Qantas and Virgin Australia allow unrestricted use of devices

Qantas and Virgin Australia passengers can from today use personal electronic devices for the duration of their flight.

Both carriers now permit the use of handheld devices during taxiing, take-off and landing, as long as ‘flight mode’ is switched on.

The move applies to both international and domestic passengers and comes after Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) last night approved applications made by the airlines.

It means mobile phones, tablets, e-readers and small game consoles can be used during take-off and landing, although laptops will still be required to be stowed away at these times.

CASA spokesman Peter Gibson said: “The change does mean that passengers will be allowed to speak on their phones from gate-to-gate.

“But at some point crew will ask passengers to put their electronic devices on flight mode, probably before the safety briefing is given.”

Lyell Strambi, Qantas’ domestic CEO, said: “We’re delighted to give Qantas customers the freedom and flexibility to use their personal electronic devices from the moment they board the plane until they disembark.”

British Airways permitted the use of personal electronic devices during all phases of flight last December (see news, December 2013).,

Graham Smith

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  • KLM adopted this policy also some months ago, and on Etihad flights also for some months.
    Makes it pleasant to be using an E-reader or tablet. I still enjoy my paper copy of The Times for European flights, which others used to see and ask if they can borrow. If i was still reading it, some Biz passengers really fiddle around feeling quite unable to be without their technology in Economy class these days!

    There is something to say about peoples addiction to their technology, and i know of plenty friends and colleagues who are fidgeting and behaviourally change significantly without it.

    I hope we never allow phone calls, as this would just be a nigthmare

    I still prefer a window seat, at least there is a moving entertainment of some sort.

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