Airlines now allow the use of personal electronic devices gate to gate

Late last month the FAA handed down official word clearing the use of electronic devices through all phases of flight aboard commercial aircraft. That left the ball in the airlines’ court for allowing passengers to use electronic devices during takeoff and landing. American Airlines has now announced it will allow customers to have gate to gate use of hand-held portable electronic devices as of yesterday.

American Airlines allowed the gate-to-gate use of electronic devices starting at 5 PM CST on November 4 after obtaining approval from the FAA to allow customers to expand the use of their portable electronic devices of its entire mainline fleet. American also allows the use of electronics on its regional aircraft operated by American Eagle.

"We're delighted that our customers are now able to use their handheld portable electronic devices gate to gate," said Jon Snook, American's Senior Vice President – Customer Service. "We know that our customers have wanted additional access to their personal devices on their flights, and we've been working with the FAA for some time to make this a reality. We're excited to be able to deliver this to our customers because of the FAA's expeditious approval."

The caveat onboard American flights is that devices do have to be in airplane mode meaning phone calls are not allowed. Customers are now allowed to secure their handheld devices by holding them or placing them in a seatback pocket rather than having to be stored in overhead bins or under seats during takeoff, texting, and landing.

Laptop computers and items of similar size are still required to be stored overhead or under the seat during takeoff and landing.
American Airlines rivals JetBlue and Delta announced earlier this month that they're allowing passengers to use personal electronic devices during takeoff and landing.

Sources: American Airlines, ABC News

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