Fortunately for pet lovers, most airlines nowadays let you bring small pets in the cabin as long as they fit certain size and weight requirements and can be properly stowed. That’s why it’s important to have airline-approved pet carriers that fit under the seat if you plan on traveling with your furry friend. However, there are so many types of pet carriers out there that it’s hard to know where to begin. What should you look for?
One thing to keep in mind is materials. You want your pet carrier to last so finding one that’s made with durable, high-quality fabric will ensure it doesn’t fall apart after a few uses. Checking things like zippers and straps will show you that it’s well-constructed and increase the chance of picking one that’s long-lasting.
Another thing to keep in mind is ventilation. You don’t want your feline or canine companion to feel like they’re suffocating under the seat. Find a carrier with mesh panels or other breathable features so they can see what’s going on around them and get some airflow.
Also, don’t forget about your own comfort. It’s already a hassle to travel with pets so finding a carrier that’s easy to actually carry will increase your satisfaction. There are options with rollers and backpack-style designs to make transport easier. Here is a list of the best airline approved pet carriers for under seats for your money.
1. The Best For Small Pets
Petyella Cat Carrier
While this miniature, airline-approved pet carrier is designed specifically with cats in mind, you could potentially fit a small dog breed such as a Chihuahua or Yorkshire terrier (its weight capacity is up to 11 pounds). The lightweight design makes it easy to carry around an airport without any of the extra bulk. It's expandable shape also folds up into a neat rectangle to slide under the seat when you're flying but it expands out to give them more space to stretch and play when you're waiting at the terminal.
2. The Best For Larger Pets
Sherpa Travel Deluxe Pet Carrier
For cats and dogs up to 22 pounds, this airline-approved carrier is perfect. Not only does it have over 4,400 Amazon reviews where people rave about its portability, but the inside features cozy faux lambskin liner for extra comfort for your pet friend. To top it all off, it has breezy mesh sides that let your pet get a clear view of what's happening around them. "I'm in love with this carrier," said one happy customer, "...The straps and clasps are all very high quality."
3. The Best Rolling Carrier
Gen7Pets Geometric Roller Carrier
This super versatile, four-in-one pet carrier converts into a backpack, luggage roller, car seat, and regular duffle bag. It's highly compact with lightweight material that's durable and well-made. Best of all, the carrier is fantastically easy to use — just push the handle into the pack when you want to use it as a bag and pull it out when it's time to use it as a roller. It also can be lowered to the ground to lay flat underneath a seat. "This bag is awesome!" said one Amazon customer. "I have a malti-poo, 15lbs and he fit perfectly! The under the seat lay down feature is exactly what I was looking for, truly couldn't have been more ideal."
4. The Best Backpack Carrier
Mr. Peanut's Backpack Carrier
For a no-frills, backpack-style carrier, this pet carrier is a great option you can get for just $32. It has a front mesh window your dog or cat can see out of that also offers ventilation and breathability. Additionally, there's a roll-up top cover they can poke their head out of when you unzip it. It's fully waterproof with strong, durable material and a handy water bottle pocket. Bonus: When you're not traveling by air, it also makes a great pack for hiking with your dog.
5. The Best Investment
Sleepypod Air In-Cabin Pet Carrier
This high-end duffle bag features top-grade, padded shoulder straps, an easy-zip top, and plush bedding for your furry friend. In other words: It's worth every cent of it's $158 price tag. This carrier is built with luggage-grade nylon on the outside and soft polyester on the inside. And, best of all, it's crash-tested for safety using the same test used on children's car safety gear. That means, no matter what turbulence you encounter, this pet carrier is up for the challenge. The sleek design has a zipper on the outside you can use to store treats or supplies, and it comes in six colors. "I can NOT recommend this carrier more," said one excited customer. "Truly. It is AMAZING! I know it's VERY expensive when you see other carriers for $20-$40. But TRUST ME. This thing is luxury."
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