The US and the UK have both moved to ban electronic devices larger than a mobile phone from cabins on flights from some Middle Eastern and North African countries. The new security measures will mean that electronic items and devices larger than a mobile phone will be required to be carried in checked luggage only, not in the main cabin in hand luggage. This will apply to (but is not limited to), laptops, tablets, portable DVD players, cameras, e-readers and gaming devices larger than a smartphone. The policy will come into effect on Friday 24 March 2017 and will impact flights travelling to the United States and the United Kingdom from the following list of countries.
The US policy has banned large electronic devices on flights from the following countries:
- Saudi Arabia
- United Arab Emirates
The UK’s policy, is slightly less restrictive and applies to flights from the following countries:
- Saudi Arabia
Qantas Airways has released the following statement on their website reporting that these changes will not impact Qantas passengers travelling on Qantas operated services. “There are no impacts to Qantas customers travelling on Qantas operated services following the announcement of new travel requirements that will be implemented by the US and UK restricting the carriage of electronic devices larger than a smartphone in the cabin of inbound flights from some Middle Eastern airports. Customers travelling with codeshare and interline partners to the US or UK should check the requirements of the operating carrier.”
Fairfax Newspapers are also reporting that while the measures should not stop passengers on direct flights to and from Australia bringing laptops, e-readers and other devices on board, there could be flow-on effects to travellers to the US or the UK due to these new tighter security concerns.
Emirates, Etihad Airways, British Airways and Qatar Airways have advised us directly that the new policy will be in place on their flights from the affected list of countries into the US and UK.
The new regulations will affect passengers transiting through the listed countries on to destinations in the US or UK and they will need to check in all prohibited devices before departing Australia.
This summarises what we have been are able to ascertain at this stage, but please be advised that details may be subject to change. We will continue to provide more information as it is confirmed by official channels.
For more information on the UK policy click here: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/additional-airline-security-measures-on-some-routes-travelling-to-the-uk
For further information on the US policy click here: https://www.dhs.gov/news/2017/03/21/fact-sheet-aviation-security-enhancements-select-last-point-departure-airports
UK BANS ELECTRONICS ON FLIGHTS
In a statement, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said: “The UK has some of the most robust aviation security measures in the world and at all times the safety and security of the public is our primary concern.
Today the U.S Government has advised the temporary restrictions of personal electronic devices larger than mobile phones will be banned in the cabins on certain flights direct to the U.S.
If you have any passengers travelling to the U.S here’s what they need to know:
They will be affected if they are flying to the U.S from the 10 following airports:
Istanbul, Turkey; Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates; Doha, Qatar; Amman, Jordan; Cairo, Egypt; Casablanca, Morocco; Jeddah and Riyadh in Saudi Arabia; Kuwait City, Kuwait
What exactly is banned? Laptops and larger electronics will be banned from being taken on board as carry-on luggage and will need to be checked in. Smartphones will be allowed, and Homeland Security advises “approved medical devices may be brought into the cabin after additional screening.”