American and United Now Allow Electronic Devices Below 10K Feet


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Following in Delta’s and JetBlue’s footsteps of allowing portable electronic devices inflight after the FAA gave their approval are American Airlines and United Airlines.

American Airlines has obtained approval from the FAA to allow customers to expand their use of PEDs onboard American’s entire mainline fleet as well as regional aircraft operated by American Eagle Airlines.

This is an improvement from Delta, who only has their mainline fleet certified at this time, and is waiting for approval on their regional jets which may take until the end of this year.

United below 10k feet

United Airlines also just got their approval from the FAA and posted their announcement on twitter.

American airlines portable electronic ped

“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.”

Here’s some additional helpful information about PED use on American and American Eagle Airlines:

  • When the aircraft doors are closed for departure, devices will need to be in airplane mode.
  • Wi-Fi access on equipped aircraft will be available shortly after takeoff.
  • Customers need to secure their handheld devices by holding them or placing them in a seatback pocket. Previously, these devices needed to be stowed under a seat or in an overhead bin during taxi, takeoff and landing.
  • Because the safety of our customers and people is always our top priority, customers should listen to all safety briefings and comply with crewmember instructions. Our crewmembers don’t like to interrupt our customers’ productivity, but always want them to be safe.
  • This change doesn’t apply to larger items such as laptops. These items will still need to be stowed during taxi, takeoff and landing.
  • Some American Eagle flights won’t allow the expanded use of PEDs until later this year.

Bottom Line

Great job to American for implementing this quickly. They may not of been the first ones, but I’m glad to see they got their entire mainline fleet as well as all American Eagle regional jets approved. It will only be a matter of time before all US airlines implement this. Also glad to see United following in their footsteps and implementing this as well.

Any guesses on who will be next? Southwest? Virgin America? US Airways? Hopefully we’ll find out soon!

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