Question on Cats and Approved Airlines
We are bringing our 5 cats along with us on our move March of 2019. It seems that Aer Lingus has reasonable rates from the USA to Dublin. I wanted to ask if we need to go through a pet transportation company ? I also wanted to see if Aer Lingus is an approved carrier, I checked http://www.agriculture.gov.ie/pets/ but did not see a listing of approved carriers.
Hi Nick, I don't believe a pet transportation company is required to be used. Not sure about the approved air carrier though I'd have a hard time believing that Ireland's only national airline is not one of the approved carriers.
That being said, you should email your questions to the agency just to be sure:
I personally am using a pet relocation service because as I moved to Dublin solo I have enough on my plate that I needed someone who does this professionally to take care of all the details and make sure I didn't make a mistake. I didn't want me pets sent back on a plane because of a mistake of mine. Others have said it's easy to do on your own but you have to have very fine attention to detail and triple check your information (internet can be tricky you know). I am using a company called Pet Relocator based out of Colorado Springs, CO. I have never met them and they have never met my pets either! They were a recommendation from a friend. Cassandra at Pet Relocator got my 2 cats from San Francisco to Austin Texas flawlessly, from a totally different state. The critters are there in Texas until I find pet friendly accommodation (I'm renting, and it's The Hunger Games over here). Once I get my long term apartment, Cassandra will get the kitties on the rest of their journey here, Austin to Dublin. She also offers a service where she just reviews your paperwork for you if you prefer to do most of the legwork yourself (mentioned on the page linked below).
Hey Nick, Fairly recently, there was a change to the rules for pet moves to Ireland. Until that point, pet relocation companies were a requirement, and all pets had to go through Dublin. I've had confirmation from another mover on here, that that is no longer the case. However, if you arrive into Ireland as your first port of entry in to the EU, then you still need to go through the Lissenhall vet check in Dublin.
Aer Lingus, have long been an approved carrier, but generally it's down to the individual airlines whether they will transport pets or not. Various things are factored in, e.g. the age/health of your pet, the temperature in the departure/arrival city, and the animals breed (this one mostly just affects dogs).
As Jessalyn mentioned above, you have to pay VERY close attention to the paperwork if you decide to do everything yourself. I have done it, back in 2006, and it really isn't rocket science. In fact, even with a pet re-locator, you'll be responsible for most of the heavy lifting anyway. They're just used to seeing the paperwork more often, and can definitely lend an experienced set of eyes to it.
Reach out if you have other questions.
Check out my brand new Moving to Ireland FAQ Guide!