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Air Canada

June 21st, 2007, 06:04 PM
Have you heard the latest ? You will now not be able to travel with your animals as checked baggage. They will fly as cargo and there will be a fee. This means that you will not be on the same flight as your animal.

June 21st, 2007, 06:30 PM
-Please note that requests to bring animals must be done within 24 hours, once you have completed your booking with Air Canada Reservations at 1-888-247-2262.
-Pets without bookings will not be accepted at the airport.
-Pets and their kennels, whose combined weight is LESS than 70 lbs (32.5 kg), are accepted for travel in the baggage compartment provided they are accompanied by the owner on the same flight. -Air Canada Cargo (AC Live Product) must be used when shipping more than one animal for any commercial intent.
-Air Canada Cargo needs to be used for pets OVER 70 lbs (32.5 kg).

also the website says that if you send them with Cargo to UK they don't need to be quaranteened anymore, which i think is great :thumbs up

maybe the info you got was from a new article??

June 21st, 2007, 06:58 PM
The Air Canada rep on CBC indicated this will apply to all animals of all weights (other than service animals) as of July 15 who do not have a prior booking. Maybe they haven't updated website.

June 21st, 2007, 07:05 PM
This was announced quite some time ago much to my and many people's dismay - a few months now - so we have all had time to adjust to it (sadly!) I decided - it is here on this site somewhere - not to use Air Canada any longer if possible! (Not always easy where I live) or else to take flying lessons which I have yet to do!

I know the stats are allegedly not bad for pets flying cargo but one death of a cat or pet is too many for me so my pets will NOT be flying cargo ever!!!! Ironically, this came about in part because of a law suit - and AC sort of decided to swat a mosquito by using a sledgehammer!!! (thus ruining it for those of us who occasionally fly with our pets.)

One always had to check in with any airline well in advance when flying with a pet - even in cargo but more so if your pet will be part of your carry on ahem, "luggage". I guess a carrier=luggage, sigh Fortunately, Moncton, NB at least has other carriers who welcome pets.

June 21st, 2007, 07:09 PM
All I can say is just ANOTHER reason to avoid Air Canada.

The company I work for has quite a few reps and EVERYONE of us has requested the travel agent do whatever possible to book us West Jet over Air Canada. I just flew Air Canada today from BC (back home to SK) and it's the same ole' same ole' bad attitudes.

June 21st, 2007, 07:11 PM
air canada should really invest in new planes. The one i was on coming from Europe was leaking water on me from the emergency door as it was descending on to Montreal.. LEAKING!!! :eek: :eek: :eek:


but yes Rainbow, maybe the website hasn't been updated yet. THey should've posted an announcement nonetheless:frustrated:

June 21st, 2007, 08:34 PM
I'll add one more offtopic msg (sorry!) - the last time I flew AC (It was Air Jazz or whatever actually, one of their regional small jets) - the seats were atrocious and I managed to get a run in my pantyhose(I should've known better but I was just flying from Halifax to Fredericton and back see some New Brunswick patients in a day long clinic). I don't know if anyone here is old enough to remember Wayne and Shuster but there is this rather famous skit they did of first class and 2nd class in air travel - 1st class had champagne, swanky area, beautiful woman serving delicious meals (Very sexist but this was in the 60's when I was a small child) and 2nd class had an overweight rather nasty flight attendant serving beans and unlike the 2at class who had a regular way to exit the plane, they had to climb down a hanging rope. I thought of that skit when I travelled AC - this is what they've come to for me! There was no other way to get to Fredericton or I would have asked the travel agency the hospital's uses to please use another airline!!! I did not have the time to fly to Moncton and rent a car, yadda yadda. Next time. I wil lask a friend who has a plane - no more AC for me AT ALL!!!

June 21st, 2007, 09:47 PM
This is the main reason why I would never fly with my pet. Period. I'd drive all the way across Canada with him before making him fly in some awful cargo or baggage hold all by himself!

Besides, I imagine a LOT of dogs are over the 70 lb combined dog + carrier weight. Toby is 80 lbs all on his own, and its not like he is a giant breed or anything...just a male Golden retriever - one of the most commonly found breeds in North America.

Boo to airlines :frustrated:

p.s. I've watched the baggage handlers practically chuck the pet carriers onto the conveyor belts when they load the animals. The caring ones are few and far between!

June 21st, 2007, 10:08 PM
My understanding of new AC policy is the same as mummummum's - as of July 15, no pets will be allowed on domestic flights - in cabin or in hold - with exception of service dogs in cabin. All pets will have to fly AC Cargo. This appears to be different than original announcement a few months ago - at that time pets were still going to be allowed to travel in the hold on same flight as parents. They plan to soon have same policy on flights to international destinations - they just can't make ruling on their own. Not good.

June 21st, 2007, 11:56 PM
They should have an all pet friendly airline, where they ride with you... and have an airplane bathroom version of a hydrant and a litter box... poor babies, still treated like second class citizens... :sad:

Or a plane with private type rooms like a train so you can hang out with your babies while you fly.

I heard West Jet is still letting them on like normal.

