British Airways only allow service dogs inside of the cabin. Other pets must travel in the cargo hold area. The compartments are well-ventilated and temperature controlled.

British Airways are one of the most pet-friendly airlines in the United Kingdom. They do not have long strings of rules and restrictions but a few simple ones.

The pets are handled by a British Airways sister company named IAG Cargo. They are well renowned for their expertise. They will turn the lights off in the cargo hold after settling the pets as they have known from experience that pets settle much faster in the dark.

Travel Options

They allow pets to transport as the cargo hold and only service dogs can fly with you inside the cabin.

  • Carry on Pets (Only Service Dog)
  • Cargo hold (As Checked Baggage)
  • Cargo (IAG Cargo)

Carry-on Pets

British Airways do not accept pets inside of their cabins anymore but only service dog can fly with you.

Pets in the Hold

Pets can be shipped in the hold area as cargo. They will be handled by a company named IAG Cargo which is apparently a sister concern of British Airways.

IAG Cargo is currently collaborating with 5 airlines and operating more than 15000 flights per week. Their name also comes up within the top 10 cargos worldwide. They are currently handling the pet transportation in the cargo hold section of these airlines.


  • They have over 60 years of experience in pet shipping.
  • They will board your pet last and bring out your pet first after the landing.
  • Expert people will handle your pet.
  • Temperature-controlled compartments.

Pets that are not allowed:

Pregnant pets which have already crossed two-thirds of their pregnancy period.

Container Dimensions For Dogs

LengthFrom the mouth to the last point of its tail + the length of its legs.
WidthTwice the size of the widest part of its body.
HeightFrom the tip of its ears to its legs.

Container Dimensions For Cats

Length27 inches or 68 cm
Width20 inches or 50 cm
Height19 Inches 48 cm

Container Requirements

  • The container should be made of hard material.
  • It should have proper space for ventilation on four sides.
  • It should have a proper locking system.
  • Your pet should not be able to put their nose and paws out of any ventilation point. The maximum space for ventilation holes are 25 mm * 25 mm for dogs and 19 mm * 19 mm for cats.
  • There should be pots inside of the container for food and water.
  • There should be a blanket inside of the container.
  • If you can, put some extra space in the container so that your pet can move freely inside of it.
  • If your pet is a snub-nosed breed, the container should be 10% larger than the normal ones.

Age Restrictions

There are no specific age restrictions.

Breed Restrictions

Some snub-nosed and strong breeds may not be allowed to travel. You have to consult with your agent about whether or not your pet will be allowed to travel by British Airways.

Destination Restrictions

  • For traveling to the United States and Canada, you must bring a series 200 container for your pet.
  • For other locations, a series of 100 containers should be enough.


You will have to book for your pet via a travel agent. The agent will assist you through the whole process. It is recommended to book your flight through an agent at least 3 days prior to your flight date.


  • If You’re traveling to the United Kingdom, you will need to comply with the pet travel scheme and fill a form of indemnity.
  • Health certificate by a certified vet issued not more than 10 days prior to the flights.


Per travel fees depend on the size of your pet and its container and also your destination. So, it is recommended to consult with IAG Cargo Customer Support about the total charges before booking your flight.

Service Dogs

British Airways allows you to bring a service dog with you inside the cabin free of charge. Some things to keep in mind :

  • The service dog must be properly trained and specialized in supporting your medical condition.
  • Should know the manners by which the service dog must behave in public.
  • Should be identified with a strap.
  • Online booking for service dogs is not available at this moment. You have to register for your service dog physically while booking for your own flight and the booking must be done three days prior to your flight.
  • You can take a pet bed with you so that your dog can lay down there.
  • Vaccination and documentation required may be different for other countries. Make sure to check your destination countries requirements.
  • Checking in can not be done online, so you have to go to a service desk. You will be allocated a much more spacious seat.
  • If you have any transits in your journey, make sure you have extra time for that.
  • A British Airways representative will assist you through other processes like immigration and customs.

Rules for service dogs as per destinations:

United KingdomApproval is required by the United Kingdom Animal Reception Centre three days prior to the flight.
United StatesU.S DOT FormU.S DOT RAF (If the flight is longer than 8 hours)

Emotional Support Animal (ESA)

British Airways do not accept emotional support pets inside of their cabins anymore. Although they can travel as normal pets.

How to add a pet to my flight?

  1. Contact a certified agent at least three days prior to your desired flight date.
  2. Support the agent with required information related to your pet and also give them the required documents as per the demands of your destination port.
  3. Keep in touch with your agent and make sure they complete the booking process as per your demands.
  4. Buy the container with care.
  5. Check-in at least 2 to 3 hours before your flight.


  • Plan your trip a few days early and arrange the container.
  • Avoid feeding your pet 4 to 6 hours prior to the flight.


Are pets allowed on British Airways?

Yes, British Airways allows passengers to take their pets with them while traveling. The pets should stay in the cargo holds section because British Airways do not allow pets inside of their cabin.

How do I bring a pet on British Airways?

Contact a certified agent at least three days prior to your desired flight date – Give the agent all the required information – The agent will complete the booking process for you with care.

Do British Airways allow pets in the cabin?

British Airways do not allow passengers to bring pets inside the cabin. Pets are bound to travel in the cargo holds section.

Is British Airways pet policy strict for dogs?

British Airways have some minimal restrictions regarding pet travel. Pets are not allowed to travel in the cabin, they can be shipped through the cargo holds section with some simple conditions.

Contact Details

United States1-800-247-92977 am – 11 pm

BA Short Profile

Airlines NameBritish Airways
WebsiteBritish Airways
Social Media PagesFacebook

See More

  1. Virgin Atlantic pet travel policy
  2. Finnair Pet Policy – Finland
  3. Lufthansa Pet Policy – Germany
  4. Turkish Airlines Pet Policy
  5. Air France Pet Policy – France
  6. Iberia airlines pet policy – Spain
  7. SAS Pet Policy
  8. Swiss Air Pet Policy
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