Travelling with a Cockatiel

Key Takeaways

  • Understand the essentials of traveling with a cockatiel, ensuring both safety and comfort.
  • Discover how to prepare your cockatiel for different modes of travel.
  • Learn about the importance of a well-equipped travel cage and maintaining your bird’s health and happiness on the road.

Travelling with a cockatiel is not as daunting as it might seem at first glance. Whether you’re planning a short trip by car or contemplating flying with your feathered friend, it’s entirely possible to make the journey smooth and stress-free for both of you. Here,  I’ve gathered practical advice and tips to help you navigate the travel process, ensuring your cockatiel remains happy and healthy throughout your journey.

Preparing for Travel

1. Health Check and Documentation

Before booking any trip, it’s essential to ensure your cockatiel is healthy. A visit to the vet for a check-up is crucial. This is also the time to discuss your travel plans and get any necessary health certificates, especially if you’re flying. For more detailed information on what’s needed, explore cockatiel veterinary care practices.

2. Getting the Right Travel Cage

A comfortable and secure travel cage is paramount. It should be spacious enough for your bird to move around yet compact enough to be easily transportable. Include familiar toys and perches to make the space comforting. You can find out more in our article on setting up the perfect cockatiel cage.

3. Acclimatising Your Cockatiel

Acclimatise your cockatiel to the travel cage and the concept of travel gradually. Short, supervised sessions in the cage can help make it a safe space for your bird.

Travel by Car

Travelling by car is often the easiest and most controlled way to travel with a cockatiel. Here are some tips to make the journey smooth:

  • Secure the Cage: Ensure the cage is securely fastened to prevent any movement that could distress or injure your bird.
  • Avoid Direct Sunlight: Keep the cage out of direct sunlight to prevent overheating.
  • Regular Breaks: Take regular breaks to check on your bird, offer water, and allow for some fresh air if the weather permits.
Car Travel EssentialsDescription
Travel CageSecure, well-ventilated, and comfortable
Water and FoodAccessible dishes within the cage
Familiar ItemsToys or items from the home cage to provide comfort
Cover for the CageTo help calm your bird and provide darkness if needed

Flying with a Cockatiel

Can you fly with a cockatiel? Yes, but it requires preparation:

  • Airline Policies: Check the airline’s pet policy in advance. Some airlines allow birds in the cabin, while others may require them to travel as cargo.
  • Health Certificates: As mentioned, ensure you have all necessary health documentation.
  • Travel Cage: Airlines have specific requirements for travel carriers, so confirm these details before your trip.

Health and Comfort

Do Cockatiels Get Motion Sickness?

Yes, cockatiels can experience motion sickness, especially during their first few travels. Signs include regurgitation or excessive drooling. It’s crucial to monitor your bird’s behavior and consult a vet for advice on managing motion sickness.

Maintaining Routine

Keeping to your cockatiel’s routine as much as possible during travel can help reduce stress. This includes feeding times, playtime, and interaction with you.

Maintaining RoutineWhy It’s Important
Familiar ScheduleHelps reduce stress and keep your bird calm
Regular InteractionMaintains your bond and provides reassurance
Consistent DietPrevents digestive issues and maintains health


Travelling with your cockatiel can be a rewarding experience, allowing you to share more adventures with your feathered companion. By preparing adequately, understanding your bird’s needs, and staying informed about travel requirements, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable trip for both of you. Remember, the key to successful travel with a cockatiel lies in thorough preparation, patience, and lots of love. Safe travels!

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