The ban on electronic devices larger than a smartphone in airplane cabins has been making headlines again this month.

The restrictions, which were introduced by the United States and United Kingdom governments in March, were triggered by growing concerns that terrorist groups could conceal explosives inside electronic devices. At the time, the ban was in effect for all US and UK-bound flights departing from a number of Middle-Eastern and North-African airports. Carries such as Emirates compensated for the restrictions by offering tablet loan services for first and business class passengers.

To the relief of travellers who pass through North Africa and the Middle East, it looks like the US-imposed restrictions are now a thing of the past. Due to an increase in security and screening measures at several affected airports to comply with the US Transport Security Administration’s (TSA) guidelines, passengers are no longer required to stow their laptops in the hold when flying from the Middle East to the US.

As it stands, all personal electronic devices are now permitted in cabins on all Qatar Airways operated flights to destinations across the US. The ban has also been lifted for all Emirates-operated flights to the US, and on all Saudi Arabian Airlines services to the US.

Turkish Airlines, Kuwait Airways and Royal Jordanian have also announced that, after working with US officials to tighten security screening on flights from Turkey, Kuwait and Jordan, all electronic devices are now permitted in the cabins of their US-bound services. The restrictions are also expected to be removed from EgyptAir-operated flights from Cairo to New York this month.

Passengers should expect to be met with enhanced security measures when travelling on all of these services.

For now, the UK government-imposed ban, which specifies that devices larger than 16cm long, 9.3cm wide or 1.5cm deep must be stowed, still applies to all UK bound flights from the following countries:

Saudi Arabia

Operated by the following carriers:

British Airways
Thomas Cook
Turkish Airlines
Pegasus Airways
Atlas-Global Airlines
Middle East Airlines
Royal Jordanian
Tunis Air
Saudia Arabian Airlines

Please get in touch with us or one of our Travel Experts today to keep up to date with the latest on which flights, carriers and destinations have become exempt to the restrictions, and which are still affected.