Relocating, whether by choice or for a job, is a big decision that requires forethought and planning. This goes double when you have pets to bring along. Just recently, we had the chance to interview Inge Michiels, Founder of JetPetGlobal, to know more about the process of importing and exporting pets to and from Bahrain.
Can you tell our readers about what you do at JetPetGlobal?
JetPetGlobal assists pet owners that relocate to or from Bahrain with every aspect related to pet travel.
What are the challenges your clients typically encounter when relocating pets to/from Bahrain?
For pets coming to Bahrain, the rules are mostly straight forward; if you respect the rules for importing pets then they should be in their new home about 3 hours after landing.
We rarely have unforeseen challenges but if something does go wrong at arrivals, it usually is because the government in the departing country modernized their system or our government still prefers blue ink government stamps and not so much the new QR codes. Another reason for delayed arrival is when airlines misplace original travel documents. This is considered the same as a person who lost his passport on the way.
At JetPetGlobal, we never allow a pet to start its journey when we are not satisfied that the documentation is correct. However, we still depend on the goodwill of the clearing veterinary and customs people.
For pets traveling elsewhere, most challenges are related to budget, pet breed, specific airline restrictions and final destination requirements.
On the other note, flat faced breeds often face challenges because air travel puts them at higher risk and it is hard for them to be transported during certain times of the year (due to environmental temperatures).Moreover, a lot of airlines refuse them even when there is a lot that can be done to prevent mortality.
As long as there are no improved guidelines on how these breeds can travel more safely, nothing will change and your flat faced friend may have a difficult time coming home with you.
How can you help them overcome these challenges to make sure everything goes smoothly?
Staying informed, planning and communication.
We are an active member of 3 associations dedicated to pet transport. We have access to all the shared resources, including the latest government regulations and are instantly informed of airline updates. We can rely on a worldwide network of relocation professionals who all have the same interest in staying well informed. In turn, we inform our clients and try to answer every question they may have.
Planning is also vital. Once the date of travel is set, we book flights, administration, veterinary visits, crate orders, groomers, etc. Anything that will be needed or requested is noted in a personalized travel calendar and shared with the client.
Communication is also very important. Most people have never done this and are worried something bad may happen to their pet. We believe that no travel question is too much; we may have done the process many times but we will always remember our first time and the stress and anxiety it caused.
How can owners ensure that their pets are safe during transport?
There are strict minimum requirements for animal travel noted in the IATA “Live Animal Regulations” or LAR handbook.
At JetPetGlobal, we go over and beyond these requirements – making sure the pet is as comfortable and safe as possible. We are constantly looking for improvements and currently have three requests to upgrade the LAR pending. If accepted, our improvements will be mandatory for all pets traveling anywhere in the world.
Again, planning is essential too. Every aspect of the trip has to be prepared, confirmed and wrinkle free; there should not be any loose ends. Be prepared, keep your pets’ vaccinations records up to date and allocate a budget. Some relocations may cost less than 150 BHD in total but those are exceptions.
No time is too early to contact us.
Where can our readers contact you?
Via email on firstname.lastname@example.org. This mailbox is monitored by all our relocation managers. You can also find us on Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook and other social channels.
Is there anything else that you would like to add?
It isn’t just a job; I am passionate about what I do and it radiates on to the people we work with.