According to the ASPCA and American Pet Products Association, between 70 and 80 million dogs and between 74 and 96 million cats make their homes with us. It comes as little surprise, then, that when we travel we want our fourlegged family members to travel with us — and travel in style. In fact, more destinations and hotels are opening their doors to our animal family members, and airlines are offering more options for our traveling pets. United Airlines, for example, boasts an award-winning PetSafe animal transport program to ensure animals too large to travel in the cabin with their owners arrive safely and comfortably to the destination.
Last year American Airlines raised the bar on pet travel with the introduction of its first-class pet cabin on the Airbus A321T plane, which flies between Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO) to New York (JFK). The airline’s standard $125 pet carry-on fee can include a reservation in the first-class pet cabin on a first-come, first-serve basis when the pet’s owner is flying in first class, too. The small, ventilated compartment accommodates dogs in their kennels (standard rules apply) for takeoff and landing; your pet can sit with you on your lap or at your feet during the flight.
“American Airlines knows its transcontinental customers’ lifestyles, so we designed the special first-class pet cabin on threeclass A321Ts to make it easier for customers to travel with their jet-setting pets,” said Barbara DeLollis, spokeswoman, American Airlines. “It’s a unique feature, and it’s becoming popular with trendsetters.”
Earlier this year, Amtrak expanded its pet travel from a pilot program to a permanent policy on most train routes throughout the United States. Now dogs and cats up to 20 pounds can travel with their people, taking pet travel to the rails (on trips of up to seven hours).
“We are excited to bring this service to more of our passengers throughout the country who want to travel with these cherished family members,” said Joe Boardman, president and CEO, Amtrak.
If traveling by car with your pet, Milo’s Kitchen has a few tips to get her road-ready. Go for a joy ride — to the park or a friend’s house — so car rides can be associated with fun, too, not just a trip to the vet. Be sure your pet’s crate is a “happy place,” somewhere she feels comfortable, before heading out on the road. Pamper your pup — some hotels offer puppy massage, but you can do it, too. And bring home with you — pets like familiarity, so bring along her favorite blanket and toys so the familiar scents are with her.
If your road trip takes you to Washington, D.C., hop over to Alexandria, Va., named one of the top U.S. dog-friendly cities by Animal Planet; there are 150,000 people and 40,000 dogs within the city. The D.C. suburb not only offers plenty of alfresco restaurants with patios on which to dine with your pet but also boasts seasonal, hour-long canine cruises that tour the seaport on board Potomac Riverboat Co. vessels and the VIP Pet Salon, where those with four legs can enjoy hot oil and mud treatments, hydrotherapy, massages and even a blueberry facial that helps with tear stains and odors. To keep Fido feeling frisky, check out Frolick Dogs, a year-round doggy gym that offers day boarding, agility training and much more.
When it’s time to check in for the night, a director of pet relations welcomes furry visitors to the Kimpton Morrison House Hotel in Old Town Alexandria and ensures pet amenities are in place, including in-room dog beds and food and water bowls. In fact, all Kimpton boutique hotels welcome any pet that fits through the doors — whether furry, feathery or even scaly — no matter size, weight or breed and for no extra charge.
Another hotel brand that welcomes pets through its doors and into its rooms is Loews Hotels & Resorts, through its Loews Loves Pets program. Upon check-in, every dog and cat receives welcome gifts that include a name tag, bowl and treats. A “pet in room” door sign serves as your pet’s “do not disturb” and lets housekeeping know your furry family member is inside, relaxing.
Speaking of relaxing, the Loews Don CeSar Hotel on St. Pete Beach, Fla., ups the relaxation ante with an in-room Pampered Pet massage from Spa Oceana. The hour-long canine massage was created for the hotel’s VIPs (Very Important Pets) to pamper and rejuvenate, perhaps even alongside their pet parents. After a massage, order a snack for your pet from the specially designed room service menu featuring Bow Wow (tenderloin beef with eggs and brown rice), Cat’s Meow (fresh filet of salmon) or a Veggie Feast (mixed veggies with scrambled eggs and brown rice).
Also in Florida, dogs live the suite life at the W Fort Lauderdale through the resort’s PAW (Pets Are Welcome) program. The Doggie Suite is decked out with an in-room Bark Box filled with goodies, a fluffy dog bed to laze the days away and an in-room menu complete with meals such as an organic salmon filet and steamed asparagus, or poached chicken breast with baby carrots, so you can all dine in, in luxury.
