Business aviation company launches programme for animal companions

Global business aviation company VistaJet has launched VistaPet, a programme designed to help four-legged passengers feel welcome, including through care kits and pre-flight courses to combat pets’ fear of flying.

VistaJet says it has seen a 104 per cent increase in the number of animals flown over the last two years. One in four VistaJet Members flies regularly with their animal companions, and an estimated 30 million people travel with their pets each year.

Yet, the company says travel standards to date have failed to reach expected service levels, with 75 per cent of owners distrusting commercial airlines to safely care for their pets, making the journey stressful for both animal and human.

VistaPet has been designed in collaboration with veterinary practitioners, groomers, dieticians and coaches to respond to the needs and challenges faced when travelling with animals.

Through the programme, VistaJet provides passengers flying with pets care kits, sleep mats and balanced menus, in addition to travel advice, global flying regulations and fear of flying courses.

Given the lack of standardisation in rules for the transport of pets around the globe, VistaJet’s customer service team advises passengers on the relevant regulations that apply to their flights and destinations – including details for vaccinations, microchips, certificates and permits.

VistaJet can also arrange fear of flying courses for dogs, in partnership with The Dog House. The four-week course is aimed at desensitising pets to what they could experience during a flight – the smell of fuel, the sounds of jet engines, cabin air pressure and the movements of air turbulence.

On board every flight, passengers will receive a VistaPet Pochette – a travel bag containing bio-organic pet food, treats created by Michelin-starred chef Michel Roux, water-free shampoos and soothing wipes for pets, and rope toys.

There will also be a menu designed to keep pets hydrated, while VistaJet Cabin Hostesses can offer natural flower essences to mix with pets’ drinking water to aid relaxation during the flight.

While flying regulations require that animals are kept on leash or in a travel cage for take-off and landing, during flight pets can relax by their owner’s side on a handmade sleep mat. A full cabin reclean is included as standard after every pet flight.

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