The victims were not only Etihad, Emirates, Qatar Airways, Saudia, Egypt Air, but passengers flying on 180 airlines and 280 airports. Passengers on direct flights or transiting through certain airports or countries to the United States are required to check their computer and other larger electronics with their suitcases.
The ban to take such items onboard the aircraft was put in place by US Authorities for security reasons and many think it’s discriminating against certain airlines and regions. Many business passengers felt hours of productivity one could have onboard an aircraft was taken away.
Today the United States Department of Homeland Security lifted the restriction to bring electronics onboard when checking in at Abu Dhabi International Airport in the Capital of the United Arab Emirates.
Not only is Abu Dhabi now the only UAE airport to fly to the U.S. with your computer on board, it’s also the only airport in the Middle East or Gulf Region where passengers will clear U.S. immigration and customs. It means when arriving in the U.S. the arrival is treated the same as a domestic flight.
The winner today is Etihad Airways, the national carrier of the UAE, when US Authorities lifted the ban from Abu Dhabi.
Etihad released this statement:
We welcome the decision by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to lift the electronic devices ban on flights between Abu Dhabi and the United States, following the successful validation of security measures at the U.S. Preclearance facility at Abu Dhabi airport earlier today (July 2, 2017).“Effective immediately, the removal of the restrictions allows passengers flying to the U.S. to carry all laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices onto the aircraft, subject to enhanced security measures.
Effective immediately, the removal of the restrictions allows passengers flying to the U.S. to carry all laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices onto the aircraft, subject to enhanced security measures.
We would like to thank our guests for their understanding and loyalty while the ban was in place.”
All Etihad Airways guests traveling to the United States clear U.S. Immigration and Customs at the U.S. Preclearance facility in Terminal 3 at Abu Dhabi International Airport, the only one of its kind in the Middle East. When guests land in the U.S., they arrive as domestic passengers with no requirement to queue for immigration and custom checks again.
Affecting 180 airlines and 280 airports, it is anticipated that Etihad Airways is one of the first airlines to be able to satisfy the short-term measures required by the Transportation Security Administration due to the superior security advantages provided by the preclearance facility.
Etihad Airways currently operates 45 flights a week between Abu Dhabi and six cities across the United States – including double daily to New York, daily to Washington, Chicago, Dallas and Los Angeles.
The U.S. is one of Etihad Airways’ largest markets, with 203,515 passengers flying to the U.S. from Abu Dhabi between January 1 and April 30, 2017. This was up by 13,157 passengers for the same period in 2016.