Emotional Support Animal Travel Changes

2021 is bringing big changes when it comes to flying with an Emotional Support Animal (ESA).

According to Forbes, “After more than a year of lobbying by US airlines, Emotional Support Animals (ESA) may be departing the passenger cabin. On December 2, the US Department of Transportation announced that it is revising the Air Carrier Access Act on the transportation of service animals by air ‘to ensure a safe and accessible air transportation system.'”

Trained service animals like guide dogs for the blind will be permitted; ESA animals will not. Instead, they will be treated as pets, and their owners will need to pay pet travel fees. The new rule is scheduled to go into effect this month.

Some mental health experts are worried about the new rule saying it could increase anxiety by some passengers who fly.

Airlines say the number of Emotional Support Animals has skyrocketed and some have questioned the different species of support animals that have included: snakes, monkeys, ferrets and hamsters.

CLICK HERE to see the official new rule on the U.S. Department of Transportation website.