Newborn / baby privileges?Back to Forum
Anonymous29 Nov 2011
We recently had a trip to Siem Reap , Cambodia. While our trip to the city was tiring but thrilling with the majesty of Angkor Wat and holy temples, the airport incident at departure was completely unpleasant and had taken all the fun out of our experience.
Having 2 kids, one at 3 and a half years old and the other at 4 months and while being deprived of sleep, the last thing I want to do is bother the little one who was deeply asleep and take her out of her Quinine / Maxi-Cozi stroller.
While explaining to the security officer that my baby had already travelled 3 times and airports such as Bangkok & Taipei has accepted to screen her manually or via the small hand held scanner (respecting the baby to the extreme of putting gloves & hand gel before manually checking around her), Siem Reap security staff had insisted on taking the baby completely out and scan the stroller in the X ray machine.
Again, I insisted that you cannot wake a 4 months old baby and that the baby will give me a hard time after and I have 2 kids and that my stroller is already detached and the important part of the stroller is already scanned , but nothing , a security officer calls another and the other looks at the third and no one could take a decision on keeping the baby in peace.
At the end, I accepted their rule while promising that I will be publishing this incident internationally and of course the baby woke up and I had the worst flight ever coming back home as my baby had woke up suddenly to hear the crowds and the airport buzz which made her distressed and uncomfortable throughout.
Why International Air Transport / IATA or international Civil Aviations does not put standards for babies and kids handling?
Why airports such as Tokyo , Singapore , Seoul ..( even Moscow airport) respect babies and kids and assign a special lane and a special security check process for infants while most of the Arab, Gulf countries and third world airports do not acknowledge this theory and considers adults and kids alike?
– There is a clear lack of guidelines respecting children’s travels, safety and comfort and it is an area in which IATA must step in and take some serious action. Scanning processes with guidelines on types of strollers, priority at security and immigration, infant seat belt use (Some airlines don’t have, some give and some say we have it but do not suggest you use!), priority boarding and so on.
Thank you ,
Maya Naji Bagaeen, Bangkok, Thailand29 Nov 2011
security issues have been discussed time and again on this forum
The fact you where able to travel safefly to your final destination is testement to the need to screen all passengers resolutly
The fact the baby buggy would have set off the detector means the baby must be removed from the buggy to for elimination puposes
I too am suprised this was not done at Bangkok and Taipei To me it should have been and I view this as a security lapse29 Nov 2011
I’m afraid you’re unlikely to find any sympathy for making exceptions for babies; that would be a weak link in the chain, and one terrorists would exploit.
It’s always adviseable to plan your timings as far as is reasonably possible to avoid such activitities when your baby’s routine means he/she will be sleeping.29 Nov 2011
“Slightly puzzled as to why anyone would want to take a three and a half year old and a four month old baby to Angkor Wat, but each to their own…”
Seconded, at least for the little baby. And security is necessary. Nuff said.29 Nov 2011
While I sympathise with the situation you found yourself in I can only agree with others who say that there should be no exceptions for babies when it comes to security.
I have no idea how old you are, so you may not be aware of the case, but some years ago a terrorist used his innocent and unsuspecting pregnant girlfriend and her young son to try and get a bomb hidden in her handbaggage onto an EL AL flight from London to Tel Aviv. Disaster was only averted as the EL AL security officer doing a last minute check at the gate thought that the bag was heavier than it should have been and semtex was found in the lining.
The terrorist wrongly assumed, thank goodness that a pregnant woman travelling with a baby would attract less attention than other passengers.
Based on that incident alone I believe that there can be no exceptions.
Safe travels everyone,
JC29 Nov 2011
Ladies & Gentlemen,
Hold your horses pls as I m definitely not asking for sympathy…
My 3 and half years old baby has done her 30th country when we went to Taipei ( with the same stroller) , so I m quite a frequent traveler as well as my kids.
If you read well, I was pointing on the fact that almost 99% of the airports we visited does not take off a newborn while 1% do it.. Obviously there is a lack in security guidelines.
And to add on, I mentioned clearly the fact that airlines ( Star alliance for exp / Thai , Egyp air..) do not recommend the infant seat belt while another airlines urges you to use it , this requires attention.
No one pointed out the verdict that I had to make, while someone is pointing out on why I took my kids to Angkor Wat! Really , is this the problem here ??29 Nov 2011
I think you shot yourself in the foot with the thread title. If you put policy consistency rather than privileges you would bave got different reaction.
In these difficult times, privileges should only be for those that really need them and I guess taking young kids on vacation does not
Qualify in members’ eyes.29 Nov 2011
Maya: May I say that you might have travelled to a lot of places in the world prior to Taiwan with your kid and have met with various airport security procedures in different countries BUT you failed to understand that security offciers in some of the developing countries with very tough government are more interested in carrying out their duty to the full so as not get any blames from their superiors. Any deviation from the routine might get them in big trouble! Being fired or fired at!
I’ve often find that even at Bangkok airport with no flexiblilty with the security check points.
Hassle-free travel to you for the future.29 Nov 2011
Maya…different countries, different rules. and the airlines/allience have no say in the security checks passengers have…however the airline i work for, BA, if a passenger refuses the “naked xray check” the they will not be boarding a BA aircraft..Safety comes first..yours, mine and your babies. Surely you can understand that…and worldwide consistancey will never happen so its something we all have to put up with.
And there should never be and flexibility with security. Newborn or not.29 Nov 2011