Most air travelers are familiar with the instruction to turn off electronic devices during take-off and landing. But that soon may be a thing of the past. The Federal Aviation Administration has authorized airlines to expand use of Portable Electronic Devices.
When implemented, this means that you may continue reading your e-book or playing games or watching videos on your device without interruption. You may also use short-range Bluetooth accessories. However there are some important things to note:
- The device must be held or safely stowed.
- Cellular devices must be in Airplane Mode throughout the flight.
- Voice communications are still not allowed, though if your carriers provides Wi-Fi services, you may use those.
- The airlines can begin the process immediately, but that does NOT mean the expansion is immediate. Each airline will have to evaluate the ability of its fleet to tolerate the radio interference signals that these devices emit. Always check your airline’s guidelines.
- No matter what the stated regulations of the airline, ALWAYS listen and follow the crew’s instructions as certain situations may warrant a change.
This is welcome and long-awaited news for air travelers, and it will be interesting to see how it plays out. For parents, not having to shut off your child’s electronics during take-off and landing will no doubt reduce some battles!