Security Process

Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) Security Process

What to expect at the pre-board screening checkpoint:

  • Present your boarding pass or e-ticket, and appropriate identification to the pre-board screening officer
  • Disclose any personal needs you may have due to a medical condition, disability, religious or cultural consideration, or other special needs
  • Have electronic devices out of their carrying cases and ready for inspection (i.e. laptop computers) and placed in a plastic bin
  • Place carry-on items (i.e. purse, coat, hat) in the plastic bin provided
  • All loose and metal objects, including coins and keys must also be placed in the plastic bin
  • All liquids, gels and aerosols must be put in a clear 1L plastic bag and placed in the plastic bin. Visit CATSA's Liquid Food & Personal Items page to see these full requirements
  • Proceed through the metal detector archway when the screening officer signals you to do so
  • If you are selected for an additional physical search, you may request a private search area
  • Remember to take all of your belongings with you when leaving the pre-board screening checkpoint area

You do not need to remove your shoes during pre-board screening unless you are travelling to the US. Children under 12 yrs travelling directly to the US also are not required to remove their shoes.


What is the Full Body Scanner at airport security?

A full body scanner is used to reveal objects, including weapons and explosives that could be concealed under clothing. All new images are generic and immediately and permanently deleted.  Health Canada has deemed the scanner fully safe. The energy used from the scanner is non-invasive, it is safe for pregnant women as well as passengers with pacemakers or surgical metal implants (i.e. plates, screws). For more information visit:


Strollers and Wheelchairs

Look for the Family/Special Needs lane. There is extra space to accommodate larger items like strollers and wheelchairs and mobility aids, and screening officers who offer additional assistance.


Priority Lane at Central Security

The Priority Lane is a fast track security line that accommodates the following passengers:

  • NEXUS Card holders
  • RAIC (airport security pass) holders
  • Passengers travelling with small children
  • Passengers travelling with mobility needs
  • Flight crews
  • Active military or peace officers in uniform
  • First Class and or business travellers on the following airlines:
    • Air Canada J Class (Elite, Super Elite, Business Class)
    • Canadian North
    • Icelandair
    • KLM

The Priority Lane is located in the Central Security Hall on the departures level to the left of the regular security lanes.  All members of your travelling party must meet the above requirements to use the priority lane.


For more information please visit or phone 1 888 294 2202.

For information on pre-board screening procedures or air travel within the US, please consult the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) website.