John F. Kennedy International Airport
John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) is the primary international airport serving New York City. It is the busiest international air passenger gateway into North America,the fifth busiest airport in the United States and the busiest airport in the New York City airport system, handling just under 59 million passengers in 2016. Over ninety airlines operate out of the airport, with non-stop or direct flights to destinations in all six inhabited continents.
JFK is located in the neighborhood of Jamaica in the New York City borough of Queens, 12 miles (20 km) southeast of Lower Manhattan. The airport features six passenger terminals and four runways. It serves as a hub for American Airlines and Delta Air Lines and is the primary operating base for JetBlue Airways. In the past, JFK served as a hub for Eastern, National, Pan Am, and TWA.
Opened as New York International Airport in 1948, it was commonly known as Idlewild Airport before being renamed in 1963 in memory of John F. Kennedy, the 35th President of the United States, following his assassination.
JFK has six terminals, containing 128 gates, numbered 1–8 but skipping terminals 3 (demolished in 2013) and 6 (demolished in 2011).
Until the early 1990s, each terminal was known by the primary airline that served it, except for Terminal 4, which was known as the International Arrivals Building. In the early 1990s, all of the terminals were given numbers except for the Tower Air terminal, which sat outside the Central Terminals area and was not numbered. Like in the other airports controlled by the Port Authority, terminals are sometimes managed and maintained by independent terminal operators. At JFK, all terminals are currently managed by airlines or consortiums of the airlines serving them, with the exception of the Schiphol Group-operated Terminal 4. All terminals except Terminal 2 can handle international arrivals that are not pre-cleared.
Most inter-terminal connections require passengers to exit security, then walk, use a shuttle-bus or using the AirTrain JFK to get to the other terminal, then re-clear security.