Flying High With Fido: Airlines That Welcome Large Dogs in the Cabin

Alpine Dog Co. ™

Commercial airlines have tight pet policies, with crazy size and weight limitations. For example, Spirit Airlines only allows dogs under 40 pounds, and for Delta Airlines, the dog must fit under the seat in front of you.

I was once stuck at the airport with my giant dog and no flight options because of these limitations. I searched for semi-private flights, and finally, I have compiled a list of airlines that welcome large dogs in the cabin. 

Flying High With Fido: Airlines That Welcome Large Dogs in the Cabin

You won’t be comfortable knowing your furry friend is in the cargo hold, and you don’t know how he’s getting along with other pets. Even more disturbing, the United States Humane Society reports show that carrying pets in the cargo hold causes stress.

Noise in the cargo compartment is tremendous, air pressure drops are wild and temperatures fluctuate anyhow. The result? Pet deaths. For example, one pet got lost, 26 got injured and 29 died while being transported in a commercial airline cargo compartment in 2012.

Although that doesn’t sound good, it doesn’t mean you leave your furry friend when going on a family vacation. After all, the dog is part of the family. The solution is to use the following airlines that welcome large dogs in the cabin. 

K9 Jets

K9 Jets is a public charter operator that provides shared flights without owning any aircraft. I’m starting with K9 because it’s dedicated to flights with pets. No quarantine, no size limitations, and you don’t need crates for your dogs. Their goal is to provide a stress-free and safe environment for pets. That’s the reason they use the Argus platinum-rated private jets.

Their flights lounge and land on luxurious terminals without queues and exhausting screening processes. In fact, they use terminals with grassy areas nearby where you can relax with your Fido as the staff gets your luggage screened.

Another good thing is their refund policy. If the jet doesn’t reach its minimum threshold in 28 days, the flight is canceled, and you get a re-accommodation or 100% refund. Let me walk you through their policies and preparation guidelines when flying with a dog. 

  • If the dog weighs less than 50 pounds, you can carry two in one seat
  • If the dog weighs more than 50 pounds, like in our case, it’s one dog per seat
  • Dogs can sit by your side, or on your lap. No restrictions
  • Provide dog documentation several days before the flight
  • Flight is confirmed when the jet reaches 75% pet and passenger threshold


Aero prioritizes convenience and privacy by using private terminals. So, no crowds and queues in commercial airports. Aero aims at short flights going to hard-to-reach places such as Sun Valley, Jackson Hole, and Las Vegas. Exactly this is what you need when going on vacations with your dog.

I love Aero because it doesn’t have weight limitations. However, you need to follow the guidelines below.

  • The booking is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Keeping in mind this airline is not dedicated to pets like K9, check on their website to confirm their pet limit is not reached before booking.
  • The airline allows only two pets per household or one pet per guest
  • The airline only allows potty-trained dogs.
  • No puppies under 4 months.
  • If the dog is over 20 pounds, like in our case, you need to purchase an additional seat. The dogs should remain on this seat throughout the trip
  • You can’t carry an infant and a dog without a travel companion.
  • The dog must be on a leash the entire flight
  • Mexico customers must have their dog’s vaccination documents


JSX is a semi-private flight service that lets you enjoy fast check-in processes, private terminals, and more legroom. I love JSX because of how they keep things easy. You just drop your bag and go to the hangar to enjoy things like coffee, tea, and water. Just give your ID, and you’ll be checked in in around 5 minutes.

From there, only 15 minutes, and you’re ready for departure. The interesting part is that if you have a small or medium-sized dog that fits in a carrier, it flies free. However, for large dogs, you have to buy a seat adjoining your seat. Here are some of the JSX requirements when flying with a large dog.

  • Even if you have paid for the seat, the dog needs to lie on the floor in front of the purchased seat. Note that the dog shouldn’t lie in the emergency rows.
  • The dog must be well-trained. JSX doesn't entertain annoying behaviors like eating off customer trays, relieving in the cabin, growling, biting, and excessive barking.
  • Unlike K9 and Aero, JSX reserves boarding rights. So, your dog can be denied boarding without explanations.
  • Dogs must be on a leash throughout the trip
  • Here comes the main limitation. The dog shouldn't exceed 79 pounds.