The boutique Madison Hotel in Memphis offers Southern charm and the rock ’n’ roll spirit with its Southern Swag for Southern Wag add-on amenity for dogs staying at the property. Upon check-in, your pup will enjoy the use of a luxe plush bed and doggie bowls (so there’s no need to bring them from home) along with all-natural, customized guitar-shaped treats from Three Dog Bakery.
At the Radisson Blu Mall of America just outside of Minneapolis, the Don’t Forget Fido package welcomes dogs traveling with their people with treats, toys and bowls to use at the hotel and take home with them when it’s time to leave. The hotel also encourages its two- and four-legged guests to get outside on a four-mile tour of the nearby Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge so everyone can stretch their legs.
Aside from hotels, HomeAway features more than 344,000 pet-friendly vacation rentals around the world, according to Melanie Fish, travel expert, HomeAway. “With amenities like fenced-in backyards and extra space, vacation rentals are comfortable for the whole family,” she said.
Yappy Hour — think happy hour with dogs — is gaining in popularity at restaurants and hotels around the United States. Back in Alexandria, Jackson 20 hosts a weekly dog-friendly event with drink specials for you and your pup; and The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel in Dana Point, Calif., hosts monthly Yappy Hours, as well as other Yappy events, throughout the year. Be sure to search for Yappy Hours wherever your travels may take you and your pup so you can enjoy even more time together.
These are just a few fun ways to travel with your pet. For more ideas, visit BringFido.com, a terrific resource for traveling with pets to find not only pet-friendly destinations but also attractions, restaurants, hotels and events all around the world.
Mazatlán, Mexico, has long been an attractive home destination for Canadian and American retirees, but, in recent years, young, digital nomads have also discovered the charms of this coastal city, finding inexpensive accommodations, beautiful weather and plenty of bandwidth for working remotely. The laid-back beach scene definitely eases the transition of relocating to Mexico’s West Coast.
Embracing a life well lived often means embracing a life well-traveled. Every journey becomes a canvas for experiences that shape our lives and at the heart of every adventure lies the indispensable companion: quality luggage.
Global Traveler Announces the Winners of the 2023 Outstanding Diversity & Inclusion in Travel Awards
For its third year, Global Traveler awards the airline, cruise line and hotel brand best representing diversity, equity and inclusion within the travel industry. Over the past year Global Traveler analyzed many airlines, cruise lines and hotel brands to determine which companies prove most committed to changing the world through diversity and inclusion.
The highly anticipated GT Tested Reader Survey has more reason to celebrate in 2024 than ever before. This year marks the 20th anniversary of our GT Tested Reader Survey awards, with many of the winning brands earning milestone accolades for years of dedicated and consistent service.
Reconnecting the World: GBTA Convention 2023 Spotlights the Vital Role of Business Travel and In-Person Connection
In an increasingly digital and interconnected world, the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Convention remains an indispensable platform for business travel industry professionals seeking to make the most of the power of face-to-face connections. Taking place August 13–15 in Dallas, the 2023 GBTA Convention provides the unique opportunity for professionals and companies to join visionaries, thought leaders and industry experts for meaningful networking, cutting-edge insights and inspiring innovation.
As another phenomenal year of travel comes to an end, it’s time, as always, for Global Traveler to celebrate and award those who do it best as we announce the 2023 winners of the GT Tested Reader Survey awards. But that's not the only cause for celebration here: We've hit another major milestone, as this marks our 20th year honoring the best of the best inn world of travel!
Next summer, Denver, Colorado, becomes home to the country’s first carbon-positive hotel. The 13-story Populus features 265 modern guestrooms, a ground-floor restaurant, café, flexible meeting spaces, and signature rooftop restaurant and bar. Architecture is designed by Studio Gang, with interiors envisioned by Wildman Chalmers Design.
United Airlines is in the midst of a major initiative to modernize its fleet over the next several years. After first announcing the plan in 2021, planes fitted with United’s signature interior are finally beginning to appear across the airline’s narrowbody fleet of Boeing and Airbus planes. United flyers are sure to notice these enhancements from the moment they step on board: Each new or updated plane sports remodeled seats, seatback entertainment screens for everyone, Bluetooth connectivity and more, all adding up to a better experience on every journey.
Private jet charter service Jettly recently conducted an extensive study to find the most and least reliable U.S. airports in 2023. Analyzing the total number of delays, cancellations and diversions from more than 390 U.S. airports provided by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the results saw the least reliable airports span all corners of the country.