This travel ban is set to cost up to $1bn

European Laptop Ban Could Cost Travelers $1.1 Billion

It said the ban had a direct impact on demand for air travel into the USA and it faced rising costs from introducing complimentary laptop loans to some passengers.

Among passenger potential costs of a wider laptop ban, the International Air Transport Association, would be $655 million in lost productivity, $216 million from longer travel times, and $195 million for the rental of loaner devices on board.

As many as 65million people a year fly between Europe and North America on nearly 400 daily flights, with many of them being business travellers who rely on devices to work during the long-haul flights.

It emerged from reports in the USA earlier this week that Al Qaeda in Yemen had figured out how to produce explosives so thin that they could be concealed in the inside of a laptop, making their detection very hard. That would have affected a massive number of travelers, since about 65 million passengers per year travel between Europe and North America on some 400 daily flights.

In a letter to U.S. Homeland Security chief John Kelly and EU Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc, IATA head Alexandre de Juniac called on governments to consider alternatives to a ban, such as methods to detect traces of explosives at airport security checkpoints, better training of staff and use of behavioral detection officers.

As anyone who's traveled on a plane since 9/11 knows, boarding a flight has become increasingly laborious in recent years due to all the new security measures adopted after the latest terrorist threat.

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US and European officials will discuss Wednesday, May 17, 2017, plans to broaden a USA ban on in-flight laptops and tablets to include planes from Europe. The initial ban on passengers bringing large electronics devices into the cabin hit hardest at Middle Eastern airlines.

"Given the volumes involved, extending the current US ban to European airports would result in significant disruptions, with implications on various aspects on airport and airline operations", the ACI stated.

Now, the Associated Press cites an official who followed the talks who says a laptop ban is "off the table".

The ban applies to laptops, tablets, e-book readers and cameras.

The move, which requires passengers to put the devices into checked baggage, came amid concerns that jihadist groups were devising bombs disguised as batteries in consumer electronics items.

USA intelligence suggested that terrorists had obtained sophisticated airport security equipment that allowed them to test how to effectively hide explosives in electronic devices, we reported at the time.

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Affected airports may also need to change their gate allocation system for USA -bound flights and start the boarding process far earlier to accommodate the additional screening procedures. Tablets and laptops must be stowed in checked baggage.

Officials from both sides of the pond believe the threat is real enough that remarkable measures are being taken to ensure passenger safety.

The British Airline Pilots' Association said the USA plan was potentially "catastrophic".

De Juniac acknowledges that state authorities may need to implement security measures in response to "credible threat intelligence".

The U.S.is considering expansion of a ban on laptops in airliner cabins on flights not only from Europe but from other regions as well, as objections against any broader restrictions mounted.

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