There’s now a more comfortable way to take your favourite four-legged family member on holiday

Hong Kong travel company Life Travel has started chartering private jets from here to Japan for pooches and their owners.

Starting at around HK$70,000 for a week in Okinawa, Japan, your pup can fly in style and comfort, and can even rack up their own “pet miles” for future trips.

“Dog owners have always wanted to go travelling with their pets, but there’s been no avenue, no way for them,” Life Travel founder Raymond Chung says. “So the purchasing power is there, and the desire is there. It’s about creating those memories.”

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On commercial flights, pets are typically carried in the hold, so flying private means owners have peace of mind knowing their dog is right next to them. Small dogs may sit on their owner’s lap and bigger dogs can sprawl out on the floor. While airborne, dogs and owners can enjoy a healthy and delicious in-flight meal together before arriving and checking into their pet-friendly accommodation.

In China, consumer spending on pets is soaring at about 20 percent per year, and by 2022, will be a US$7 billion market according to research by Euromonitor International. And with more options for destinations and accommodation available, more families will be travelling with their furry loved ones.

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Last year, Life Travel organized three trips to Japan, its only destination for the moment—although the US is set to be added to the list this year. Certain countries, such as Australia, will remain off limits due to strict customs policies and quarantine requirements. The agency plans to ramp up quickly with 13 trips in 2018 and 50 in 2019. 

While Life Travel has received requests for cat, guinea pig, hamster and parrot travel, they only cater to dogs for now.

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