Tips for Traveling with Pets on Indonesia’s Top Airlines

Nobody wants to leave their furry friends at home when they board a plane to a new country or destination. However, most travelers assume flying with pets is more difficult and stressful than leaving them behind. The Indonesian airlines that allow pets aboard their flights make flying with dogs or cats safer and easier than many travelers assume.

It’s important to understand the rules and regulations of the airline you’re planning to fly before you buy your ticket and start planning your adventure with your pet. Even more, you’ll need to assess your pet’s health and personality to determine if it’d be better for your furry friend to stay at home while you explore.

Is Your Pet Healthy Enough to Fly?

The American Humane Association encourages travelers never to fly with kittens, puppies, animals in heat, animals that are pregnant, elderly pets or those in poor health. The Humane Society of the United States also advises that air travel is dangerous for dogs and cats with pushed-in faces, such as Persian cats, bulldogs and pugs.

The best way to determine whether or not your pet is ready for air travel is to take him or her to a trusted veterinarian. Your vet will help you make an educated decision on whether your animal should get on the plane or stay behind.

What Does Your Airline Require?

The policies on traveling with pets vary among Indonesian airlines. It’s important to know exactly what your airline requires before arriving to find that they don’t accept pets or that your preparations don’t reach their requirements.

1. Garuda Indonesia Pet Policy

Unlike many international airlines, Garuda Indonesia Airlines doesn’t allow small cats, dogs or other animals to travel in the plane’s cabin area. However, pets can be transported in the aircraft’s cargo area. The area of the cargo department where pets travel is kept at the same pressure and temperature as the cabin in which you’ll be seated.

Don’t forget to remind the captain that your pet is in the cargo space when you step on the plane. This will serve as an additional reminder for him or her to keep the temperature properly regulated in the cargo area below.

  • Preparing Your Pet’s Crate
  • Garuda Indonesia Airlines requires that all pets travel in an International Air Transport Association (IATA) compliant pet crate. Your pet must be able to stand, turn around and lie down comfortably inside the crate. A long list of other features are required of IATA compliant pet crates, and that list can be found on the International Air Transport Association’s website.

  • Other Requirements
  • Garuda Indonesia Airlines requires that all pets are accompanied by a health certificate proving the pet is healthy enough for travel and is free of any communicable diseases. The health certificate must be completed by your veterinarian within 10 days of your travel date. If you’re traveling internationally, Garuda Indonesia Airlines also requires you to show the documents needed to enter that country with your pet.

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    Garuda Indonesia Airlines reserves the right to refuse to board your pet as cargo or checked baggage if the runway temperatures are above 84-degrees fahrenheit. The airline may require an acclimation certificate if runway temperatures are below 45-degrees fahrenheit. Log onto the Garuda Indonesia Airlines website or give them a call to learn more about their pet policies.

2. AirAsia Pet Policy

Air Asia does not allow dogs, cats or other animals aboard their flights. Guide or assistance dogs are also prohibited unless you’re traveling on an Air Asia flight operated by i5.

3. Citilink Pet Policy

Pet are not allowed on any flights provided by Citilink Airlines.

4. Lion Air Pet Policy

Lion Air is another Indonesian airline that allows pets to travel as checked baggage. However, there are a number of conditions, regulations and fees associated with flying with your pets. Travelers with guide dogs should be aware that they can not check in online and are expected to arrive early to check in at the airport. More information about Lion Air’s pet travel policy can be found by contacting them directly at (+6221) 6379 8000.

5. Sriwijaya Air Pet Policy

Sriwijaya Air doesn’t allow animals to fly with travelers in the cabin or as accompanied baggage.

Additional Tips for Flying with Pets

Traveling on an aircraft with your pet isn’t difficult, but it does require a lot of preparations and responsibility from you as the owner.

  • Book your flight far in advance to ensure the airline has enough space for your pet. Always book your pet’s ticket at the same time you purchase your own.
  • Choose the most direct route to your destination and book during weekdays when airports are less crowded and flights are more likely to leave as scheduled.
  • Get your pet used to his or her carrier long before you board the flight. Driving your pet around in the carrier will help him or her get acclimated to the new space.
  • Feed your pet roughly four hours before the flight and make sure he has played heavily and relieved himself before getting on board.
  • Arrive two hours before your flight to give the airline plenty of time for the pet boarding process.

You can never do too much research when preparing your pet for an upcoming flight. However, the most valuable place to find information is from the airline itself. An airline customer service representative will be able to provide you with all of the detailed information you need to know, so your pet is 100-percent prepared when it comes time to fly.

Performing the proper preparations will also create a more stress-free flying environment for you and your pet, so you can arrive at your destination rested and ready to play.