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Delta to Stop Emotional Support Animals

Delta to Stop Emotional Support Animals

Old Jan 10, 21, 3:38 pm
  #16  
 
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I am beyond flabbergasted.

I NEED to travel with my pangolin!!
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Last edited by bostontraveler; Jan 11, 21 at 9:54 am
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Old Jan 11, 21, 8:15 am
  #17  
 
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Originally Posted by nydave11 View Post
But what about my emotional support elephant. I can't fly without Stampy.


If you get him a magic feather you should be in good shape.
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Old Jan 11, 21, 8:45 am
  #18  
 
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
I hope DL's rules and procedures ultimately aren't perceived as any less stringent than those of competitors UA and AA. It would be frustrating if all of the ESAs and fraud-ESA owners moved their travel to DL and we ended up with more rather than fewer untrained pets in the cabin (and in SCs).
That is the spirit of my question.. If people on DL could book ESA flights for any future date - thru yesterday.. I imagine you will see straggler's in the cabin for the next year.. I think it also makes it harder for the service animal excuse to stick out like a sort thumb.. DL will continue to have ESAs on flights past Jan 11 or past Jan 30 - by virtue of the policy they implemented.

I think the real misunderstanding is the motive.. It isn't about saving the $150 pet fee.. This was all about the folks who wanted to bring Rover their golden retriever on board.. It is interesting they didn't adopt an abusive fee schedule to allow them to continue.. Like must buy EXST and pay a $1000 pet travel fee.. I think the bozo willing to lie on a DofT form, would have also very willingly ponied up for an additional seat and a fee - if that was the new policy vs NO.
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Old Jan 11, 21, 8:56 am
  #19  
 
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Originally Posted by AlwaysAA View Post
I think the real misunderstanding is the motive.. It isn't about saving the $150 pet fee.. This was all about the folks who wanted to bring Rover their golden retriever on board.. It is interesting they didn't adopt an abusive fee schedule to allow them to continue.. Like must buy EXST and pay a $1000 pet travel fee.. I think the bozo willing to lie on a DofT form, would have also very willingly ponied up for an additional seat and a fee - if that was the new policy vs NO.
It is *exactly* about saving the $150 pet fee because it's also not cheap or as easy to check pets as cargo. I've seen/encountered plenty of small pets who would otherwise qualify on size to be a "pet-in-cabin" who have a "Service Animal" vest but I can't say I've come across too many Chihuahuas who fit the bill of "service animal". Keep in mind too that in-cabin pet fee is ONE-WAY too, which equates to $300 round-trip for a pet in cabin. And the reason such people don't just get a pet-sitter or board their animal while they're gone is because they don't want to pay for the sitter or boarding either, which on an extended trip, isn't cheap and which is why the number of "Emotional Support Animals" was always higher over the Christmas/New Year holiday period when folks, many of whom normally don't travel, were taking 7-14 long vacations and pet sitting/boarding fees could run $500+, often with holiday rates (as my wife and I have paid for pet-sitting over various holidays periods). But the ones who don't want to pay $300 for pet fees or pay for checking their pet as cargo or pay for pet-sitting exploited a loop-hole and conjured up that they needed Rover or Fluffy as their "emotional support animal" to get through the stress and hassles of flying simply so they wouldn't have to pay. It is most definitely about money.
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Last edited by ATOBTTR; Jan 11, 21 at 9:09 am
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Old Jan 11, 21, 7:12 pm
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by bostontraveler View Post
I NEED to travel with my pangolin!!
Back in 2014, the New Yorker published an article about absurd ESAs and to make the point, the author took these animals around to different places, including bringing an emotional support pig on a flight and an alpaca to a drugstore. It was a really good read. You can find the article here, or for the tl;dr crowd, there are pictures here.
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Old Jan 11, 21, 8:17 pm
  #21  
 
