The UK’s cabin baggage ban on laptops and tablets must be implemented by Saturday, the Department for Transport (DfT) said.
Senior U.S. administration officials declined to elaborate on the threats that prompted the ban, saying only that commercial airlines are still a target of terrorists who are trying to smuggle explosives in electronic devices.
ABTA, the UK’s largest travel association, said some passengers may wish to consider leaving their electronic devices at home altogether.
Speaking in the Commons, Grayling said he hoped the measures would be temporary.
USA authorities said the measure is the result of intelligence showing a risk for terrorist activity involving commercial aviation.
Officials said that they believe a threat to the USA would be negated if a passenger transferred through a secondary city with additional and more trustworthy screening procedures.
The ban, announced by the United Kingdom government on Tuesday, applies to certain direct flights to the United Kingdom from Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.
USA airlines are not affected because none of them fly from the airports in question to the United States, according to US government officials.
It also affects eight foreign carriers, including Egyptair, Royal Jordanian, Tunis Air and Turkish Airlines.
The US ban will apply to direct flights to the US from 10 global airports serving the cities of Cairo, Amman, Kuwait, Casablanca, Doha, Riyadh, Jeddah, Istanbul, Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
The UK ban applies to direct flights to Britain from Tunisia, Egypt, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia.
IAG-owned British Airways advised customers departing from affected airports to arrive in good time at check-in.
The sudden move, attributed to concerns about potential terrorist attacks, creates a new headache for airline staff and passengers.
It’s thought a bomb hidden in a laptop was responsible for an explosion on a plane previous year claimed by Somali Islamist militant group al-Shabab.
“The first few days of something like this are quite problematic, but just as with the liquids ban, it will start to sort itself out”, she said.
The official also said that the action has been taken based on intelligence reports and that it has nothing to do with President Trump’s travel ban.
“These steps are both necessary and proportional to the threat”.