New US airport screening: What will be different when you land

New US airport screening: What will be different when you land”

The measures will be rolled out for 180 airlines operating out of 280 airports in 105 countries. Airlines and airports were given 120 days to comply with the new directives.

The Department of Homeland Security is about to roll out new, heightened security measures that will impact the 2,000 flights and 325,000 travelers who arrive in the US from foreign countries every day.

"We see this as a big issue for China Airlines", Steve Chang, senior vice president of the Taiwanese firm told reporters on Wednesday, adding the airline was trying to consult with the American Institute in the country over the issue.

Many worldwide airlines had concerns about the new regulations. "We were already doing so by strict checking of passport and visas at check-in counters and also asking (some) passengers about the goal of their visit and baggage content".

"We therefore advise all passengers travelling to the USA to arrive at the airport three hours prior to departure to ensure they can proceed through all airport checkpoints in good time", Cathay Pacific said on a website posting.

Alexandre de Juniac, CEO of the International Air Transport Association, said the industry understood security threats to aviation were made regularly but in this case the USA government had not shared any specific dangers before announcing the initial Middle East and North Africa electronic device restrictions in March.

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In a statement, Virgin Atlantic said: "We work closely with U.S. authorities to ensure the safety and security of our flights, and are aware of the additional measures - however, we do not anticipate any disruption to customers. That is something that is very concerning and disturbing".

The checks being done at Changi and other airports aim to increase security without widening an in-cabin ban on laptops and other large electronic devices that was imposed on selected flights earlier this year.

The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines recently called for security measures to be risk-based and proportionate.

Passengers who do online check-in have to deposit their bags at dedicated counters at the airport, where they are subject to a short security interview.

The TSA has also further restricted access to aircraft.

Travellers may also be asked to switch off their electronic devices, including phones.

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