Oh and I'm still NEVER flying. LOL (I'm a big believer that I NEED NOT defy gravity.)

June 22nd, 2007, 12:13 AM
I heard this on the news tonight. The reason they gave for this decision is to make more room for luggage:mad: . They are finding that people are travelling with more baggage and with the restrictions on what you can and can't bring on the plane, even more stuff is now going in the hold. By doing away with pets on board, they can have more room for luggage. Well, they can keep my seat too! Not that I had any plans to fly in the future but if my pet isn't welcome because a suitcase is more important, then I fly with someone else.


June 22nd, 2007, 11:37 AM
There is an airline in the US - that is pet friendly and WestJet claims to be. I flew Delta with one of my Siamese and it was no prob at all! (in the cabin of course!). This is the US one:

It seems rather pricey though!

June 22nd, 2007, 04:19 PM
There is an airline in the US - that is pet friendly and WestJet claims to be. I flew Delta with one of my Siamese and it was no prob at all! (in the cabin of course!). This is the US one:

It seems rather pricey though!

This company has literally never gotten off the ground. They've been talking about their first flight for at least 1 1/2 years now. Nice concept, but it doesn't look like it's happening any time soon.

June 22nd, 2007, 05:13 PM
I think the trains need to be pet friendly as well - say one or two cars where people could take their cats and dogs of all sizes. Heck, this would seem to be more doable than the plane scenario - only people with pets would ride in said cars. I would like an express train as well from Toronto to Guelph.

June 22nd, 2007, 05:23 PM
i think trains are more pet friendly than airplanes. At least you can go visit them during the trip, while you can't on a plane.

June 22nd, 2007, 08:06 PM
Amtrack doesn't do pets though.. So you are limited to Canadian train travel..

CKC's letter about Air Canada's new policy

June 22nd, 2007, 09:07 PM
I have traveled on VIA Rail and had excellent service. I could not keep my cat with me (It was YY at the time) but I could visit her any time I wanted to and fortunately, most if the train staff were so enamored with her that they lavished attention on her. She was just a kitten and seemed to do very well - I sat in the car next to where she was and a conductor would take me there frequently. I have often seen dogs and cats travel on VIA Rail - well, as often as I have taken the train which is not that much lately but I was impressed with how they handled it. I would have preferred to have her with me but the train is not suited to that - too many passengers usually but the bonus is that the cargo car has the same amount of oxygen as all the others, meaning your pet will be fine.

My experience is in the Maritimes - I would not travel longer than a few hrs in this situation - and YY slept much of the time - when she was not receiving oohs and ahhhs from the train staff, lol Since the cargo car is directly behind the engineer's car and conductors and others are always bringing items up there, pets will usually get a lot if attention. Admittedly - in my case, the head conductor was the grandfather of a child I had successfully treated for a particularly virulent type of cancer and the little girl who had survived so I suspect he may have gone out of his way to help me with my cat. In fact, the 2nd time I traveled and he was on, he gave us a bedroom for free - and allowed me to bring her there - but that is against the rules. But he was in charge and no-one really knew except a few other conductors who were also cat lovers as it turned out. So, I re;lly lucked out! This was a longer train ride - from Halifax to northern NB.

I have since read of some instances where dogs have managed to get out of a cage (and that alas means someone did not have the proper cage!) and attacked another animal but I know of no studies about animal travel in trains, unlike the airlines - where studies about animals in cargo are atrocious! They may show a small rate of deaths but some are particularly gruesome and horrifying and the low level of O2 in the cargo hold is very scary!!!

The best way to travel with a cat is by car - in which the cat is safely in a carrier!! - and actually, my Siamese yell more loudly there than in the airplane with its hum that seems to be somewhat of a relaxant for my kitty anyway. My Sphynx - who have more championships than I can count - are well traveled - and never complain in any form of vehicle. But they or my meezers will not be going on AC any time soon!!!

June 23rd, 2007, 07:20 AM
The trouble with train travel in Canada with a pet is that Via Rail demands that pets travel in the cargo car - and unfortunately not all trains have said cargo car - for example the train from Toronto to Ottawa - makes absolutely no sense. I looked into this when I was threatening to send my little angel to Ottawa for a weekend with my husband when he was visiting his family (not that I would have done it - my guy does not go leash free - or "loose" to do his business. I just don't undertand Via Rail's or Amtrak's policy. In Europe you can take animals on the train - not the EuroStar but still you can get a train.

June 23rd, 2007, 07:50 AM
To me,this is just another nail in AC's coffin,it's to me the most unfriendly air-line,the worst service:frustrated:
On our flight to Sweden,via London,the seats were cramped,service terrible and I swore never,ever again AirCanada.
We have flown West Jet,out of Hamilton,the service is great,staff very friendly.
I am glad they are expanding to more international flights.
Hubby flew Delta Air to Martinique this winter,said they were great,but that's not always an option.
I also think Pearson is the worst International air-port and I've been to a few,it's cold and unfriendly..IMO.

June 23rd, 2007, 09:02 AM
also the website says that if you send them with Cargo to UK they don't need to be quaranteened anymore, which i think is great :thumbs up

maybe the info you got was from a new article??

