Can I Take my Pet Snake in the Cabin?

Although it can seem challenging, flying with snakes is rather usual. But even if it is widespread, how does it works? Do the regulations for each airline change? These questions about how to fly with a snake have their answers, which we looked for and will happily share with you. If you are more of a dog person, you must check this article about some essential dog travel accessories.

Flying With a Pet Snake

Following the requirements set by your airline on the transportation of your pet, you must carefully box and label your snake. It will be loaded as checked baggage or into the air cargo of the aircraft if your airline permits you to bring it on your trip. Under no circumstances will you be allowed to transport your snake in the aircraft cabin, and smuggling a snake in an airplane can be severely punished.

Since pets are also considered family members, many people enjoy taking their animals along. As a result, you should be aware of all the requirements of the airlines so that you and your snake can fly like pros. Let’s take a look at a few airlines that accept snakes:

AirlineCabin?Checked Baggage?Cargo?International?
American AirlinesNoYesYesYes
Air CanadaNoNoYesYes
Alaska AirlinesNoYesYesYes
JetBlue AirwaysNoNoNoNo
Spirit AirlinesNoNoNoNo
Aegean AirNoNoYesYes
Air EuropaNoNoYesYes

How to Prepare Your Snake for Travel

You must take the following actions to bring your snake abroad on an airplane:

  • Place some heating or cooling pads (depending on the snake) in a plastic container. The plastic container should be of a suitable size for your snake and should have ventilation holes.
  • Prepare a cloth bag with enough space for the plastic container, and make sure it has ventilation holes too.
  • As a heat or cold barrier, spread several towels over the heat or cold pads.
  • Place the snake in the plastic container.
  • Place the plastic container in the bag.
  • Put the bag with the plastic container in a carton box, which must also have the corresponding ventilation holes.
  • Be sure to label this luggage by the requirements of your airline.

It’s important to remember that certain airlines won’t let you bring your snake with you on your trip, whether you intend to travel with it in the cabin, as checked luggage, or as air cargo.

Find Your Snake a Bag

There is no such thing as being too cautious when moving your snake. In the end, it is all for the safety of your pet.

If the box where the snake is in breaks, your snake will require a constrained location to reside during the trip, which is what the bag is for. This bag is an added safety measure to ensure your snake doesn’t wander off during the flight.

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Make tiny ventilation holes so your snake can breathe in the plastic container and the bag. The snake shouldn’t be able to escape through these tiny pores. The bag must be fastened securely so the snake cannot escape if the plastic container breaks. If your snake escaped the airport, there would be unimaginable commotion and panic, as many others may not share your enthusiasm for snakes.

The Temperature Has to Be Right

The following action is crucial for the well-being of your snake. We understand that temperature-controlled settings are necessary for snakes to remain healthy in their tanks. Traveling doesn’t alter this at all.

You will need heat or cold pads to maintain the proper temperature as you cannot bring your preferred plug-in heating or cooling system and your snake’s nice, completely set up and maintained tank.

These pads must be in a plastic tub with room for your snake and some extra space, just in case. Airports and airlines suggest purchasing a transparent plastic tub for your snake’s new temporary habitat. This is because it makes it simpler to inspect and check on the animal without opening it up and running the snake’s chance of escaping.

Due to the difficulties and temperature variations of travel, maintaining a consistent temperature for your snake will be more difficult. However, as long as its tub has a temperature range that is still safe for its species, everything should be fine.

You must ensure that your plastic tub has enough space because you will need to insert the heat or cold pads to control temperatures appropriately.

If you are here, because you are thinking about traveling, you must read this article on easy tips for your next trip and how to plan a travel itinerary.

Protect Your Snake With Temperature Control

To regulate the temperature, you must cover the pads with several layers of towels. The towels are there to prevent the skin on your snake from being burned by the heat or cold pads.

These towels provide a layer of insulation against the heat or cold required by the climate control system. Without them, your snake could be seriously injured, requiring you to take it to the vet, resulting in a hefty expense.

Besides, these towels are essential because they serve as a silencer for the numerous vibrations that travel causes. Given how annoying vibrations and motions there are during plain travel, this can be a lot, if not too much, for your snake to endure.

By including these towels, we not only shield our snakes from burns but also provide them with something resembling earplugs to make the flight a little bit easier.

And be sure your box has air holes so your snake can breathe. Keeping that in mind is crucial. Like with the bag, these holes should be too small for your snake to squeeze through but large enough to ensure that your snake is receiving the essential oxygen.

How to Pack Your Snake

After completing everything above, you can place your snake in the plastic tub. Again, you must confirm everything is in order before confining your pet to its box and bag. For that, you have to:

  • Ensure that your snake is housed in a clear plastic tub that is properly temperature-controlled, well-ventilated, and free from any danger of escape.
  • Double-check that there are three towels (or more, depending on the box size) in your tub to reduce noise from movement and protect against heat or cold exposure.
  • Ensure that your snake’s bag is securely fastened, has no chance of escape, and is adequately ventilated.
  • Set your snake into the new environment once you have ensured everything is in place and checked again.
  • Place the bag with the plastic container in a carton box (it must also have the corresponding ventilation holes).
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Label Your Snake for the Airline

The next step is crucial if you intend to bring your snake on your trip. Before heading to the airport, properly mark your snake’s crate with all the necessary information.

Before your journey, ensure your airline knows you will bring a snake. Additionally, you will need to complete all the required paperwork for this.

Once more, everything is based on the airline and how they handle things. Just be aware that you should only count on being able to bring your snake on your trip after first checking with your airline about their policies, and determining what you will need to do or bring.

However, the labeling that is typically required is evident and straightforward. Your scaly companion’s package needs to be marked “LIVE ANIMAL” so the luggage, or cargo loaders understand what it is and where it needs to go.

If you have a poisonous snake, you must include a label with the reptile’s scientific name, and a picture of a warning so that people know that the box is highly delicate.

You should instead use a clear plastic container for this reason as well. Whether your snake is venomous or not, it will be better to use a transparent plastic container so that security can securely inspect it without opening the box and exposing themselves or others.

How Much Will It Cost?

You must pay additional expenses when traveling by plane with a pet. The cost of doing so can become relatively high, possibly equaling the cost of a second plane ticket.

It typically costs $250 to transport a dog or cat. However, this does not include handling or pickup costs. Just the air freight fee is included in that cost. These costs will vary depending on your animal’s container size and the airline you choose, but you may be paying hundreds of dollars to carry your snake with you.

Want to save on airline tickets to make it easier to afford the cost of transporting your snake? Check this article about how to find cheap flights.

What Are the Rules for Traveling With a Snake?

For various reasons, most airlines do not allow snakes at all. One of them is the exotic hazard that snakes pose to the passengers on the aircraft. Even on a cargo plane, if a snake escapes its crate, it poses a risk to the passengers for several reasons.

It might slither up to the cockpit and hurt one of the pilots, enter the passenger compartment and create havoc, or even gnaw through wires or something similar, which might have disastrous consequences.

Airlines recently passed regulations and rules that make it so the use, or justification of your pet being a “service animal” has to be legitimate, and have the proper paperwork signed and turned in.

It’s vital to refrain from misusing the term “service animal”, as any restrictions imposed by airlines on the transportation of particular species are done so for the safety of all passengers, including yourself.

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