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Hello and welcome to Seat 1A!

When you travel, do you ever wonder how you can be that person who is always ahead of the pack, even when things go awry? Hosts Vinod Viswalingam (@VViswalingam) and Geoff Dahl (@geoffdahl) are proud to present The Seat 1A Podcast.

Seat 1A aims to provide savvy travellers with advanced industry based knowledge to enhance the air travel experience and take off from the crowd. By arming you with an understanding of the systems, processes, rules and structures that define modern air travel, Seat 1A strives to give you the upper hand by examining real experiences from abroad.

Whether traveling in ultra-economy or first-class, with or without frequent flyer status, knowing how the operation works will keep you moving in front of the masses, especially when things don’t go as planned. Seat 1A provides tips and tricks on how to make your travel experience as smooth and efficient as possible. Our goal is that you'll be in Seat 1A all the time!

We have over 5 million miles of flying and over 10 years working for numerous airlines, enjoying all classes and cabins, and exploring airports on every continent. We're enthusiastic #avgeeks, with a keen interest in modern aviation trends and aim to share our knowledge in The Seat 1A Podcast. To learn more about who we are, check out Experience 010!

The Seat 1A Podcast also relies on feedback from listeners, offering the chance to take real experiences and analyze them, breaking them down to understand what happened, where things went well or wrong and what can be learned from it. If you have a story, question or experience that you would like to share, please email us at stories(at) or find us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

In the meantime please find us wherever you download your podcasts, and tell all your friends!

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May 21, 2024

We’re happy to be back after a few months of hiatus.

In this experience we examine pets and other furry fliers, and Vinod shares a couple of trip reports.

We have talked about animals as cargo in previous experiences. Airlines should know that there is an animal in the plane. Vinod remembers a dog that escaped out of the plane in Edmonton and went missing for weeks. Geoff remembers a poor dog that made a mess of itself in the kennel. Vinod remembers a massive dog that took up a row of seats with a passenger flying from St. John’s to Toronto.

Animal kennels on board need to be able to fit under the seat under the seat in front of you.

Prior to COVID in the US, there was a large number of unique support animals brought onboard.

We saw Dexter the emotional support peacock, Daniel the emotional support duck, Fred the miniature service horse, an emotional support pig, Gizmo the emotional support marmoset and a turkey at security.

Eventually in 2020 a new rule was implemented differentiating between trained support animals and emotional support animals.

Vinod shares a story that his father would share about a passenger feeding a miniature monkey in his jacket.

Vinod shares his experience of rescue dogs flying from Taiwan to Canada.

We wonder what happens with irregular operations and delays with pets. Vinod shares his memory of rats and mice in aircraft.

If you're liking this episode experience, you may also enjoy Experience 41. "What are you Shipping? The Complex World of Air Cargo." It's available wherever you listen to your podcasts. 

Vinod shares a couple of trip reports. 

The first was a flight from Toronto to Vancouver that was delayed by more than three hours. There was extra drama with passengers and a crying baby.

The second was a family vacation to Costa Rica. Vinod’s son had wonderful interaction with a Delta pilot in Atlanta. The return flight via Los Angeles, caused Vinod’s loathing and hatred of the airport to go up a notch.


If you have a story about pets and animals on flights, or other experiences that you would like to share, please email us at stories(at) or find us on Facebook, X/Twitter, and Instagram. If you wish to support the show financially, we are on Patreon. Show notes are available online at