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John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) – #6 Busiest Airport in US


John F. Kennedy International Airport is the sixth busiest airport in the United States, and was the busiest airport in the United States in terms of international flights in 2011.

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JFK combined with nearby LaGuardia and Newark Airports make up the New York City metropolitan area airport system, which is the largest airport system in the United States. The New York City airport system is first in the world in terms of total flight operations, and second in terms of passenger traffic.


John F. Kennedy International Airport is located in Queens, New York City. The airport was named Idlewild Airport, and briefly Anderson Airport, though even then it was usually still called Idlewild Airport until it was finally renamed. In 1963, after the assassination of John F. Kennedy, the airport was renamed in honor of the former President of the United States.

JFK airport has seven terminals, though they are numbered one through eight, skipping number six. Terminal 3, known as Worldport, was built for Pan Am (Pan American World Airways) in 1960, and has a distinctive flying saucer design. Terminal 3 will be closed and demolished in the next phase of construction at JFK. Terminal 4 is the international terminal, which serves about 40 airlines and about 9 million passengers yearly.

JFK is the headquarters for JetBlue Airways, as well as a hub for American and Delta, and is a major gateway for international flights to and from the United States. JetBlue uses Terminal 5, which has a futuristic design and many facilities.

Airport Services

Wi-Fi and Technology: Wi-Fi is available throughout most of the airport, though travelers must pay for the service, provided by Boingo Wireless.

JFK allows travelers to reserve parking spots online before they leave for the airport, for quicker travel and the convenience of not having to search for a free space.

Shopping and Dining: JFK has a wide variety of shops and restaurants in each of the terminals, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art store, pizza joints, and a few bars. The JetBlue terminal (5) is known for its restaurants and shops.

Extras: Terminal 4 features many works of art from local and international artists. The airport also has play areas sponsored by JetBlue in Terminal 5.

Ground Transportation


AirTrain JFK stops at each terminal, parking lot, hotel shuttle area, car rental lots, some subway stations and the Long Island Rail Road. AirTrain is free within the airport, but trips outside of the airport area cost $5. Travel time to Midtown Manhattan is about 40 minutes from the airport. AirTrain links passengers to the New York City subway system for access to the whole city, as do some bus lines that pick up passengers near Terminal 4.

The NYC Airporter is an express shuttle that departs every half hour to and from the bus terminal, Grand Central Station, and Penn station, and costs about $12 for a one-way trip.

Another transportation option is a taking a taxi, which offers a $45 flat rate from the airport into Manhattan.