Large electronic items to be banned from passenger cabin for flights to US
Follow all security directives, anticipate airport delays.
The US government has issued instructions to ban all electronic devices larger than a cell phone from the passenger cabin on direct flights to the US from a variety of countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The Department of Homeland Security has specified that this will affect ports of departure in Abu Dhabi and Dubai (UAE), Amman (Jordan), Cairo (Egypt), Casablanca (Morocco), Doha (Qatar), Istanbul (Turkey), Kuwait City (Kuwait) and Riyadh and Jeddah (Saudi Arabia). The deadline for implementation is 24 March, though some airlines may implement the ban sooner. Travellers should follow all security directives, and anticipate possible security delays at affected airports.
- Anticipate possible security delays at pre-departure screening at the affected airports while the new procedures are being implemented. All travellers departing from these airports, regardless of their final destination, should arrive earlier than usual to account for delays to screen US-bound passengers.
- Comply with all security directives from airport authorities. Those wishing to minimise disruption may wish to consider placing large electronic items in checked luggage in anticipation of the ban’s implementation. Use only TSA approved measures to secure valuable electronics in checked luggage.
- We do not hold information on specific flights. Consult the relevant airport, airline or your travel agent directly before setting out.
- Monitor our travel security alerts for more details.
The ban will prohibit all electronic devices larger than a cell phone including laptops, tablets, cameras and e-readers from the passenger cabin and carry-on luggage on flights to the US from the affected airports until further notice. Such devices will be permitted in checked luggage. Cell phones and medical devices will be excluded from the ban, subject to additional screening.
The Saudi authorities have confirmed that they will implement the ban by 23 March. Statements from officials in Egypt and the UAE to the media earlier on 21 March indicated that they had not yet received instructions related to the ban, but that they would comply with instructions from the US.
For the full Homeland Security announcement click here.
The UK has also announced that it will be imposing restrictions. Further details will be provided as soon as details are clarified.