Travel News and Restrictions, Regulations

10 Facts Travelers Should Know

  • Enhanced security precautions are in place at all international airports with flights to the U.S.
  • Passengers must arrive especially early for any international flight as enhanced security on U.S. Bound flights is affecting all travel times.
  • All carry-on bags are being subjected to extra security screenings, causing delays at security gates.
  • The Canadian government has banned all carry-on bags for passengers traveling to the U.S. because new screening requirements are causing excessive delays. Only exceptions are purses, cameras, coats, laptops, musical instruments, medical devices and items for baby care.
  • TSA urges all travelers to check as much carry-on baggage as possible but says that items such as car seats will be accepted on board flights.
  • Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air are both waiving some baggage fees for the mandatory checked baggage on flights to the U.S. from Mexico and Canada.
  • According to the TSA, all passengers regardless of age (including minors and unaccompanied minors) will be subject to additional screening if selected at random or if circumstances warrant.
  • Secondary passenger screenings are very likely to include full body pat-downs and manual inspection of all hand carried items.
  • In flight, at the discretion of the pilot and the individual airline, passengers may be required to stow all their personal belongings for any portion of the flight.
  • In flight, passengers may be required to remain in their seats with their hands fully exposed to view, for any portion of the flight but most likely, for the final hour of the flight.

Additionally, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reminds travelers that, according to the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, all U.S. and Canadian citizens, age 16 and older must present a valid, acceptable travel document that denotes both identity and citizenship when entering the U.S. by land or sea. All air travelers of any age are required to present a passport at time of entry to the U.S.

We suggest that parents discuss these enhanced security procedures with their children prior to travel, and that travelers use the CBP website to check on the estimated waiting times at all U.S. air, land and sea borders before making their travel plans.

According to TSA spokesperson Ann Davis, these security precautions and other undisclosed ones will remain in effect indefinitely.

PLUS — the latest from the UK -British airports will step up the use of full-body scanners, Prime Minister Gordon Brown said Sunday, and all passengers — even those who are simply changing planes in the U.K. — will have their carry-on bags checked for trace explosives. “We have found that there is a new form of explosive that is not being identified by ordinary machines,” Brown said, acknowledging that no technology will provide 100% protection against terrorists