There are rumors that the United States is considering a broader electronics ban to include countries from Europe. It’s only been a bit over a month since the ban was announced on a patchwork bunch of countries in the Middle East.
If the rumors are true, this would be a devastating change, no matter who you are. Business travelers need to work on flights. Airlines have added Wifi specifically for that purpose. On a recent quick trip to Europe, I purchased connectivity on both of my flights and worked for a decent chunk of time. That’s invaluable to me. Taking away my laptop would make me significantly less productive. Sure, I could stay connected on my phone for urgent items. But, no business person wants to try to bang out e-mails on a 6″ screen for 8 hours.
It might be worse for families. iPads are a lifesaver for parents with young children on long flights. Some airlines do a better job than others on IFE for kids. But, my kids always seem to gravitate back to their iPads. My kids are old enough to reason with. But, when you’re talking about kids who are 4 years old and under, those type of negotiations don’t go well. Kids that young won’t normally have enough content on the airline’s IFE to keep them occupied.
The Final Two Pennies
The reports are that we won’t know more until at least Wednesday, and it could be longer. I understand that there’s a risk here. I certainly don’t pretend to understand the extent of the risk. That being said, it’s my fervent hope that authorities can find another way to address this risk. Because, if the temporary ban goes into place, I suspect “temporary” will be a really long time.
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