Weekly ESA News Report Dec 18th: Delta Says No to ESAs Under 4 Months Old

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emotional support dog reading about delta new policyThis week, new policy changes from a major U.S. airline mean that some ESA owners will need to rethink their travel plans. Could other airlines follow? Given what we’ve seen in the past year, there is a very high chance that this may be a new movement across the board for airlines. Read on for more details about a popular airline’s policy changes.

Delta Moves to Tighten Emotional Support Animal Policy Further

On Monday, Delta announced that it will not allow emotional support animals on flights that are over eight hours any longer. The airline has also brought into place restrictions on the ages of animals that are allowed to travel on board. The new age limit for kittens and puppies traveling with Delta is 4 months or older, in order to be eligible to board flights.

Policy changes come into effect on December 18, just before the holiday rush is due to begin. The new policy will apply to both passengers who bought their tickets before and after the announcement.

Delta’s new policy says that the age limit restriction that they have implemented is in line with the Center for Disease Control’s vaccination recommendations, and that it will increase health safety for pets and passengers. They also stated that the capping on the flight time limit for pets reflects the US Department of Transportation’s Air Carrier Access Act, which states that “airlines may require documentation stating that your animal will not need to relieve itself, or can do so in a sanitary way.”

Delta has made the call that 8 hours is the limit for pets according to this clause.

Airlines have been scrambling to tidy up their policies as more customers attempt to test the boundaries of their ESA policies. Some incidents on planes around the country this year have been jaw-dropping, with passengers attempting to board planes with everything from squirrels to peacocks.

In response, airlines have been releasing updates to their policies continuously, in order to keep all passengers and crew safe and protected.

emotional support animal in airport

What Does This Mean For Current or Future ESA Owners?

These changes from Delta will affect owners of ESA puppies or kittens that wish to travel with their pets. It will also affect those who plan to travel long distances with their ESAs, as Delta will no longer allow pets to fly for a lengthy amount of time. This move from Delta could see other airlines tightening their policies too, which could result in an end to ESAs being able to travel long distances in the cabin with their owner.

Stay tuned for more news and updates from airlines as they change their policies. We are here to keep you in the loop with new airline policies that may affect your ability to travel with your ESA.

If you are thinking about getting an emotional support animal, CertaPet has made the process of getting an ESA letter quick and simple! Simply start by taking our free online 5-minute pre-screening, and if your answers indicate that you may qualify for an ESA, we will connect you with a licensed mental health professional and you could have your ESA letter in as little as 48 hrs!

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