If you are planning a trip and intend on taking your furkid along, there are a few things you need to know before booking those tickets. Like many other airlines, WestJet welcomes pets on their flights, as long as the pet parents have done their homework and meet every single requirement of the WestJet Pet Policy.
Read on to learn more about this airline’s pet policy and how it differs from the emotional support animal (ESA) and service animal Policy.
WestJet Pets! What Animals Are Accepted for In-Cabin Flight?
WestJet Pets in Cabin
- Birds (restrictions may apply)
Only 1 pet allowed in cabin per kennel and owner. There can only be a maximum of four or two depending on aircraft.
According to the Aircraft Accessibility for Persons with Disabilities, people wishing to fly with their ESAs or service animals may do so free of charge. WestJet enforces this law with full support for people who rely on their assistance animals.
While most airlines enforce this law, they still reserve the right to make their own policy for animals on their flights. This is as much to protect (whether legally or physically) the animal, as it is to protect the other passengers on flights.
It is very, very important to know the difference between pets and assistance animals, and the laws that protect them! Let’s look at which assistance animals are accepted in-cabin on WestJet flights.
Service animals receive intensive training and perform specific tasks for their owner with a disability. One example of service dogs is those which help people in wheelchairs by retrieving items or opening and closing doors for them. One common type of service dog is a seeing-eye dog who helps people with visual impairments.
Emotional Support Animals
Emotional support animals do not receive any special training. Their sole purpose is to provide their owner with comfort and companionship. People suffering from mental illnesses or conditions such as anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or depression, massively benefit from the presence of an ESA.
WestJet Cargo Pets Travel: The 4 Main Facts to Know When Checking in
Checking your pet into cargo may seem quite scary. However, if you do your part to prepare your pet and their travel needs, WestJet will take care of the rest! The WestJet pet policy sets clear instructions and requirements for animals traveling in cargo.
Checking your pet into cargo for domestic flights will cost half as much as for international flights. Carry-on pets will cost you less. If however, for some reason you have to check your pet into the baggage compartment or cargo compartment, the fees are as follows:
- Fee for travel within Canada: $100 CAD
- Fee for travel between Canada, US and other destinations: $200.
Pets traveling without their owners need to contact WestJet at 1-866-952-2746 (1-866-WJCARGO) to find out more.
There is a long list of breeds and species that are not allowed on WestJet Flights. Double check that the animal you want to fly with is not on the restricted list. Also note, that puppies under 8 weeks old are not allowed to fly on WestJet flights.
Weight and Height Restrictions of Carriers
The WestJet pet kennel restrictions according to Width, Height and Length are 40 in. L x 27 in. W x 30 in. H. Make sure your kennel meets all of the airline’s safety requirements.
Also remember that according to the WestJet pet policy, your animal needs to be able to sit, stand and lie down (stretched out) in their kennel.
Regarding Pet Safety
WestJet has strict kennel rules in place to ensure the safety of animals on their flights, which includes a kennel fee for check-in baggage or in cabin travel. Also, be aware that there are certain months of the year in which pet owners cannot check their pets onto WestJet flights.
For safety reasons, pet kennel transport for animals in cargo is impossible.
5 Top Tips As You Are Preparing to Travel with Your Pet or Assistance Animal
- Although your ESA is not legally required to wear an ESA vest, the airline recommends that you put one onto your emotional support dog during travel.
- Know the policies for service animals and emotional support animals.
- Make sure your pet is potty trained and take them to a designated pet relief area for the flight.
- Double and triple check that all of your documentation is in order. If you have any reservations, contact the airline for more information.
- Do your homework. All it takes is overlooking one small detail and your ESA or pet will be denied boarding.
Documentation: The 3 Forms You Will Need Before Arriving at the Airport for Emotional Support Animals
There are 3 documents that you need to present when checking in with your ESA. You have to download all 3 of them from the WestJet website.
If you don’t come prepared, WestJet has every right to deny your ESA access to the flight. Also note, that WestJet does not accept documents with E-signatures. You need to bring a hardcopy of each document with original signatures.
An ESA Letter
An ESA letter is the document which proves that you are someone with a disability and are allowed to fly with your animal free of charge. It is very important to know that only a licensed mental health professional (LMHP) in your province or state can issue your ESA letter. The letter may not be older than one year.
The letter has to include your LMHP’s signature, license number, the type of license, and the jurisdiction under which it was issued.
For WestJet Dogs and Cats: Confirmation of Animal Training
Every ESA owner wanting to fly on a WestJet flight with their owner has to fill out this form and email it to the airline. Although legally ESAs do not have to receive specific training, they are expected to behave well in public. This form basically shows that you take responsibility for the actions of your ESA. You or (preferably) your dog trainer must sign this form.
Veterinary Health Certificate
Your dog’s vet has to complete and sign this document as proof that your ESA is in good health.
Flying with Your ESA or Pet: Know the Special Requirements when Traveling with WestJet Airlines
- If you are a passenger with an emotional disability and want to fly with an ESA, you have to complete two official WestJet forms before traveling with the airline and submit an ESA letter.
- You have to notify the airline that you are bringing your ESA/pet 48hrs in advance.
- The only ESAs accepted on WestJet flights are dogs. Any other animal will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
- As per the WestJet pet policy, there is a limited number of pets allowed in the cabin and in the cargo hold.
- Always check the entrance requirements for animals at your destination!
Where to Call or Visit for More Information on WestJet Airline Pet Policy
You can find out more about the WestJet pet policy by contacting them on social media (24/7), chat on their website, via email or phone at 1-888-937-8538 (1-888-WESTJET).
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