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15 Best Airline-Approved Pet Carriers in 2022

Deborah R Fletcher
  Sep 25, 2022 7:36 AM

Our furry friends and family are our closest friends and family, and we bring them everywhere we go. Companies now make it easier than ever for us to transfer our pets, even on airlines.

Airline-approved pet carriers will allow you to take your furry friends on vacation, and they may even be more comfortable!

When choosing one of these carriers for your pet family member, keep more than just comfort in mind.

It must be tough enough to withstand your pet's claws and robust enough to be carried without collapsing around them! With so many options accessible, this can appear to be a difficult decision.

Don't worry, BestForPets (bestforpets.org) has made the procedure as simple as possible by testing as many of them as we could get our hands on.

The ten reviews of the best airline-approved pet carriers that follow will compare our favorites and perhaps help you decide.


Reviews

Mr. Peanut's Airline Approved Pet Carrier - Overall Winner
 


Mr. Peanut's airline approved pet carrier was our favorite of all the options we tried. It was stylish for you and comfortable for your pet. It weighs only two pounds but can transport pets weighing up to 15 pounds.

Keep in mind that these carriers are designed to house pets while they are laying down, so they may appear crowded when they are standing.

When lying down, however, its carrier can be stretched to provide more space. Even better, the expansion region is entirely constructed of mesh, allowing for even more breathability.

We all consider our dogs to be members of the family, and we all want them to be secure. To that end, this carrier includes seatbelt attachments to keep your dog safe while you're driving.

The foundation is built of sturdy plywood that will not bend or collapse when carried with your pet inside. The plywood is covered in soft, thick fleece to keep your small buddy comfy for the duration of the voyage.

This was one of the more expensive solutions we looked into, but the value is excellent. Overall, we believe it is the greatest airline-approved pet carrier option available.

Pros

  • Several color options
  • Fits pets weighing up to 15 pounds
  • Waterproof as well as breathable
  • Attachments for seatbelts
  • It only weighs 2.7 pounds.

Cons

  • One of the more expensive alternatives

 

Best Value Sherpa Airline Approved Pet Carrier
 


We believe the Sherpa 55552 pet carrier is the greatest airline-approved pet carrier for the money because it is just over half the price of our top recommendation.

This one comes in three sizes, with the bigger carrier holding pets weighing up to 22 pounds. This makes it one of the largest we tested and an excellent alternative for individuals who have slightly larger pets.

The carrier's bottom is coated with a silky fake lambskin liner to keep your pet comfortable and snug. Even better, it's machine washable, so you can keep it clean and smelling fresh.

We liked how the seatbelt straps allowed you to buckle up your pal while in the car. There's also plenty of ventilation because the carrier's walls are all mesh.

The zippers should be robust enough to keep your pets enclosed over extended journeys. Unfortunately, we felt that the zippers were a weak spot, and that the locking function did not adequately keep them closed.

Larger pets may not have the most difficulty opening these zippers, so keep a watch on them when you initially put them in.

Pros

  • There are three sizes available.
  • Large accommodates pets weighing up to 22 pounds.
  • Seatbelt fastener
  • Mesh allows for optimal breathability.
  • Reasonably priced

Cons

  • Zipper failures

 

Airline Approved Pet Carrier RUFF LIFE 101 - Premium Choice
 


Carrying your pet through an airport may not be the most comfortable option for either you or your pet.

To address the problem, RUFF LIFE 101 has created this wheeled pet carrier with an extensible handle that can be pulled like a suitcase.

This will be a much smoother journey for your pet and a far less strenuous workout for you.

This type can accommodate cats and dogs weighing up to 14 pounds, making it ideal for smaller pets. When they go inside, the sides expand to provide them extra space.

While the wheels and telescopic handle were convenient, this carrier wasn't without problems. First and foremost, it weighs well over 6 pounds.

This isn't a problem when you're wheeling it, but you'll have to pick it up on periodically. This may be more challenging for you because of your excess weight.