Blade is the solution to avoiding congested routes in the US and abroad. In fact, it's claimed no other company flies people in and out of cities more than Blade. It's a versatile company that uses jets, seaplanes and helicopters. So, if you love adventures and want a company you'll use in almost all routes, consider Blade. Let me give you some of their requirements depending on the aircraft you use.

When Using Turboprops, Seaplanes and Helicopters

  • If the dog weighs less than 25 pounds, sit it in a carrier and pay the standard pet fee of $95 if using Rotorcraft or $50 if using airport flights.
  • For dogs over 25 pounds, buy an additional seat. Note that if one dog weighs more than 25 pounds and the other one under 25 pounds, both will be treated as large dogs and you’ll buy two additional seats.
  • You can only carry a maximum of 2 dogs per trip.
  • When there are two unrelated large dogs taking the flight, you’ll need to familiarize them on the tarmac before getting into the plane.

When Using Jets

  • You can bring one Fido less than 35 pounds at an extra cost of $300.
  • Purchase an additional seat if the dog is over 35 pounds.
  • You don't need dog carriers. However, the dog must remain on a leash.
  • No extra cost when using chartered flights.

Note that all dogs require approval by the Blade team, and boarding can be denied based on behavior, size, and weight.

Surf Air

If you are a frequent traveler, then consider Surf Air. It features both on-demand jet services and scheduled semi-private flights. Unlike the airlines we have covered so far, Surf Air is a membership-based airline. Here’s a breakdown of their different membership packages.

  • $295 per month: This is the base tier. It gives you access to their products under the pricing and benefits of members only.
  • $1900 per month all-you-can-fly package: This membership targets frequent travelers within Surf Air's scheduled network. You get unlimited flights on scheduled Surf Air routes across the entire network.
  • $11,700+ flight package: This package allows you to pre-book up to 24 scheduled flights on Surf Air's network for a one-time fee, usually starting from $11,700. It’s a great option when you want to share the pre-booked flights with your Fido.


  • The dog must have current vaccinations for things like distemper and rabies
  • Puppies under 4 months and dogs weighing over 100 pounds aren’t allowed. This is a deal breaker for giant dogs
  • Before the dog is allowed in the plane, Surf and airport personnel must inspect and give it the go-ahead.
  • Dogs more than 20 pounds require an additional seat
  • Make sure the dog is well-trained and harnessed. Surf Air doesn’t condone destructive behaviors
  • Make sure the dog doesn’t block exit routes and aisles when on board

Tradewind Aviation

Tradewind Aviation offers scheduled flights and on-demand services across the Caribbean and the United States. I believe Tradewind Aviation is the best airline for large dogs. In fact, by 2023, Tradewind Aviation was the 3rd best airline in the U.S. Let me give you a hint why. Most airlines limit dogs to 35 pounds or even 20 pounds, and anything from there is considered a large dog.

For Tradewind Aviation, a dog is considered a large dog and needs an additional seat if it weighs more than 100 pounds. Remember, a dog is considered large if it weighs more than 70 pounds, according to Seven Hills Veterinary Hospital.

That means Tradewind Aviation allows you to fly with all large dogs without extra cost unless it’s an over 100-pound giant. The only limitation is that only one party can board a flight with pets, and it’s a maximum of 3 pets. Also, the dog has to sit next to its owner in the last row.    


XO is a private aviation company that offers on-demand private jet charters and operates as a sister company to another Vista brand, Vistajet. Just like Surf Air, XO uses fixed-price membership programs.

Their pricing plans are on the upper side, with the minimum deposit starting at $100,000. The good thing is that the deposit has no expiration, and is refundable. XO offers an option of private jets or private flights.

XO private jets only allow service dogs and emotional support animals. No pets, whether small or large. However, XO private flights allow you to fly with your Fido. Here are the requirements:

  • If the dog is 25 to 100 pounds, leash it in the captain’s seat during departure and arrival.
  • If the dog weighs more than 100 pounds, make it sit on the floor beside you.
  • The dog must have a microchip with the current information.
  • You must have veterinary inspection documents.
  • The dog must wear a muzzle if it’s a restricted breed such as an American Pitbull Terrier.

Final Thoughts

The commercial airlines’ size and weight limitations shouldn’t cause you to leave your loyal fido at home when going for vacations. At the same time, don’t subject it to the stressful conditions of the cargo compartment. The above semi-private airlines welcome large dogs in the cabin, and you and your fido will have a stress-free flight.

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