U.S. and European officials are meeting in Brussels today to discuss a potential ban on laptops on flights from Europe to the U.S. The Trump administration’s reasons are concerns about safety and terrorism. What impact could the ban have?
Aviation consultant Michael BoydÂ said a ban on tablets and laptops would be a deterrent to flying.Â Trans-Atlantic flights can be long and boring, but they give business travelers valuable hours to work on their devices. Â
âMany of those business people will say, âIâll find other ways of communicating, because if I canât take my laptop, I wonât be effective on this trip,â Boyd said.
If would-be travelers instead opt for, say, video conferencing, airlines could see big losses.
âThey make up over 50 percent of the revenue,â Boyd said. âSo everyone you lose, because he or she does not want to check their Macbook Pro, is going to be a real hit.â
Brian Sumers, with travel industry website Skift, said a ban wouldnât just hurt airlines and business travelers, but also the U.S. tourism industry.Â
âHotels, and rental car companies, and tour companies, and really anybody who deals with tourists on a day-to-day basis,â Sumers said.
Some experts see todayâs meeting as a sign the ban will likely go through. A spokesman for the Department of Homeland Security said a decision has yet to be made, but that a ban would largely mirror one set in place on flights from several Middle Eastern airports.
âIt is likely to follow the decision that was announced back in March, that it would restrict from the cabin of aircraft on certain flights electronic devices larger than a cell phone or smartphone,â said David Lapan.
Itâs still unclear which European airports would be affected.
âThe type of restrictions and the locations is still to be determined,â Lapan said.