The RUFF LIFE 101 carrier is also one of the more expensive solutions we tested, so expect to pay a premium for the convenience it delivers.

For us, the sacrifice is worthwhile, which is why we suggest this carrier as a premium option.

Pros

  • It has wheels.
  • Handle extends
  • Pets weighing up to 14 pounds
  • Expands to provide more space for pets

Cons

  • It weighs more than 6 pounds.
  • One of the more expensive alternatives

 

TSA Airline Approved Carrier Henkelion
 


The Henkelion airline-approved pet carrier is inexpensive and compact, but it falls just short of our top three.

It can transport pets weighing up to 15 pounds, which appears to be about average for this sort of pet carrier.

Except for the mesh side panels that allow for ventilation, this one is made of waterproof material. A safety leash connects to your pet's collar inside to keep them safe throughout transport.

This is a great safety feature, though we'd like to see seatbelt loops as well.

While this carrier was designed to be collapsible for storage, the walls were left flimsy enough to fall when pets were inside.

This implies it doesn't stay upright and can periodically go over on its side. Despite this problem, it's a pretty good operating carrier with no other obvious flaws.

It falls just short of the quality supplied by our budget option, the Sherpa 55552, for the price.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Pets weighing up to 15 pounds
  • Waterproof
  • Inside is a safety leash.

Cons

  • Doesn't remain upright properly
  • Soft-walled collapses
  • Occasionally flips over

 

Pet Carrier with Soft Sides by EliteField
 


This EliteField soft-sided pet carrier is available in medium or large sizes.

It offers some safety features that we always look for in a pet carrier, such as a built-in leash to tether your pet or loops to allow the entire carrier to be secured by a seatbelt.

This was also the lightest pet carrier we tested, at only 1.6 pounds.

Being the lightest is advantageous for carrying something around, but it comes at the expense of decreased durability.

To begin, some of the pets we kept in the EliteField chewed right through the mesh in no time.

We also noticed that because the bottom is soft and compresses over your pet, carrying your pet in this carrier is significantly less handy than other carriers.

This is significantly less pleasant for your companion, and no one wants to intentionally make their pets unhappy.

The carrier's final fault was its overwhelming chemical odor when we initially received it. The scent went away after a few days, but we were hesitant to use it while the smell lingered.

Pros

  • At only 1.6 pounds, it is extremely light.
  • Integrated leash
  • Loops for seatbelts

Cons

  • Chemical odor is really strong.
  • When carrying a pet, the soft bottom collapses.
  • Mesh is easy for pets to gnaw through.

 

Airline Approved Travel Carrier X-ZONE PET
 


The X-ZONE PET airline-approved soft-sided pet travel carrier, priced in the middle of the pack, offers one of the greatest weight capacities of any carrier we tested, at 20 pounds.

It has the greatest space for your pet at just under 20 inches long, but it still fits under most aircraft seats. Unfortunately, it is not extensible, therefore you are limited to the current size.

We were nevertheless excited because it was rather large to begin with. When we tried to put a puppy in, we quickly discovered that it was a little smaller in actuality than claimed.

This carrier, despite being one of the strongest on paper, has a cheap feel to it. It does not appear to be as durable as many of the other things we compared it to.

During our testing, no pets escaped, but you can tell the wear from the excursions it has done.

Overall, it's a good product; but, we believe that several others offer more value for money and will leave you and your furry loved one more comfortable, and hence happier.

Pros

  • Pets weighing up to 20 pounds can be accommodated.
  • Fits beneath most airline seats.

Cons

  • Dimensions are less than those listed.
  • Low-cost construction
  • Not extensible

 

PetAmi Pet Travel Carrier is an airline-approved pet travel carrier
 


If you're seeking for the airline-approved soft-sided pet travel carrier with the most color options, the PetAmi is the way to go.

This carrier, which is available in both small and large sizes, comes in 15 different color options, which is more than any competition we've encountered.

It's still reasonably priced, sitting in the middle of the pricing range.

We quickly realized that this carrier is shorter than claimed. It only supports pets weighing up to 12 pounds, thus it won't fit anything other than very small pets.

