Virgin Australia bans all MacBooks from checked baggage

Virgin Australia bans all MacBooks from checked baggage


You can still fly with them in cabin baggage.
Photo: Sergey Zolkin/Unsplash

Virgin Australia this week banned all MacBooks from checked luggage over battery fire fears.

The move follows a worldwide recall of certain 15-inch MacBook Pros. Apple’s notebooks can still be transported in cabin baggage, according to an update on the airline’s Dangerous Goods page.

Apple confirmed in June that some 15-inch MacBook Pro units, sold primarily between September 2015 and February 2017, “contain a battery that may overheat and pose a safety risk.”

A worldwide recall, prompted by 26 reports of flaming MacBook Pros, was launched. It didn’t take long before the affected machines were banned from all flights by the FAA.

But Virgin Australia is being more cautious with a ban of its own.

Don’t check your MacBook on Virgin Australia flights

The airline today confirmed all Apple notebooks — not just those included in the recall — “must be placed in carry-on baggage only.” None are permitted in checked baggage “until further notice.”

This might seem a little excessive given that only a small number of MacBook Pro units are affected. But it is unlikely to pose too many problems for Virgin passengers, and it makes sense.

It’s not easy for airline staff to distinguish between MacBooks that are considered a risk, and those that are perfectly safe, when they’re packed into checked baggage.

Apple will fix affected MacBook Pro units

If you own a 15-inch MacBook Pro sold between September 2015 and February 2017, you can find out if it’s eligible for the recall on Apple’s website.

Apple is offering to replace the battery inside affected units free of charge, so there’s no reason not to get yours fixed.


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