If you’re planning on traveling with an animal on JetBlue, which is billed as one of the most pet-friendly airlines, make sure you read up on the JetBlue pet policy before you set off to ensure a smooth and stress-free journey!
Boarding with Animals: What Assistance Animals Are Accepted for In-Cabin Flight?
Before 1/11/2021, JetBlue took their definition of what constitutes an emotional support animal (ESA) and a service animal from the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA).
However, the airline will only recognize service animals after this date due to the new travel regulation passed by the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Flying with any pet other than a cat or dog? Unfortunately, you may need to find another airline – JetBlue pet policy will only accept domesticated dogs and cats. If you are planning to fly with an emotional support animal or service animal that is not a cat or dog, we would recommend contacting the airline before you make a booking to check they will be allowed to fly with you.
JetBlue also will not permit any animals that they deem to be improperly cleaned or as having a foul odor to fly.
Emotional Support Animals
JetBlue pet policy will now recognize emotional support animals as pets.
JetBlue defines a service animal as “trained to perform a specific task to assist the customer traveling such as pathfinding, retrieval of objects, providing stability, alerting to sounds, etc.” They, as well as psychiatric service animals, are protected under the Air Carrier Access Act and can fly with you, free of charge. Just make sure to get your documentation in order and submit to airline 48hrs prior to your flight. You can find more information on this below.
Documentation: The Forms You Will Need Before Arriving at the Airport
It is very important that you bring the correct documentation with you, otherwise, JetBlue pet policy states that you may not be permitted to fly. The documentation that you will need depends on where you are going and what sort of animal you will be bringing with you: an emotional support animal, a service animal, or a pet.
See below for a full list of forms, but be careful to check which ones are applicable to you.
ESA Letter: Optional
This was once required for any passenger traveling with an emotional support animal. You do not have to bring your letter if you wish not to after 1/11/2021.
This document must be less than a year old and on letterhead paper or a prescription pad from a licensed medical doctor or mental health professional. The ESA letter must state the following:
- That you have a diagnosed mental health condition or mental health-related disability
- The emotional support animal accompanying you is necessary for your mental health or treatment.
- The type of animal you are bringing, and how many
- That the issuer of the letter is a licensed medical doctor or mental health professional, and that you are under their treatment or care for a mental health disorder
- The issuer’s license number, type of license, the license’s issue date, and the state or jurisdiction where it was licensed.
U.S. Department of Transportation Service Animal Air Transportation Form
If you are flying with a service animal, this form is required to be submitted 48hrs in advance. Please go to ‘Traveling with Service Animals’ on JetBlue’s website.
This documentation is only for service animals, and does not apply to pets or emotional support animals.
Veterinary Health Form – Your Pet’s Vaccinations
Required for all animals traveling internationally, including Puerto Rico.
A USDA-approved veterinarian should be able to provide this; it proves the animal’s clean bill of health and rabies vaccination record.
Signed testament to the animal’s behavior: Optional
If you wish to bring this documentation (though you are not required), you could obtain this from your veterinarian or animal trainer. JetBlue does state that emotional support animals must be well behaved, so this form could help to prove it.
Some destinations require additional forms for any animal entering the country, including ESAs, pets, and service animals. If you are traveling overseas with your animal, including Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the American Virgin Islands, you may need to bring additional paperwork. Always check in advance of traveling what paperwork you will need.
The 5 Main Facts to Know When Traveling With Your Pet
- JetBlue does not accept any animals as cargo or checked baggage, on any flight. The cargo hold in JetBlue planes is not correctly pressurized to carry live cargo, so don’t try to negotiate.
- Only small cats and dogs are permitted on JetBlue as pets.
- All pets must be brought as carry-on baggage in a suitable carrier (see below for more information) into the aircraft cabin.
- Pets must remain in their carrier in the airport terminal, during takeoff and landing, and throughout the flight.
- If you’re traveling with a pet, JetBlue has a free pet program called the ‘JetPaws Program’, which gives pet owners a tag for the pet’s carrier, a set of tips for flying with pets, and an additional 300 TrueBlue loyalty points.
The pet fee on JetBlue costs a flat rate of $125 each way. Psychiatric service animals and service animals are exempt from this fee. Be aware that some international destinations may have additional fees for animals entering.
Only cats and dogs are permitted as pets according to the JetBlue pet policy. Unlike other airlines, JetBlue pet policy does not refuse to carry short-nosed dog breeds and cats, such as Pugs, Bulldogs and Persian cats. However, if you are planning on traveling with snub-nosed dogs and cats, we would recommend contacting the airline in advance to confirm.
Weight and Height Restriction of Carriers
The carrier’s dimensions must not exceed 17″ (43.18 cm) by 12.5″ (31.75 cm) by 8.5″ (21.59 cm). Carriers can be soft or hard-sided but must be well ventilated and leak proof.
Damaged carriers may be refused if they could allow the pet to escape.
Only one animal is permitted per carrier. JetBlue offers a soft-sided carrier for $50 that is designed to fit under the airplane’s seats. The pet carrier counts as an item of carry-on luggage. The weight of the pet and the carrier must not exceed 20 pounds.
Regarding Pet Safety
JetBlue pet policy states that pet owners are responsible for their animal’s safety onboard, which includes ensuring that their carrier is suitable and well ventilated.
5 Top Tips As You Are Preparing to Travel with Your Furry Friend
- If you’re traveling with a service animal that is not a dog or cat, check before booking your flights that your ESA will be allowed to fly.
- Check all paperwork requirements well in advance, and make sure you leave enough time to gather all the necessary documents before traveling. Contact the airline if you are unclear on what documentation your animal will need.
- If you are flying internationally with your ESA or pet, make sure to check what documentation you will need to enter the country. You should also check about return flights to the USA.
- Make sure that your ESA is properly socialized and knows how to behave properly in public. This is not only courteous to other passengers, but it will make your journey much less stressful too.
- Most airports will have pet relief areas for pets, service animals, and emotional support animals. Make sure to check in advance where these are so you don’t get caught short!
Flying with Your ESA: Know the Special Requirements when Traveling with JetBlue
Flying within the USA with your ESA on JetBlue should be relatively straightforward. Your emotional support animal will be recognized as your pet so just follow the JetBlue pet policy! If you travel overseas, including Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands, you may have to fill out additional paperwork. No live animals of any kind are permitted on flights to Jamaica, including service animals and ESAs.
Where to Call or Visit for More Information on JetBlue Pet Policy
The general JetBlue pet policy page can be found on the airlines’ website.
JetBlue provides a lot of information on traveling abroad with animals, as does the USDA. You can ring the airline on 1-800-JETBLUE (538-2583).