Skip to main content

Southwest Airlines Community

Service animals and ESA animals

Explorer C

How is travelling with an ESA and travelling with a service animal different?


Is there a charge for an ESA or service animal?


Do I need special paperwork for either of them?


Re: Service animals and ESA animals

Explorer C

A service animal is a dog that helps an individual with a diability and is allowed access everywhere. An emotional support animal is allowed on planes and housing, but not out in public. 


In South West, traveing with an ESA requries documentation that you need an ESA, where a service animal does not need those documents. Instead workers can ask if it is a service animal and what task it does to help with a disability. 

There are no charges for both service animals or ESAs. 


Reminder that your animal must be well behaved to go on the flight 🙂