TRANSPORT CANADA

TRANSPORT CANADA

February 19, 2010 17:30 ET

Government of Canada Announces Change to Benefit Air Travellers With Connecting Flights in Europe

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 19, 2010) - Canada's Transport Minister John Baird today announced a new change that will benefit passengers flying outbound from Canada whose connecting flights are through European Union (EU) airports. Effective today, passengers can carry duty-free purchases of liquids, aerosols and gels over 100 millilitres with them through an EU airport en route to a final destination.

The change requires that Canadian airport retailers now put duty-free purchases of liquids, aerosols and gels into secure special bags. These bags will be recognized as secure in the EU.

"Passengers will now have assurance that what they buy at Canadian duty-free stores can continue on through any connection point in the European Union," said Baird. "Also, starting this spring there will be two airports in Canada equipped to offer the same service for passengers flying in from the EU."

Two Canadian airports will be ready this spring to screen duty-free liquids, aerosols and gels over 100 millilitres that passengers bring from EU airports, en route to domestic airports. At the end of April 2010, passengers from Europe will be able to transfer through Toronto Pearson International Airport, and in May 2010, passengers from Europe will be able to transfer through Montreal's Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport with these items.

Transport Canada advises travellers to respect the number of carry-on items allowed by airlines and to check the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority's website at www.catsa.gc.ca before flying for further information about security screening.

Transport Canada is online at www.tc.gc.ca. Subscribe to news releases and speeches at www.tc.gc.ca/e-news and keep up to date on the latest from Transport Canada.

Backgrounder

LIQUIDS, AEROSOLS AND GELS ABOARD AIRCRAFT IN SECURITY TAMPER-EVIDENT BAGS

With increased security measures in place since 2006, the volume of liquids that passengers may bring through security screening checkpoints has been limited. Restrictions on carrying duty-free items when connecting through international airports were also imposed.

In 2007, the International Civil Aviation Organization approved the use of security tamper-evident bags to secure liquids, aerosols and gels as passengers transit through airport screening points to connecting flights. Since then, several European countries, including Norway and Croatia, as well as Iceland, Australia and Singapore, have embraced the concept. While the use of security tamper-evident bags provides an additional layer of security, screening of these bags will also take place when passengers from Europe use them when transferring through a participating Canadian airport.

In February 2010, Canada and the European Union reached an agreement to allow passengers to carry their duty-free liquids (alcohol, cosmetics, syrup) through security screening checkpoints, provided that they are secured in these special bags. This initiative is a progressive step in gradually reducing or eliminating restrictions on liquids, aerosols and gels aboard an aircraft while maintaining a high level of security. The Canadian Air Transport Security Authority will be able to offer this convenience for travellers connecting through other Canadian airports as new security equipment is introduced. 

These changes will be phased in as follows:

Phase One: Passengers departing from Canadian airports and connecting to their destination through European airports

Beginning on February 19, 2010, airport retail outlets located beyond security screening checkpoints at 12 Canadian airports will be able to sell liquids, aerosols and gels, and package them in secure bags for passengers connecting through European airports. This change will be in effect at the following Canadian airports that currently offer direct flights to European airports:

  • Calgary International Airport
  • Edmonton International Airport
  • Halifax Stanfield International Airport
  • Greater Moncton International Airport
  • Montreal's Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport
  • Ottawa's Macdonald-Cartier International Airport
  • Quebec City's Jean Lesage International Airport
  • St. John's International Airport
  • Toronto Pearson International Airport 
  • Vancouver International Airport
  • Erik Nielsen Whitehorse International Airport
  • Winnipeg International Airport 

Phase Two: Passengers departing from European airports and connecting to their destination through Canadian airports

By the end of April 2010, passengers from Europe will be able to carry their duty-free liquids, aerosols and gels through Toronto Pearson International Airport en route to domestic and non-U.S. international airports, provided the items are packaged in secure bags at point of purchase in a European airport. The same conditions will be in effect by the end of May 2010 for passengers from Europe who are connecting through Montreal's Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport.

The Canadian Air Transport Security Authority will be able to offer this convenience for travellers connecting through other Canadian airports as new security equipment is introduced. 

This news release may be made available in alternative formats for persons living with visual disabilities.

Contact Information

  • James Kusie
    Director of Issues Management and Parliamentary Affairs
    Office of Canada's Transport Minister,
    John Baird, Ottawa
    613-991-0700
    or
    Media Relations
    Transport Canada, Ottawa
    613-993-0055