Aeroflot strips passenger of air miles after sneaking overweight cat on board

Mikhail Galin's cat, Viktor next to a glass of champagne
To the Viktor go the spoils. Photo credit: Mikhail Galin

Russian airline Aeroflot has reportedly come down hard on a passenger who was caught sneaking his cat, which the airline described as 'overweight', onto one of their flights.

Mikhail Galin says he was checking in to fly from Moscow to Vladivostok with his cat Viktor when he was told the feline was above the 8kg weight restriction by 2kg, and would have to be transported in the cargo hold.

Mikhail Galin and Viktor on board the Aeroflot flight
Mikhail Galin and Viktor on board the Aeroflot flight. Photo credit: Mikhail Galin

Cat-loving Galin couldn't accept the possibility of his furry friend being put in with the luggage, so came up with a devious plan.

He moved his flight to the following day, when he returned with a different cat, one that he had borrowed from a local.

The cat was weighed and was well below the 8kg limit, so Galin was cleared to travel. He swapped the borrowed cat for his beloved Victor and boarded the flight home.

Galin's plan worked and he managed to successfully trick the authorities and get himself and Viktor back home safely.

But then he posted about it on Facebook.

He called it the "operation to replace the fat cat Viktor" and included photos of the cat next to sparkling wine onboard the aircraft.

Viktor as a kitten.
Viktor as a kitten. Photo credit: Mikhail Galin

Aeroflot were made aware of the cat crime and launched an investigation. They tracked down CCTV vision showing the cat swap and pounced on Galin, he claims.

A frequent flyer with the airline, Galin says he was then stripped of all his air miles and member rewards as punishment.

Disappointed, he then posted an image of Viktor as a kitten on Facebook, with the caption "when his weight still met the requirements of Aeroflot".

The airline wouldn't comment on the incident to local media, except to confirm the passenger's rewards account has been annulled.