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Which bird carrier is best?

Birds are intelligent, curious animals that require ample time outside of their cages to play, exercise and interact with new objects and environments. Even small birds like parakeets benefit from enrichment.

A bird carrier is a great way to allow your pet a safe way to explore new sights and sounds. It’s also indispensable if you have to travel with your bird or make a trip to the vet. The Petsfit Bird Carrier With Stainless Steel Bowl is the best bird carrier for small to medium birds. It provides excellent visibility and ventilation, allowing for both security and flexibility because of its use of quality materials and its backpack design.

What to know before you buy a bird carrier


Air travel: Traveling with a pet bird by airplane can be a challenge. Your bird carrier has to fit under the seat in front of you and will require a security inspection. Check with your preferred airline to determine their requirements and restrictions regarding birds in the cabin. Carefully select a bird carrier that complies with their requests.

Groomer or vet: Like other pets, birds require periodic trips to the veterinarian as well as to the groomer to get their wings, claws and beaks trimmed. If you expect that your bird carrier will only be used as a way to transport your pet for these short visits, you don’t require an especially large model with multiple food and water bowls or other accessories.

Trips for fun: If your bird is comfortable with new people and places, a trip to the park or other outdoor area outside the home is a great way to give them the stimulation and socialization they crave. If you anticipate that your bird carrier will be used for adventure and exploration, consider one that’s easy to move and provides your bird with good visibility, plenty of room and access to food and water.

Your bird’s personality

If your bird is particularly shy or sensitive, choose a carrier that offers them a feeling of security. While many birds enjoy meeting people and taking in new sights, they all appreciate the ability to choose their own level of privacy. For apprehensive birds, select a carrier with opaque sides or a mesh screen as opposed to a clear plastic one that will leave them feeling fully exposed.

What to look for in a quality bird carrier


Birds are visual creatures. Not only do they appreciate being able to see their surroundings, they’re also comforted by being able to see their owner. Select a bird carrier that allows you to easily observe your pet.


Because of their delicate respiratory systems, fresh air and good ventilation is necessary for the health of your bird. Carriers with screen windows provide ample airflow. If you prefer a carrier with plastic sides, choose one that provides adequate ventilation through portholes or a mesh door.


Parrots’ powerful bills can make short work of almost anything they determine to be worth chewing. It’s important that your carrier is made from a material that’s strong enough to prevent your bird from biting its way out. Large parrots like cockatoos that are especially prone to chewing require metal carriers.

Food dishes and accessories

Many bird carriers include bowls to provide clean water and food. However, a carrier in motion can result in spills. If you intend to do a lot of walking with your bird, seek out a model that allows you to use a water bottle as opposed to an open dish. While getting your bird to drink from a bottle requires some training, it greatly reduces the mess.


Whether your bird carrier is used for short trips or an afternoon at the park, it should provide ample room for your pet to comfortably turn around and stand up at full height. Birds are especially protective of their tail feathers, so a carrier that extends below your bird’s perch and allows room for their tail to hang without dragging is ideal for your pet’s comfort and cleanliness.


Some bird carriers come with backpack straps to allow for easy travel. Others are built in the style of a duffel bag with a handle or strap that can be slung over your shoulder. Consider your plans with your pet to determine which configuration works best for you.


From metal cages to patterned bags, bird carriers are available in a variety of colors and styles. Choose a look that best matches your personal aesthetic, but keep in mind that some birds are highly sensitive to brightly colored objects and may take more time to become acclimated to the stimulation.

Toys and accessories

Many bird carriers come with clips or hooks that can be used to hang your pet’s favorite toys or treats. While not necessary for short trips to the groomer, toys and other accessories can prevent your bird from getting bored during travel.

How much you can expect to spend on a bird carrier

Expect to pay $50-$100 for a quality bird carrier made from strong, safe materials. Bird carriers made from metal or those from premium brands can cost $200 or more, depending on size.

Bird carrier FAQ

How long can your bird be safely left in its carrier?

A. To avoid undue stress and mess, your pet bird shouldn’t be in its carrier for more than a couple of hours at a time. While this isn’t possible during extended travel, trips outdoors for socialization should be kept brief. Be sure your bird always has access to drinking water.

Can you put more than one bird in a bird carrier?

A. Depending on the carrier’s size and how well your birds get along, yes. Bonded pairs prefer the security of their partner, but some birds like more solitude. Placing birds who aren’t familiar with one another in a confined space can result in injuries due to fighting. 

Will your bird get car sick if you travel with it?

A. You may be surprised to learn that some birds can get car sick. If your bird becomes nauseous during travel, try to limit drives to necessary trips only. If travel by car is a must, some owners recommend installing a hanging perch in your carrier. The swinging motion of a hanging perch provides a more comfortable car ride for some birds.

What’s the best bird carrier to buy?

Top bird carrier

Petsfit Bird Carrier with Stainless Steel Bowl

Petsfit Bird Carrier with Stainless Steel Bowl

What you need to know: This bird carrier backpack is versatile and includes features only available in carriers that cost twice as much.

What you’ll love: Stylishly designed and comfortable to carry and wear, this bird carrier is an excellent choice for conures or other small parrots. Its mesh screen provides great ventilation and visibility. All side windows can be covered with flaps to provide your bird with privacy for sleeping or stressful situations.

What you should consider: This bird carrier’s plastic mesh isn’t suitable for aggressive chewers. Only one bowl is included. It is not large enough for many species.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top bird carrier for the money

Colorday Lightweight Bird Carrier

Colorday Lightweight Bird Carrier

What you need to know: This lightweight bird carrier is available in two sizes and provides crystal-clear visibility. 

What you’ll love: The included wooden perch provides your bird with a secure grip and stable balance. This carrier’s shoulder strap and handle make it portable and easy to move around.

What you should consider: Users have noted that this bird carrier’s window is covered in a protective plastic film that’s difficult to fully remove. Plastic mesh can be destroyed by birds who are excessive chewers.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Featherland Paradise Perch 'n Go Polycarbonate Bird Carrier

Featherland Paradise Perch ‘n Go Polycarbonate Bird Carrier

What you need to know: Rugged plastic construction and metal cage doors make this popular carrier a safe, secure option.

What you’ll love: This model’s carrying handle doubles as an additional perch for your bird to use outside of the carrier. It is easily cleaned, and the clear polycarbonate plastic provides great visibility. 

What you should consider: This carrier is on the expensive side and is only acceptable for small birds.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Derek Walborn writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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