Apple’s recall of some 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro models due to faulty batteries has spurred a number of airlines around the world to initiate bans, even on MacBook Pro models that are not a part of the recall.
Bloomberg reports Qantas Airlines has banned all 15-inch MacBook Pro models from checked luggage and fliers must keep the devices switched off for the duration of the flight. This applies to all MacBook Pro models, not just the models subject to recall.
Meanwhile, Virgin Airlines has banned “all Apple MacBooks” from checked luggage. Customers are required to place their MacBooks inside their carry-on luggage.
The United States Federal Aviation Administration gave has warned U.S. airlines, reminding them of rules that prevent affected MBPro models that have not received replacement batteries from being placed in checked luggage. U.S.-based carrier United Airlines is asking passengers not to use affected models during flight.
The European Union Aviation Safety Agency has issued warnings to airlines reminding them that recalled 15-inch MBPro models with faulty batteries should be kept switched off during flight.
Apple in June voluntarily recalled a limited number of older generation 15-inch MacBook Pro units which contain a battery that may overheat and pose a safety risk. The units were sold mostly between September 2015 and February 2017 and can be identified by their product serial number.
The recall affects just the 15-inch MacBook Pro from 2015 and does not affect later models released in 2016 and beyond.
MacBook Pro models that have had a battery repair are no longer in danger of overheating, and are considered safe for use on airplanes and in other locations.
However, there is no easy way for airlines to determine what year a MacBook Pro was made, short of checking the serial number. Hence, the varying rules for their use in-flight among airlines.
If your MacBook Pro model is a recalled model, you are instructed to find an Apple authorized service provider, make an appointment at an Apple retail store, or contact Apple support to arrange a mail-in repair. For more information, visit the Apple Support website.