July and August are by far the busiest months of the year in Canadian airports with more than 10 million travellers going through security screening. The peak starts in June as schools close for the holidays and continues all the way to Labour Day. If you’re flying with your family this summer, the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) has tips that can help you navigate busy security checkpoints.
Tip #1: Preparation is key to success at security. Check all carry-on bags before you leave for the airport to ensure any liquids, gels and aerosols (e.g. suntan lotion, insect repellant, toothpaste, food products and beverages), respect the 100 ml limit. If any of these items are more than 100 ml, place them in your checked bags.
Tip #2: There’s an exception to Tip#1. The size restriction on liquids, gels and aerosols in your carry-on bags doesn’t apply to items for children under the age of two. That means baby food, formula, medications, milk, water and juice for these children are exempt. The amounts must be reasonable for the length of your vacation and these items must be presented to the screening officer. More good news – there are no restrictions on solid food snacks for the whole family.
Tip #3: When you arrive at the checkpoint, look for the Family/Special Needs line. These lines are set up to provide help for those needing more time or assistance during the screening process, and offer more room for strollers and car seats.
Tip #4: Be security savvy. Make sure you have everyone’s boarding pass ready to present to the screening officer; leave electronic devices in your bags for screening; remove laptops, liquids, gels and aerosols for inspection; and put hats and jackets in the bins.
If you follow these tips, your screening process will be done in no time and you’ll be able to sit back, relax and start your summer vacation.
More information about security screening is available on CATSA’s website (catsa.gc.ca). You can also ask questions on Twitter (@catsa_gc).