Qatar Airways to launch laptop loan service after US ban

Doha airline says it is offering 'best possible solution' to recently imposed electronics ban
Qatar Airways to launch laptop loan service after US ban
Qatar Airways group CEO Akbar Al Baker. (ERIC PIERMONT/AFP/Getty Images)
By Staff writer
Thu 30 Mar 2017 05:53 PM

Qatar Airways has announced a solution to the recently imposed electronics ban by offering passengers a laptop loan service on its flights to the United States.

The Doha-based airline said in a statement that it has taken the step to purchase laptops available for loan on all of their US flights to allow "uninterrupted productivity and service" throughout the journey.

Qatar Airways group CEO Akbar Al Baker said: “We truly appreciate the importance of being able to work on board our aircraft and that is why I have insisted on offering only the best possible solution for our customers.

"By providing this laptop loan service we can ensure that our passengers on flights to the US can continue to work whilst on-board."

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimates that the controversial ban will impact around 393 scheduled passenger flights per week to the UK from affected airports – equivalent to around 2.7 percent of the total flight schedule in and out of those airports.

Last week, US President Donald Trump banned electronic devices bigger than mobile phones on direct flights to the US from 10 airports in eight majority-Muslim countries including the UAE, Qatar, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

The complimentary laptops will be available to Business Class passengers travelling on all US-bound flights from next week and and can be collected from the boarding gate.

Customers will be able to download their work on to a USB before stepping on board to pick up where they left-off.

Qatar Airways said it is offering a special service at the gate for all passengers, whereby any electronic items prohibited by the new ban will be collected and securely packaged. These will be tagged, loaded as check-in baggage and returned safely to the customer on arrival to the US.

In another move, Qatar Airways is providing one hour of free Wi-Fi for all passengers and a special Wi-Fi package of $5 to stay connected for the duration of the whole flight on US routes.

Earlier this week, Etihad Airways said it will offer free Wi-Fi and iPads to its first and business class passengers on all its US-bound flights from Abu Dhabi from April 2.

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