The Best Airline Approved Dog Carrier!

About a year ago we had to go to India for 2 weeks to attend a close friend’s wedding. It was the longest trip abroad we’d ever taken and also the most time our dog has ever spent away from us. When we came back, his face was massively tear stained and his eyes were completely bloodshot. When we took him home, he slept for about a week. We did not want to put him through that again.

So when we were planning  a trip to California for the holidays, we knew we had to take him with us. We also knew that finding the perfect carrier would be the key to a successful 11 hour flight from Seoul to Los Angeles.

Our pup is a maltese weighing in at 3 kg (roughly 6.5 lbs), more than light enough to ride in the cabin. Most airlines have similar strict size and weight restriction. First, the weight of the bag (with your pet inside) can’t exceed 5 kg (11 lbs). Second, the sum of the width, depth and height of the cage must be less than 115 cm and the height must be 21 cm or shorter (up to 25 cm for soft cases). After a lot of research and browsing through a sea of Amazon products, we settled on the Petsfit Expandable Foldable Washable Travel Carrier.Petsfit Expandable Foldable Washable Travel Carrier

The dimensions of our bag are 18 x 11 x 11 inches, slightly bigger than the allotted amount, but since the bag is made of flexible mesh and nylon, we had no problem storing it under the seat. The fabric also proved to be durable. On the way to LA, our pup was everything we were hoping he wouldn’t be. He barked, bit at the bag, clawed at the mesh and did his best to get out. Unfortunately (or fortunately), the bag didn’t give way and he was more or less secure.Waiting

Thankfully, we were able to spend the next two weeks in LA getting him used to his bag. It was big enough for him to turn around, sit up  and even sleep on his side. The the inside has a soft pad with a removable/washable sherpa cover which helped him fall asleep comfortably whenever his blanket wasn’t with him. It also has a leash hook inside (for my own peace of mind). The front, top and half of the back of the carrier are all mesh, so he can see me and what’s going on outside at all times.Tea Time

It’s actually pretty comfortable for me to carry around too. It has 2 handles, a detachable shoulder strap and a slit in the side to slip it though a suitcase handle and I utilized all of these. I also found the bag to be pretty stable and well balanced, so when I used the shoulder strap the bag didn’t tilt vey much. It’s also completely collapsable, which makes it super easy to store when we’re not using it.Perfect Company

One of the coolest features of this bag is the side which unzips and expands into a “porch.” It’s like a fancy little pet glamping tent. I have to admit we didn’t get much use out of it on this trip (since he was just getting used to it), but I have a feeling we will definitely put it to use on our next trip.Nap Time

After two weeks of traveling around California in his carrier, our pup had completely acclimated to it. He went in on his own, took naps in it, and kept toys in there for safe keeping. On our 13h 30m flight back to Seoul, he slept almost the whole way. It was a complete turnaround from our trip to LA! My only complaint is that it has only one pocket, but other than that, this bag was a total lifesaver. I highly recommend it to anyone who likes to travel with their four legged babies. You won’t regret it.

  • Petsfit Expandable Foldable Washable Travel Carrier

8 thoughts on “The Best Airline Approved Dog Carrier!

  1. Hi there, I am having so much challenge finding a suitable travel carrier for korean air and i am so happy to come across your entry!

    Did you purchase the carrier in South Korea?

    Could you please let me know where?Cjlo

  2. Hi Lexi,

    Love your blog! I am so happy I came across your site. I will be bringing my sweet chihuahua and yorkie with me in-cabin from LAX-SGN. I’m flying with Asiana as well (transit in ICN), and was wondering if Asiana was strict with their pet weight policy. It states that pet including carrier cannot exceed 15lbs. Did they weigh your pet upon check-in at the airport (both ICN and LAX)? My dog might be 1 to 2 lbs over the 15lbs limit. It will be their first time flying. Any suggestions or tips that you have, I will greatly appreciate it! Thank you so much!

  3. Hi,
    Is this the medium size (11 inches high)? Also, did you fly Korean air? If so, did this fit under the seat in economy?

    Sorry for all the questions, Korean air said the height limit for a dog carrier to be in-cabin was 10 inches and noticed that the medium size was 11 inches, and I wasn’t sure how strict they would be with being 1 inch over.

    1. Hi there!
      I flew Asiana, but in my experience, most airlines are incredibly strict with both the weight and measurements of the pet carrier.

      HOWEVER… the best thing about this carrier is that it is bendable! It’s kind of a have your cake and eat it too kind of deal. All you have to do is show that your carrier will fit under the seat (and it will). If you really need to, you can even take the wiring out of the edges and it will shrink it down that full inch.

      THEN… when you get on the plane, your furbaby will have that bit of extra room =) Hope this helps. If you have any other questions, feel free to ask =D

  4. Hi! I am flying with Asiana from JFK to MNL with my cat. When I called Asiana for reservations they say max 10inches height even with soft carriers. i have 11 inches height carrier. Did they measure and weigh your dog carrier at check in? Thank you!

  5. Hello. First of all thank you for your post. It’s really useful. I just have a question that is your doggy able to stand in the carrier? My Shih tzu is a bit higher (from head to the ground) than the height of the carrier. She is able to stand but cannot stretch her kneck.

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