New airline security measures have been announced for passengers travelling to the UK from six countries, banning them from carrying laptops and other large electronice devices in their cabin luggage.
Here is everything you need to know about the new ban.
What has been announced?
Airline passengers travelling to the UK from six countries in the Middle East
and north Africa are to be banned from carrying laptops and other large
electronic devices as cabin luggage.
What devices are affected?
Under the new arrangements phones, laptops, tablets and e-readers longer that 16cm, wider than 9.3cm and more than 1.5cm deep will be barred.
What are the countries?
Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.
Why is this being done?
Downing Street declined to discuss whether the new rules were prompted by
specific intelligence, while Transport Secretary Chris Grayling said the
Government “will not hesitate to put in place measures we believe are necessary, effective and proportionate”.
Aren’t they doing something similar in America?
Yes. Grayling said Britain has been “in close contact” with the US government
“to fully understand their position”.
What are authorities in America saying?
The Department for Homeland Security said “evaluated intelligence” indicated that terrorist groups “continue to target commercial aviation and are aggressively pursuing innovative methods to undertake their attacks, to include smuggling explosive devices in various consumer items”.
Which airlines are affected?
Six UK and eight foreign airlines will be affected by the new rules. The UK
carriers are British Airways, easyJet, Jet2.com, Monarch, Thomas Cook and
Thomson, while overseas airlines affected are Turkish Airlines, Pegasus Airways, Atlas-Global Airlines, Middle East Airlines, EgyptAir, Royal Jordanian, Tunisair and Saudia.
What if I need to take my device?
Travellers who want to use a laptop or kindle in one of the affected
destinations can either arrange for it to be delivered to their home by post or
pack it in a checked bag in the hold.
Will I have to pay extra to check a bag in?
Many passengers hoping to save money by choosing hand luggage-only fares now
face extra baggage fees. The amount varies between airlines and destinations,
with easyJet charging £13 to £30 for a bag in the hold booked online.
Will my gadgets still be insured?
Passengers should contact their travel insurer before putting expensive devices in checked baggage, as many policies do not cover valuables placed in the hold.
How long will this last?
No timeframe has been confirmed in the UK but US authorities said the measures announced there would be in effect “indefinitely”.