Flying into New York: Crowded Skies, Not-So-Great Airports

Recent news stories have talked about the increasingly crowded skies over the New York City area, but don’t look for that to change anytime soon. The ground below those skies is just as gridlocked meaning there’s little room for airport expansion at New York area airports including JFK, LaGuardia and Newark.

See the New York Travel Guide

New York – Crowded Skies, Late Planes

So how bad is the airline traffic? There are reportedly more than 4,000 flights in the skies over New York every day and about a third of all flights in the U.S. are traveling to or from or over the area. That means delays and lots of them.

Department of Transportation statistics paint a grim picture for New York airports in 2011. In its rankings of the nation’s top 29 airports for on-time arrivals, JFK was #25, LaGuardia came in at #27 and Newark was dead last at #29. Rankings for on-time departures were a little better, but Newark was last in that category as well.

What to Do if Your Flight is Delayed/Canceled

How New York Delays Affect Other U.S. Flights

This can affect passengers who don’t go anywhere near New York City or even the east coast and that’s because of the ripple effect. It’s been estimated that the delays in the New York metro area are responsible for as many as a third of the delays around the country.

List of ‘Worst Airports’ in U.S.

Bad New York Airports and Some Good News

If that’s not bad enough, New York airports themselves routinely make worst airport lists. A recent poll showed JFK, LaGuardia and Newark in the top five – though Chicago’s O’Hare made the top spot.

One bright spot: JetBlue’s JFK home – Terminal 5 – is winning raves from passengers and foodies alike.

What They’re Saying about JetBlue T5 Restaurants

And, despite the harsh reviews, New York is hardly over. According to USA Today, it remains “the biggest moneymaker and most popular starting point and destination in the country.”


Published: February 1, 2012