Update: The electronics ban has now been expanded to flights to the U.S. from eight countries in the Middle East and Africa. Click here for the latest news on the in-flight electronics ban.
Warn your clients: Royal Jordanian just banned all portable electronic devices for flights departing to and arriving from the United States from its cabins during flights.
On Twitter the airline announced that, starting March 21, passengers will be prohibited from taking electronic devices, including laptops, tablets, cameras, DVD players and electronic games onboard with them. Instead, all devices must be placed into checked luggage only.
Attention all passengers 🛑 pic.twitter.com/VjN58EbJkJ— Royal Jordanian (@RoyalJordanian) March 20, 2017
The sole exceptions: cell phones, as well as medical devices needed during the flight.
The prohibition will begin starting with flights departing to and arriving from New York, Chicago, Detroit and Montreal.
Why the change? In its Twitter message, the airline only said it was following “instructions from the concerned U.S. departments.” Travel Agent has reached out for more information and will update when we learn more.
While the airline has not yet specified the reasoning behind the new policy, electronic devices powered by lithium ion batteries have caused problems before. Last year the Federal Aviation Administration was forced to ban all Samsung Galaxy Note 7 phones from flights after several incidents in which the devices overheated and burst into flames (although, again, this latest ban does not apply to cell phones).
What else do travelers need to know? In addition to being aware of the new policy if they’re flying into or out of the United States on Royal Jordanian, travelers should also keep in mind the ins and outs of travel insurance should they be one of the unlucky few to be involved in an electronics fire like the ones caused by the Galaxy Note 7. Last year APRIL Travel Protection issued a study noting that mobile devices may not be covered under many travel insurance policies. According to the study, travelers’ Personal Effects coverage often caps out as low as $500, much lower than the replacement cost for many electronics. Additionally, some policies place consumer electronics in the same category as jewelry and furs, further reducing the potential payout.
Keep visiting www.travelagentcentral.com for further updates to this developing story.