It also didn't appear to want to keep its shape, which we think is really frustrating for the unfortunate animal within.

When the walls collapse, it is uncomfortable for your pet and might be frightening for some.

Several of the goods we tested had this problem, but others had stronger frames to keep their shape while traveling.

We choose models that maintain their shape throughout transportation and have weight restrictions greater than 12 pounds.

Due of these factors, despite its numerous color possibilities, the PetAmi will only rank eighth on this list.

Pros

  • There are two sizes available.
  • There are numerous color variations.

Cons

  • 12 pound maximum weight
  • Shorter than stated
  • Doesn't want to keep its shape

 

Pet Carriers Approved by Akinerri Airlines
 


The Akinerri pet carrier, available in medium or large sizes, is a fantastic blend of price and strength, so we had great hopes for it.

The medium can accommodate pets weighing up to 15 pounds, while the large can accommodate creatures weighing up to 18 pounds.

Both are reasonably priced and come in three hues. The frame keeps it upright, which we appreciated, but some obvious flaws held this one back.

With this pet carrier, the pad on which your pet will lie is very thin. In comparison to competitors, we simply did not believe it was as pleasant for our pets.

It's also not extendable, which is something we'd like to see on all models. The most serious issues were with durability.

The shoulder strap broke while carrying one of our favorite pets, and we just made the grab in time! We also had issues with the zippers failing after only a few journeys with this carrier.

Finally, in our first position, we like the lifespan of something like Mr. Peanut's carrier.

Pros

  • Large accommodates pets weighing up to 18 pounds.
  • Reasonably priced
  • It is supported by a frame.

Cons

  • The pet pad isn't particularly thick or comfortable.
  • The shoulder straps are extremely frail.
  • Zippers frequently fail.
  • Not extensible

 

Pet Carrier Approved by Zampa Airlines
 


The Zampa pet carrier is the most affordable model we examined, priced at the low end of the spectrum and available in five colors.

It only accommodates pets weighing up to 10 pounds, which is far less than we had hoped for.

Because of the low price, it's also the only carrier without a comfortable mattress for your pet to lie on.

Instead of soft fleece, the Zampa comes with a thin black pad that is significantly less comfy than we prefer to see our pets travel on.

Furthermore, the bottom of this carrier collapses while you are carrying your pet.

This is much more uncomfortable for them, and we prefer sturdy bottoms in our pet carriers so they don't collapse when being transported to the plane.

Overall, we weren't satisfied with this pet carrier and recommend spending a little more to obtain our budget option, the Sherpa 55552.

Pros

  • Very low cost
  • A variety of colors

Cons

  • Only accommodates pets weighing up to 10 pounds.
  • There is no cushy pad for your pet's comfort.
  • During transport, the bottom tends to collapse.

 

Airline Approved Pet Carrier Smiling Paws
 


This Smiling Paws pet carrier is one of the most expensive we tested. We naturally expected it to be one of the best.

We liked how all sides of this carrier stretch to provide your pet the most space available. On a plane, you're probably not going to use this feature.

This is one of the bigger carriers, weighing roughly three pounds. You'll feel the extra weight if you have a long walk to your terminal.

The Velcro enclosure was the worst issue we encountered with the Smiling Paws pet carrier. One piece of the top is secured with Velcro, which isn't strong enough to keep some creatures in.

If this had been discovered mid-flight, it could have been disastrous. Fortunately, we discovered this while driving, before it was too late.

Choose one of the more durable versions that received our top ratings to save yourself the bother.

Pros

  • All sides enlarge

Cons

  • Extremely costly
  • The Velcro enclosure is insufficiently sturdy.
  • At 3 pounds, it's quite heavy.

