Flying with Fido: A Guide to Pet-Friendly Airlines in Canada

Ready to jet set with your furry best friend? Traveling with pets can be a breeze if you know the right airlines. In Canada, luckily, you have options when it comes to finding a pet-friendly flight for your next adventure. Let's break down the pet policies of major Canadian airlines and get some insider tips for a less-stress trip with your furry companion in tow.

Air Canada

  • Who Can Fly:

    Small dogs and cats can join you in the cabin or travel in the comfy, climate-controlled cargo area if they're a bit bigger.

  • Cost:

    • If your pet will be in the cabin: The charge for one-way travel within Canada and Canada/US is $50 CAD/USD (except Hawaii), the charge for international travel is $100 CAD/USD.

    • If your pet will be in the baggage compartment: The charge for one-way travel within Canada and Canada/US is $105 - $120 CAD (except Hawaii). International travel is more expensive with a charge of $270 - $318 CAD. Fees depend on where you're headed and whether your pet's chilling with you in-cabin or will be in the cargo.

  • The Carrier Deal: Specific sizes apply for in-cabin carriers, and there are kennel rules for cargo travel. Air Canada provides maximum carrier sizes allowed in the cabin, so check their website for the lowdown.

  • Heads Up: Some smooshed-face pups (like Pugs or Bulldogs) might have travel restrictions because of potential breathing issues during flights.

  • Arrive Early: Pet parents traveling with a pet will need to see an agent to check-in for their flight. With this in mind, it’s best to arrive about 30 minutes before the recommended check-in time to give yourself time to speak with the agent.

PAL Airlines

  • Cabin Cuties: PAL Airlines welcomes small cats and dogs into the cabin, except on Air Borealis flights. Larger dogs can fly as well, but must be checked as baggage.

  • Cost: The travel fee for domestic flights is $50 CAD. The pet fee for international flights is $100 CAD.

  • Carrier Check: Your pet needs an approved carrier that tucks neatly under the seat. See the PAL Airlines website for the specifics.

  • Book Early: Booking for your pet needs to be made by phone or e-mail after your own reservation is made. Only a few pets get a ticket on each flight, so contact PAL Airlines way in advance.

Porter Airlines

  • Small Pets Only: Porter welcomes small cats and dogs to travel with you in the cabin. They do not allow pets to fly in the hold, so larger pets cannot fly with Porter Airlines.

  • Cost: The pet travel fee is between $50 - $58 CAD each way.

  • Cozy Carriers: Carriers must be soft-sided, leak-proof, and fit snugly under the seat. According to their website, the maximum carrier size allowed is 55 x 40 x 27cm (21.5 x 15.5 x 10.5 inches).

  • Plan Ahead: Book your pet as part of your reservation or add your pet to your reservation through the call center. Make sure to let them know right away if your pet will be traveling with you – only two pets are allowed on each flight!


  • Cabin Cruisers:

    • Exceptions: Small pets are not allowed to fly in the cabin on flights to or from Barbados, Hawaii, Ireland, Jamaica, or the UK. Small dogs and cats can chill in the cabin with you or in the cargo on flights within Canada.

  • Fees: The pet travel fee is between $50 - $59 CAD each way for flights inside Canada or between Canada and the US. International flights have a higher travel fee, $100 - $118 CAD. Expect a fee per direction for your furry travel buddy.

  • Carrier Rules: WestJet only allows soft-sided carriers no larger than

    41 x 25.4 x 21.5cm (16 x 10 x 8.5 inches).

  • Add your pet to your reservation: Contact WestJet at least 48 hours before your flight to add your pet to your reservation.

  • Weather Watch: WestJet sometimes puts limits on cargo pet travel due to extreme temperatures in certain places.

Flair Airlines

  • Domestic and Beyond: Small cats and dogs are welcome in-cabin for domestic Canadian flights and those crossing the border into the US.

  • Fees: A standard pet fee applies per direction for in-cabin travel. If you pay the fee online it is about $79 CAD, whereas if you pay at the airport it is $99 CAD.

  • Carrier Check: Soft-sided carriers with a maximum size and weight of 41 x 25 x 23cm (16 x 10 x 9 inches), with a maximum weight of 10.4kg (23 lbs), including your pet.

  • Route Restrictions: Pets can't chill in-cabin on flights to Mexico, Jamaica, or the Dominican Republic.

  • Book early: Flair airlines only allows 6 pets per flight. Your pet’s fee needs to be paid at least 48 hours in advance for your pet to fly with you.

Tips for Smooth Sailing (or Flying!) with Pets

  • Vet Visit: Make sure your pet is travel-ready – check up on vaccinations and get any travel certificates needed.

  • Book Early: Let the airline know your furry friend is tagging along well before your flight.

  • Carrier Comfort: Get your pet used to their carrier before the trip – make it a cozy space.

  • Food & Water: Limit food a few hours before takeoff, but always offer water.

  • ID Please: Have a collar with ID tags and consider microchipping as an extra safety measure.

The Takeaway

With this guide in hand, traveling with your furry companion may have just gotten easier. By choosing the right airline and taking a few preparatory steps, you're setting the stage for an enjoyable flight with your best pal.


“Which Canadian Airlines Allow Dogs in the Cabin in 2024?” Travelnuity,, Dec. 6, 2023.

“Travelling with Your Pet,” Air Canada,, n.d.

“Traveling With Pets, Service, Specialty Animals,” PAL Airlines,, n.d.

“Travelling With Pets in the Aircraft Cabin,” Porter,, n.d.

“Pets,” WestJet,, n.d.

“Pet in Cabin,” Flair Airlines,, n.d.

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