Leaving On A Jet Plane

| June 1, 2011 | 0 Comments
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More Than Money

Yes, Pet Airways is in business to generate a profit. They are a publicly traded company (OTCQB: PAWS) but Pet Airways is a company that has a heart and they are animal lovers first and foremost. When a Pet Airways flight is not full they use open cabin space for transporting rescue dogs. They have worked closely with relocating dogs from Mississippi Puppy Mills and work with Best Friends Animal Society to help re-home pets across the country. Finally, Pet Airways also helps out our our US servicemen get their pets around the country. Getting our servicemen reunited with their pets is a labor of love for the folks at Pet Airways. Pet Airways feels there is more to business than dollars and cents!

Introduction

Link To Pet Airways

My wife, Lorraine, and I are passionate about showing our dogs in conformation events. Oftentimes that means we have to fly our dogs to events like Westminster Kennel Club in New York City or the AKC Eukanuba Championships in Long Beach (Orlando, Florida in 2011). By far the most stressful part of the trip is not watching our dogs in the ring, it is getting them from home to the show location and back home on a jet. The dogs are loaded into cargo by folks who are overworked and may not have your dog’s best interest at heart. The dog is placed in a very stressful situation with folks that generally have limited understanding of the care required to transport a pet with minimal stress. That means Lorraine and I are upset travelers until we meet our dog on the other end of the flight.

Enter Pet Airways, an airline that specializes in transporting pets across the United States. I had the pleasure to speak with one of Pet Airways founders, Alysa Binder, about this new concept in pet travel. The first thing I had to ask is “how do you start your own airline?”.

Some History

Pet Airways Founders

Pet Airways Founders Dan Wiesel, Alysa Binder, and Zoey

Alysa Binder and her husband, Dan Wiesel, were successful executive recruiters for Silicon Valley startups during the 1990’s through 2005 when Pet Airways was founded. One of their claims to fame is finding and placing the first 38 employees for eBay! Alysa and Dan thrived on the intellectual horsepower that flowed through Silicon Valley and that kept them fired up about their business.

Somewhere along the way they decided to relocate to Florida so they packed up their life and their little Jack Russell, Zoey, and flew east. Like all pets who are too big to fit under the seat of an airplane, Zoey had to fly in the cargo hold. This was a stressful situation for Alysa and Dan, but it was Zoey who suffered the most and, after a long flight, came out of the plane in a traumatized state. Although Zoey soon recovered, Alysa and Dan were determined to make sure that Zoey’s traumatic airline experience was a thing of the past.

Possessing entrepreneurial spirits, Alysa and Dan set off to solve the challenge of moving our pets in a secure, safe, and comfortable fashion. Dan’s passion for flying (he is a licensed private pilot) led Alyssa and him down the path of creating a brand new airline that would cater only to pets.

The Dream Begins

Pet Airways Ready For Takeoff!

Pet Airways Ready For Takeoff!

Creating an airline is no easy feat, but Alysa and Dan knew they had an interesting niche idea that was bound to be a hit given US pet owners spent almost $45 billion on their pets in 2009. As more and more families include their pets on their vacations and other trips, the need for a pet-specific airline seems obvious, but it was Alysa and Dan who pushed that dream into a reality. They partnered with Suburban Air Freight who re-tooled a fleet of planes to accommodate crates for Pet Airways Pawsingers™. In order to transport pets, Alysa and Dan spent the first four years of the airline working closely with organizations like the FAA and USDA to ensure all of the regulatory hurdles were cleared and setting up airport schedules.

Pet Airways’ maiden flight took off from Republic Airport in Farmingdale, NY, on July 14, 2009. They are currently located in ten airports from coast to coast. Alysa told me that even more cities are expected to come online in 2011 to make it even easier to get your retriever from here to there!

The Pet Airways Experience

Pet Airways is the ultimate flying experience for their Pawsingers™. Ensuring your pet’s welfare is always the cornerstone of any Pet Airways flight plan.

The Pet Airways experience begins in the Pet Lounge where you are greeted by a Pet Airways representative and you and your retriever are interviewed for any of your dog’s special needs, food, etc. The only “pat down” your retriever will get on this airline is lots of pets from the Pet Airways staff.

For any flights that are longer than five hours, the flight makes a stop to air, feed, and play with your dog. This may may mean that you have to arrange your flight plans around the longer flight times your dog takes but you know that your prized pooch will be getting first class service the whole trip. Another great thing about Pet Airways is that the staff is made up of skilled pet professionals. It includes veterinarians, dog trainers, passionate dog owners, etc. You can rest assured that all of the folks caring for your retriever know what they are doing.

If anything happens to your pet in-flight or on the ground, Pet Airways will contact you. And should you get stuck and are unable to pick up your retriever, Pet Airways has partnerships with local pet hotels in the cities they service. You can also track your pet as it travels across the country on the Pet Airways website.

Pet Airways offers a charter service for its customers so if there is a big event like the Westminster Kennel Club, or the Master National you and your fellow competitors can arrange a flight just for your retrievers! What a way to go! Frequent Flyers? Yep they also offer a frequent flyer program where our canine frequent flyers earn an free trip after every five flights!

What more can be said about an airline that caters to the most important members of our families? Check this airline out the next time you and your retriever are making plans for a trip!

Category : Destinations

About the Author ()

I am one of the founders and editor of Retriever Life. My passion is Labradors of all sizes and shapes but I am a big fan of all the retriever breeds.

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