Business Travel Blog

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For many business travellers, one saving grace during a long-haul flight is having access to your laptop, catching-up on emails and working on important documents; it’s a great way to use your time productively and helps the time pass quickly too. 

Unfortunately, in rece nt air travel news, this will now be a thing of the past. Those travelling on inbound flights from the Middle East and North Africa to the UK and US are affected after the governments of the latter two countries banned electronic devices larger than a mobile phone. Instead, they will have to be stored in the luggage hold and the Department of Homeland security has explained that the ban is due to the threat of terrorists targeting commercial aviation.

The ban raises serious questions over the safety and security of travellers’ possessions, with a risk of losing sensitive information stored on laptops and damage that may occur due to baggage handling processes.

For many business travellers, having the one hand luggage bag was ideal as you could fit all you needed into one bag, including your laptop and enough clothes for a short trip. The ban now means business travellers will have to check-in luggage and pay the extra charge to put their luggage in the hold.

Some airlines have already started to work around the ban to ensure it doesn’t affect their customers too much by handing out Microsoft Surface tablets for their customers to use in-flight.

Announcing the new restrictions, a Government spokesman said: "The safety and security of the travelling public is our highest priority.

“That is why we keep our aviation security under constant review and put in place measures we believe are necessary, effective and proportionate.

"The additional security measures may cause some disruption for passengers and flights, and we understand the frustration that will cause, but our top priority will always be to maintain the safety of British nationals.

"Decisions to make changes to our aviation security regime are never taken lightly. We will not hesitate to act in order to maintain the safety of the travelling public and we will work closely with our international partners to minimise any disruption these new measures may cause."

Airports affected by the ban:

  • Hamad International Airport, Doha, Qatar
  • Dubai International Airport, UAE
  • Abu Dhabi International Airport, UAE
  • Ataturk International Airport, Istanbul, Turkey
  • Queen Alia International Airport, Amman, Jordan
  • Cairo International Airport, Egypt
  • King Abdul Aziz International Airport, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
  • King Khalid International Airport, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Mohammed V Airport, Casablanca, Morocco
  • Kuwait International Airport, Kuwait