Here’s what you need to know about the new US electronics security measures for international flights.
First, from Argentina, you’ll still be able to travel with your laptop. If you’re taking an international flight to the US, however, many airlines with services to the US are recommending passengers arrive at the airport at least three hours early, since you and your carry-on luggage may have to go through additional security inspection before boarding.
This is because rather than expand its laptop ban, the US government ruled to increase security measures on roughly 180 foreign and US-based airlines from 280 cities in 105 countries. If the airports don’t comply or take too long to implement the new security, the economic consequences would be severe: not only will passengers not be allowed to bring electronics larger than a cell phone in either their carry-on or checked bags, but the airlines could lose permission to fly into the US.
As a result, the Ezeiza International Airport (EZE) of Buenos Aires recently bought three scanners that will analyze electronic devices for explosives. The scanners cost US $98,000 including tax and the expense was covered by Argentina’s Ministry of Transport, according to its minister, Guillermo Dietrich.
“We adapt and we will comply,” said the President of Aerolíneas Argentinas Mario Dell’Acqua at a press conference, regarding the United States’ tightening of international security measures. “We will be able to meet the conditions when we sell the boarding passes.”
The U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA) gave international airports 21 days to install explosive trace detection technology, and six months to add additional screening. According to Michael McCormick, executive director and COO of the Global Business Travel Association, increasing security measures so that passengers can still use their laptops is “the best option we have right now.”
Though most international airports allow passengers to bring laptops on board as long as they comply with the US government’s new demands, the US electronics ban still affects the following Muslim-majority countries: Turkey, Kuwait, Qatar, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Following this example, the UK took similar measures.