Traveling with Your Cat Using Uber: A Complete Guide for Cat Parents

Traveling with Your Cat Using Uber: A Complete Guide for Cat Parents

From understanding Uber's pet policy to rewarding your cat after a successful journey, we've got you covered. Discover valuable tips on minimizing stress, securing the carrier, handling anxious cats, and more.

Get ready to embark on stress-free and enjoyable Uber adventures with your beloved feline companion!


Uber's Pet Policy and Preparations

Understanding Uber's Pet Policy and Regulations

Before booking an Uber ride with your cat, it's essential to understand Uber's pet policy and any specific regulations that may apply. While Uber generally allows pets, the policy can vary depending on your location, here you have the US Pet policy. Some cities or regions may have additional guidelines or restrictions regarding traveling with pets in Uber vehicles. To ensure a smooth experience, it's crucial to review and comply with Uber's pet policy in your area.

To find information about Uber's pet policy, you can visit Uber's website or search for "Uber pet policy [your city/region]." This search will provide you with specific details about whether pets are allowed in Uber rides, any size or breed restrictions, and any additional requirements for traveling with animals.

Some cities may require pets to be in carriers or restrained during the ride, while others may allow them to be on a leash or in a harness.

When I travel with my cat Mia I generally have her on my lap and on a leash + harness but I always ask the driver if they are okay with it.

Additionally, there may be rules regarding the cleanliness of the vehicle after the ride if you are traveling with a pet. By familiarizing yourself with these regulations, you can ensure compliance and avoid any issues or conflicts with drivers or Uber's policies.

It's important to note that Uber's pet policy is subject to change, so it's a good practice to review it periodically or before each trip to stay updated on any modifications or updates. By understanding and adhering to Uber's pet policy and regulations, you can ensure a hassle-free experience when traveling with your cat using Uber.

Riding with a Pet on Uber is More Expensive

As you'll be traveling with a pet, it's important to note that Uber Pet trips come with an additional cost compared to regular rides. Moreover, in the event that your pet causes any mess or damage to the vehicle, the driver may apply a cleaning fee.

Minor traces of pet hair or animal odour are generally acceptable and won't incur a cleaning fee. However, if your pet has an accident that requires car cleaning, such as urine, faeces, vomit, or damage, you will be responsible for covering the cleaning fee.

I did a quick analysis of what happens ordering a Pet Uber in NYC and this is what I've learned:

  • The cost of uber Pet is an extra $5 in absolute
  • For short trips the impact is greater relatively to longer trips
  • Uber has most of their regular prices ending at .9 (shady...)


No Pet (Uber X)


Absolut Difference

Percent Difference

Short Trip (10min)





Long Trip (30min)





Airport (20min)





Should You Use a Carrier for Your Cat in the Car?

When traveling with your cat using Uber, it's crucial to ensure their safety and comfort. While using a cat carrier is not the only way to do so, it's the safest. Here are some key steps to prepare a carrier that provides a secure and cozy environment for your feline companion:

  1. Choose the right carrier: Select a carrier that is appropriate for your cat's size and temperament. It should be spacious enough for your cat to stand, turn around, and lie down comfortably. Opt for carriers made of sturdy materials, such as hard plastic or metal, which provide better protection and durability.

  2. Ventilation is essential: Make sure the carrier has proper ventilation to allow for adequate airflow. Look for carriers with multiple ventilation holes or mesh panels to ensure your cat receives fresh air during the journey.

  3. Secure closures: Test the closures and zippers beforehand to ensure they are functioning properly and won't easily open during transit.

  4. Line the carrier with comfort: Place a soft blanket or towel on the carrier's floor to create a comfortable surface for your cat. this will also allow them to spread their pheromones (point 5). This not only provides a cozy spot for them to rest but also helps absorb any accidents or spills that may occur during the ride.

  5. Familiar scents and objects: Introduce familiar scents or objects inside the carrier to help comfort your cat. These familiar scents can help reduce anxiety and provide a sense of security for your cat. For my cat Mia I use a small towel that I always take with me.

  6. Test the carrier's stability: Before using the carrier for an Uber ride, ensure that it is stable and secure, particularly if you are intending to have it next to you instead of on your lap or on your feet.

