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Everything You Need to Know About John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York

Everything You Need to Know About John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York
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The main airport serving New York City, John F. Kennedy International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the United States. It handled nearly 60 million passengers in 2019. Although it may not be among the top 5 busiest US airports, the fact that it is still the busiest international air passenger gateway into North America, emphasizes that this New York International Airport is a major entry point for international flights to USA. If you are booking a flight to JFK for the first time, then here’s a detailed JFK Airport guide for you.

Quick Information about John F. Kennedy International Airport

Original Name: Idlewild Airport (renamed in memory of John F. Kennedy)

Airport Code: JFK

Area Covered: 4930 acres

Location: Jamaica neighborhood, Queens, NY 11430

Distance from Manhattan: 16 miles

Year of Establishment: 1948

Terminals: 6

Runways: 4

Helipads: 4

Terminals at JFK Airport

JFK airport has six terminals, numbered 1-8 (the third and sixth terminals were demolished years ago), and 131 operational gates. These six terminal buildings are arranged in a deformed U-shaped pattern around a vast central area.

More than 90 airlines operate flights from John F. Kennedy International Airport to all corners of the globe, including nonstop flights to various destinations across six continents.

SkyTeam alliance and other airlines offer domestic and international services from Terminal 1, whereas Delta Air Lines occupies the entire Terminal 2 building besides managing its international operations from Terminal 4. JetBlue and other airlines operate out of Terminal 5 and British Airways is currently utilizing Terminal 7 for its operations. Terminal 8 functions as the hub for American Airlines. It is the largest terminal in the airport, twice the size of Madison Square Garden.

Inter-Terminal Transportation

New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport boasts of well-planned inter-terminal transportation. The AirTrain system (called JFK AirTrain) and access roads provide easy connectivity between six terminals and the parking lots in the airport. You may have to exit security and then re-clear it again when moving from one terminal to another.

Transportation Options from/to JFK Airport

The JFK AirTrain route also links the airport to the New York Subway and Long Island Rail Road (the metro system). For buses, you need to take JFK AirTrain to Terminal 5 of John F. Kennedy International Airport, where the bus stop is located. The NYC Express Bus plies between the airport and Manhattan. Shuttle services, car rentals, and taxis are also available from JFK to Manhattan.

Best Places for Food and Refreshments at JFK Airport

Here are some of the best restaurants and bars in each of the terminals that you can visit to tend to your hunger resulting from sitting through a long-haul flight from India to USA.

Terminal 1:


Idlewild Bar

Martini Bar

The Local (for burgers and pizzas)

Terminal 2:

French Meadow Bakery

Todd English’s Bonfire Steakhouse


Terminal 4:

The Palm Bar and Grill

Uptown Brasserie

Blue Smoke on the Road (for barbecue)

Terminal 5:

La Vie Cafe

Deep Blue Sushi

AeroNuova (for Italian pasta and meatball sandwiches)

Terminal 7:

Bonfire Restaurant by Todd English

Balducci’s Market

Terminal 8:


Bobby Van’s SteakHouse

Lounges in New York International Airport

Air France, Lufthansa, Delta, British, and American Airlines offer lounge access to their passengers at John F. Kennedy International Airport. You can enjoy a refreshing shower and rejuvenating spa at Air France and Lufthansa’s lounges in Terminal 1 or watch the crowd hustling around from the outdoor deck of Delta’s SkyClub (Terminal 4). British and American Airlines’ lounges boast of a special kids’ space beside the usual perks. British Airways also offers a luxurious Concorde Room for its first-class fliers.

WiFi and Charging Stations

Electrical outlets and complimentary 30-minute WiFi sessions are made available at every terminal in JFK Airport. Free unlimited WiFi is available near gate areas and restaurants in Terminals 2 and 5. JetBlue offers free wireless Internet service throughout Terminal 5.

Other Facilities & Amenities at JFK Airport

Pet-Relief Areas: Outside the arrivals area of each terminal and inside Terminals 4 and 5

Luggage Storage: Terminals 1 and 4

Kids Play Area & Lactation station: At Gate 12

Spa: At Terminal 5 (JetBlue’s ‘Be Relax Spa’)

Aviation-themed interactive play area: Near Gate 26, Terminal 5

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