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Here's what we know so far about the world's first airline for dogs

By Yoniel Acebuche Published May 29, 2024 3:25 pm

The world's first airline that's 100% built for dogs has taken its first flight.

Pet company BARK, which offers dog food and toys, has introduced a new travel experience for our furry friends known as BARK Air. In this airline, dogs can fly in the cabin of the aircraft with their owners as their plus one, instead of being kept in cages in the cargo hold. 

According to its website, the brand created the air travel offering due to the demand for a "good and convenient" solution for fur parents who are traveling long distances with their dogs.

“We recognize and believe that life is better—for you and for your dog—when you are together,” they said. “We partnered with a jet charter company to meticulously build out an in-flight experience from the ground up that is focused solely on the comfort and happiness of the dog first, and human second." 

How does it work?

BARK Air has one way and round trip flights to and from New York, LA, or London, though additional routes will be introduced later on.

When flying from NY to the UK, you must present a USDA certification of rabies vaccination and microchip status as well as proof of completed tapeworm treatment for your dog. Flights from the UK to NY, meanwhile, require a document stating your pet has not been in a high-risk rabies country for the last six months and that it has up-to-date rabies vaccines along with a fit-to-fly health certificate.

BARK Air is the first airline in the world that's designed for dogs in particular.

You must be at least 18 years old to avail of the offer and book a ticket through this link for you and your little one. A one-way flight from NY to LA costs $6,000 (P349,395) while a flight from NY to London costs $8,000 (P465,995) in June.

After booking a flight, a BARK Air concierge will contact the fur parent to ask for information on the dog, including its size, allergies, socialization preferences, and travel plans. 

The dog and their owner should be at the airport an hour before their flight for the check-in process and security screening. 

A "highly skilled" staff will welcome the pups and help them settle into their experience through socialization at the gate and dog-centric cabin preparation.

Passengers can expect ample space to play inside the cabin as the planes are "designed to fit 15 dogs and their owners." BARK Air noted they will not sell more than 10 tickets per flight for the travelers' convenience. There are no size and breed restrictions for the dogs.

Tying up your dog will be up to you, though they must know how to obey verbal command. Just like seatbelt rules on standard flights, however, dogs must remain on their leash while the plane is taking off, landing, or experiencing turbulence in the middle of the flight.

According to the pet company, BARK Air is "similar to hanging in a dog park, a dog-friendly cafe, or a friend’s house." It noted that the layout of the planes "ensures that if you need some alone time, you’ll have it."