  7. Practice with short trips: If your cat is not accustomed to being in a carrier or traveling in a vehicle, consider acclimating them through short practice trips. Gradually increase the duration of these trips to help your cat become more comfortable with the carrier and traveling in general.

By following these steps and preparing a secure carrier, you can provide your cat with a safe and comfortable space during their car ride.

Remember, a well-prepared cat ensures that your cat remains protected and at ease throughout the ride, particularly when it´s in a car that´s not yours and your cat doesn´t know.

How to Request a Pet-Friendly Uber

When booking an Uber ride with your cat, it's important to request a pet-friendly ride to ensure a smooth experience.

Pet Uber Ride

Follow these steps to request a pet-friendly ride through the Uber app:

  1. Open the Uber app: Launch the Uber app on your smartphone and make sure you are logged into your account.

  2. Enter your destination: Enter the address or location where you want to travel with your cat as your destination.

  3. Tap on the ride options: The app will display various ride options available in your area. Look for the option that indicates pet-friendly rides or mentions acceptance of pets.

  4. Select the pet-friendly ride: Choose the pet-friendly ride option by tapping on it. This option ensures that the driver is comfortable with having a cat in the vehicle. This option as of July 2023 costs an extra $5 vs. regular rides but ensures that the uber driver is ready to take both, you and your pet.

  5. Confirm the ride: Review the details of your ride, including the estimated fare and pickup location. If everything looks correct, tap on the "Confirm" or "Request" button to book the pet-friendly ride.

It´s good mojo to communicate with the driver. After requesting the ride, you have the option to communicate with the driver through the app's messaging feature. Use this opportunity to inform the driver that you will be traveling with a cat. This allows the driver to prepare accordingly and ensures a smoother experience for both you and your furry friend.
Be ready for pickup: Once your ride is confirmed, be ready for the driver's arrival at the designated pickup location. Make sure your cat is secured in their carrier or wearing their escape-proof cat harness and ready to go.

    It's important to note that while requesting a pet-friendly ride increases the likelihood of a driver being comfortable with pets, there may still be drivers with allergies or personal preferences. Being respectful and considerate towards the driver's preferences helps create a positive experience for everyone involved.

    Securing the Carrier in the Uber

    If you decide to have your cat on a carrier, ensuring that the carrier is properly secured in the Uber is essential for the safety of your cat during the ride.

    Follow these steps to securely position the carrier in Uber:

    1. Choose the right location: Place the carrier either next to you and secured it with a seatbelt or on your feet. While you can place the carrier in the trunk, it's not recommended as you have less control over your cat's wellbeing. Having the cat next to you allows you to keep an eye on your cat and provide comfort if needed.

    2. Use a seatbelt: If placing the carrier on the back seat, use the seatbelt. Buckle the seatbelt around the carrier, ensuring that it is tightly secured to prevent any movement or sliding during the ride. This helps to keep the carrier in place and provides stability.

    3. Utilize the floor space: If the carrier is small enough, you can position it on the car's floor, between the front and back seats. This helps create a stable and secure position, minimizing any potential shifting or tipping during the ride.

    4. Maintain clear visibility: When securing the carrier, ensure that it doesn't obstruct the driver's rearview mirror or impede their visibility in any way.

    Minimizing Stress for Your Cat when Riding on a Car

    We have a whole article talking about cat comfort when driving, but here are a few basic tips.

    Traveling in an Uber can be stressful for cats, but there are steps you can take to help minimize their anxiety and create a more comfortable environment. Here are some tips for reducing stress during the Uber ride:

    1. Create a cozy carrier: Make the carrier as comfortable as possible for your cat. Add a soft blanket or towel inside the carrier, ideally, a towel they've impregnated with their smell upfront.  This can help your cat feel more secure and at ease during the ride.

    2. Use calming supplements: If your cat is not familiar with car riding, consult with your veterinarian about any cat-safe calming products that may be suitable for your feline companion.

    3. Maintain a quiet environment: If your cat is a little anxious, try to limit external stimuli that may cause stress for your cat. Keep music low and try to not open the windows.

    4. Avoid sudden movements: While in the Uber, try to avoid any sudden movements or quick stops that may startle your cat. Smooth and gentle driving can help reduce anxiety and provide a more comfortable experience.

