Some Airlines Banning All MacBooks in Checked Luggage Regardless of Recall Status

Following an Apple notice that a “limited number” of 15-inch MacBook Pros may have faulty batteries that could potentially create a fire safety risk, multiple airlines have barred transporting Apple laptops in their checked luggage — in some cases, regardless of whether they fall under the recall.

The restrictions — which prohibit travellers from checking in and operating their laptops in flight — have spread from the United States to Australia to Asia, according to a new report from Bloomberg.

Qantas Airways and Virgin Australia are among the latest airlines to ban MacBooks — regardless of whether Apple has recalled them — from checked luggage. Qantas said that all passengers will need to stow 15-inch MacBook Pros in their cabin bags and keep them switched off for the entire flight, while Virgin Australia said passengers have to keep all MacBook models out their checked luggage.

Other international airlines and aviation safety agencies are also issuing warnings and bans regarding the laptops.

Fortunately, it’s a rather select group of laptops affected by the recall: 15-inch MacBook Pro computers sold primarily between September 2015 and February 2017; Apple is using serial numbers to determine if individual laptops are eligible for free battery replacement.

Apple issued the recall in June, saying “in a limited number of older generation 15-inch MacBook Pro units, the battery may overheat and pose a fire safety risk.”

If you have a 15-inch MacBook Pro purchased in 2015, 2016, or 2017, you can visit the recall program page to see if your MacBook’s battery needs to be replaced and, if so, learn how to go about doing so.

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