More often than not, when a pet owner starts to plan their pet’s move they logically would like their animals to travel along the same timeline that they and the rest of the family travel. While we will always try to accommodate this for our clients, it’s sometimes not that simple. So, what goes into confirming a move date for your pet? Today we’d like to show you a little behind the scenes on the many steps we take and possible roadblocks we could incur when building your pet’s travel timeline.
1. When We Get Started
The sooner you reach out to PetRelocation, the quicker we can start building your move plan. After your initial contact with PetRelocation, one of our experienced sales specialists will reach out to you within two business days. If our team seems like a good fit for your needs, we’ll get to work building you the perfect plan and within a week you will receive your proposal. To ensure we have enough time to piece together all the complicated steps of an international move, PetRelocation will always require at least 30 days from the time you sign your contract until the date of travel. However, this is not a guaranteed move date, as there are many factors that will dictate when your pet can start their journey.
2. Building Your Timeline
Once you have accepted our proposal of services and signed your contract, you will be assigned a relocation coordinator, who will start by reviewing your pet’s vet records and building a timeline. It’s important to understand that before you have signed your contract for services, PetRelocation cannot obtain and review your vet records to ensure your pet meets the requirements to travel.
Once we have reviewed your pet’s vaccines, we can then build your pet a plan and timeline that’s customized for their destination country. At this time, we will present you with a projected date of travel for your four-legged friend.
PetRelo Tip: Know your desintaion requirements! Some destinations will require a longer timeline than others. You can find a list of the countries and their import requirements here!
3. Quarantine Availability
If your pet is traveling to a country that requires quarantine, like New Zealand, we will be required to apply for space. Typically, we cannot book a flight nor get the USDA government endorsement for your pets to travel until we can prove this has been reserved.
However, there are only a finite number of weekly spots available in quarantine. If your desired date of arrival has no availability, we will then book the next available date. In many cases, the closest available date will be within the same week, but sometimes a full quarantine station may result in delaying a move date by weeks or even a month. While we do our best to accommodate your original move date, quarantine can be at capacity with little notice and the best we can do is work on an ideal plan B for your pet. It’s important to have a direct conversation with your relocation coordinator on what your options are if your pet has significant delays due to an overbooked quarantine facility.
Cody and Ryder in Singapore's pet quarantine station
4.Booking Your Pet’s Flight
The last step in securing your pet’s move date is the flight. We have discussed several times the limitations we may face when it comes to booking flights.
When a flight is canceled or when a desired date of travel is not available, your PetRelocation coordinator will work hard to ensure your pets travel on the closest date possible to keep your timeline as close to the original plan as possible. However, please be cognizant that if a flight routing is canceled for longer than a day or two, this could result in your pet needing to have an updated quarantine reservation, import permit, and in some cases new vaccines or veterinary visits. If that is the case, your coordinator will present you with a new timeline within the following one to two days and would result in a new move date.
It may come as a surprise, but a pet’s timeline and availability to travel will sometimes be affected by your own travel plans and other human-related factors! For instance, perhaps you would like to travel ahead of your pets to get your home pup-friendly for their arrival. While that’s a great idea, if you’re moving to somewhere within the United Kingdom or European Union, this could cause some re-working of their travel plans. If a pet does not arrive within 5 days of their owners, they are considered a “commercial” shipment. While your relocation coordinator will know exactly how to navigate this situation, be mindful that pets arriving commercially must adhere to a different timeline, which then affects possible arrival dates.
Another situation we’ve encountered is when applying for the required permits your pet needs to enter a country, that country’s government may require proof that you have obtained housing in a property that allows pets. We have seen this in places such as Singapore and the Netherlands, just to name a few. If this cannot be proven, we may need to rework your pet’s move plan and travel date until his or her people have found suitable accommodations. This is just one of the many logistics to consider when choosing your pet’s move date and juggling it with your own plans!
As you can see, choosing a realistic move date for your pet can be a bit of a puzzle, but luckily one that PetRelocation is familiar with solving! It’s always helpful to come to our team with a preferred move date in mind, but due to factors out of our control, we may not be able to accommodate this. When possible, always start planning your pet’s travel as early as possible.
We understand that planning pet travel is a lot of work, but you do not have to do this alone. Our team has years of experience in planning and replanning the most complicated move timelines, and we’d love to offer our expertise to you and your pet. Get in touch with us today!