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Lawyers Travel's weekly client e-newsletter, the Informed Traveler, keeps readers updated on travel industry news and trends.

Following is a recap of March's Top 5 (most clicked by Lawyers Travel's clients) e-newsletter stories.

1. U.S. & U.K. Issue Bans on Carry-On Electronic Devices for Flights from Certain Airports

Both the U.S. and U.K. governments are banning passengers from bringing laptops, tablets and other electronic devices onboard flights from certain countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The U.S. ban affects 10 airports: Hamad International Airport in Doha, Dubai International Airport, Abu Dhabi International Airport, Ataturk International Airport in Istanbul, Kuwait International Airport, Cairo International Airport, Queen Alia International Airport in Amman, King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah, King Khalid Airport in Riyadh and Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca. 

The U.K., meanwhile, has issued a similar ban on electronics aboard flights from Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Tunisia. Click here to read a Business Travel News article on the bans.

2. U.S. Tourists Could Soon Need Visas to Visit Europe

The European Parliament has voted to end the visa waiver program with the U.S., reports Reuters. While U.S. nationals have long been able to travel throughout Europe without needing a visa for stays less than 90 days, the U.S. refuses to grant visa-free access to people from four European states. Since the U.S. has failed to reciprocate visa-free access, many within the EU are urging the European Commission to adopt restrictive measures against U.S. citizens. If the Commission decides to reinstate visas, U.S. citizens will need to apply for a visa in advance and be approved in order to legally enter the EU. To read more, click here.

3. Alaska Airlines is Terminating the Virgin America Brand

Last week, Alaska Airlines announced that all Virgin America flights will fly under one brand with Alaska Airlines beginning sometime in 2019, reports CNN. Alaska has promised to keep much of the "flair" that accompanied Virgin flights, including free in-flight entertainment, mood lighting and boarding music. An Alaska representative stated, "While the Virgin America name is beloved to many, we concluded that to be successful on the West Coast we had to do so under one name - for consistency and efficiency, and to allow us to continue to deliver low fares." Passengers will see significant changes in the coming years, including all new cabins with new first and economy class seating, high speed Wi-Fi and free movies and TV episodes available to stream on mobile devices. To read more, click here.

4. American Airlines Introduces New Boarding Process

Beginning March 1st, American Airlines is launching a new, simplified boarding process. With the introduction of the airline's basic economy fare class in February, there will now be nine boarding groups. The "simplified boarding process" will be similar to current boarding order; however, some group names have been changed. Preboarding will be for ConciergeKey members, followed by priority boarding for Groups 1-4, then main boarding for Groups 5-9. More details regarding each group are as follows. To read more about the new boarding process from Travel + Leisureclick here

Group 1

First Class
Active duty U.S. military with military I.D.
(Business Class on a 2-class international aircraft)

Group 2

Executive Platinum
oneworld Emerald
(Business Class on a 3-class aircraft)

Group 3

Platinum Pro
oneworld Sapphire

Group 4

oneworld Ruby
Alaska Airlines MVP members
Premium Economy
Citi / AAdvantage Executive card members
Customers who bought Priority boarding

Group 5

Main Cabin Extra
Eligible AAdvantage credit card members
Eligible corporate travelers

Group 6

Group 6

Group 7

Group 7

Group 8

Group 8

Group 9

Group 9
Basic Economy

5. TSA Introduces More Thorough Pat-Down Procedures

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has introduced a new physical screening to improve airport security, reports Bloomberg. Security workers will no longer have the option of using five different types of physical pat-downs at screening lines; instead, all pat-downs will follow a single universal approach. For those selected to have a pat-down, the screening "will be more thorough and may involve an officer making more intimate contact than before," according to a TSA spokesperson. The change is partly a result of the agency's study of a 2015 report that criticized aspects of TSA screening procedures, including the failure to detect handguns and other weapons. The new policy will also apply to airline pilots and flight attendants. To read more, click here.