Emotional Support Animals on Planes

Emotional support animals on planes are starting to become a common fixture in America, and you may have seen them on board an aircraft before. These animals are with their owners to provide companionship, and they can be particularly helpful on an airplane if their owner has anxiety or a fear of flying. They are legally permitted to accompany their owners onto an airplane and even sit in the cabin with them providing the owner has the required letter of approval permitting this. Someone could have a variety of reasons for wanting to take their ESA on a plane with them, and this could be because they are visiting a relative or are moving to another state.

What is an Emotional Support Animal?

An ESA is a companion animal, and their purpose is to be around their owner to provide them with company. The owner must have a verifiable emotional disability, and then get a letter of approval from a licensed mental health professional. These animals are deemed to aid in significantly mitigating the symptoms of someone’s disability and are protected by various laws from being discriminated against. They are commonly used for people who have depression and anxiety too and have a good success rate in these areas.

How Are They Allowed To Board Airplanes?

Someone who has an ESA needs to go to a registered mental health professional and obtain a letter of approval from them stating that the animal is allowed to board an airplane with their owner. We can also arrange for this letter or just give examples of what they should look like and could potentially do it in a faster turnaround time as well. The government has made it a federal offense to discriminate against disabled people and their animals, and The Aircraft Carrier Access Act in conjunction with the Americans with Disabilities Act are the legislation that protect them. An emotional support vest, harness or patch is recommend to make your pets purpose clear to everyone around.

What Does This Act Entail?

The Aircraft Carrier Access Act stipulates that a disabled person, whether physically or emotionally, is allowed to have the right to fly on an airplane with their animal. They must have reasonable accommodation made for them and can’t be charged any fees for the animal to fly. There is a clear difference between service animals and ESA’s though. A service animal doesn’t need a letter of approval to fly, and they can just board with their owner. An ESA, however, does need this documentation and you can’t just turn up for a flight without this letter. This is because a service animal is trained to perform a specific and vital task for their owner, while an ESA is there to provide company.

How Can I Get This Letter?

Providing you already have an ESA, you can either visit a mental health professional to obtain this letter, or we can organize it for you. It could possibly be a lot faster if we were to do it as we have an extensive network of professionals to draw on in order to expedite the process. Please feel free to contact us if you require any assistance, and we will be happy to help or organize something for you.