SOURCE: APRIL Travel Protection

KTCpr

April 22, 2015 13:59 ET

APRIL Examines the Serious, and Less Serious… Truths Behind Air Security Protocols

MIAMI, FL--(Marketwired - April 22, 2015) - From the moment you enter the TSA queue to the time you exit your aircraft, travelers are often inconvenienced and routinely perplexed by some of the protocols implemented by airlines and airport security personal. APRIL Travel Protection (www.AprilTravelProtection.com) looks at a number of procedures in place that seem amusing but should be taken extremely seriously.

Shoes Must Come Off! No, that's not Au Bon Pain you smell. The four people ahead of you and the two behind have just removed their loafers, and at least one of those gentlemen isn't wearing socks. You'll often be warned about this procedure long before you get to the screening area, yet despite most frequent travelers accepting this as common practice, moccasin removal continues to contribute to airport security delays.

This practice has been in place for less than 15 years in the United States. It traces back to the infamous botched shoe-bomb attempt on American Airlines flight 63 between Paris and Miami. Islamic fundamentalist and UK native Richard Reid -- not to be confused with Marvel superhero Reed Richards -- failed to kill himself along with almost 200 passengers and crew when the perspiration of his feet dampened the gunpowder in his shoe. Thankfully, the Colorado inmate wasn't aware of Gold Bond.

Unfortunately, several months later, American Airlines flight 587 crashed shortly after taking off from New York City's JFK due to similar circumstances prompting the TSA to scrutinize shoes to the same degree as other carry-on baggage. The good news is that TSA PreCheck now allows low-risk travelers to bypass certain security measures at select airports where the program's been implemented. Visit http://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck for more information.

You Won't Like Me On 3.4 Oz Of Coffee! Your 3.4 oz liquid allotment seems a bit random until you realize it's roughly the equivalent of 100 ml. But it still begs the question: What kind of dastardly plot can one conceive with 3.5 oz of liquid that couldn't be pulled off with a mere 3.4? Is this a legitimate security concern or is this another way to get you to spring $6 for a 20 oz soda from the airport concession?

According to the foiled 2006 al Qaeda plot, a typical water bottle's worth of hydrogen peroxide was all that was needed. False alarms are commonplace as its better to be extra cautious than not. A good travel insurance policy will protect you in the event you are delayed as a result of terrorism, whether perceived or actual.

iPhone vs Plane! That toddler in the seat behind you has been screaming in your ear for the past 15 minutes. Only one thing will get him to stop, but the flight attendant told little Tommy's parents that Elmo has to go bye-bye during take-off and landing. Will your iPhone, iPad, Samsung Galaxy or laptop computer really interfere with the pilot's ability to communicate with air traffic control?

We've always been permitted to use our personal electronic devices (PEDs) in "airplane mode" once take-off procedures were complete, a setting available on virtually all smart phones and tablets which disables cellular signals and Wi-Fi. Yet, within the last few years, airlines have been discovering that in-flight Wi-Fi services can be a lucrative revenue stream. Suddenly, there's no longer a danger that Candy Crush will bring down a commercial airliner.

Of course, we're still required to shut our devices when the flight crew prepares for landing, but if they lied about the need for airplane mode midflight, should we believe them about this?

The FAA ban on use of PEDs during take-off and landing dates back to a 1988 policy barring devices which broadcast along the same spectrum of radio frequencies used by Avionics equipment. Unfortunately, even a stand-alone mp3 player emits electromagnetic radiation and, although there is no conclusive evidence proving PEDs interfere with vital aircraft communications systems, there have been several documented incidents which suggest it's possible. In a sense, the ban is a better-safe-than-sorry policy, though the FAA has reportedly been considering loosening restrictions for certain non-cellular devices.

"APRIL Travel Protection strives to educate travelers on a wide manner of travel safety issues and other topics designed to minimize the likelihood of inconveniences before it becomes necessary to step in, but things don't always go as planned," said Jason Schreier, CEO of APRIL-USA.

When confronted with unforeseen issues such as severe weather, injury, sickness, job loss or relocations, supplier default, terrorism, military duty or strikes, APRIL pays to resolve issues on-the-spot via instant adjudication -- a major innovation at the core of its signature "Stress Less Benefits."

"Policyholders are spared the undue stress of going out-of-pocket, one of the contributing factors to American's negative perception of insurance companies," said Schreier.

"We're tackling those perceptions head on by being there when our policyholders need us most, not six to eight weeks later," he noted.

The new U.S. division of 26-year-old APRIL Travel Group pioneered instant adjudication in the U.S. travel insurance market with the introduction of "Stress Less Benefits" in 2013.

The flagship program is an integral aspect of APRIL's marketing strategy designed to challenge American's perception of travel insurance, complementing other innovations such as the integration of non-traditional support channels including Skype, live chat and texting as well as the company's Concierge & Travel Assistance program.

For more information, contact APRIL Travel Protection at 855-277-4587, email info@AprilTravelProtection.com or visit www.AprilTravelProtection.com.

About APRIL Travel Protection

APRIL Travel Protection is owned by APRIL, an international group with 45 operational companies in more than 40 different countries. APRIL is listed on Euronext Stock Exchange and has yearly sales of more than $1.1 billion. 

With its guiding principles to build trust, push boundaries, innovate and keep it simple, APRIL Global Assistance Network benefits from an extensive organizational structure servicing more than six million policyholders worldwide.

The company's U.S. division is supported by American Modern Insurance Group (an AM Best A+ rated carrier) as its preferred underwriter and is headquartered at 11900 Biscayne Blvd. Suite 600, Miami, FL, 33181.

Contact Information