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My child is always questioned in the airport!

(37 Posts)
tigwig76 Sat 20-Apr-19 23:22:39

We are lucky enough to go abroad on holiday at least twice a year. For the previous 2- 3 years my now 9yr old son is always questioned both at check in, before boarding and on arrival back to the UK at Border Force. Is this normal?
I never thought anything of it at first and I also have a teenage daughter who is never asked a thing. We all have the same surname, I'm married and we all travel together as a family of 4. Both kids look just like their dad too!
DS is asked stuff like are you sure that's your name, how old are you, what's your dob, where have you been and for how long etc. He is completely laid back and answers in his own natural way. One time it was a few days after his birthday and the check in staff quizzed him about that and asked him what he got for presents. It's like they all dont quite believe him!! Does this happen to everyone?!

ittakes2 Sun 21-Apr-19 22:09:31

I think my children often get asked.

PicsInRed Sun 21-Apr-19 12:15:27

Agree with pps, it is very likely that your son has the same or very similar details to a child with a custody related border stop on his travel. Particularly as this is an issue in the UK, but not in the US. The border stop is likely only located on UKBA computers. Should resolve once he is of age.

KatnissKringle Sun 21-Apr-19 12:09:44

I always used to get stopped and security checked which was a standing joke in my family. Then one day - I think it was CDG in Paris - I somehow managed to swap passports with a friend (not even related!) and we literally got to the plane having used one another's ID! We were amazed!

FirstNameSurname Sun 21-Apr-19 12:09:24

I think it's pretty standard. My youngest is unable to speak (SEN) so they direct their attention to DD2 who has verbal dyspraxia and slurs her words. Germany hated her annunciation of her address and it caused alot of stress but luckily I found her SALT report in my bag. Since shes started using ear defenders they now ask DD1 and things are much easier.

CCC1 Sun 21-Apr-19 12:01:20

@PlainSpeakingStraightTalking I think it’s probably more to do with custody disputes - where one parent may try to remove a child to another country on a child’s genuine passport.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Sun 21-Apr-19 11:13:36

Random thought - its does make you wonder how many known terrorists/abducted children/plain wanted by the authorities fly on their own passports ….. I have thought ….zero

churchthecat Sun 21-Apr-19 11:09:26

I always get pulled out for the extra questions and shoe swabs. 3 times on a 3 leg trip earlier this year!

I'm white british, blonde, dress like a hippie, not suspicious looking - whatever that means.

Connieston Sun 21-Apr-19 11:06:27

Perhaps the youngest child is most likely to answer truthfully or at least forget to lie if their parents have primed them so naturally the one to quiz?

dudsville Sun 21-Apr-19 10:38:26

I see all the kids very questioned like this. I think it's good practise. Don't worry.

Connieston Sun 21-Apr-19 10:37:18

I barely got through for a few years when I had blond hair as opposed to brown in the pic. It totally changed the look of my face. Passport photos arent the most flattering, it could be that.

tigwig76 Sun 21-Apr-19 09:00:13

We're white British. Very average name and passport pic is 2nd one that does look like him. It's happened about 6 times at least. First time was just saying his name to see if he responded. Funny thing is we travel to America and US Immigration are fine!!

MolyHolyGuacamole Sun 21-Apr-19 01:52:03

Forgot to add that her son was also 9 at the time.

MolyHolyGuacamole Sun 21-Apr-19 01:51:27

Child trafficking. Might be considered the 'right' age or something for it. I have a relative who needed all sorts of permission from her son's father to travel alone with him from SA to the UK, for this very reason. Grim.

LaCitrouille Sun 21-Apr-19 01:51:03

Are you Muslim? That's quite the norm with us. We travel A LOT and we're always checked at the security gates and DDs are questioned. Still, I will never forget how the passport control officer in Vienna refused to believe that our daughter was actually ours! She kept asking about why I'm not having my husband's last name and why my daughter is having a different surname. You would think that her job would've taught her that not every woman chooses to have her husband's surname. And that there are cultures that name their kids surnames after grandparents. I wonder if she's ever heard of families with step children or unmarried couples with children. That will surely shock her!
We were held for 25 minutes until they finished inspecting all our passports, marriage certificate and Dd's birth certificate.

Ghanagirl Sun 21-Apr-19 01:16:13

Is he a different colour to typical UK Citizens?
My Ds has been pulled aside few times since he was around 8-9 and he’s not particularly tall...

Alicewond Sun 21-Apr-19 01:15:52

I always get stop checked too, my family find it hilarious. I think in my case it’s because flying terrifies me and therefore I look nervous. Doesn’t help that I am also terrified they’ll check me and I’ll have accidentally somehow smuggled she’d loads of drugs without realising!!! Yes my mind is an odd thing and I worry about the impossible!!! 😂

WithAllIntenseAndPurposes Sun 21-Apr-19 01:09:48

I don't know but every bloody time I will get frisked and my tray will go down the naughty slide

SeaToSki Sun 21-Apr-19 01:07:22

In the US you can get a know traveller number. It is for people who have similar details to someone who is flagged. You have to have an interview and provide lots of documentation, but then you can add the special number whenever you travel, and it stops the extra checks

TreacherousPissFlap Sun 21-Apr-19 00:43:51

I've recently had a thread on here about DS's passport and similar issues.

In DS's case it's because he's had surgery to correct a squint and his original photo shows his eye turned right in towards his nose. We have a new passport application going at the moment as the passport office advised us that DS will have a "marker" on his passport due to the number of times he's been stopped.

WaxOnFeckOff Sun 21-Apr-19 00:28:54

yes, agree with the others, something about his details trigger an alert. Might stop when he is 16/18.

You want to try getting through Turkish security (stricter than your average europe flight) with a 6 foot 14 year old with long dark hair and beard who has a passport with a baby faced blond child in it. At one point they took him away towards another room and then wondered why I was protesting until I told them that he was a child (then they checked the date of birth properly). After that they just took him to another desk and had him completely empty his bag and examined everything really carefully and gave him an over clothes body search. He's had a few since and will be 18 soon so he'll be on his own with those now. DS1 never gets them.

Karwomannghia Sun 21-Apr-19 00:16:20

All we’ve ever had is they say one of the kids’ names and see if they look. Only really recently realised it was a thing and not just Conversation

notangelinajolie Sun 21-Apr-19 00:10:15

Him or his dad probably have the same name as someone who is of interest. I don't think you should worry about it. My adult daughter is always stopped when entering this country. It has been happening since she was a child. It is a standing family joke that we steer well clear of her once we get off the plane. Although their interest in my daughter is unfounded it is reassuring to know that behind the scenes they are trying to keep this country safe.

Itwouldtakemuchmorethanthis Sun 21-Apr-19 00:10:08

One of my twins is always pulled aside and so am I. Fucking weird! Mercifully we are boring as hell so it just makes things slower.

Purpleartichoke Sun 21-Apr-19 00:09:58

Dd is always questioned, but she is flying in the US without Id. They check child identity by asking them questions. A 2 year old would point to mom or dad. A 5 year old Might be asked to say their parents first name while pointing to them. An older kid might get asked an address and they check that against the parent Id.

ginmcginface Sun 21-Apr-19 00:06:40

My 10 year old ds is too. Every time. It makes me laugh though because he can talk for England and happily regales stories far and above what they’ve asked him grin.

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