Etihad, Emirates passengers flying to America hit hard by electronics ban

Any electronic device larger than a smartphone will need to be checked into the cabin on the affected flights, including laptops, iPads and other tablets, Kindles, game consoles, and even cameras.

The US Department of Homeland Security said people traveling from the airports that are included in the ban can not bring electronic devices bigger than a smartphone.

Following the move by the USA, the British government announced a similar restriction on different airlines, citing terror threats.

Saudia Airlines confirmed in a tweet that US transportation authorities had banned carrying larger electronic devices in cabin luggage.

The airlines that serve the eight countries - Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Turkey and Morocco - were given 96 hours to implement the US ban, starting Tuesday morning, according to senior USA administration officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Emirates Airline and Etihad Airways have not been advised of any new restrictions on carrying electronic devices on USA flights, the Middle East airlines said on Tuesday.

While the United States announced that they had given airlines 96 hours to inform travellers before the ban came into force at 3am (0700 GMT) on Tuesday, there was some confusion over when the British ban would kick in.

The rule also affects Saudi Arabian Airlines, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Kuwait Airways, Turkish Airlines, EgyptAir and Royal Air Maroc.

The US ban applies to 10 airports that fly nonstop to American airports in Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, and UAE.

However, passengers carrying necessary medical devices will be allowed take them onboard after the devices are screened.

The Homeland Security Department said a "small percentage of flights" to the USA would be affected and the regulations would remain in place "until the threat changes".

Other airlines, including Saudia Airlines, Saudi Arabia's national airline, tweeted on the subject Monday, saying the ban would last only 96 hours.

Flight and cabin crews are not covered by the new restrictions.

The British ban related to devices larger than 16 centimeters (6 inches) by 9 cm (3-and-a-half inches).

"We face a constantly evolving threat from terrorism and must respond accordingly", British Secretary of State for Transport Minister Chris Grayling said.

  • Zachary Reyes