Author Topic: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??  (Read 1497 times)

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Offline Amyelise85

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Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« on: January 31, 2014, 09:36:06 PM »
Okay, so we're in the process of sorting through fiancé visas and such.. and the only thing that truly stresses me is my cat. I am absolutely OBSESSED with him and couldn't leave him here in the States when I move. I am lost in a sea of information when it comes to UK regulations. It seems the airlines still wont allow small pets in the cabin on flights to the UK, even though the UK has changed their pet scheme. So now, I'm seeing that I can fly AirFrance with my cat in cabin, then have my partner pick me up in Paris and do the whole Eurotunnel deal. This is pricey as it costs so much more to book directly with an airline vs. third party, plus fuel, but my cat is Persian (snub nosed) and I just think I would stress waaayyy too much to have him in hold. Now, I see on another topic that some people had just taken their animals over by sea?? It was only casually mentioned, not discussed. Is there any one that can give me more details on how they did it and their experience? I would gladly take days on a ship without the stress of my cat croaking on the airplane. ANY info would be SO helpful! Please!! :)

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2014, 09:49:39 PM »
Stephanie303 recently brought her snub nosed kitty over via Paris and had a good experience.  Hopefully she'll be along to share.

Yes, you can kennel kitty on the QE2 but I think it fills up 12-18 months in advance and kitty would be next to dogs...

Having moved two cats over myself, I'm glad I did a direct flight. It was over with after about 18 hours total and the kitties were cuddled in my arms on the sofa.

Offline Stephanie303

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2014, 12:13:32 AM »
Yes, I moved my cat and dog over via Paris this past October.  My cat is a snubnose (half persian), so I really had no other choice but to have her in the cabin with me as a lot of airlines will not take a snubnose cat/dog in the hold because of the possibility of breathing problems. 

I flew with Delta/AirFrance, so it was the cost of my flight, plus $200. each for each pet, so it was a huge savings from going into Heathrow with both animals.

I got the cat a really good, sturdy carrier about 6 weeks prior to our departure, I lured her in with catnip, fed her in there every day and once or twice a week I would zip her up inside overnight so she would be used to staying in there for a long period of time.  I also got a TSA approved harness and leash for going through security and when we arrived at Calais and she had to be removed from her carrier.  The harness, leash, collapsible water/food dishes and pads for the carrier were all bought from a company called Dryfur, get on their site and do some reading, it will help put your mind to rest!

As far as traveling with her, she was fine, she got a little antsy on the take off and landing on the first leg of our journey as that was a small commuter plane, but on the Paris leg, she slept the whole night through.  We arrived in Paris, no one blinked an eye, no one looked at paperwork for either animal in Paris.  DH picked us all up, we drove to Calais, zipped through the UK Animal Reception, drove onto the train for the Eurotunnel and back home. 

Both the cat and dog handled the journey very nicely and they are both curled up next to me right now!

If you have any questions about going to Paris with the cat, PM if you want  :)

Offline Amyelise85

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2014, 07:45:31 AM »
Thank you both!!!! I sent a message :)

Offline BabsB

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2014, 08:39:13 AM »
Hello

I have travelled both ways across the North atlantic on the QM2 with my dogs, and there are cats places too.  As someone said earlier, it gets booked up so you need to check space with Cunard.  Its very well handled and much cheaper than our current trip where we are shipping our dog back to Chicago via air at a cost of £900... So ring Cunard and check prices and availability.  It will take 7 days, and your cat or dog has to stay in the kennel area, you cant bring it into your cabin.  Like a boarding facility really.  They supply food and a playroom.  Good luck.

Offline TryingToUnderstand

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2016, 06:38:40 PM »
I'm facing flight charges of $1475 to fly my dog. How did you get only $200? Xx desperate to find cheaper answers xx

And can anyone give me more detail on the travel by sea costs for myself and my dog? I hear it's cheaper but I'm not finding that either x I feel travel illiterate lol
We don't want to break the rules. We just want to be together.

Every day, I remember why I fell in love with him, I remember why I still am and I can see why I always will be.

Offline larrabee

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2016, 06:58:35 PM »
I'm facing flight charges of $1475 to fly my dog. How did you get only $200? Xx desperate to find cheaper answers xx

And can anyone give me more detail on the travel by sea costs for myself and my dog? I hear it's cheaper but I'm not finding that either x I feel travel illiterate lol

The $200ish price tag is usually associated with flying an animal into France.

