Qantas travellers to London better make sure their laptops, tablets and smartphones are charged up before they leave the Emirates lounge in Dubai, with UK authorities now adopting a similar stance to the USA's ban on powerless electronic devices.
Australian Business Traveller reader Andrew Larmour says that on arrival into Dubai on the Qantas QF9 Melbourne-London flight, it was announced that "random checks of carry-on electronic equipment (including having to power them up) would be carried out for the second segment of QF9 to London."
If your travel tech fails to start up during the security check it won't be allowed onto the plane with you, and will be consigned to your checked baggage.
Qantas advises that "customers travelling on flights from Dubai to the UK who are randomly selected to undergo additional screening may be required to remove footwear and from hand luggage all electrical equipment including portable electronic devices such as laptops, iPads, smart phones, and cameras larger than a standard mobile phone and power up the device to demonstrate functionality."
"Passengers are advised to ensure that their electronic devices are charged before travel" Qantas suggests. "Devices that do not power on may not be permitted onboard the aircraft."
Last week saw the US Transportation Security Administration begin selective bans on powerless electronic devices on flights bound for the United States.
Responding to a directive by the Secretary of Homeland Security, passengers may be asked to power up certain gadgets – including laptops, mobile phones and iPads – before being allowed on board.
Those that won’t boot, whether faulty or simply with a flat battery, won’t be allowed into the cabin and must be placed in checked baggage at “certain overseas airports”.
The Department of Homeland Security isn’t revealing which foreign airports would be targeted – or indeed whether any of the affected airports will be those in Australia.
From Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, passengers can fly non-stop to Los Angeles, San Francisco and Dallas/Fort Worth on Qantas, Virgin Australia, United Airlines and Delta Air Lines.
All of these flights are potentially affected, so we’d strongly advise travellers to ensure their portable gadgets are charged before heading to the airport.
And, if you're unlucky enough to have 'SSSS' on your boarding pass, you'd best allow a little extra time for security screening too.
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