When your beloved pet has places to go, let them soar through the air.
Travellers around Australia may not get to go overseas until at least December, but that doesn’t mean that your pets can’t take to the skies. If you’re moving house or adopting an animal from interstate, let Pawmobile transport your pets safely through the air. Pawmobile is a Melbourne-based flight service just for pets. Instead of being transported in the cargo hold, they travel comfortably inside the cabin of the plane, under the watchful eye of an experienced animal manager. This service is exclusively for animals, not people, so your pet will feel like a rock star on their very own private plane. Pawmobile runs flights between Melbourne, Devonport and Sydney, with plans to expand to other cities around Australia.
What is Pawmobile?
Travelling interstate with a pet is hard enough. But when you throw in a global pandemic, it becomes even harder.
“I was operating a road transport service for pets and started to think about how difficult it was for people moving their pets around due to the reduction in commercial flights,” said Fiona Millhouse, creator of Pawmobile.
She wanted a way to move pets around in a safe and stress-free environment, and her solution was to start her own air transport service. Instead of being transported in cargo, or on the road over several days, pets fly in the comfort of the cabin, with an experienced animal manager travelling with them at all times.
During her development phase, Fi reached out to a few different airlines to make her dream possible. She landed on GAM Air, which flies out of Essendon Fields Airport every week.
“All the staff are animal lovers themselves, and they were very excited to work with us to make Pawmobile flights a reality,” Fi said.
Of course, while the vast majority of passengers are dogs or cats, any animal that can fit on the plane and in a transport crate is welcome. Fi has transported bunnies, birds and even a pair of rats named Salt and Pepper.
“We’ll happily accommodate any pets that can be safely and legally transported,” said Fi. “We are always very mindful of different rules in each state and we make sure all our travellers comply with biosecurity regulations.”
How does it work?
Simply call Fi on 0450 429 009 or Cathy on 0452 561 422 in order to make a booking at Pawmobile.
Both the check-in and the unloading procedures are quite fast, so you aren’t separated from your pet for too long. Check-in takes place about 15 to 45 minutes before departure. After that, the pets are loaded into their crates, put into the cabin and secured for the flight by the pilot and Pawmobile crew. Upon arrival, pets are immediately unloaded and brought to you at the gate.
And if you’re worried about your furry friend getting stressed on board, don’t worry. According to Fi, the pets are always well-behaved. “In general, about 95 per cent of them actually sleep the trip away, and we love seeing that because we know they aren’t stressed,” said Fi.
In addition, pets are provided with bright orange Comfort Buddies to keep them company. After the flight, they can take these Comfort Buddies home as a reminder of their adventure.
Fi has big plans for Pawmobile. While flights to Sydney are currently on hold due to current COVID restrictions, she has plans to expand flights to other cities around Australia, and even cross the Tasman to New Zealand.
“We’re about to operate our first two Melbourne to Brisbane and return flights, and these will become a regular service,” she said. “By the end of this year, we’ll be making exciting announcements about Perth, Darwin and Auckland.”