What are in-cabin pets?
In-cabin pets are domesticated cats and dogs that can fit in a travel carrier underneath the seat in front of you.
Pets can’t be in-cabin on flights to, from or through Hawaii and these international cities, but they are allowed in-cabin on select United flights. Pit Bull breed dogs aren’t allowed in cabin.
You can bring aboard your in-cabin pet’s kennel in addition to your carry-on bag allowance. There’s a $125 service charge each way and an additional $125 service charge for each stopover of more than four hours within the U.S. or more than 24 hours outside of the U.S.
Documentation & requirements for in-cabin pets
We know that pets are important members of your family, but to keep them and other travelers safe, you must follow the rules below.
- There are various state and country entry rules for animals, and it’s up to you to know what they are and to comply with them.
- If you’re traveling within the continental U.S., we require you to bring a health certificate (talk to your veterinarian) and proof of your pet’s latest rabies vaccine. You cannot travel within 30 days of your pet’s rabies vaccination.
- If you’re traveling to Hawaii or internationally, please see the “Hawaii and international travel” section below. And if you’re traveling to the U.S. from another country, please see the “Health declarations and vaccination requirements for dogs and cats entering the U.S.” section below.
- Puppies and kittens must be at least four months (16 weeks) old.
- Pets can’t travel with unaccompanied minors.
- If you want to bring aboard an additional pet, you’ll need to buy an extra ticket for that pet and pay an additional $125 each way. Your pet must also always remain in the floor space under the seat.
- If your pet doesn’t fit in a kennel, then they'll need to travel with our PetSafe® program.
- Pets must travel on the same flights as the traveler responsible for them.
- If there’s an emergency, oxygen service won’t be available for pets.
A pet traveling in cabin must be carried in an approved hard-sided or soft-sided kennel. The kennel must fit completely under the seat in front of you and remain there at all times. The maximum dimensions for hard-sided kennels are 17.5 inches long x 12 inches wide x 7.5 inches high (44 cm x 30 cm x 19 cm). The recommended maximum dimensions for soft-sided kennels are 18 inches long x 11 inches wide x 11 inches high (46 cm x 28 cm x 28 cm). Soft-sided pet carriers can exceed these dimensions slightly because they are collapsible and able to fit underneath a seat without blocking the aisle. Only one pet is allowed in a kennel, and the animal must be able to stand up and turn around comfortably.
For questions, please contact the United Customer Contact Center at 1-800-UNITED-1 (1-800-864-8331).
Booking an in-cabin pet
If you want to bring your pet into the cabin, you’ll need to indicate you are traveling with your pet ahead of time. You can do this when booking your trip on united.com and indicating the number of travelers in your reservation. Follow the prompts under “Pets in cabin.” You can also add your pet to your existing reservation through Manage Reservations on united.com
Please note: United's in-cabin pet policy applies to flights operated by United and United Express® only. For codeshare flights, please check the operating carrier’s in-cabin pet policy. If you are traveling on multiple airlines, please check with each carrier individually to make sure your pet can travel and for each airline’s restrictions. United can only accept your pet for flights operated by United and United Express.
At the airport with an in-cabin pet
When you arrive at the airport with your in-cabin pet, please check in with a United customer service representative who will give you a bright yellow bag tag to attach to your pet’s kennel.
On board with an in-cabin pet
- Your pet must stay in their kennel with the door closed at all times while in the airport, at the boarding area and while on board the plane.
- Your pet’s kennel must stay at your feet, underneath the seat in front of you.
United doesn’t allow in-cabin pets on flights to, from or through:
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand
- South Africa
- Trinidad and Tobago
Before you travel, you’ll need to find out if pets are allowed to enter your destination. For more information, or to book international in-cabin travel for a pet, contact the United Customer Contact Center. Rules for international in-cabin pets vary.
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has exemptions for dogs arriving from certain rabies-free countries, we require each animal entering the U.S. to have a valid certificate of rabies vaccination, signed by a licensed veterinarian. Vaccinations must be completed at least 30 days before arrival in the U.S. Since puppies cannot be vaccinated against rabies before three months of age, puppies under four months old won’t be accepted for travel.
The certificate should include the following information:
- Name, phone number and address of the owner
- Identifying information for the animal, including breed, sex, age, color and markings
- Date of vaccination and the name of the vaccine used
- Date when the vaccination expires. If no expiration date is given, the vaccination must have been completed within 12 months before arrival in the U.S.
- You can book your pet for in-cabin travel only if there is space available.
- If you’re traveling with an in-cabin pet, you cannot be seated in the bulkhead or an emergency exit row.
- If you’re traveling with an in-cabin pet, you cannot be seated in a United Premium Plus℠ seat because the footrest limits the storage space under the seats.
- Two pets per flight are allowed in our premium cabins on select aircraft. Pets are not permitted in our premium cabins on Boeing 757, 767, 777 or 787 aircraft because of limited storage space under the seat.
- Four pets per flight are allowed in United Economy® on all United flights.
- A customer traveling with an in-cabin pet in United Economy on Boeing 757-200 aircraft will need to be seated in a window seat because of limited storage space under aisle and middle seats.
- The number of in-cabin pets allowed varies by United Express partner airline. For more information about the operating carrier’s in-cabin pet policy, contact the United Customer Contact Center.