How much does it cost to add a pet to a Southwest flight?

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Carry your four-legged friend onboard: Ultimate Guide to Southwest Airlines Pet Policy

Southwest Airlines is one of the largest airlines in the United States that operate flights to many destinations worldwide. The airline is known for their dedicated services to their passengers onboard and before/after the flight. Are you planning to travel somewhere with Southwest Airlines but do not want to leave your pet behind? You can carry your pet onboard with Southwest Airlines' pet policy. Here is everything you need to know about traveling with your pet on Southwest Airlines. 

Southwest Pet Policy

  • Your dog must be at least two weeks old to travel with Southwest Airlines.
  • During the security check, you must hold the dog to get through the screening device while the carrier will be x-rayed.
  • You will be assigned a boarding group and need to board the plane with them.
  • There is an open seating policy, but if you are traveling with a pet, you can sit on the seats near the exit and extra gates.
  • Pets are not allowed in Cargo. They can travel with you on the flight.
  • Make sure that your pet is vaccinated before you board the plane.
  • If you are a kid or an unaccompanied minor, you cannot travel alone with a pet.
  • Pets with wild behavior, such as scratching, excessive whining or barking, biting, lunging, urinating, growling, etc., will be denied boarding the flight at the time of verification.
  • The Airline does not allow pets on International flights.

How strict is Southwest with pet policy?

At Southwest Airlines, you can travel with your pets, and to ensure your and your pet's safety, the airline ensures to fulfill all the requirements. There are certain policies that passengers need to follow if they want to carry their pets onboard. 

  • According to the airline's policy, small cats and dogs can travel on domestic flights. 
  • The owners must ensure that their pets are vaccinated at least ten days before the flight's departure. 
  • Southwest Airlines follow a first come, first serve policy for pets, as the seats are limited. Passengers must book their reservations for their pets in advance. 
  • Check-in for the pets must be done only at the airport's check-in counters. 
  • Passengers can carry their pets inside the aircraft in an airline-approved carrier. 
  • The minimum age for your pet must be eight weeks to travel inside the cabin. 

How do I add my dog to my flight Southwest?

If the passengers are willing to carry their dog or cat while traveling with Southwest Airlines, they must book a reservation for their pets. The airline follows a first come, first serve policy, as the seats are limited for pets per flight. The passengers can check-in for their flight online before the flight, at the airport or kiosk, but their pets must check-in only at the counters at the airport before the flight. The steps to book a reservation for pets via call are as follows. 

  • Please dial Southwest's phone number at 1-800-435-9792. 
  • Listen to the computerized IVR and press the keys accordingly. 
  • Your call might get a hold-up time; please wait for your turn. 
  • Once on the call, speak to an agent to book a reservation. 

How much does it cost to add a pet to a Southwest flight?

Southwest Airlines charges $95 for a single-side flight as a fee to carry your pets onboard. 

How do I add a pet to a Southwest flight after reservation?

It is a simple procedure that you need to go through if you wants to add a pet to your reservation:

  • Visit the official website of Southwest Airlines.
  • Scroll and click on the Flight from the given options.
  • Add your departure and arrival location with the class, date, and flight time. 
  • Click on Additional Services at the bottom right and select Pet.
  • A form will be opened, and you need to fill out all your dog's details.
  • Submit the form, and the amount of carrying a pet will be included with the ticket.
  • Make the payments and download the ticket from the website.

Can my dog fly in the cabin with me Southwest?

Yes, passengers can travel with their pets in the cabin at Southwest Airlines. The pet must be inside a carrier that is approved by the airline and under the seat in front of you. Passengers must ensure that the carrier is comfortable enough for their pets, with ventilation, and leak-proof too. For dogs/cats to fly inside the cabin, passengers must make sure that their pets are healthy and do not bark or scratch excessively. 

Southwest Pet Carrier Requirements:

  • You cannot hold the pet as it should be kept in the carrier.
  • You cannot even keep it on your lap as it should be in the carrier, and the carrier should be placed under the seat space.
  • Only one pet carrier will be allowed on each ticket. One carrier can contain two pets of the same species.
  • The size dimensions of the pet carrier should be 17” (L) x 10” (W) x 9.5” (H). and a maximum of 8.5” (L) x 13.5” (W) x 9.5” (H). If you cross the limit, the boarding will be denied.
  • The pet carrier will be counted as a personal item. 


The Airline does demand a cost if you are traveling with a pet with Southwest Airlines, and you can pay this account online or at the airline's ticket counter.


You have to pay $125 for the pet, which can be done online, or you can pay the fee at the airline's ticket counter.


No, your dog or cat can not sit on your lap during a flight with Southwest Airlines. Your dog/cat must be under your seat or the seat in front of you inside a carrier approved by the airline. 

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