Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Use of Approved Handheld Personal Electronic Devices

Back in November, and after extensive research, the FAA has concluded that customers can safely use handheld personal electronic devices (PEDs) during taxi, take-off, and landing and has expanded the approval for use of handheld PEDs to include all phases of flight, with limited exceptions. This approval applies to departures and arrivals in the U.S.  ONLY.

What is changed?
  • Customers may use smartphones, tablets, electronic readers, MP3 players and other similarly-sized devices during taxi take-off and landing in the U.S., with limited exceptions.
    • Exception: Certain instrument approach landings, known as CAT 2 or CAT 3, require all electronic devices to be turned off. The flight deck will notify Flight Attendants when this is necessary.
  • Larger electronic devices, such as laptop computers, are NOT considered handheld PEDs and must be stowed in an approved stowage location during taxi, take-off and landing.
  • Approved handheld PEDs must be secured for taxi, take-off, and landing. Secured is defined as being kept controlled by the customer, e.g. held in the hand, seatback pocket or personal pocket rather than laying on the seat.
  • Airlines have received FAA approval to allow customers to stow lightweight items in seatback pockets for all phases of flight, including taxi, take-off, and landing.  
  • Items restrained in the seatback pocket must:
    • Not exceed a total of 3 pounds
    • Not block or hinder passenger egress
    • Be properly restrained to prevent being dislodged 
  • The following are some examples of some items that are acceptable and not acceptable for seatback pocket stowage: 
Acceptable Not Acceptable
  • Safety Instruction Cards
  • Magazines
  • Airsick bags
  • MP3 players
  • Eyeglasses
  • Cell phones
  • Tablets
  • Beverage (less than 32 fl oz) and small food items
  • Laptop computers
  • Purses (handbags or pocketbooks)
  • DVD players
  • Camera bags

  What has not changed? 
  • Cellular functions are still not permitted for taxi out, take-off or landing. All electronic devices must be placed in airplane mode. Cell phone calls are permitted after landing on arrivals into the U.S. and U.S. territories as they are today.
  • Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) calls remain prohibited. Our current Wi-Fi providers block all known VOIP calls.

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