What is an Airside Pass: Guide to Airside Pass

With over 100,000 passengers transiting through the London Heathrow Airport daily, it comes as no surprise that the airport (and every other airport around the world) requires staff at air travel companies and other airport workers to obtain something called an airside pass.

These passes are usually only issued to those who have a specific need to be in these areas. This includes employees of the airport or airline staff. And, they’re designed to protect the safety of the airport, air travellers, and other staff working within the airport.

If your company or airport is in need of these types of airside passes then keep scrolling through our airside pass guide. We’re about to explain everything you need to know about how to get an airside pass. Yes, that includes how to get the right kind of background check needed to meet the requirements.

What Is an Airside Pass?

An airside pass is a document that allows a person to enter the secure area of an airport. The pass is typically only valid for a certain period of time. In certain cases, it might be restricted to certain areas of the airport. 

To obtain an airside pass, a worker goes through something called airside pass screening. This is typically a background check. They’ll also have to show some form of identification when transiting through secure areas. 

Airside passes are generally only issued to airport employees and people who need to access the secure area for business purposes. 

This means that if you manage a team of workers at an airport or need to help ensure that every business at the airport is able to get their employees an airside pass then you’ll need to find a reputable company that can provide you with background checks and screenings.

What Types of Workers Need an Airside Pass?

There are many different types of workers who need an airside pass in order to do their jobs. These include air traffic controllers, baggage handlers, janitors, and ramp agents. 

Airside passes are also required for some airport security personnel, such as those who work at airport screening checks at both Heathrow Airport and Gatwick Airport. In general, anybody who works in an RZ (Restricted Zone) will need an airside pass.

Because airside areas are restricted areas, only workers who have a valid airside pass are allowed to enter them. While this seems obvious, it means that you’ll need to thoroughly vet workers before granting them access to high-security areas.

Airside Pass Requirements

Whether you’re looking for a Heathrow airside pass or a Gatwick airside pass, each worker will have to meet minimum requirements. The requirements can vary slightly depending on the airport, and airside passes are only valid for the airport where they’re issued.

However, here are the basic requirements for airside passes at any airport:

  • ID check
  • Criminal background check
  • International criminal background check (in certain cases)
  • Work history verification for the past five years
  • Credit check

Sometimes, airports might even require a worker to go through what’s called character checks. In this case, they’ll contact individuals who personally know the applicant and ask about their character and personality.

Ultimately, it’s up to the airport to decide how in-depth these checks are. However, the points mentioned above should be part of the airside pass check regardless.

Potential Disqualifications for an Airside Pass

What can cause someone to potentially be denied an airside pass? Airside pass applicants may be denied if they have a criminal record or if they pose a security risk. 

Additionally, airside passes may be denied if the applicant does not have proper identification or if they fail to meet other eligibility requirements. This could include failing a personal reference check or lying about something during the application process.

How to Get an Airside Pass

Interested in getting airside passes for your employees or for the workers at an airport? In most cases, you apply for the pass on their behalf. 

This means that you would work with a third-party international background check company. They will use their technology, experience, and team of experts to carry out the checks for you.

Depending on the agreement you have with the company, they’ll likely pass the results on to you and your team. Or, they’ll process the applications from start to finish. In the case that you get the results, you’re free to use those to approve or deny the airside pass application.

What’s Included in Background Check Services for Airside Passes?

One of the biggest benefits of working with a trusted team of professionals to carry out the background checks for the airside pass screening process is the quick turnaround time. At Credence, for example, we can get results back to you within 15 to 20 working days.

However, what’s included in those results?

Our airside pass checks include five-year references and a basic criminal record check (otherwise known as a Basic CRC in the UK).

Our five-year reference checks are carried out according to BAA & Department for Transport guidelines. This means that we’ll cross-reference everything from employment, education, and voluntary work to gaps in employee work history that need to be addressed.

The basic level criminal check includes a report regarding any convictions the employee or potential employee has had during the past five years in any country they have lived in (as a resident). 

Get Background Screening Services

Need airside pass checks for your employees or potential workers? At Credence, our team has expertise in the international background check market. With 25 years of experience in this industry, we offer quality you can trust.

Click here to get a quote for your company today.