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Originally Posted by ATOBTTR View Post
It is *exactly* about saving the $150 pet fee because it's also not cheap or as easy to check pets as cargo. I've seen/encountered plenty of small pets who would otherwise qualify on size to be a "pet-in-cabin" who have a "Service Animal" vest but I can't say I've come across too many Chihuahuas who fit the bill of "service animal". Keep in mind too that in-cabin pet fee is ONE-WAY too, which equates to $300 round-trip for a pet in cabin. And the reason such people don't just get a pet-sitter or board their animal while they're gone is because they don't want to pay for the sitter or boarding either, which on an extended trip, isn't cheap and which is why the number of "Emotional Support Animals" was always higher over the Christmas/New Year holiday period when folks, many of whom normally don't travel, were taking 7-14 long vacations and pet sitting/boarding fees could run $500+, often with holiday rates (as my wife and I have paid for pet-sitting over various holidays periods). But the ones who don't want to pay $300 for pet fees or pay for checking their pet as cargo or pay for pet-sitting exploited a loop-hole and conjured up that they needed Rover or Fluffy as their "emotional support animal" to get through the stress and hassles of flying simply so they wouldn't have to pay. It is most definitely about money.
Completely agree. It most definitely is about money. I have never understood why someone would go through all the hassle to falsify that their pet is an ESA, just to save $125 each way (on DL). I usually take my small dog on one trip a year around the holidays. So that's $250 roundtrip. If I was to board her it would easily be twice that much.

In short, if you can afford to fly, you can afford to take your pet if you truly desire to. Same with bag fees in my opinion.

The only other consideration I can think of that people are (or I guess I should say "were") getting ESA certs was in order to avoid finding a compliant carrier. My experience is that DL does not make it easy to find under seat dimensions unlike other carriers who has that info on their website. With DL you have to call and it is 50/50 if the agent can tell you. Even then I have found the underseat dimensions to be even further restricted with the Entertainment Equipment Boxes. We have a 13x8x8 carrier and our 10 lb dog is fairly cramped. I can't imagine attempting to fly with a bigger dog/carrier.
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Old Jan 11, 21, 8:26 pm
  #22  
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and of course the classic “Bloom County” comic from 2015

https://www.gocomics.com/bloom-county/2015/08/25
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Old Jan 11, 21, 9:45 pm
  #23  
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Originally Posted by ATOBTTR View Post
It is *exactly* about saving the $150 pet fee because it's also not cheap or as easy to check pets as cargo. I've seen/encountered plenty of small pets who would otherwise qualify on size to be a "pet-in-cabin" who have a "Service Animal" vest but I can't say I've come across too many Chihuahuas who fit the bill of "service animal". Keep in mind too that in-cabin pet fee is ONE-WAY too, which equates to $300 round-trip for a pet in cabin.
I agree that it's largely about the fee, which over the years rose to indefensible levels. I think it is also partly about not wanting to keep the dog confined to the carrier bag under the seat the entire flight, either for behavior reasons or because the dog is somewhat oversized (no, I'm not talking about Goldens). Frankly, I'd probably rather have a small dog sitting quietly on the passenger's lap instead of barking or crying the entire flight in the bag.
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Old Jan 12, 21, 7:08 am
  #24  
 
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Gosh - I guess if it was all about the fees - instead of banning them - they could have monetized it at an even greater rate than the existing policy. $125 for Rover in the bag, additional seat purchase and $500 fee to allow Rover to sleep and fart at your feet. Because they didn't continue to allow a like offering - it seems not revenue based for the airline.
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Old Jan 12, 21, 7:18 am
  #25  
 
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Originally Posted by AlwaysAA View Post
Gosh - I guess if it was all about the fees - instead of banning them - they could have monetized it at an even greater rate than the existing policy. $125 for Rover in the bag, additional seat purchase and $500 fee to allow Rover to sleep and fart at your feet. Because they didn't continue to allow a like offering - it seems not revenue based for the airline.
Delta isn't banning pets in cabin. Delta is banning "ESA's". DL will still be monetizing a pet-in-cabin fee, though part of the reason the price is so steep is to overall discourage it in the first place, for many reasons, but monetize off of those who are still willing to pay it.

The issue with ESA's is the airline couldn't monetize it because it was treated similarly to a service animal, thus DL couldn't "charge", which is why people who wanted to bring Rover and Fluffy along but wanted to skirt the fees labeled Rover and Fluffy as "ESA's".

