Know Your Three New York City Airports

New York Airports

New York City is one of the largest cities in the world. Accordingly, there are a few places you can fly into to get there. John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), LaGuardia Airport (LGA) and Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) are the three New York City airports supporting the metropolitan area.

Both LaGuardia Airport and Kennedy Airport are located in Queens, New York, which is a borough of New York City. Kennedy Airport is largely for international flights as the runways are longer than 14,000 feet.

JetBlue has a decent presence at Kennedy Airport, though it’s all domestic and Caribbean flying. American Airlines has several flights as well. However, as mentioned, Delta Air Lines is the largest carrier with the most flight options.

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Just north of Kennedy Airport is LaGuardia Airport, which is a much smaller airport with just two runways spanning about 7,000 feet. This airport is largely for domestics flights since it’s too small to accommodate the larger aircraft. American Airlines and Delta Air Lines maintain hubs at LaGuardia.

Newark Liberty International Airport is located in Newark, New Jersey and is the main hub of United Airlines. The airport is for both domestic and international flights. I like Newark Airport the best because it’s close to New York City, especially lower Manhattan.

An Lyft ride will likely cost around $40 to midtown Manhattan, roughly the same cost for a ride from New York City to LaGuardia, but less than the $60 a ride to Kennedy Airport costs. Plus, there is a monorail that travels from Newark Airport to a train station, which passengers can then take a train to New York City’s Penn Station.

Kennedy Airport also has a monorail to the Jamaica, Queens train station – which offers multiple trains to Penn Station.

LaGuardia Airport has the worst travel options to New York City as there is no public transportation option other than a bus.


What’s your preferred airport when flying into NYC, and how to do you get into the city from that airport?


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  1. derek says

    In my book, there are 3 major NYC airports and 3 minor ones, being Westchester County Airport, Stewart International, and Islip. For the rich and business tycoons with private jets, there’s also Teterboro and, to a far lesser extent, Republic on Long Island.

    My favorite depends on the location. LGA if to Manhattan by taxi. JFK for long distance flights over a connection to LGA. JFK if going to Midtown East (like Third Avenue) due to the someone fast E train between the AirTrain and Lexington and 53rd Street subway station. EWR used to be a favorite to the Upper West Side of Manhattan before the AirTrain but now EWR by public transit is more expensive and not faster. EWR to NYC by taxi is too expensive. Know that these choices are just because of location and travel costs.

    If the criteria is “what airport do I like”, none are great but not as bad as Biden accusing LGA of being Third World. It’s probably JFK because EWR is all cut up with small satellites in Terminals A and B.

    JFK has a slight preference if I have lots of time and want to see the architecture.

  2. derek says

    LaGuardia Airport has the worst travel options to New York City as there is no public transportation option other than a bus.

    I strongly disagree. I can get to the old Citibank Building (the tall white building with what looks like angled solar collectors on the roofline) on Lexington Avenue fastest from LGA. Take the express / no stops bus from LGA to the Roosevelt 72nd (or similar name) subway station, then E train (very few stops) to Lexington/53rd station in Manhattan. Faster than public transit options from EWR or JFK and only $2.75.

    No, the quoted statement is ONLY true IF someone is dumb and only wants to take a train because they can’t be bothered with finding about a city bus.

    The same thing happened in Seattle. Now there’s light rail which is marked as a wide line on maps. However, it takes longer than the previous bus, which ran non-stop from the airport to a few stops around downtown and cost around $2.

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