Review of bags for flying, Part 2 — Sturdibags

So, the bag I’ve used for flying for several years is the Large Sturdibag. For a smaller dog, it’s a great bag, and is very economical and light. The Sturdibag is designed with flexible poles that give it a curved appearance. The advantage of these poles is that you are able to squish the bag under a plane seat, while maintaining the structure of the bag, and maximizing your dog’s room. It has a heavy foam board that zips into the bottom of the bag, giving a good base structure without adding a lot of weight.

Trip has flown a ton in this bag, on several different airlines (Continenetal/United, Southwest, and US Airways), and on all different sized planes. One plane I’d rather forget was so small, people in the first few rows had to move to the back of the plane to redistribute the weight. I’ve sat on the side of the plane with a single seat, I’ve sat where there were 2 or 3 seats across. The only issue I’ve ever had is I prefer an aisle seat, and on Southwest, the aisle seat is a bit narrower, and the bag wouldn’t fit. It fit fine under the window or middle seat (turns out the middle seat is actually the widest).

Front view

Top view

Trip and her bag

The Sturdibag also comes in an Extra Large size, which is considerably bigger, especially when you look at the height of the bag. The design is the same, just slightly larger dimensions. Ticket, my slightly larger Sheltie, fits great in this back. However, even though it *can* be fit under the seat on most planes, it’s so far outside of their recommended bag dimensions that it can definitely cause unwanted attention. I’ve had friends that have been hassled about flying with this bag, and threatened with not being able to get on their plane. I’ve also known people who used this bag for their small border collies without problem. Definitely a tricky situation that is very dependent on who you have to deal with at the airport. For this reason, I’ve never been 100% comfortable with the idea of flying Ticket in this bag–I don’t need the extra stress when flying. Ultimately, that’s why I kept looking until finding the Celltei bag.

Front view

Ticket in the bag

Travelling in comfort

In short, if you have a smaller dog–somewhere under 13″-14″, maybe 15-17 pounds, the large Sturdibag can work for you, and is no problem to fly with. If you have a larger dog, while your dog might fit in the XL Sturdibag, you may have more issues and be denied at the airport. With the slightly larger dog, I would definitely recommend the Celltei bag.

Size Comparison:

Large Sturdibag: 18″Lx12″Wx12″H
Extra Large Sturdibag: 20″Lx12″Wx16″H

Large Celltei Bag (Backpack-o-pet): 20″Lx11.5″Wx12.5″H

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