Laptop ban lifted for Emirates and Turkish Airlines

Posted at 9:01 AM, Jul 05, 2017

DUBAI (CNNMoney) -- Passengers flying to the U.S. from Dubai and Istanbul no longer have to pack laptops and tablets in their luggage.

Emirates and Turkish Airlines confirmed that a U.S. ban on electronics devices larger than a smartphone in cabins was lifted on Wednesday.

"Emirates has been working hard in coordination with various aviation stakeholders and the local authorities to implement heightened security measures and protocols that meet the requirements of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's new security guidelines for all U.S. bound flights," the Dubai-based airline said in a statement.

The U.S. introduced the ban in March over concerns that devices could be used to smuggle explosives on board.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has refused to detail all the new requirements for security reasons, but they include greater scrutiny of passengers entering the US, enhanced screening of electronic devices, and better deployment of canines that detect explosives.

Turkish Airlines tweeted: "#WelcomeOnBoard to our U.S.-bound flight. Please fasten your seatbelts and enjoy your own electronic devices."

A separate electronics ban on flights from Turkey to the U.K. is still in place.

Last week, the DHS lifted the ban for Abu Dhabi's Etihad Airways after it put additional security measures in place.

The ban still applies to U.S.-bound flights from seven other airports in the Middle East and North Africa. It will continue to affect six airlines, including Qatar Airways.

The Doha-based airline confirmed that the ban is still in place. It declined to comment on whether it was introducing new security measures to meet the DHS requirements.

Saudi Arabia's national carrier, Saudia, said Tuesday it was working to implement the DHS measures and aims to have the ban lifted by July 19.

"We're not in a position to confirm so far in advance," a DHS spokesman said on Tuesday. "Saudi Arabian Airlines is still operating under the [portable electronic device] restriction."