July 30, 2017
The UK is Starting to Lift its Electronics Ban
Back in March, the UK banned in-flight electronics larger than a cell phone on 14 airlines, citing security concerns. This policy was similar to the US electronics ban announced around the same time. Since the beginning of July, the United States has been gradually lifting its own in-flight electronics ban from middle-eastern airports which comply with new security screening policies. It looks like the UK is now starting to lift its own electronics ban as well.
Per The Independent, the UK is ending the electronics ban on certain flights from Istanbul and Izmir operated by Turkish Airlines and Pegasus Airlines. Interestingly, the ban is only lifted from three airports in Turkey-Ataturk, Sabiha Gokcen, and Izmir. Passengers flying on Turkish or Pegasus from those airports will be allowed to bring laptops, tablets, etc on board. UK transport secretary Chris Grayling said the following:
“Having looked carefully at the changes introduced in March, and working with our international partners and the industry on tough additional security measures, we can now lift the ban on electronic devices in the cabin on a small number of UK-bound flights from Istanbul and Izmir.”
Some of the new security measures include explosive trace detection tests on electronics and ‘enhanced surveillance’. It appears that Turkish and Pegasus are just the first two airlines to comply with the UK’s new security protocols, as British Airways and easyJet have both released statements that they’re working to comply with the new policies and expect their own bans to be lifted shortly.