Planning a trip with your pet? You're not alone. More pet parents than ever are packing up their pets and hitting the road. Our pets are family, so whenever we can, we like to include them. As a result, not only are pet parents planning their trips differently, but many businesses are also responding to the uptick in traveling pets with expanded services. Pet travel is on the rise, and we’ve figured out what’s trending!
1. Pet-centric Travel Planning
Pet parents are making their travel plans with their pets in mind, instead of just "bringing them along." Pet-centric trips are all about doing things with your pet -- that you'll both enjoy. There are pet friendly destinations and accommodations for any type of experience you're looking for.
If your pet is the outdoorsy adventurous type, a vacation rental, cabin, or campground situated in the mountains or woods may be the perfect pet friendly getaway. Being able to get out there to explore some trails and become "one with nature" might be just the ticket. For the water dogs of the world, pet parents are planning trips to the beach as well as lake trips so their pups can enjoy either playing in the surf, boating, paddle boarding, or all of the above!
Pets that have a more social demeanor and enjoy being out and about are venturing out with their people to more urban settings - where they can enjoy pet friendly restaurants, shops, and attractions. For the more laid back pet that really only wants to be with you, pet parents are seeking out pet friendly accommodations that fit the bill. Whether it's a secluded vacation rental with a cozy fireplace to curl up in front of, or a fancy hotel that offers spa packages and room service for both you and your furry companion, pet parents are planning these types of pet-centric trips.
2. Pet Concierge Services & Pet Amenities
A growing number of accommodations that are pet friendly are expanding the services they offer. They realize that catering to pets goes a long way to win the hearts and bookings of pet parents.
Some hotels now provide pet concierge services. Services may include: arranging for dog walking and pet sitting (which can be offered by the hotel or booked through a third-party service), scheduling pet spa appointments, and providing recommendations for nearby pet friendly activities and services, as well as restaurants and shops that allow pets.
Special pet amenities are one way that pet friendly accommodations set themselves apart -- and many are jumping on this bandwagon. Pet amenities range from pet welcome baskets and special pet bedding, to designated dog potty areas, pet room service, and on-site dog play areas.
3. More Pet Friendly Things to Do
More traveling pets = more pet friendly things to do. From pet friendly restaurants and breweries to whale watching tours, dog friendly beaches, and other pet friendly excursions, more businesss and destinations are opening up their hearts and doors to pets.
Did you ever think that your pet could join you on a winery tour or ghost hunting tour? How about mining for gems, antiquing at area flea markets, or even apple picking with your pet? Yes! You and your pet can do all all these things. Further, you can find Yappy Hours, festivals, and a 5k or 2 that welcome your pets to come along for the fun in just about any destination.
4. Adventure Pet Travel
With a surge in popularity fueled by millennials, more pet parents are planning adventure travel with their pets. These types of trips can be active, inspire exploration, or involve experiencing something for the first time. They can come with spectacular views, access to places that normally wouldn’t be so reachable, or just a check off your bucket list.
Hiking, paddle boarding, kayaking, and rafting are just a handful of the many more active pet friendly adventure trips that pets and their parents are taking. Colorado River Runs in Vail, CO lets you and your pup experience river rafting on the Colorado River together. In North Carolina, pet parents can explore Cape Hatteras National Seashore with their pet. And for the highly athletic pooch, Olympic Valley, California offers a place where you and your dog can hike and swim at the Squaw Valley Aerial Tram.
For the less active adventurers, Two Dog City Ghost Tours in Spokane, WA invites you and your pet to get spooked side by side. Pets and their parents can also explore the nations' capital with DC by Foot tours. And the list goes on!
5. More Pets Buckling Up
This trend is one that makes us especially happy. We buckle up when we're in the car, as do the rest of our family members. However, for far too long pets have been overlooked when it comes to vehicle safety. They have been allowed to travel "free range" when going on road trips. This is not only dangerous to them but also to the rest of the passengers. The good news is that an increasing number of pet parents are taking measures to properly secure their pets in their vehicles. Pet seat belts, pet car seats, travel kennels, and vehicle pet barriers are among the various methods used.
Author: Elise Laurie
Elise is a big pet lover and marketing major at Central Washington University. As a marketing intern at TripsWithPets.com, Elise most enjoys building on her marketing knowledge and focusing on pets in the process. She is mom to one Chihuahua mix, Sophie, and enjoys traveling with her husband and Sophie in her spare time.