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Philadelphia-bound traveller Kevin Wall, right, reads a book as thousands of passengers wait in line to board U.S. bound flights at Toronto's Pearson International airport on Dec. 27, 2009. (J.P. MOCZULSKI/J.P. MOCZULSKI/THE GLOBE AND MAI)
Philadelphia-bound traveller Kevin Wall, right, reads a book as thousands of passengers wait in line to board U.S. bound flights at Toronto's Pearson International airport on Dec. 27, 2009. (J.P. MOCZULSKI/J.P. MOCZULSKI/THE GLOBE AND MAI)

Books permitted on U.S.-bound planes Add to ...

Canadian travellers flying into the U.S. can take whatever books and magazines they want through airport security.

A spokesman for the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority said today that "books and magazines were always allowed and still are on U.S.-bound planes." Books and magazines, however, weren't included in a list of 13 "items" that Transport Canada approved Dec. 28 for carry-on purposes.

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The failure to include books and magazines with canes, laptop computers, small purses and cameras on the approved list led many to conclude that reading materials purchased pre-flight were banned as part of a security clamp-down in the wake of a failed terrorist attempt to down a Detroit-bound passenger plane Dec. 25.

The situation was reinforced last week by a Transport Canada official who said, "Technically, if [an item]is not on the list, it is not allowed." Further complicating matters was a news report out of Edmonton that travellers could purchase books and magazines after they had passed through security.

Transport Canada issued an "update" on its security measures Monday afternoon this week, but the list of approved items remained at 13, with no addition of books and magazines. The Air Transport Security Authority official indicated today that "a revised list that will be more specific" was in the works from Transport Canada but a media officer with Transport Canada would only say "there might be" a revised or new list.

Regardless, "books would never be refused." she said. "They can be easily scanned."

 

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