Traveling can be a lot of fun, but there are certain things to think about when traveling with your cat, especially when it comes to long car trips. So before you head out on a cross-country trip of a lifetime with your feline friend, you should ensure you have the right kind of cat carrier that keeps your pet safe and comfortable for the entirety of the trip.
In this article, we’ve put together our top picks for the best cat carrier for car travel, whether that be cross-country or just down the road.
The Best Overall Cat Carrier for Car Travel: Mr. Peanut’s Expandable Gold Series Pet Carrier
Mr. Peanut’s expandable soft-sided pet carrier is the best cat carrier for long trips due to its versatility and comfort. This carrier advertises to pet owners who travel by plane, but this carrier is ideal for traveling via car as well.
This carrier is light and comes with a padded shoulder strap for your comfort. For your feline’s comfort, they get a removable plush faux fleece bed, and the carrier has mesh on all sides for proper ventilation.
There is a zip-out atrium that is removable and can expand to more than double its size. While this is not ideal for use while driving, it does give your cat extra room while waiting at the veterinarian’s office, pet groomer, or other places you may want to take your cat.
The Best Cat Carrier for Long-distance Travel: PetLuv “Happy Cat” Premium Carrier
Long-distance travel is expecting to see a surge, including road trips. 60% of Americans say they will be traveling for leisure in the next three months. If you plan on a road trip this year, make sure your feline travel companion is riding in style and comfort.
This is the best cat carrier for long car travel due to the ample space and excellent ventilation it provides. There are plenty of windows for your cat to watch through to entertain them. Seat belt loops, zippers that lock, and reinforced seams keep your cat safe and away from harm.
The Best Budget Cat Carrier for Car Travel: Necoichi Portable UltraLite Pop-up Cat Carrier
Sometimes you need a cat carrier to get your pet from point A to B and don’t need all the luxuries of a top-quality carrier. The Necoichi Portable Ultralite Pop-up Cat Carrier is a terrific option, especially for new cat owners on a budget.
This cat carrier collapses, making it easy to carry and transport with you. It is also completely foldable, making it easy to fold up and tuck away in a cabinet, closet, or other small storage space.
While it is light enough to carry, it is durable and sturdy enough to hold up to 17 pounds and is easy to clean. It includes extra-large windows for your feline as well as plenty of ventilation.
The Best Foldable Cat Carrier for Car Travel: SPORT PET Travel Cat Carrier
This cat carrier is designed specifically for cats―both for comfort and to keep them safe. The door of the carrier is a wide side-opening gate that you can open or close immediately. Both the latch and the door are made from strong and durable polycarbonate to keep your cat safe.
This foldable cat carrier is suitable for car trips, the vet’s office, or traveling. There is a removable waterproof bed that keeps your cat comfortable. It also prompts them to relax or even sleep during long car rides.
The Best Cat Carrier With Accessories for Car Travel: Pet Fit For Life Portable Cat Condo
This is the best cat carrier for long car travel since it has its very own pop-up litter box, bowl, and even a cat wand. Having these supplies on hand makes it convenient when taking your feline on long road trips. It helps, especially during outings where you can’t get out of the car as much.
The carrier comes in two sizes: medium and large. Both size carriers are spacious enough for your pet to walk around in, and the large size is big enough for two adult cats.
The carrier’s bottom has a velvet-covered floor pad with room to add your cat’s favorite bed if needed. Since this is more of a tent-style carrier, it is best to put the cat into the carrier once the carrier is in the car.
Although the carrier is from durable fabric, it may not be the most suitable for carrying around your pet. It is more of a place for your cat to be secure and comfortable while in transit, making it one of the best cat carriers for cross-country trips.
The Best Hard-shell Cat Carrier for Car Travel: Petmate 2-Door Top Load Kennel
This hard-shell cat carrier has both a top and front door for easy accessibility and can hold up to 10-20 pounds. The door latches are easy to squeeze, and the handle is comfortable to hold while carrying.
Petmate’s cat carrier is roomier than most travel carriers, giving your cat enough room to roam around. This carrier does not come with a liner or bed, so make sure to line the bottom with a soft blanket or some type of carpet.
The Best Soft-sided Cat Carrier for Car Travel: Pet Magasin Airline Approved Cat Travel Carrier
This lightweight cat carrier weighs a little over two pounds. It is comfortable and easy for the pet owner to carry. You can carry it with a handle or use the padded shoulder strap.
The soft exterior makes it easy to clean with a simple wipe. When not in use, you can completely fold the carrier for easy storage.
Its padded inside helps calm your pet down and encourages them to nap. Below the padding, there is a firm floor. The floor is firm and sturdy enough to prevent it from collapsing underneath a heavy cat.
Best Top Opening Cat Carrier for Car Travel: Pet Magasin Hard Cover Collapsible Cat Carrier
It can be hard getting your cat to come out of its carrier, especially after being in the car. A carrier that opens from the top makes things easier for you and your feline.
This carrier is from both hard and soft material to give you the best of both worlds. The hardtop and base provide durability, while the soft sides collapse for storing when not in use.
Best Durable Cat Carrier: AspenPet Pet Porter
Petmate’s AspenPet heavy-duty, stable cat carrier is made from a durable hard exterior with a secure metal door to protect your cat on even the roughest of terrain. Although it is built solidly, this carrier is lightweight and has great ventilation to prevent your cat from overheating.
Light assembly is needed and can be done easily with metal nuts and bolts, resulting in a sturdy carrier. Industry-leading plastic is used to decrease the number of sharp edges to create a safe environment for your cat.
This cat carrier is well built and sturdy while being lightweight enough to carry. It also has great ventilation to prevent your cat from overheating.
Aspen’s carrier requires light assembly with metal nuts and bolts. This uses industry-leading plastic to decrease the number of sharp edges. This helps create a safe environment for your cat.
Best Expandable Cat Carrier: Siivton 4-Sided Expandable Pet Carrier
Siivton’s expandable cat carrier provides plenty of room for your cat to walk around and sleep in. The padded inside with faux fleece plush makes it even more comfortable for your pet during a long car ride.
There are four expandable sides to give your pet plenty of moving space. It also increases ventilation while decreasing anxiety. These expandable panels are durable and have an anti-claw net for added protection.
The best cat carrier for car trips is the one that both you and your cat feel comfortable with. Take into consideration the amount of traveling you and your cat will be doing. The longer the car ride will be, the more comfortable the carrier you should have for your kitty.
By choosing one of the above options, you’ll be sure to have a comfortable carrier for your feline friend that makes any journey a happy one.