Last edited by ATOBTTR; Jan 12, 21 at 1:51 pm
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Old Jan 12, 21, 7:55 am
  #26  
 
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Originally Posted by GagaPilot View Post
Completely agree. It most definitely is about money. I have never understood why someone would go through all the hassle to falsify that their pet is an ESA, just to save $125 each way (on DL). I usually take my small dog on one trip a year around the holidays. So that's $250 roundtrip. If I was to board her it would easily be twice that much.

In short, if you can afford to fly, you can afford to take your pet if you truly desire to. Same with bag fees in my opinion.

The only other consideration I can think of that people are (or I guess I should say "were") getting ESA certs was in order to avoid finding a compliant carrier. My experience is that DL does not make it easy to find under seat dimensions unlike other carriers who has that info on their website. With DL you have to call and it is 50/50 if the agent can tell you. Even then I have found the underseat dimensions to be even further restricted with the Entertainment Equipment Boxes. We have a 13x8x8 carrier and our 10 lb dog is fairly cramped. I can't imagine attempting to fly with a bigger dog/carrier.
We take our dog on at least 4-5 trips annually. I will have to say I've never had a problem in coach getting our carrier to fit, but first class seats are all over the board. I have not been able to get our carrier to fit on the A220 for instance. There is maybe only 6-7" of clearance under the seats and last flight I just pushed the carrier as closely as I could to the seat and wore a blanket over my legs to hide the dog. We also have a soft sided carrier and only leave our dog under the seat until 10,000 ft then put him between us in his carrier on the floor.
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Old Jan 12, 21, 7:37 pm
  #27  
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Originally Posted by AlwaysAA View Post
Gosh - I guess if it was all about the fees - instead of banning them - they could have monetized it at an even greater rate than the existing policy. $125 for Rover in the bag, additional seat purchase and $500 fee to allow Rover to sleep and fart at your feet. Because they didn't continue to allow a like offering - it seems not revenue based for the airline.

They're closing the loophole that allowed passengers to specifically avoid paying the fee. So yes, it's about the fees. Sure, it's about snakes and pigs and peacocks too, but those were likely a VERY small percentage of the ESAs.
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Old Jan 12, 21, 7:41 pm
  #28  
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This is all being incorrectly reported in the media as a ban on ESA's. It isn't. It's simply that your ESA travels just like any other dog and you (or perhaps the dog if it's got the cash) pays the tab.
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Old Jan 12, 21, 8:18 pm
  #29  
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Originally Posted by ijgordon View Post

They're closing the loophole that allowed passengers to specifically avoid paying the fee. So yes, it's about the fees. Sure, it's about snakes and pigs and peacocks too, but those were likely a VERY small percentage of the ESAs.
This is part of it, but let's not forget that if ESAs (and fraudulent ESAs) must now travel as pets, it means that very different rules apply, regardless of the fee. Pets are required to remain inside their carriers on flights and in SCs. It also means that the size of such dogs in the cabin is restricted, although their owners are welcome to pay to have the animal fly in the cargo hold, subject to some route and seasonal restrictions (i.e., for breeds who tend to experience breathing problems in hot weather).

These changes should prevent dogs from roaming around freely in SCs (no leash and no carrier, obviously not trained as a service dog) and dogs from running up the aisle during flights and sniffing/licking other passengers (both of which I've experienced when traveling DL). It should also avoid the problem of animals that are too large (or too untrained) to be capable of fitting in the owner's seating area during flights so that they take space belonging to another customer.
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Old Jan 13, 21, 8:53 am
  #30  
 
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Last month I flew on a DL red eye flight from LAX to ATL on a 764. I was upgraded to C+ in the middle seats and the guy to my right at the window seat at the bulkhead had an empty next to him with a HUGE dog on the floor. Dog was good and slept on the floor the entire flight, perhaps turning around a couple times. Thing is, this emotional support dog belonged to a passenger traveling up in D1 where there was no room so he flew with the friend who had the bulkhead space. That's great emotional support, isn't it. And some airports even have relief areas to curb your dog!
So glad the airlines are finally ending this scam. It has gotten completely out of hand.
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