Wednesday,  August 10, 2022  1:28 pm

Why you should never put your passport in a carry-on

Why you should never put your passport in a carry-on
Christine Hogg

Christine Hogg is the Associate Digital Editor at PAX Global Media. Prior to joining PAX, she obtained her Honours BA in Journalism from the University of Toronto. Upon graduating, she went on to write for several travel publications while travelling the world. Her longest trip was a three-week stint in Europe, and the shortest was a 16-hour adventure in Iceland. Get in touch:

Liquids under 100ml, tucked into a clear, plastic bag? Check.

Tossed your excess medical or not-so-medical cannabis? Check.

Rolled everything into neat little cubes so you don’t have to pay for a second bag? Check!

After packing your carry-on according to Canadian aviation regulations, you’ve probably made a mental checklist to make sure what’s inside can actually be there.

There’s a long list of items that can’t go in your carry-on, and some of them are quite obvious. No liquids over the 100ml rule, no aerosol sprays, and please, no guns—this is Canada, after all.

But one of these forbidden items isn’t like the others. In fact, it’s something that’s so easy to do by accident—here’s why you should never put your passport in your carry-on.

Keep your passport close

If you travel for business, chances are you’ve gotten used to those three-day stints in the Caribbean or Europe that require a few different outfits and your laptop.

For that reason, it’s likely you keep a lock on your carry-on, as even though it’s coming on the plane with you, once you’re in the hotel room, it needs to be secured, just like a checked luggage would.

Many business travellers will have a second personal item like a laptop bag or a purse they can slip their passport into once the security screening process is complete.

Or, you can keep it in your hand. But after a whole lot of waiting around, it’s easy enough to put the passport in your carry-on. Afterall, once you’re settled on the plane, you can always take it out.

Not quite.

Forgetting something?

If you’ve ever been on a fully-booked or overbooked flight, you’re familiar with the voiceover announcement that asks if any passengers with carry-on luggage wouldn’t mind checking their carry-on suitcases prior to boarding.

Most of the time, people comply.

Other times, the airline starts offering vouchers with air credits or other incentives to expedite the process. But if no one complies, they’ll start picking at random.

If you’ve forgotten that your passport is in that carry-on and yours is slotted for the checked luggage hold, once you arrive in destination you’ll likely run into a few headaches.

Remember, once you disembark from the plane you must hand over your declaration forms, visas, and of course, passport. And, if you don’t have it handy, well, let’s just say you’ll find out real fast what kind of mood passport control officers are in at the airport in which you arrive.

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