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Akasa Air allows pets on board; bookings start on October 15

Akasa Air will commence bookings for pets from October 15 for flights from November 1 onwards. The passengers will have to produce required documents. However, all airports do not handle pets. Currently, Air India and Spicejet allow pets on flights.

NEW DELHI, Oct 14: Akasa Air will start bookings for pets from October 15 for flights from November 1.

Akasa Air has become the third airline, after Air India and Spicejet, to allow pets on board. The airline will allow “domesticated dogs and cats” in passenger cabin as well as cargo compartment from next month, India’s new scheduled airline said in a statement.

Small pets weighing up to seven kg can be brought inside the passenger cabin while heavier animals weighing more than that will travel in the cargo compartment.

However, taking pets along in the flight is not a hassle-free job. There are several things to be taken care of for the safety of the pets as well as to ensure that no inconvenience is caused to the co-passengers. The airline may ask for vaccination certificates as well as vet reports to ensure the pets have no health issues. The airline on its part has to see the pets are accommodated in secure environment in the cargo section, with enough space for it to move around and in normal temperature.

Akasa Air was founded by the late billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala and launched in August last. The airline's network includes airports at Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Kochi and Bengaluru.

Air India and SpiceJet also allow pets on board. IndiGo and Air Asia do not offer such a facility unless it's a service animal such as a guide dog for a blind man. SpiceJet allows domesticated dogs and cats to fly on certain aircraft only as air cargo. Pets are not allowed in the passenger cabin unless they are service animals.

The pet must be carried in soft ventilated bags/kennel in the prescribed size. A label will be affixed on the container showing the name of the pet. A moisture absorbent mat must be placed in the container. The pet dog must be properly muzzled and leashed. The pets/guide dogs will not be allowed to occupy a passenger seat.

The import/export of pets by passengers is allowed only at six airports in India. They are Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Kolakata, Chennai and Hyderabad. Clearance from the Animal Quarantine & Certification Service (AQCS) is also a requirement for pet carriage.

Pets should be properly crated and accompanied by valid documentation like vaccinationa and vet certificates.

Air India rules

Air India allows a maximum of 2 animals per aircraft, as checked baggage or service dog.

Carriage of pets is not permitted by Air India either in the hold or cabin on Ultra Long Haul (ULH) Sectors (Direct Flights).

The name of owner in the official health certificate must match with the name as mentioned in the ticket of owner to establish ownership.

Domestic pets such as dogs, cats and birds are permitted on Air India flights in the cabin or as checked in baggage depending on the regulations of the country of destination. The owner will be responsible for compliance with all governmental customs and health requirements like vaccination and vet certificates.

Air India says it is not authorized to carry live animals (including service animals) in and out of the United Kingdom and Germany, in cabin or as baggage/cargo. Several other countries also ban pets.

It says the pet must be properly muzzled and leashed and the weight of the pet including the container should not exceed 5 kg. Pets will be carried at an additional charge too. They will not be included in the free baggage allowance,

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