A US couple has spent the last two years travelling throughout America and Europe – with their cat.
Boston couple Hélène Vincent, 34, and her wife, Alice, 38, started travelling a lot over the past two years, after their jobs became remote in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, New York Post reports.
“We started this lifestyle back in Covid when our jobs both went remote,” Ms Vincent explained to Caters News Agency. “Before, we had lived in the city and always felt like something was missing from our life.”
However, they knew that if they wanted to travel, they had to take their six-year-old rescue cat Bao Zi with them.
Now the trio have travelled to five countries and 45 US states.
They typically decide where they’re going to go next only five days in advance, and like to move nearly every week, they said.
The couple described Bao Zi as more like a dog than a cat, as she’s extremely attached to the two of them and is very adventurous.
And, although Bao Zi was nervous during their first trip, over time she has warmed up to jetsetting and is now an “easygoing traveller”.
“She loves car rides and just falls asleep until we get to our destination,” Ms Vincent said.
The couple said that she’s calm when flying long distances, too.
“She’s happier and healthier than she’s ever been,” Ms Vincent said about their cat. “She used to have all kinds of medical problems that cleared up when we started travelling with her at four years old.”
When they travel, Bao Zi stays comfortable in a special cat backpack.
They also got her a harness so that she can use the bathroom outside, similar to a dog. Bao Zi also has a travel litter box in case of an emergency.
“She enjoyed walking on the leash during her bathroom outings and eventually she was the one who started taking us on walks,” Ms Vincent said.
“She explores the world from a different vantage point, she also helps us notice things we wouldn’t notice otherwise.”
So far, some of their favourite places to travel have been Utah, as Bao Zi is a huge fan of the desert and the slot canyons, as well as Arkansas, because she loves taking trips in the kayak.
Internationally, Bao Zi has felt very welcome in France, as the couple said it’s a “super pet-friendly country,” so they’ve been able to take her to explore cafes, shops and museums.
The trio is currently exploring Paris and Italy, with EU travel rules making it surprisingly easy to travel with their feline friend.
To take your dog, cat or ferret to Europe, they need to be microchipped, vaccinated against rabies, have had worming treatment and have a valid pet passport or animal health certificate.
And most airlines flying between the US and Europe allow pets to travel (in a pet carrier) in the cabin of the plane with their owner.
For Bao Zi, next on the travel list is the American Southwest – namely, Arizona and New Mexico. The trio is planning to stay there for a couple of months.
“The most amazing part is the chance to experience the world through her eyes,” Ms Vincent said.
This article originally appeared on New York Post and was reproduced with permission