Flying on American Airlines?

If one or more of your flights is on American, learn about traveling with service animals on

Service animals

Service animals are welcome on all our flights. There is no charge for trained service animals.

  • There is no limit to the number and type of service animals as long as they fit on your lap or in front of your seat. Aisles may not be obstructed.
  • An animal sitting on your lap must be no larger than an infant.
  • Additional restrictions apply on flights outside the continental United States.
  • If you'd like special seating, such as a bulkhead seat, call 800-428-4322 (TTY 800-245-2966) at least 24 hours before your flight. Because of safety regulations, if you're traveling with a service animal, you may not sit in an exit row.

Charlotte, Philadelphia and Phoenix offer animal relief areas.

To show that an animal is a service animal, you must provide one of the following:

  • Animal ID card
  • Harness or tags
  • Other written documentation
  • Credible verbal assurance

Emotional support or psychiatric service animals

To travel with an emotional support or psychiatric service animal in the cabin, you must provide documentation on letterhead dated within 1 year of the scheduled initial flight date from a licensed mental health professional (psychiatrist, psychologist or licensed clinical social worker) or a medical doctor specifically treating your mental or emotional disability.

Documentation must state:

  • That you have a mental or emotional disability recognized in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders – Fourth Edition (DSM IV)
  • That you need the emotional support or psychiatric service animal as an accommodation for air travel and/or for activity at your destination
  • That the individual providing the assessment is a licensed mental health professional or medical doctor, and you are under his or her professional care
  • The date and type of the mental health professional or medical doctor's license and the state or other jurisdiction where it was issued

Hawaii animal quarantine

Hawaii is a rabies-free state. If you're traveling to Hawaii with a service animal, emotional support animal or psychiatric service animal, you must have a health certificate issued within 14 days of travel. If you're traveling to Maui, Kauai or the Big Island, you must also contact the Hawaii Department of Agriculture to obtain a Neighborhood Island Permit before leaving the mainland.

We permit only service animals, emotional support animals and psychiatric animals in the cabin for travel to and from Hawaii.

If the service animal, emotional support animal or psychiatric service animal is a bird or for information on requirements for allowing these animals to enter the state of Hawaii without quarantine, contact the Hawaii Department of Agriculture:

Hawaii Department of Agriculture
Animal Quarantine Station
99-951 Halawa Valley Street
Aiea, HI 96701-5602

United Kingdom animal quarantine

The United Kingdom is a rabies-free country and strictly enforces its rules governing animals, including service animals, entering the country. Previously, all animals traveling to the U.K. were subject to 6-month quarantine. Now, if you meet certain requirements, you may transport a service dog or service cat in the cabin without a 6-month quarantine.

At least 72 hours before departure, you must notify us that you intend to transport a service dog or service cat in the cabin on a flight to the U.K.

At the departure gate in the U.S. and on landing in the U.K., you must present a date-stamped official veterinary certificate signed by a veterinarian licensed by an approved country, or an EU pet passport demonstrating that the animal has received:

  • A microchip implant readable by an ISO-compatible scanner or by another scanner compatible with the implanted microchip provided by the passenger.
  • A vaccination against rabies.
  • A rabies antibodies blood test. This test must be completed at least 6 months before the animal’s initial entry into the U.K.
  • Treatment for certain parasites.

Passengers are responsible for the costs associated with the U.K.’s Pet Travel Scheme.

For detailed information about compliance procedures, visit the U.K.’s Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFFA) website: