Taking your cat for a long trip in a car can be a great experience, if you plan ahead and get the right cat carrier. After reviewing dozens of carriers we have found the best cat carrier for long car trips to be the One for Pets Fabric Portable 2-in-1 Double Pet Kennel (Buy Online).
Best Cat Carrier for Long Car Trips
One for Pets Fabric Portable 2-in-1 Double Pet Kennel
Petsfit Expandable Travel Cat Carrier
Necoichi Portable Stress Free Cat Cage
PetLuv Soothing Happy Cat Premium Soft Sided Cat Carrier
A4Pet Soft Collapsible Crate
Best Cat Carriers for a Car
The One for Pets Fabric Portable 2-in-1 Double Pet Kennel (Buy Online) is our top pick for the best cat carrier for long trips in a car. This carrier measures 20” W x 20” H x 39” L, and it is extremely portable since it only weighs 8.6 pounds.
This carrier has a unique dual compartment design that will provide enough space to transport multiple cats with ease. Each of these compartments can be loaded and unloaded separately through the front or side mesh panel doors. The two compartments can either be joined together, or they can be separated to give each cat their own space.
For all intents and purposes, this cat carrier is actually two cat carriers in one. The two carriers form one large carrier when they are connected together by the durable zipper located on each of the carriers sides. What I really like about this feature is that you can put your cats in a single carrier which makes it easier to carry them out to the car. Then once your cats are securely in the car you can join the carriers together to give them more space.
These carriers also come with built-in straps that will allow you to safely attach these carriers to your cars seat belts. This will help ensure that this cat carrier stays safely in place during sudden movements or if you hit a pothole or any other rough terrain.
The Necoichi Portable Stress Free Cat Cage (Buy Online) is a soft-sided collapsible cat carrier that is perfect for long car rides. This carrier measures 20” W x 20” H x 31.8” L, and it is so easy to carry since it only weighs 2.6 pounds.
The Necoichi Portable Stress-Free Cat Cage will provide plenty of space for up to two cats. The large mesh panel front door will make it easy to load even the most nervous cat with ease. There is even a large drop down shade that can be rolled down over the mesh panel door if your cat prefers some extra privacy.
Another nice optional add-on you can purchase with this carrier is a matching portable litter box. The portable litter box fits perfectly in this carrier, and it will fold down flat when it is not in use.
The Necoichi Portable Stress Free Cat Cage can also be folded down when it is not in use. Both the carrier and the optional litter box will easily fit in the included carrying bag which is nice so everything can be stored in a single place.
The only downside of this carrier is that it needs a lot of space. If you don’t have a large bench backseat then the One for Pets Fabric Portable 2-in-1 Double Pet Kennel would be a better alternative since it can be split in half which allows it to fit on any seat.
The PetLuv Soothing Happy Cat Premium Soft Sided Cat Carrier (Buy Online) is a great carrier if your car doesn’t have a lot of space. This carrier measures 16” W x 16” H x 24” L, and it weighs 8.8 pounds.
Even though this carrier might be a little smaller than some of the larger carriers on this page, it still offers up to 4 times more space than your average cat carrier. This carrier also has excellent accessibility due to the fact that it has multiple doors on almost every side of the crate.
Each one of the mesh panel doors also has a roll down privacy screen, so if your cat gets a little nervous they can have their own space. Each of the doors also has locking zippers with reinforced seams in order to prevent escapes.
This carrier also has built-in seat belt loops which will allow you to securely anchor the carrier to the seat of your car.
This carrier is also very easy to move around thanks to the adjustable carrying strap with a padded handle. This strap is securely mounted on all four corners of the carrier in order to evenly distribute your cat’s weight. Then when this crate is not in use it folds down flat for easy storage in your trunk or any other out of the way place.
The Petsfit Expandable Travel Cat Carrier (Buy Online) is one of the more versatile cat carriers on the market. This carrier measures 12” W x 12”H x 19” L when not fully extended, and when the sides are fully folded out it measures 33” W x 12” H x 19” L. In addition, this carrier is extremely lightweight since it weighs only 3.8 pounds.
The best thing about this carrier is the fold out side panels. These panels can be kept in their folded position when you are carrying your cat, which is nice since it makes this carrier very easy to move around. Then once your cat is in your car you can unzip the panels and fold them down to give your cat some extra space to lay down.
This carrier also has a thick soft fleece mat on both the floor and the fold out side panels, so you can be sure your cat will be comfortable on a long ride. There is also a convenient pouch located on the exterior of this carrier, which will allow you to keep anything your cat needs close at hand.
This carrier is also suitable for air travel which means you can use it when you have to take your cat for a long plane ride.
The A4Pet Soft Collapsible Crate (Buy Online) is the perfect cat carrier for a large car or SUV. This carrier comes in two separate sizes with the 24-inch model being well suited for cars, while the 31-inch model would be a better fit for an SUV. The 24-inch crate weighs in at 6 pounds while the 31-inch version has a total weight of 7.3 pounds.
This crate has three large doors which make it very easy to load and unload no matter what orientation it ends up in your car or SUV. There are two doors located on the side of this crate. One of these doors is very large and is perfect for loading your cat into the back of an SUV. While the other side door will work well if you place this crate on a car’s backseat. There is also another door on the top of this crate which is nice if you want to get access to your cat without risking them attempting an escape.
The floor of this carrier is made of a durable waterproof rubber membrane that will help prevent any leaks from escaping the crate. The waterproof floor can also be removed if an accident does happen which makes it very easy to clean.
This crate can also be folded down when it is not in use, so it won’t take up a lot of space. You should also have no problem setting this crate up since it takes less than a minute to unfold from its folded state.
How to Travel with a Cat in a Car
The main things you want to focus on in a carrier for a car are size, comfort and how well the carrier fits in your car. A large carrier will give your cat plenty of room to stretch out and relax, and your cat will also appreciate some extra padding during the long drive.
Of course, we all would love to get the biggest carrier available, but we have to take into consideration how much space we have in our car. Before you purchase any carrier you should make sure it will easily fit in the available space inside your car.
Another thing to look for in a cat carrier for a car is if it has seat belt mounts incorporated into its design. This added safety feature will help secure your cats in the event of a bumpy ride. You also want to make sure your cat carrier fits the contours of your seat, this will help ensure the carrier stays on the seat and remains level throughout the ride.
Once you have selected the right carrier for your car then you will need to make sure you provide for your cat’s food and water needs. You should have a set of travel food and water bowls on hand. Small collapsible travel bowls are a good option when traveling in a car since they don’t take up a lot of space.
Your cat will also need a litter box in there carrier if you plan on taking them for a long ride. A collapsible litter box will do the trick for most trips. These litter boxes are small enough to fit in a carrier, while still having enough capacity to last for the whole ride.