen pounds;
– It must be in a special cage (well sealed and well ventilated)
– The animal must feel comfortable in it, lie down freely or stand up to its full height.
Passengers who plan to travel with their service dogs should sit in remote locations: near emergency exits or restrooms. At the same time, travelers should have a first aid kit with them. At high altitudes, many animals experience discomfort and pain.
How is check-in done?
First of all, you should know that the registration of a passenger planning to travel with a guide dog cannot be done online, but only at the airport. It is necessary to carefully check the correctness of filling out the documents for the container with the dog. After that, the animal is placed in a special compartment with fixed pallets. It will therefore be much easier for him to transfer the flight.
Things to know when booking
As a first step, you should familiarize yourself with the rules for transporting animals of the airline Southwest Airlines in which the tickets are purchased. When booking, you must indicate that a dog is traveling with the passenger. At the same time, its weight and the dimensions of the container are indicated.
You must also indicate the breed of the dog. It should be noted that the US carrier may prohibit the transportation of brachycephalic dog breeds. It is best to reserve a place for a pet in advance, as the number of places on board for them is limited. Contact customer service for any inquiries relating to this subject.