TSA Tips for Airport Travel with Children
Everyone knows that airplane travel has become quite difficult; traveling with your children is extremely hard. Just getting through the airport can be difficult and traumatic. Fortunately, today’s manufacturer’s are on your side. They’ve created items especially for traveling with baby, toddler airplane seats, easy folding and carrying strollers and other products for traveling with kids to help you make baby traveling just a little easier!
The TSA urges you to read their tips and information before you get to the airport. It will save you much unneeded stress.
Read the TSA rules and advice.
- The Screening Process
- Travel Tips
- Baby Formula, Breast Milk, Juice, and Other Liquids
- Children with Disabilities
We have to screen everyone, regardless of age (even babies), before they can go through the security checkpoint.
We will not ask you to do anything that will separate you from your child or children.
We specially train our Security Officers and they understand your concern for your children. They will approach your children gently and treat them with respect. If your child becomes uncomfortable or upset, security officers will consult you about the best way to relieve your child’s concern.
NEVER leave babies in an infant carrier while it goes through the X-ray machine.
The Screening Process
At the X-Ray
- All carry-on baggage, including children’s bags and items, must go through the X-ray machine. Examples include: diaper bags, blankets, and toys.
- All child-related equipment that will fit through the X-ray machine must go through the X-ray machine. Examples include: strollers, umbrella-strollers, baby carriers, car and booster seats, backpacks, and baby slings.
- When you arrive at the checkpoint, collapse or fold your child-related equipment. Secure items that are in the pockets, baskets, or attached to the equipment and place it on the X-ray belt for inspection. Plastic bins are provided to deposit such items.
- If any of your child-related equipment does not fit through the X-ray machine, security officers will visually and physically inspect it.
- Ask a Security Officer for help gathering your bags and child-related equipment, if you need it.
The Walk-Through Metal Detector
If your child can walk without your assistance, we recommend that you and your child walk through the metal detector separately. If you are carrying your child through the metal detector and the alarm sounds, our Security Officer will have to additionally screen both you and your child.
- Remove babies and children from their strollers or infant carriers so that our Security Officers can screen them individually.
- You may not pass the child to another person behind you or in front of you during this process.
- Do not pass your child to our Security Officer to hold.
- Our Security Officer may ask for your help screening your child.
TIPS Before you reach the airport
- Please allow yourself and your family extra time to get through security – especially when traveling with younger children.
- Call your airline or travel agent for their recommended check-in times for your departure airport.
- Talk to your children before you come to the airport and let them know that it’s against the law to make threats such as, “I have a bomb in my bag.” Threats made jokingly (even by a child) can delay the entire family and could result in fines.
TIPS At the airport
- Speak to your children again about the screening process so that they will not be frightened or surprised. Remind them not to joke about threats such as bombs or explosives.
- Tell your children that their bags (backpack, dolls, etc.) will be put in the X-ray machine and will come out at the other end and be returned to them.
- Let your children know that a Security Officer may ask to see their shoes, but that they will get these back as well.
- You may want to consider asking for a private screening if you are traveling with more than one child.
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Baby Formula, Breast Milk, Juice, and Other Liquids
Medications, baby formula and food, breast milk, and juice are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding three ounces and are not required to be in the zip-top bag. Declare these items for inspection at the checkpoint. Click here to learn more about 3-1-1
All items including formula, breast milk, and juice will be inspected, however, you or your infant or toddler will not be asked to test or taste breast milk, formula, or juice. Our Security Officers may test liquid exemptions (exempt items more than 3 ounces) for explosives.
Click here to read about traveling with formula, breast milk, juice, and baby food.
All liquids, gels and aerosols must be in three-ounce or smaller containers. Larger containers that are half-full or toothpaste tubes rolled up are not allowed. Each container must be three ounces or smaller.
All liquids, gels and aerosols must be placed in a single, quart-size, zip-top, clear plastic bag. Gallon size bags or bags that are not zip-top such as fold-over sandwich bags are not allowed. Each traveler can use only one, quart-size, zip-top, clear plastic bag.
Each traveler must remove their quart-sized plastic, zip-top bag from their carry-on and place it in a bin or on the conveyor belt for X-ray screening. X-raying separately will allow TSA security officers to more easily examine the declared items.
Learn more by getting the the 3-1-1 on Carry-ons
Make sure you understand what you can and cannot bring aboard your flight. Permitted and prohibited items – What can I bring?
You should only carry on the liquids and gels needed for you and your child’s immediate comfort. You should pack larger volumes needed for your trip in your checked bag.
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Children with Disabilities
If your child has a disability or medical condition, please read our separate section on traveling with Children with Disabilities.