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What does “UM” mean?

UM stands for Unaccompanied Minor.  This is a term refers to students who are travelling alone and who require supervision for their trip by airline staff.  Depending on the age of the student, it may be mandatory for a student to use the UM service.  Each airline has its own age requirement (please check with them directly), but for most airlines, students under the age of 12-13 and travelling alone must travel
as an unaccompanied minor (UM).  Students over 13 years of age can typically travel without the UM service.  However, it may be possible to request and pay for UM service if preferred at any age.

UM service is arranged with the airline and NOT through CISS. This service can be purchased at the time of ticket purchase or at the check-in counter. Costs associated range between $100-200 CAD each way, but the cost depends on the airline and should be checked in advance of purchase.

Students travelling as UMs are escorted from the check-in counter, through security, to the gate and on-board the aircraft by a staff member of the airline. They are supervised while on-board the flight and, once they land, they are escorted through immigration and luggage pick up. The airline staff then bring the student(s) into the arrival lobby to meet a designated individual picking them up.  For the summer, this designated individual is a CISS staff and we provide you with that person’s contact details closer to the arrival date.

Students travelling as UM must pay an additional fee to CISS (separate from the fee paid to the airline).  Our designated CISS staff receives the student upon arrival and assists the student upon departure at the check-in counter. After the departure check-in is complete and the UM student is handed off to an airline staff member, our designated CISS staff remains at the airport until all flights with UM students have departed.

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