Since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, passengers have had to bring all liquids, gels, pastes and creams packed in containers holding no more than 3.4-ounce containers and placed into a see-through, quart-size bag, and passengers have had to take laptops and other electronics out of their carry-ons and in some cases turn them on to prove they are what they purport to be during the preflight screening process.
"Following instructions from the concerned U.S. departments, we kindly inform our dearest passengers departing to and arriving from the United States that carrying any electronic or electrical device on board the flight cabins is strictly prohibited".
The only further details on the ban have been provided by a Saudi executive, who indicated in a reply on Twitter that the ban was at the request of United States authorities, and applied to flights originating in 13 countries. Alternatively, it could be a security measure focused at different objectives; until the TSA or DHS chooses to comment, we won't know for sure.
A congressional aide told the Associated Press Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly informed lawmakers of security issues related to the upcoming electronics ban over the weekend.
The U.S. Transportation Security Administration has a lengthy list of things that are prohibited from being brought onto planes, but electronic devices are not on it.
A tweet from the airline's official account listed new rules for all passengers flying in and out of the US that spell horror for anyone who gets bored on long distance journeys.
"This story is very much still developing", air travel expert Ben Schlappig, who runs the One Mile at a Time travel blog, wrote.
They said it applies on flights headed to the USA, but not on Saudi-bound flights. "However, what seems certain is that Royal Jordanian wasn't misinterpreting some policy, but rather there's some intelligence that's about to change travel for a lot of people".
Gulf carriers Emirates Airline, Qatar Airways and Etihad Airways did not immediately respond to comment. Global carriers Saudia, Qatar Airways, and Lufthansa didn't immediately return requests for comment.