For those of you who frequent the US via the Middle East be it for work or play, take note.
According to multiple news reports, the US authorities today issued an alert to indefinitely ban passengers from bringing electronics larger than a cellphone on certain flights. The directive was supposedly issued to a number of Middle Eastern and African airlines.
This means no to your tablet, your Kindle, your laptop, your portable game console, your DSLR camera, so on and so forth in airline cabins. Not even in your carry-on luggage. Instead, travellers are required to check any electronic items larger than a cellphone with the rest of their checked baggage.
As it stands, at least 10 to 13 countries are affected by the ban and it includes number of Middle Eastern and African airlines. Both Saudi Arabian Airlines and Royal Jordanian Airlines have confirmed that their flights have been affected by the ban. The Royal Jordanian Airlines took to their Twitter to deliver the news, but the tweet has since been deleted:
The airlines has since replaced the initial alert with a tweet that simply said, “Further updates will be announced soon regarding #electronicsban.”
The Associated Press, citing a US official, confirmed that the ban will apply to nonstop flights to the US from 10 international airports. The 10 airports affected are: Cairo in Egypt, Amman in Jordan, Kuwait City in Kuwait, Casablanca in Morocco, Doha in Qatar, Riyadh and Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, Istanbul in Turkey, and Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
However, no further the details of the ban were disclosed. All requests for more information from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) were redirected to the Department of Homeland Security and David Lapan, a spokesman for Homeland Security, has declined to comment.
There’s no knowing when the electronics ban will be lifted, but travellers might find it a challenge if they’re forced to check in their electronics (read: laptop, tablet, DSLR). Furthermore, many airlines do not allow passengers to check their laptops with the rest of their checked baggage due to the use of lithium-ion batteries. Transporting lithium-ion batteries in a plane’s cargo compartment run the risk of it catching fire.
On whether or not this will affect Malaysians, there may be chance if said traveller is transiting at one of the airports affected by the ban. Your guess is as good as ours.