ATA and IPATA: What is the Difference?

When searching for professional pet transportation providers, two acronyms will lodge themselves in your mind: ATA and IPATA. Though similar in mission, they provide drastically different services. Below, we have detailed the most important differences between the two organizations.


IPATA, or the International Pet and Animal Transportation Association—IPATA was founded in 1979 to provide professional, competent, and caring pet transportation relocation services in the United States and internationally. The association is an international network of pet shippers, comprising over 440 members in over 84 countries (with services to all major airports) worldwide.


IPATA members must be registered with the applicable organizations within their own countries and thus adhere to the rules and regulations of the Live Animals Regulations of the International Air Transport Association (IATA). In the United States, IPATA members are registered with the USDA and adhere to the rules and regulations of the USDA’s Animal Welfare Act. Their professional movers coordinate flights, flight regulations, airway pet policies, flight container requirements, pickup and delivery arrangements, quarantine, boarding, import and export arrangements, and the necessary proper identification.


If you come across a pet mover online, check to see if they have IPATA membership and similar certification. The association’s pet relocation specialists provide skilled and professional services—from animal handling and securing boarding kennels to obtaining pet insurance and contacting port holding facilities, they truly do it all.


ATA, or the Animal Transportation Association—The Animal Transportation Association is a United States-based non-profit organization dedicated to the safe and human transportation of animals. The association provides an opportunity for individuals, businesses, organizations, and groups involved in any phase of animal transportation to become a part of an international effort to find solutions to the problems experienced during animal transport.


ATA does not provide pet moving services itself, but instead advocates on behalf of safer and more uniform pet transportation worldwide. They lobby for progressive legislation and host an annual conference to discuss ways in which we can improve the experience of animal transportation.


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