Jiorji, the quarantine in the UK depends on where your pet is coming from - there is now a list of countries which the UK will accept "pet passports" from for pets, Canada and the US are 2 ofthem - essentially, the animals do home quarantine, which means that for the 6 months prior to their travel to the UK, they must not leave Canada, or the US, and have all their shots and paperwork in order...

When we moved to the UK many years ago, this was not the case, and our 2 kitties did 6 months in quarantine, it was fine, and they didn't really suffer too much, but I did!

this new system is much better...

Here there is still quarantine no matter where you come from, the length just varies - it was 30 days for Gomez coming from the UK...

As for travelling on a separate flight than your pet - well, Gomez flew 5 days ahead of us to come to Melbourne- he was going directly into quarantine anyway, and he was perfectly happy, bounced right out of his crate as if he had travelled across town...

krdahmer, if you don't fly, and if you had to come to Australia for whatever reason, you have the perfect excuse to take the QM II across the oceans then! They even have kennels on board,but like the trains, your pet stays in the kennels for the 3 week journey!

June 23rd, 2007, 07:57 PM
Thx to whoever pointed out about Companion Air - it is a nice concept (even if it sounded expensive) - that may be why it is not working?

I agree with you Chico about AC as well as Pearson - I loathe that airport, and I have been in so many - it is one of the absolute worst!! I had a difficult time once to find anyone to help me find my gate (they kept changing it - I was going to Dublin - NOT AC!!) and people could barely talk to you, it was so unfriendly!!! I don't know why that is - it makes no sense!

On another occasion, my metal rods in my spine set off the sensors and that took some explaining! (Even in Dublin, London (England) and Tel Aviv, I don't have that problem!!) - I almost missed my connecting flight to the Maritimes!!!

June 24th, 2007, 02:38 AM
I wasn't surprised to hear this news. Everyone and their mother seems to be carrying around a dog in a bag these days. I'm sure that airlines are having problems with yappy little dogs and people not following the rules. It IS a major inconvenience for us pet owners, though.

For a dog, cat, or other smaller animal, I would much rather fly with them than do a cross country road trip. I did BC to Ontario with my 2 large dogs. They were both good travellers on short trips in the car, but both were sick and lethargic by the time we made it to Ontario. They perked up right away, but it was so difficult getting them to eat, drink, urinate or defecate, and stay quiet in the vehicle. I felt so bad for them and regretted not flying. It is a hassle to fly with pets and it's scary to know that things can go wrong and that your pets are going to worry. With all that said, I still think it's better to get long trips over with quickly.

June 24th, 2007, 08:06 AM
Chico, I think you must have been on same aircraft type as I was to London -my knees were touch seat ahead of me and I am only 5' 8". Really old plane. I was in Economy and my husband in Business as it was a business trip for him, but with absolutely none of the business calls "perks" - no personal VCR - zip - and seats were much as Economy used to be on 747s. He went to Australia in April - that was a very long trip - AND the planes were so old they still had ash trays in them - again very basic Business class service at same price as British Airways that has beds etc. And they wonder why people are flying other airlines. Unfortunately my husband's company has a corporate account with AC so they must fly AC unless service not offered. Many other passengers when making annoyed comments about the planes have said that is reason why they must fly AC as well. AC had told me that as of last year they were supposed to start using larger and newer planes for transatlantic flights. Some of the planes doing the Toronto to Montreal route have been bigger.

June 24th, 2007, 03:42 PM
Snowdancer,the entire flight to Stockholm via London I was sooo angry,my legs were aching and I felt like sh...t,luckily at Heathrow airport at 9am the bar was open:laughing: I had a jug of beer,just to calm my nerves and by the time we flew to Stockholm I was very happy,totally forgotten about evil AC:laughing:
We had friends coming in from Sweden,who thought they had landed in the wrong country at Pearson,no employee could speak proper english:laughing:

June 26th, 2007, 02:59 PM
I was going to say I cuold not find anyone who spoke English at Pearson but I wondered if that was too unpc, <g> But now that you have noted it Chico, I have to add my experience was the same as your friends! Even the staff at Tim Horton's could not understand what I wanted - I was starving and the flight kept being delayed and delayed (up to an 11 hr wait which was supposed to be 2 hrs!). Had I known the time, I might have went somewhere in TO- and then promptly missed the flight when they changed the time again, lol In my case, I finally asked one of the servers at Tim's "Do you speak French then?" No and at the end of a 10 hour wait, finally I said, "I don't suppose you speak Gaelic or Hebrew?" - both of which I understand at a rudimentary level - same for Spanish and I found no one who spoke that either. Even my few words of Urdu did not help!! It was just deplorable!!!! They need translators if they rae going to hirwe people who speak neither official language.

June 26th, 2007, 03:32 PM
CK,I was a little worried about writing that too,in case someone got offended,but it is not a racial slur,it's a fact.
I know airport workers are payed very little,but one of the requirements should be you at least speak English.

June 26th, 2007, 03:37 PM
I have experienced same language problems as well - and I ended up trying a bit of Italian - that didn't work either.