Passenger airlines limit some specialty cargo

A cargo handler moves a pet crate on airport tarmac.

Cargo departments of scheduled passenger airlines are beginning to restrict what type of cargo they accept, as well as drop-off and pick-up windows because of limited flight availability in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

United Airlines notified customers Friday that it is temporarily suspending shipments of pets that travel in the cargo hold and human remains on international flights. Cargo stations will continue to accept those shipments for domestic travel to the extent permitted by United’s current schedule.

United Cargo also said it is suspending performance guarantees for deliveries for all shipments tendered on, or after, March 20.

Air Canada issued a notice that it will no longer accept live animal bookings. 

Meanwhile, Alaska Air Cargo reminded customers to be aware that operating hours are changing at many locations for drop off and pick up because airlines have reduced flight schedules.

Airlines are adjusting daily to a dynamic situation of global travel restrictions and loss of passenger business. Several airlines, including American Airlines, have launched programs to flip passenger planes into all-cargo service to meet commercial needs for airlift.