Emirates airline will introduce a “laptop and tablet handling service,” a move that follows an electronics carry-on ban introduced by the United States this week.
With the service, Emirates is attempting to minimize the inconvenience to fliers affected by the new U.S. directive, which indefinitely covers U.S.-bound flights from 10 airports in Africa, the Middle East and Turkey. Dubai, where Emirates operates a major international connecting hub, is among the airports covered by the ban. The United Kingdom also has introduced a similar measure, though its ban does not include Dubai.
Emirates’ new handling service will be offered for free to customers traveling to the U.S. from Dubai, allowing them to use their laptaps and tablets until just before boarding.
Prior to boarding, customers will be required to “declare and hand over their laptops, tablets, and other banned electronic devices to security staff” as they go through gate-side screening in Dubai.
Emirates says “the devices will be carefully packed into boxes, loaded into the aircraft hold, and returned to the customer at their U.S. destination.”
“Our aim is to ensure compliance with the new rules, while minimizing disruption to passenger flow and impact on customer experience,” Emirates president Tim Clark says in a statement. “Our new complimentary service enables passengers, particularly those flying for business, to have the flexibility to use their devices until the last possible moment.”