What are the airlines doing about the electronics ban?

You know, if you have a smartphone, laptop, iPad/tablet, kindle or any other electronic device (like gaming devices, scanners or printers and maybe even your camera) bigger than 16cm x 9.3cm you need to include it in your check-in luggage if you are travelling from certain destinations to the USA and UK.

If you’re a corporate traveller on your way to the affected destinations from South Africa (even if you’re stopping over) you may need to check your devices in from the onset.

But, there is good news!

Selected airlines have already put measures in place to minimise the effect of the ban on your travels:

  • Etihad Airways: Provides free wi-fi to all First and Business Class travellers going to the US from Abu Dhabi. A limited number of iPads are offered to guests onboard. Should you wish to carry your larger electronic devices to Abu Dhabi, you will go to a re-packing point at the airport’s US preclearance facility, where they will pack your device and store it in the hold until you land.

  • Emirates: Passengers can use their electronic devices until the last possible moment – after which you hand them over to the Emirates staff just before boarding the US-bound flight. They will pack your device into boxes, load it into the aircraft hold, and you will get them when you land. This service is free of charge. Emirates have also introduced a tablet loan service onboard selected flights.

  • Turkish Airlines:  Offer free internet connection onboard. You can use your electronic devices right up until boarding, where you hand them over for tagging at the boarding gate for safe and secure transportation. You can collect your devices in the baggage reclaim area by presenting the matching luggage tag. This is an option for transit passengers as well.

  • Qatar Airways: Business class travellers may use laptops on loan at the gate. The airline will collect prohibited electronics and check them in, to be returned on arrival. The airline says it will provide one free hour of Wi-Fi, with a $5 charge to stay connected the whole flight. 

These are the main airlines and their ways they are trying to alleviate the impact of the electronics ban on the business traveller. Here’s a summary of all the destinations and airlines affected by the ban:

Any direct flight from the following ten cities to any port in the USA:

  • Dubai, UAE 

  • Abu Dhabi, UAE 

  • Cairo, Egypt 

  • Istanbul, Turkey 

  • Doha, Qatar 

  • Amman, Jordan 

  • Kuwait City, Kuwait 

  • Casablanca, Morocco 

  • Jeddah, Saudi Arabia 

  • Riyadh, Saudi Arabia 

 Airlines include: EgyptAir, Emirates Airline, Etihad Airways, Kuwait Airways, Qatar Airways, Royal Air Maroc, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airlines and Turkish Airlines.

Any direct flight from the following six countries to any port in UK:

  • Egypt

  • Jordan

  • Lebanon

  • Saudi Arabia

  • Tunisia

  • Turkey

The U.K. restrictions apply to 14 airlines flying from the above six countries to any UK port: British Airways, EasyJet, Jet2.com, Monarch, Thomas Cook, Thomson, Turkish Airlines, Pegasus Airways, Atlas-Global Airlines, Middle East Airlines, Egyptair, Royal Jordanian, Tunis Air and Saudia.

For more information, contact your Corporate Traveller Travel Manager.