Identification Requirements for Children and Infants

If you are travelling with your child or infant, it is your responsibility to ensure that both of you have all the travel documents necessary to enter in, or transit through, each country on your itinerary.

Please make sure to verify the requirements for each country as the required documents for your outbound flight may differ from those required on the return.

Travel within Canada

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In accordance with government regulations, the required identification must be presented at the boarding gate and the name on the ID must fully match the name on the boarding pass.

Passenger Type Identification Required
Infants
(7 days to under age 2)
  • Proof of age required (a photocopy of birth certificate, health card or passport is acceptable).
  • Due to safety regulations, without proof of age, you may be required to purchase a seat for your lap-infant.
Children
(younger than 18)
  • One piece of government-issued identification, such as an original birth certificate, health card, passport or non-government-issued ID (e.g. student card) is strongly recommended, however not mandatory for travel.
Children travelling as unaccompanied minors
  • One piece of government-issued identification showing name, gender, and date of birth must be presented and sent with your child (photocopies are not acceptable).
  • Each parent/guardian that is picking up or dropping off a child must also present a valid government-issued photo identification.
Children travelling alone
(12 to 17 years of age)
  • Your child may be denied boarding if they appear to be less than 12 years of age and are not able to present proof of age.

Travel to, from or through the United States

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In accordance with government regulations, the required identification must be presented at the boarding gate and the name on the ID must fully match the name on the boarding pass.

Passenger Type Identification Required
Children and infants A valid passport is required

A valid passport is required

The following additional documents are strongly recommended, but not required for children travelling to, from or through the United States:

  • The child’s birth certificate showing the names of both parents.
  • Any legal documents pertaining to custody.
  • A parental consent letter authorizing travel (if the child is travelling with one parent, the letter must be signed and dated by the other parent; if the child is travelling without their parents, the letter must be signed and dated by both parents).
  • A death certificate if one of the parents is deceased.

Please consult Travel.gc.ca for information on child custody, consent letters or other documentation that is recommended or may be required for children travelling abroad.

Consent letter for children travelling abroad

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The Government of Canada strongly recommends that if a person younger than 18 is travelling internationally alone or with only one parent or another adult, they have their parents' consent for such travel. A notarized letter of consent to travel is proof of such consent. This is not an airline requirement.

What is a notarized travel consent letter?

A notarized consent letter is a document signed in the presence of the notary by every non-accompanying person or organization with the legal right to make major decisions for the child, including anyone with custody rights, guardianship rights or parental authority. For example:

  • In the case of the divorced mother traveling to the US from Canada, the child's father would prepare a letter consenting to the child's travel, and sign it in the presence of the notary public.
  • The letter should include addresses and telephone numbers where the parent(s) or a legal guardian can be reached and confirm that the child is not taken against their will.
  • The father would be required to show proof of identity, and the notary would certify that the letter had indeed been signed by him.
  • The mother should also carry a copy of the legal custody agreement.

What is the purpose of a notarized travel consent letter?

A consent letter demonstrates that children travelling alone, or with only one parent/guardian, friends, relatives or a group (e.g. sports, school, musical) have permission to travel abroad from every parent (or guardian) who is not accompanying them on the trip.

More Information

Please consult Travel.gc.ca website before you travel to ensure that you have all of the required documentation.