Why a travel ban might be good news
Ok, ok, ok… before all of you readers start thinking this is going to be another Trump rant or some super left leaning (or right leaning) political post, I encourage you to be open minded and read on.
The first travel ban that Trump issued via executive order was struck down by the courts, as was the second travel ban. Shortly after, the Trump administration issued an electronics ban, barring all electronics larger than a cell phone on board aircraft in the cabin. You were, of course, more than welcome to check your expensive electronics in the hold of the airplane, but you won’t find us doing that. No way, no how.
How this is definitely a bad thing
We wrote about the potential shenanigans earlier of the electronics travel ban, and if you didn’t read that, give it a browse. It’s interesting nonetheless to see the timeline of events.
Apparently the electronics ban HAS been having an effect on travelers, and most importantly business travelers. Anyone traveling for business who has sensitive information or even potentially confidential information, isn’t going to trust their equipment to the underbelly of an A380.
Economy travelers who look for the cheapest fare haven’t been deterred and prices have remained the same, but I’ve noticed a slight decrease in the cost of business class tickets to and from the affected countries and the affected airlines.
How this could be a good thing
We’re all about finding the cheapest option to fly in first and business class, and we will not stop flying on the big 3 middle eastern carriers. We love Emirates and will continue to fly on them. We love Etihad and will continue to fly on them. We had a great experience on Qatar and would not hesitate flying on them again. But, it will make me rethink my flying habits.
If there are less business travelers buying tickets on these airlines, then there will be open seats. When there are open seats, the paid cost will go down. And if there are still unsold seats, award availability should open up as well.
I don’t want to travel without my laptop, especially when we’re working on the blog. I’m envisioning our trips to be something like this:
USA-Anywhere on ME3
Anywhere-USA on Another Carrier
Anywhere to USA via Milan/Athens on Emirates
For example, we might fly Seattle to Dubai to Hong Kong on Emirates, and then fly home from Hong Kong to the USA on Cathay Pacific. Flights on Emirates from Athens and Milan to New York City are not affected by the electronics ban as the do not come directly from those countries.
I’ve already seen a lot of first class space open on Emirates, and just today I searched for Etihad award space from New York to Abu Dhabi and it was wide open.
Just to be clear, while I support taking actions to protect us against a potential act of terrorism, I do not support taking actions that are unfounded and not based in truth and instead on speculation. The Brits came up with an electronics ban, but decided not to implement it in the end. If they had the same information, what happened?
When we found bombs in shoes, we didn’t check our shoes. When we found potential explosives in liquids, we didn’t ban all liquids, we limited them.
If large electronics are a problem, subject them all to extra screening. Or, don’t… and keep the cost of the Middle East carriers business class tickets even lower. We won’t be complaining.