Dog-cations: Flying abroad with your dog

It is never easy saying bye to your furry friend as you go on holiday, here at Airport Parking and Hotels we have surveyed 1,000 UK dog owners to find out how many Brits would rather take their dog abroad with them.

Dog-cations: Flying abroad with your dog

The findings showed that over half (59%) of people don’t want to leave their dogs behind and would like to bring them on holiday with them. Women would prefer to holiday with their dog more than me (64% v 51%), but still over half of men would like to have their dog with them on their trip.

The older generation (65+) are the least fussed about taking their dog abroad, with four in five (82%) saying they would never take their dog on holiday. The opposite can be said for those aged between 18-44, with three quarters (72%) saying they would prefer to holiday with their dog.

Why don’t Brits take their dog on holiday with them?

We asked dog owners the main reason that stops them from taking their dogs on an abroad holiday…

  1. It is too expensive (25%)
  2. I don’t want to cause my dog distress (24%)
  3. I don’t want to put my dog in the hold section of a plane (17%)
  4. It is too much effort (16%)
  5. I didn’t know I could (4%)

The cost is the main worry for a quarter of dog owners,  but it may be cheaper than you think!

When taking your dog abroad with you, it is important that it is as stress free as possible for them, therefore it is no surprise that nearly a quarter (24%) were primarily worried about causing them distress.

Worrying for their dog’s welfare appears to be the top reason why 82% of over 65s won’t take their dog abroad with them, as two in five (40%) said they would be worried about causing their dog distress.

To fly with your dog, especially a larger dog, the only option is to put them in the hold section of the plane, which is understandably a harder decision for owners to make. The data showed that this was the main reason one in six (17%) of owners wouldn’t let their dog fly. However, if you own a smaller dog, there are options from a variety of airlines that allows a dog to be with you in the cabin.

The cost of flying with your dog

Our research revealed that the main reason our furry friends were left at home when going on holiday abroad was due to the expense it brings. So, we asked dog owners how much they would be willing to pay to take their dog on holiday with them:

How much would dog owners pay to take their dog on holiday with them?

  1. £501-750 (26%)
  2. £401-£500 (17%)
  3. £101-£200 (13%)
  4. £1-100 (11%)
  5. £201-£300 (10%)
  6. £301-£400 (10%)
  7. £750+ (7%)

Although plenty of dog owners said it was the cost stopping them taking their beloved pet abroad with them, a third (33%) would be willing to pay over £500.

The findings showed that the average an owner was willing to spend was £430, a little higher for women at £469, whilst for men significantly lower at £352.

What your dog needs to travel abroad 

Here at Airport Parking and Hotels we have calculated the average cost of taking your dog in the aircraft cabin to show it can be within budget.

There are various things you need when taking your pet abroad, but they come at a cost. When you are travelling in the EU or Norther Ireland your pet needs:

  • Microchip: £16
  • Rabies Vaccination: £50
  • Animal Health Certificate: £180
  • Tapeworm treatment (in some locations): £30

*All costs are an average

Previously, to fly with your dog  a pet passport was needed, however any pet passports issued in Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales), including the Channel Islands and Isle of Man, are now invalid for travel to an EU country or Northern Ireland.

Those are the initial costs before you even pay for your flights, we have worked out the average costs of return journey in the cabin for a dog, which is £125. Therefore, the average cost to travel with your dog abroad flying in the cabin is £371 (£401 if tapeworm treatment is needed).

This is below the average of the £430 budget that dog owners said they are willing to pay. Men would also only need to spend an extra £20 on top of their budget.

It has to be said, that it will be more expensive for larger dogs due to the fact they won’t be allowed in the cabin section of the aircraft.

Which airlines offer pets to travel in the cabin?  

Now that you know the costs, here is a list of the airlines that allow dogs to travel in the cabin:

  • Aegean Airlines – Cost per trip: £30-£56
  • KLM – Cost per trip: £107
  • Lufthansa – Cost per trip: £43-£94
  • TUI – Cost per trip: £43 and an extra £6 if not notified in advanced (per flight).

The requirement of all the above airlines is that the max weight for the dog to be able to fly in the cabin is 8kg, and the dog must be at least 12 weeks old (15 weeks old for some airlines).

When travelling in the cabin, the dog needs to be in a suitable closed travel bag and be able to go under the seat in front. They will not be allowed to get out during the flight, so they need to be small enough to allow them to stand up, move and lie down. Always check the size of the bag for each airline as this can differ.

The low budget airlines such as easyJet, Ryanair and Jet2 do not allow pets to travel on their flights.

Dogs that are allowed to travel in the cabin

As there is a limit in terms of weight and size for a dog to travel in the cabin, we have tried to make it easier for dog owners to see if their dog would fit the criteria.

Dogs that are allowed to travel in the cabin

There are certain dog breeds that airlines don’t accept due to their inability to breathe easily and cool themselves down, usually snub-nosed dogs such as pugs.

Here is a list of dogs that are allowed to travel in the cabin:

  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Bichon Frise 
  • Chihuahua 
  • Maltese
  • Pomeranian 
  • Toy Poodle (small)
  • Papillon
  • Dachshund (mini and some normal)

Our conclusion

The research has shown that the majority UK dog owners would like to take their dogs on holiday with them and according to how much they were willing to pay, it is affordable to many.

Not all dogs can fly in the cabin but there are plenty of small dog owners that flying in the cabin is a realistic option.

Flying with a dog can be a stressful experience for you and the dog, so we want to ensure there is no added stress when parking at the airport before your flight. Whether you are flying from down south and need airport parking at London Gatwick or up north at Manchester Airport we are here to make your travel experience hassle-free.


  • Survey of 1,000 UK dog owners in August 2023. Data split by respondent age, gender, and location 
  • Desk research included the airlines that offer cabin travel for dogs, what the dog needs to travel, and the costs involved – full list of sources available
  • Data on airlines pet travel policies:  Skyscanner, KLM, TUI, Aegean Air  
  • Data used to calculate cost of taking dog abroad:

  • Other data sources used:

What Size Dog Can Fly in Cabin? (Breeds, Size & Weight)

Post navigation

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *