SIA allows tablets, other small electronic devices to be used on flights from start to end

The use of laptops, tablets and other electronic devices is now allowed on Singapore Airlines flights from the time of boarding until disembarkation. -- PHOTO: ST FILE
The use of laptops, tablets and other electronic devices is now allowed on Singapore Airlines flights from the time of boarding until disembarkation. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - The use of iPads, tablets and other small electronic devices is now allowed on Singapore Airlines flights from the time of boarding until disembarkation. Mobile phones are also permitted if on flight mode which means there is no transmission of wireless or other data.

Previously, such devices could be used only after take off and had to be switched off before landing.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) said on Friday that the rules were relaxed following a review.

The new procedures apply to all Singapore carriers - Singapore Airlines, SilkAir, SIA Cargo, Scoot, Tigerair, Jetstar Asia and Valuair - but the airline must first seek approval from the authority.

Singapore carriers have to ensure that their aircraft meet the certification requirements and conduct the necessary safety risk assessments to verify that the use of personal electronic devices does not interfere with the performance of the aircraft navigation or communication systems, the CAAS said.

The Straits Times understands that so far, SIA is the only airline that has got the green light.

Mr Tan Pee Teck, SIA's senior vice-president (product and services), said: "More and more of our customers are now travelling with personal electronic devices and we are pleased to have implemented this for the benefit of our customers."

Safety remains the top priority and cabin crew will ensure that travellers are advised on the safe use of the devices in accordance with the appropriate guidelines, he said.

There are no common global guidelines on the use of electronic devices during flight but with advancements in aircraft technology and increasing use of iPads and other such personal devices, aviation regulators including in the United States are increasingly relaxing the rules.

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