Flying Cats (No Easy Feat)

Lap SampsonYesterday a guest post I wrote was published over on Katzenworld. In the post I told Sampson’s story and asked the readers if they would be willing to donate and help us fund Sampson’s move to Finland.

Among the comments of support a number of readers have expressed their surprise at the cost of moving Sampson. I too was surprised when I received the quote for the expense, but then again an international move isn’t cheap!

There are a lot of different expenses involved with moving a cat from one country or another. I’ve decided that, due to the interest shown, I will share the numbers I was given with you, giving a detailed breakdown of what the money raised will be doing. This may also help other people who are considering moving pets abroad to gain a better understanding of the costs involved.

(Disclaimer: costs involved will vary based on the countries involved, type and size of pet, company used, date of travel, etc. The numbers below are meant to be informative rather than definitive. Also please bear in mind the currency, some of these numbers are in euros, others in pounds.)

  • Rabies jab: 98.60€ – The rabies jab must be given at least 21 days prior to flying. Price may vary from vet to vet and depending what other health checks are given at the time. (This number was found by looking back through my records and may include bank fees as it was paid in England on my Finnish credit card.)
  • Pet passport: £72.05 – Just as humans flying abroad require passports, so to do pets. (This was also charged on my card but doesn’t include bank fees – I’ve not had my statement through yet so this is the exact cost as stated on the invoice I received.)
  • Transit kennel: Free – The company I’m using for Sampson’s move included this for free within their package. Other companies may or may not, and it is also possible to choose to provide a transit kennel oneself, although they must reach strict requirements on size etc.
  • Freight Charge (Heathrow to Helsinki): £303.50*
  • Export Airline Handling Fees/FSC/Security: £116.25*
  • Agency fee: £48*
  • Completion of Health Check in the back of the Pet Passport: £95*
  • Overnight boarding at the transit company’s cattery: £44*
  • VAT: £121.35 – The numbers marked with * do not include VAT, which is listed separately here.
  • Collection: £150 – Being that I’m already in the destination country it’s not possible for me to deliver Sampson to the transit company, and as I was unable to get anyone to take him (in the morning of a work day) I was required to pay a collection fee.
  • Out of hours fee: £90 – When almost at the end of getting everything arranged I was informed that an out of hours fee would be involved. The transit company had been incorrectly informed by the airline with regards to which flights pets are allowed on. It turned out that Sampson could only go on a morning flight, and that because he’d need to be at the airport 4 hours ahead of the flight out of hours fees were unavoidable.
  • Admin fees: £50.97 – I wasn’t actually quoted for these, but was told they were included in the final number. The number I list is the difference between the final number and the quote (that didn’t include it).
  • Local charges: ~100€ – I’m not entirely sure what these are, but I’m reliably informed that we will have to pay them when we collect Sampson from the airport.

Grand total: ~200€ + £1091.12

Converted into euros that is: ~200€ + ~1475€ = ~1675€

…which tells me my estimate/goal to raise money for is actually a bit low! Admittedly when I wrote the guest post I was not aware of the collection, out of hours or admin fees, nor the local charges. I also didn’t have an exact amount for what the pet passport would cost.

It’s a lot of money. A lot of money.

Since I wrote the guest post a little over a week ago circumstances changed. The people looking after Sampson were not going to be able to keep him much longer and the timetable sped up. As a result I have had to arrange for the move to take place a lot sooner than we were expecting. In fact, as we speak Sampson is in the transit company’s cattery awaiting his morning flight. This time tomorrow he will be with us!

Whilst it’s a relief to have his move sorted logistically the money is still an issue. I’ve had to charge everything to my credit card and hope for the best. The donations we’ve received so far are generous, and we are exceedingly grateful for them. And every cent we receive from here on out will continue to help us with paying for Sampson’s move.

Hopefully you found this post and the cost breakdown enlightening. Even having been faced with the numbers over the last several days it has been a shock to me to see exactly how much it is all together!

Thank you for reading, and if you were one of the lovely people who have donated so far I thank you for that too. You are our heroes.


Lady Joyful

7 thoughts on “Flying Cats (No Easy Feat)

  1. Pingback: Not Friends Yet | Katzenworld

  2. Reblogged this on Ann's Corner and commented:
    Sure seems an exorbitant expense just to move a little cat!
    Can anyone help defray the cost?
    I can’t, but I can share the story 🙂

  3. Pingback: Greedy Sampson | Katzenworld

  4. I wish I could give more! Keep the donation link active for a few weeks–I’m hoping the friends I contacted will donate, too.

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