Can I Buy A Seat For My Cat On A Airplane?

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It’s very important to know your cat’s travel options when Flying since most airlines are very strict and you have to abide by the rules and regulations to ensure a successful flight. Your cat has the option to travel in the cabin or in cargo but can cats have their own seat?

United Airlines is probably the only airline in America that allows you to buy a seat for your cat while flying. They have strict rules that must be implemented to ensure a safe flight. Furthermore, you will have to buy a ticket and pay an additional amount. The Cat must be in an airline-approved carrier at all times and must be placed under the seat.

However according to pet parents who have bought seats with the same airline. They said they were allowed to have their pet’s carrier placed on the seat flying alongside them for the full duration of the flight. The only time when the pets were required to be placed under the seat is during takeoff and landing. Check with the airline for more current information regarding cabin policies since every flight has its rules.

If you traveling with big cats like Maine coons or Ragdolls. It can be difficult since they require bigger carriers and it might not fit in the cabin on the seat or under the seat. In this case the cat will not be allowed to fly with you, rather they can be transported in the pressurized cargo hold that the airline offers. When booking a flight with United airlines always be transparent about your pets size, you wouldn’t want your pet to be rejected on the day of the flight.

When it comes to booking it’s always good to do so in advance since they only allow a certain number of pets per flight. For this reason early reservations will give you the best chances of your pet being approved for travel. Before your flight you are required to call the airline to confirm that your cat is accepted for travel.

The Cost of Buying a Plane Seat For Cats With United Airlines ?

The cost of Buying a ticket for your cat for cabin travels is $125 per pet, one way. However there is also an additional fee of $125 service charge for each stopover of more than 4 hours within the U.S. or more than 24 hours outside of the U.S. For information on pricing contact United airlines for their current pricing.

Booking A Seat For A Cat With United Airlines.

Bookings can be made online at and follow the “pets in cabin” prompts or you can visit your nearest ticket station. However before you actually book your pet make sure the cat meets all the requirements and you have the necessary documentation to get accepted.

  • You must buy an extra ticket for the pet and pay an additional fee of $125.
  • Cat must be at least four months to handle the stress of flying.
  • If the cat cannot fit in the cabin they will be required to travel with the petsafeprogram.


  • Traveling within the U.S, you are required to get a Health Certificate from your vet aswell as your cats latest rabies vaccine. Record must be within 30 days of vaccination.
  • If you traveling internationally check for the necessary documentation that is needed for that specific country.

Carriers and Cages.

  • Cat must travel in a airline approved carrier which must be secure soft or hard-sided.
  • The maximum dimensions for hard-sided kennels are 17.5 inches long x 12 inches wide x 7.5 inches high (44 cm x 30 cm x 19 cm).
  • The recommended maximum dimensions for soft-sided kennels are 18 inches long x 11 inches wide x 11 inches high (46 cm x 28 cm x 28 cm).
  • Carrier must be big enough for the cat to sit and turn around with only one pet per cage or carrier.

Recommended Airline Approved Carriers.

1. Smiling Paws Pets 4-Way Expandable Airline Approved Soft Sided Pet Carrier.

  • TSA approved for air travel
  • Secure with safety locking feature.
  • Perfect size for cats 17x11x9 L/W/H , however measure before you purchase it. not suitable for bigger cats.
  • High quality and waterproof.

Get it now conveniently from Amazon.

2. Petisfam Soft Pet Carrier.

  • Airline approved and escape proof.
  • Breathable for proper ventilation.
  • Leak proof.
  • Carrier measures 17″L X 11″W X 11″H, recommended max load of 16 lbs (7.3 kg)

Get it now delivered to you from Amazon.

Other Flying Options.

If for some reason your cat is not accepted to travel in the cabin you have an alternative option of having your pet fly in the cargo compartment. The Cargo hold is a climate controlled pressurized area that’s safe and quiet for your pet to fly in. The cat must be in an airline approved carrier that is the right size and secure.

For your cats safety pets are the first to be unloaded from cargo since this reduces the stress of the changing environment.

Why Most Airlines Dont Allow Pets to Have their Own Seat.

  • Airlines normally dont allow pets to have their own seat as it goes against the Live Animal Regulations of the IATA.
  • Pets may be disruptive and could inconvenience other passengers.
  • Untrained Pets react to traveling really bad and it could upset other travellers.
  • Pets relieving themselves in the cabin can be really inappropriate and messy.
  • Some pets like cats can damage the seats and the interior of the aircraft causing more expenses.
  • Pets traveling in cabin could aggravate other passengers who have allergies.Airlines That allow Cats in The Cabins

Related Questions.

1. How do cats go through airport security ? The cat must be removed from the carrier and officials will inspect the cat while the cat carrier or cage is sent through to a scanner to check for any illegal substances.

2. Can old cats fly on planes ? Old cats may be allowed to fly if the veterinarian approves of it. If the cat is approved an health certificate would be granted which states that the cat is healthy enough to face the pressures of traveling.

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