Does the FedEx Guarantee Cover Horses?

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According to an interview on NPR’s Morning Edition from March 7, 2012, Tim Dutta is planning on using FedEx to transport horses to this summer’s Olympic Games in London, England.  What we wonder is if the FedEx guarantee still applies? The animals will make the journey anywhere from 4 days to three weeks before their scheduled event, and will travel in custom stalls that fit two or three horses.

Tim Dutta is a lifelong rider who founded his equestrian transport company in 1988. Photos of the horse stalls can be seen on his website. Horses can travel in coach (3 horses per crate), business (2 horses per crate), or first class (1 horse per crate). The passengers require the proper vaccines and documentation to pass through customs at their final destination.

Dutta did not comment on whether the FedEx guarantee applied to the athletes. However, the pilots do often take alternative flight paths to avoid bad weather. The horses also travel with a veterinarian and a groomer to attend to their needs during the flight. According to Dutta, just like humans, some horses fly better than others. Horses are supplied with apple juice and Gatorade to keep them hydrated, and a mild sedative may be used on occasion. However, Dutta says that most of the horses are accustomed to being moved around, and like their human counterparts, have learned to cope with the jet lag.

Dutta says that his company expects to transport somewhere between 40 to 60 horses in the days and weeks leading up to this summers Olympics. Many will be flying from Newark Airport in New Jersey to Stansted Airport outside of London. FedEx charges by the pound for its equestrian passengers. The horses weigh around 1100 pounds, plus the crates and food. According to FedEx’s web site, it costs about $1600.00 to ship 2000 pounds from New Jersey to London, and the FedEx guarantee applies on standard freight. Nowhere does it say that there is an exception for horses. If anything, it’ll be fun to watch the games this summer and know those horses arrived on time via Fedex!

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