Chapter 2: Who to contact before your trip
Time to read: Approximately 3 minutes
Check home first
You may need to follow your own country's Travel Rules first, not just your destination which could involve obligations before, during your travel, and after you've returned home.
Check with your home Responsible Authority first!
It's easy to launch into trip planning with the destination first in mind - People without an Assistance Dog do it all the time. However, if your own country has strict quarantine controls, you may have to fulfil their requirements first in order to return home.
If this is the case, your Travel Process will vary depending on the country you are visiting. The process may involve obligations before and during your travel, and after you've returned home.
Home and abroad Responsible Authorities
You may need to communicate with both your home Responsible Authority and all Destinations' Responsible Authorities before your trip. One Authority will not manage the entire process for you. It is not a one stop shop unfortunately. Again it is better to email or phone, and check.
Don't forget to confirm that all Responsible Authorities can meet your arrival and departure time BEFORE you book. Then email and confirm just before you fly.
You may be required to complete some Travel Processes before you even travel, and they could be out of the order you expect.
As an example, you may need to complete your Travel Process in the following order:
- Step 1, Process for Returning home (your own country's Responsible Authority)
- Step 2, Process for Arriving into your destination (destination's Responsible Authority)
- Step 3, Process for Leaving home (your own country's Responsible Authority)
- Step 4, Process for Leaving your destination (destination's Responsible Authority)
If you have multiple countries in your itinerary, you will need to discuss your requirements with every country's Responsible Authority.
Every time you cross a country border you are starting a new Travel Rules process. If possible, try to organise your trip to have no repeat border crossings, as each crossing will cost you time and money.
Of course if you are travelling on a valid EU pet passport within Europe life is a lot simpler for you.
Airlines and Cruise Ships
Finally, you must also check with your airline or cruise ship before booking anything, as they may have additional requirements. These usually have a lead time of several days/weeks and relentless paperwork so anticipate this.