Update: The DHS spokesperson claims that TAP Portugal is incorrect, and that there are “no current restrictions on large PEDs in checked bags.”
— DHS spokesperson (@SpoxDHS) July 19, 2017
As of now this is still very much “developing,” though it potentially has huge implications. Let’s keep in mind that we first found out about the US electronics ban when Royal Jordanian leaked it on their Facebook page.
Well, now another airline has posted something interesting on their Facebook page. Earlier I posted about how the US seems to be implementing new security requirements for US-bound flights from several countries today. TAP Portugal wrote on their Facebook page that as of today electronic devices larger than smartphones are banned from checked bags on US-bound flights. Per their announcement:
Traveling to the USA – new security rules
TAP alerts its Customers with travel to or via the United States of America for the new rules for electronic devices transportation on board.
As of July 19, 2017, as determined by the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA), it will not be allowed to carry electronic devices that are larger than a conventional smartphone in the checked baggage.
Electronic devices that are larger than a smartphone may be carried in cabin luggage, but may be screened at boarding gates through explosive detection systems (EDS).
For more information, please check the TSA website at www.tsa.gov.
This is the first I’ve heard of this, so I can’t personally vouch for whether or not this is true. If so, I’m not sure if it only applies for certain countries (in which case Portugal seems like an odd choice), or if TAP Portugal is misinterpreting a new security directive.
If this is in fact the case, then I can’t help but laugh at the fact that we’re going from having electronics banned from the cabins of flights, to having electronics banned from the cargo hold. I guess having some element of mystery and unpredictability will help keep us safe. 😉
Fortunately this wouldn’t be a big deal, since I don’t recommend checking electronics anyway. Furthermore, I think there’s actually a legitimate reason behind this, which is the increased risk of fire in the cargo hold if an electronic device sets fire, without any way to put it out.
Has anyone seen anything else about electronics being banned from checked bags?
(Tip of the hat to Mauricio)