BC Ferries is hoping to bring in airport-style baggage checking within the next three years.

BC Ferries spokeswoman Deborah Marshall told ctvbc.ca that the company expects to spend $25,000 to study systems and technology for the new protocol, which would be in place by 2012 or 2013.

"What we would be looking at is some sort of baggage tagging and tracking system," Mar said.

"It may be similar to an airport-style system, where you get a tag on your bag and you get a stub."

Currently, ferry passengers can check bags without any tags at all -- ferry officials only recommend that travellers tag their luggage according to weight to assist baggage handlers.

Up until a few years ago, passengers were allowed to check baggage before they'd even bought a boarding ticket.

Despite adding an extra step to the boarding process, Marshall said that she doesn't expect the new system to add any time to passenger waits.

"It's not about screening the bags; it's about verifying whose bag is on the ship."

The ferry company has brought in several new security measures in recent years, including closed circuit cameras and extended fencing.