Can You Take Human Ashes on Air Canada? Here's What We Found Out

While this guuide is primarily aimed at UK and Irish passengers flying outbound with human ashes, the same guidelines generally apply to all Air Canada flights, regardless of departure or arrival location.

Travelling with cremated remains can be a sensitive and emotionally charged experience. Whether you’re planning to scatter ashes in a special place or simply bringing them to a family memorial service, you’ll want to know the rules and regulations for carrying ashes on a plane.


Air Canada Ashes Policy and What You Need to Know?

Firstly, yes, you can take human ashes on an Air Canada flight. But there are some important caveats that you need to consider.


Choosing the Right Container for Cremated Remains on Air Canada

Air Canada specifies that cremated remains may be carried on board in hand luggage. However, they need to be stored in a cardboard or wooden box, or in an urn made of a material that can be easily screened at security—this means metal urns are usually not permitted.

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Urn Dimensions Must Fit Within Cabin Bag Allowances

For your convenience, ensure the urn’s size is within the dimensions of your allowed one cabin bag, which can be up to 23 x 40 x 55 cm. There are no weight limits to worry about.

Extra information: You’re allowed to bring one personal item, but given the urn’s size, it would need to fit within your cabin bag.


Security of the Container

Make sure that the urn or box is secure to avoid any spillage. The last thing you’d want during a flight is for the container to open inadvertently.


Documentation for Travelling with Ashes on Air Canada

Although a certificate of cremation or death certificate is not required by Air Canada, it is advisable to check any additional documentation that might be needed in the country of departure or arrival, particularly if you are travelling internationally.

Strong advice: We highly recommend carrying both a cremation and death certificate, as airport security may request these documents, helping you avoid potential issues during your travel.

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International Travel: Do Your Homework

Air Canada doesn’t require a certificate of cremation or death certificate, but that doesn’t mean the country you’re flying to won’t have its own set of requirements. Always check ahead to avoid any unnecessary hurdles.


If you've discovered value in this guide, please think about sharing it with others who might also benefit from it. If you've had the experience of traveling with ashes on Air Canada, we would greatly appreciate it if you could leave a comment below, sharing the details of your experience. Your input is highly valuable to us. Our mission is to make the process of traveling with ashes less challenging for anyone flying with Air Canada.
How heavy is My URN?
When traveling via Air Canada and carrying cremated remains, it's crucial to consider the total weight of both the ashes and the urn. Usually, the ashes themselves weigh between 1.8kg and 4kg, and the urn adds an extra 1kg to 3kg. Therefore, the combined weight can vary from a minimum of 2.8kg to a maximum of 7kg, with the average weight around 4.9kg. As a lighter option, you might think about using a scatter tube, which weighs a nominal 0.35kg.
What size is my URN?
As for the urn's dimensions, they typically range from 10 to 12 inches in height (25 to 30 cm) and have a diameter between 6 and 8 inches (15 to 20 cm). However, for the most accurate information, it's advisable to either measure the urn yourself, review the specifications where you bought it, or consult directly with the crematorium if that's where the urn was obtained.
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