Do You Need a Pet Passport?

In September 19, 2016

Traveling with your furry friend can be an exciting twist on your travel plans. Road trips and domestic travel are one thing, but taking a pet overseas is a whole new ballgame. International pet travel happens for countless reasons, from business trips to long holidays, and even extensive world traveling. Sometimes traveling abroad with a pet is a necessity you can’t easily avoid.

You’ll know your pets’ needs, food, toys and travel arrangements, but you may be wondering “does my pet need a passport?” The answer to that questions is “Possibly”. Depending on your destination, having a pet passport can remove some of the restrictions and processes normally in place when traveling with your pet. Over the years, the number of countries that accept pet passports has expanded a great deal.  Most international airlines will allow pet travel, but you’ll want to check into it long before your scheduled trip to be sure.

Here’s a Basic Guide to Pet Passports:

Does Your Pet Need a Passport? Possibly, as it may save you time and hassle. The pet passport (which ensures your animal is up to date on vaccinations and has been thoroughly examined by a veterinarian) will expedite quarantine times and processing times, but it is not currently a necessity. Without a pet passport,  you will be required to adhere to strict quarantine times and may have to spend more on fees.

How Much is a Pet Passport? While it depends on the destination, application fees generally cost around $12.50 per country visiting, plus the cost of the passport itself, around $25.00. This does not include the vet visits and vaccinations you’ll need to get your pet up to date on the required health standards for the passport, so you’ll need to check in with your vet for those costs.

Which Countries Require a Pet Passport? Each country has different regulations and requirements for international pet travel. You’ll want to check with your destination location’s embassy for more details.

What About International Travel With a Service Animal? Health regulations remain the same, and you’ll still need to adhere to quarantine times and, if applicable, you’ll be required to stick to the documentation and passport needs of each individual country. However, when traveling with a service animal, your travel arrangements will be different. Most service animals are allowed to travel in the plane as a passenger, but the location on the plane varies with the size of your animal.

Now that you know how to get a pet passport, it might make sense to get your animal’s documentation in order and acquire their pet passport. The reduced stress and ease of transport will make the trip (both for you and your pet) a much more pleasant experience. Be sure you look into the documentation required by any country you plan to visit. Some countries are far stricter than others, and being left without the right documentation can put a damper on your vacation. Now that you have your pets ready, don’t forget to acquire your own personal vital records. A great place to kick off your travel document process is to ensure you have a certified copy of your birth certificate. Happy traveling!

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