When you imagine traveling with your pet, you may worry you’ll be stuck in budget accommodation or limited to driving. However, the world is becoming more dog-friendly, and places where you couldn’t usually take pets, are now becoming more accepting of canine companions. Here are some tips to help you travel in style while still keeping your furry friend by your side.
1. Check your airline’s policy
Traditionally, traveling with your dog on a plane has meant your poor pooch has to be put in the cargo hold unless you can register them as an emotional support animal. However, many airlines have now realized that a lot of us don’t want to be parted from our pets and put them through a distressing journey. American Airlines let dogs fly in first class on certain routes on their A321T aircraft, where passengers can snuggle up with their dog in their seats, except for during take-off and landing when their dogs are kept in an on-board cabin.
2. Take the train instead
If you’re traveling between cities and don’t want to drive, then taking an Amtrak train can be a fun alternative to flying. Dogs up to 20lbs are allowed on train journeys up to seven hours but must remain in a closed carrier next to your seat. You’re also limited to coach, as they aren’t allowed in first-class or bedroom accommodation. However, Amtrak seats are generally spacious and comfortable.
3. Choose a cruise for longer journeys
Want to get from the USA to Europe with your pet? If you don’t think they’ll cope with being in the cargo hold, then you could consider a trip on the Queen Mary 2, a cruise ship that runs from New York to Southampton in the UK or Hamburg in Germany. Your dog can stay in luxury kennels on-board with long visiting hours and a dedicated kennel master.
4. Find a dog-friendly luxury hotel
Booking a dog-friendly hotel will usually depend on your destination and the kind of dog you have. If you’re visiting an area with lots of outdoorsy activities, you may find it easier to find upmarket hotels that accept pets, while luxury city hotels can be harder to find. If you have a friendly breed such as a white lab as opposed to dog covered by breed specific legislation, then it’s usually easier to find a place to stay.
However, there are some amazing places around the USA and the world where you can take your dog. For example, the Four Seasons in NYC will let you bring a pet up to 25lbs for free, while the Ritz-Carlton in Laguna Niguel has a dog room service menu, so your dog can feast on specially prepared steak or chicken breast. Call the concierge at the Bellagio in Las Vegas, and they’ll book a dog sitter so you can still enjoy a night out.
5. Look at alternatives to hotels
Can’t find a hotel at your destination that’ll take dogs? Try Airbnb and similar booking sites. They have lots of luxury accommodation choices such as apartments and homes where you can bring your pet. Your dog may settle better if you have a whole house rather than just a hotel room, and there may even be a garden where they can play.
6. Dine alfresco
It can be difficult for dog owners to find dining spots where they can take their furry friend out for the evening. However, many restaurants offer outdoor dining areas, where you’re more likely to be able to take a well-behaved dog. If the weather is bad, you could always stay in your room and order room service or get a delivery from a local restaurant.
Although the world is becoming more dog-friendly, it’s still unusual to travel with your dog. However, there are ways to take your dog on trips, and as long as they’re well-trained and happy, you’ll find that people are quite welcoming.