Compare Products

Showing  1 - 10  in  15 results
1
  • SCORE
    9.4
    AI Score

    Our experienced team created the BFP Score rating algorithm. Our BestForPets tool automatically scores it from 0 to 10 based on the data gathered. This score is unrelated to or influenced by any manufacturer or sales agency website. Find out more

  • Brand
    Mr. Peanut's
2
  • SCORE
    9.4
    AI Score

    Our experienced team created the BFP Score rating algorithm. Our BestForPets tool automatically scores it from 0 to 10 based on the data gathered. This score is unrelated to or influenced by any manufacturer or sales agency website. Find out more

  • Brand
    Sherpa
3
  • SCORE
    9.0
    AI Score

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  • Brand
    RUFF LIFE 101

We are excited to get your feedback. 

Please let us know your thoughts via email: 

[email protected]

4
  • SCORE
    9.6
    AI Score

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  • Brand
    Henkelion
5
  • SCORE
    9.2
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  • Brand
    EliteField
6
  • SCORE
    9.4
    AI Score

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  • Brand
    X-ZONE PET
7
  • SCORE
    9.4
    AI Score

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  • Brand
    PetAmi
8
  • SCORE
    9.4
    AI Score

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  • Brand
    Akinerri
9
  • SCORE
    9.2
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  • Brand
    Zampa
10
  • SCORE
    9.2
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  • Brand
    Smiling Paws Pets

Last update on 2022-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images, Product Titles, and Product Highlights from Amazon Product Advertising API


Choosing the Best Airline-Approved Pet Carriers: A Buyer's Guide

We've gone through a lot of information about a variety of products. Don't let it overwhelm you; our buyer's guide will help you make an informed purchase.

Certain aspects we believe are the most crucial to consider when selecting a pet carrier to entrust with your beloved companion.

Let's go over those things quickly so you don't forget them.


What is the weight of your pet?

Many of these carriers were of similar size. You should still measure your pet's general size to ensure they'll fit a particular product before purchase, but we believe their weight is more vital.

Each carrier will be rated for carrying pets weighing up to a specified amount. Put your pet on the scale to see how much they weigh so you know how big of a pet carrier you'll need.


Loops for Seatbelts

Your pet will not appear at the airport by itself. They will accompany you in some kind of car. Your pet, like humans, is vulnerable to the inherent dangers of a car ride.

As a result, we suggest pet carriers with seatbelt hooks so that you may belt your pet in just like you would any other member of your family.


How Will You Handle It?

If you've ever been assigned to the farthest gate in a huge airport, you understand how far this may be.

Your pet may appear light at 12 or 15 pounds right now, but after strolling for 15 minutes, they may appear much heavier. Some carriers include handles, while others include shoulder straps.

You may even have them with straps that go over the handle of a rolling suitcase. Some pet carriers even have rolling wheels and extended handles for maximum portability.


Expandable

Being extensible is one of our favorite features offered on many airline-approved pet carriers nowadays.

Not all of them are, but some of them can be expanded on one, two, or even all four sides.

While you may not always be able to use this function on an aircraft, your pet will appreciate it when you can spread it out and offer them more room.

Finally, we're constantly looking for the most comfortable alternative for our furry friends, and we believe that expandable pet carriers are frequently that option.


Conclusion

BestForPets (bestforpets.org) hopes you now have a good notion of what to look for in a pet carrier. You should also have a good idea of which one will best suit your requirements.

We covered a lot of ground in our reviews of the best airline-approved pet carriers, so we'll summarize here.

Overall, we thought Mr. Peanut's soft-sided pet carrier was the finest option.

Even though it barely weighs 2.7 pounds, it was robust enough to transport a 15-pound pet without collapsing. It's fashionable, comes in a variety of colors, and has vital safety features like seatbelt loops.

Look no further than the Sherpa for the best airline-approved pet carrier for the money.

It comes in three sizes and can accommodate pets weighing up to 22 pounds at a very reasonable price. Furthermore, it is breathable and contains a seatbelt strap for your pet's protection.

Finally, the Airline Approved Pet Carrier RUFF LIFE 101 was our premium pick. It is the most practical carrying choice because to the wheels and extensible handle.

It also expands to make traveling with your pet more comfortable. We have complete confidence in recommending all three goods.


5
4 ratings