Monday, October 18, 2021

Can you really bring your emotional support animal onto a plane now? Here’s what’s changed.

In October 2017, President Trump banned all U.S. citizens from traveling with any all non-essential items as a travel restriction. As a result, it was surprisingly legal for airlines to check bags which should not have been checked at all, as the owner should not have been carrying them. This special privilege came with some constraints: if a traveler didn’t travel with all their luggage, they had to notify the airline in advance and actually pay for the checked bag.

According to USA Today, now airlines in the U.S. have been allowed to outlaw animals from their flights, meaning passengers will no longer be able to bring their emotional support animals onboard their airlines’ planes.

The ban, which allows airlines to list specific bans on each flight, means airlines will be able to enforce how passengers are allowed to bring their animals on board.

“Simply stated, customers will be permitted to board a plane with their pets, but the pet must be carrier-bound and the carrier must contain one of the following: A small pet. A service/support animal or psychiatric service animal. All other animals must remain in the carrier during flight or be carried in a pet carrier at all times,” American Airlines said in a statement.

With this new rule, airlines like American, United and Delta have followed United Airlines in banning pets, who are now banned from all flights.

“It does feel like a kick in the gut when people ask you to stand up or bring their small, noisy dogs and cats on to the plane. I told them I didn’t want them on my flight. They told me I was selfish,” Robert Montgomery, a Philadelphia-based English bulldog owner, said.

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