Canadian Travelers Conflicted Over Airport Security Measures For Kids


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Canadian Travelers Conflicted Over Airport Security Measures For Kids

By Jim Douglas

December 18, 2010 - FlightNetwork, one of Canada's leaders in online travel, on Thursday announced the results of their fifth 'State of Air Travel Poll,' aimed at giving Canadians a voice to weigh-in on the biggest issues facing the travel industry in 2010.  

In the wake of major controversy over increased and invasive security measures being adopted at American airports, FlightNetwork newest poll asked Canadians to weigh in on the possibility of similar measures being adopted in Canada: 

Of the 1000 Canadian consumers polled, 62.9% said they approve of the new full body digital x-ray machines being used at major airports in the United States and nearly as many, 62.2% approved of having full body pat downs and digital x-ray measures in Canadian airports.

Those in support of the security measures cited the need to upgrade antiquated security systems (18.6%), Canadian borders being too easy for terrorists to cross (17.2%), the need to support American airport security measures at both ends of North American flights (16.2%) and fear of terrorism (12.7%) as the top reasons that they would support security upgrades. 

When asked if children should be exempt from full body x-ray machine scans at airports, Canadians seem conflicted responding 46.7% 'yes' and 53.3% 'no'. Similarly, asked if children should be exempt from a full body pat down if a parent refuses a digital x-ray machine scan, Canadians responded 41.2% 'yes' and 58.8% 'no.'  

Canadians were clear on the potential gaps in security that any exemptions could create. When asked if they believe there would be a major hole in security if children are exempted from the increased security measures, Canadians responded with a decisive 64.5% yes and 35.5% no.  

"All of our 'State of Air Travel Polls' have highlighted the air travel issues on the hearts and minds of Canadians," said Naman Budhdeo, CEO of FlightNetwork. "The enhanced security measures in American airports have emerged as the most talked about air travel issue of 2010 and we wanted to give Canadians a voice to weigh in on the issue and their concerns."


Additional questions posed in the poll revealed that Canadians who do not approve of the full body digital x-ray machines cite health concerns from radiation (23.4%) and invasion of privacy (14.6%) as the top reasons for concern. Asked to choose between the full body digital x-ray machine, a full body pat down or not flying, Canadians overwhelmingly chose the digital x-ray machine (66.2%) followed by a full body pat down (23.9%) and choosing not to fly at 9.9%.


Canadians resoundingly responded that the new security measures in the USA will not deter them from cross border travel. Asked if the new security measures would keep them north of the border 76.0% responded 'no' and only 24.0% responded 'yes.' 

Running until February 2011, the State of Air Travel Poll will utilize FlightNetwork's blog, Facebook page and customer database to reach Canadians and ask for their input. Poll topics will cover a range of issues including green travel, plus sized passengers, if cell phones should be allowed on planes and Canada's best and worst departure lounges.

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