    5. Reassure your cat: Stay close to your cat during the ride to provide comfort and reassurance. Your presence can help your cat feel more at ease and alleviate any anxiety they may experience.

    Remember, every cat is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. Pay attention to your cat's behavior and adjust your approach accordingly.

    Safety Measures and Essentials

    While traveling with your cat in an Uber, it's important to stay with them throughout the ride to ensure their safety and comfort. 

    1. Avoid opening the carrier: While it may be tempting to open the carrier and let your cat out during the ride, it's essential to keep them inside for their safety if they are not wearing a cat harness. Opening the carrier can increase the risk of escape or injury, especially in a moving vehicle.
    2. Monitor your cat's behavior: Pay attention to your cat's behavior throughout the ride. Look for signs of stress, such as excessive panting, restlessness, or vocalization. If you notice any signs of distress, try to soothe your cat with comforting words and gentle strokes.
    3. Be prepared for accidents: Cats may experience anxiety or motion sickness during car rides. Be prepared for the possibility of accidents and carry necessary supplies like absorbent pads or wet wipes to clean up any messes quickly and efficiently.

    Remember, the safety of both you and your cat is paramount during the Uber ride. Avoid any actions that may compromise the driver's ability to operate the vehicle safely, such as excessive movement or distraction.

    Post-Ride Rewards and Positive Reinforcement

    Rewarding Your Cat After a Successful Uber Journey

    After a successful Uber journey with your cat, it's important to reward them for their good behavior and help create positive associations with the experience. Positive reinforcement is used for cat training but can also help habituate your cat to the outdoors, car rides, people, and other animals.

    Many cats won't be interested in food while they are anxious. This limits our ability to use food to reinforce them during the ride but it helps us gauge their stress level. (Won't Eat - Likely Stressed) So when they start eating during the ride means that they got used to the motion and they are starting to be comfortable. This usually happens after the first 10-20 minutes of riding but varies from cat to cat.

    Here are some ways to reward your cat after a successful Uber ride:

    1. Treats and praise: Offer your cat a special treat or their favorite snack as a reward for their calm behavior during the Uber ride. Positive reinforcement in the form of treats can help reinforce good behavior and create a positive connection with the experience.

    2. Playtime and affection: Engage in a play session with your cat using their favorite toys or engage in gentle interactive play. Some cats won't play while stressed so, if they start playing, means they are comfortable. If playtime doesn't work, a good alternative is to offer plenty of affectionate strokes, cuddles, and praise to show your appreciation for their good behavior.

    3. Observe their needs: Pay attention to your cat's needs and provide them with what they require. My cat Mia gets agitated and loud when she needs to use the litterbox. She's learned that the behavior makes me stop and help her relieve herself and we now both understand each other. Listen to your cat and try to identify what they need.

    Remember, rewards should be given during or immediately after the Uber ride to make a clear association between the behavior and the reward. By rewarding your cat after a successful Uber journey, you create positive associations and help make future trips more pleasant for both you and your feline companion.

    Long-Term Benefits of Positive Reinforcement

    Implementing positive reinforcement techniques with your cat during Uber rides and other experiences can have long-term benefits for their behavior and well-being. I've found that the 3 main benefits of positive reinforcement are:

    1. Strengthening the human-cat-bond: Positive reinforcement builds trust and strengthens the bond between you and your cat. By rewarding desirable behavior, such as remaining calm during an Uber ride, you create a positive association with yourself as their caregiver. This can lead to a deeper and more trusting relationship over time.

    2. Encouraging desired behavior: Positive reinforcement helps encourage your cat to exhibit desirable behaviors consistently. Behaviors that are rewarded are more likely to be repeated in the future.

    3. Creating a positive learning environment: Positive reinforcement creates a positive learning environment for your cat. It allows them to associate specific actions or behaviors with positive outcomes, making them more willing to try to understand what are you asking from them. This makes training and teaching new behaviors more effective and enjoyable for both you and your cat.

    In this video, you'll learn how to use clicker training to encourage positive behavior:

    If you've never traveled by car with your cat, consider watching this video first:

    Good luck on your next Uber ride! Stay wild, stay safe and we'll see you outdoors!

    Albert & Mia

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