When flying into the UK, it must travel as manifest cargo and that's where the expense comes in.
When flying into Europe, an animal can travel as excess baggage hence the smaller fee. It amounts to the same thing but is not charged the same way.

Once in France though, you have the problem of getting them the rest of the way. Having someone drive from the UK to meet you is one option.
March 29th 2013-Moved to UK, husband on spouse visa.Oct 20th 2015-Applied by mail for FLR(M).Feb 1st 2016 FLR(M).

Offline TryingToUnderstand

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2016, 07:26:12 PM »
Would they consider that sneaky in the UK government? And if I can't get someone to drive in (my husband said it's really complicated and I doubt anyone could do it that we know), do you know how the flight from there to Norwich or London would work? Or any other options that would be totally up front for the government haha
We don't want to break the rules. We just want to be together.

Every day, I remember why I fell in love with him, I remember why I still am and I can see why I always will be.

Offline larrabee

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2016, 07:40:47 PM »
Would they consider that sneaky in the UK government? And if I can't get someone to drive in (my husband said it's really complicated and I doubt anyone could do it that we know), do you know how the flight from there to Norwich or London would work? Or any other options that would be totally up front for the government haha

No, it is legit. The animal will still need to meet the criteria for entry and be cleared on it's way into the UK.
You are not bypassing that stage, just the high price of flying it in manifest cargo.

I've read of a few people doing it but most just bite the bullet and fly their animals in because logistically, it's simpler.
March 29th 2013-Moved to UK, husband on spouse visa.Oct 20th 2015-Applied by mail for FLR(M).Feb 1st 2016 FLR(M).

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2016, 08:57:05 PM »
The animal would be cleared when you entered the UK by ferry (they can't go on the train).  You can't fly from France, etc., into the UK without having the same original issue of the animal being in cargo.

Also keep in mind this is a very old thread and the costs will be well out of date.

Offline TryingToUnderstand

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2016, 09:10:37 PM »
What about going by train or sea from France? Sorry if I sound hopeless x
We don't want to break the rules. We just want to be together.

Every day, I remember why I fell in love with him, I remember why I still am and I can see why I always will be.

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #11 on: November 29, 2016, 09:19:07 PM »
Pets are not allowed on trains.  They are allowed on ferrys.

If your husband drives to France and you drive back to the UK, you'll take the ferry over and clear UK customs then.

Offline larrabee

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2016, 09:33:57 PM »
What about going by train or sea from France? Sorry if I sound hopeless x

Dogs can go by train or sea but in both cases must travel within a vehicle.

https://www.eurotunnel.com/uk/tickets/travelling-with-your-pet/

http://www.poferries.com/en/dover-calais/travelling-with-us/taking-your-pet
March 29th 2013-Moved to UK, husband on spouse visa.Oct 20th 2015-Applied by mail for FLR(M).Feb 1st 2016 FLR(M).

Offline TryingToUnderstand

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2016, 10:27:16 PM »
So driving really is the only way unless you rent a car just to drive on a ferry? Yikes.
We don't want to break the rules. We just want to be together.

Every day, I remember why I fell in love with him, I remember why I still am and I can see why I always will be.

Offline BertineC

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Re: Travelling from the US to UK with pets by SEA??
« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2016, 11:14:49 AM »
Look into pet courier companies. There is one in particular that does loops through different EU countries every few weeks to pick up/drop off pets. We are considering animalcouriers.com - they quoted us I think £400 per cat to drive them three days door to door from Sweden to London, in a specialized, shared pet taxi with vets as drivers. (Our cats cost exactly $0 to fly because SAS are morons and the desk staff were so excited to see the cats/ours are so cute they forgot to charge us at the desk!)

Oh! they offer a channel hopping service:
http://www.animalcouriers.com/channel-hopping/

They were very responsive when we emailed for a quote. Maybe see what quote they give you because it could save a LOT of hassle in car rental and ferries and hotels etc. They will pick up the pets at the airport and deliver to your home. THAT is worth the price to me!
« Last Edit: November 30, 2016, 11:18:51 AM by BertineC »