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New York JFK Airport

Customer Reviews

3 star Skytrax Rating
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Queuing Times 12345
Customer rating from 418 reviews
3/10
3 star Skytrax Rating
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2/10

"congested and disorganized"

(United States)

Verified Review | Terrible. The security area was congested. It took 50 minutes to get through security. Customs and immigration was even more congested and disorganized. It took 50 minutes to get through. This was a contrast to Heathrow which was calm and took only a few minutes and there is free wifi at Heathrow. According to Wikipedia, Heathrow handles a larger number of passengers.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
2/10

"unpleasant and chaotic experience"

(Ireland)

Terminal 5 - unpleasant and chaotic experience. We arrived at 5pm for a 9pm flight thinking we had plenty of time, having left the city early more out of concern for rush hour traffic. Check-in was smooth enough, but then the trouble began. The queue for security took over two hours, they kept decanting passengers from one queue to another and people were getting increasingly stressed and aggressive as they feared missing their flights (I'm sure some of them did). We thought that the delays were due to strictness at the security check, we were shocked when we eventually got there that we were not required to do the minimum usually needed, like taking out liquids and electronics, taking off shoes and belts etc. I know it's a pain, but it is reassuring. There were no trays available just put the bag on the conveyor belt as is and the staff screamed at anyone who started to take laptops etc out. Never seen anything like it, got the impression that they were completely overwhelmed and disorganised. would expect that an airport serving one of the world's major cities would at least have the security check properly organised, not the chaos we found. Once through, there was very little, a couple of tacky souvenir shops, a bar and a newsagent, all vastly overpriced. Will be looking to LaGuardia or Newark next time.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerBusiness
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
6/10

"standard of terminals varies"

(China)

JFK in New York is more like many airports built in one area rather than one airport, for each major airline has its own terminal. The standard of terminals varies, but none up to the high standard of an important airport you expect. Shopping is virtually not available. The last Terminal I used was the AA terminal, where they charge money for some food items against the norm of a normal lounge. Transportation is varied but you almost need to be an expert to know what to use. The fact that there are too many terminals make each terminal minimalist.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitFebruary 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
8/10

"had plenty of time"

(Japan)

Very good. I was traveling from Rome and transiting to go to Montreal. The transit time was 8 hrs, but due to the fact I was traveling in business on the first leg I was able to go through customs checks faster and so I had plenty of time to spend and shop.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerBusiness
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
yes
1/10

"damned chaotic, inefficient"

(United Kingdom)

Arrival at JFK from Frankfurt around 21:30 on Friday evening; we had a powerful and immediate sense of hostility from airport staff who barked orders at us; there is no smooth system of filtering passengers; many passengers feel, like us, confused and dazed - what's going on? why is this line not moving? Even some US citizens were caught up in the immigration lines because they were not shown through; there were frequently discourteous shouts for us to get in a single file, keep to the right, keep up, stay back, don't move yet, have this ready - when we eventually (after 3/4 hour) emerged into the main 'queuing pen' we could see roughly half of all the security checking positions were closed at a time when three large planes had just arrived! In this snaking queue we took a further 1.5 hours to reach the immigration officer. As we presented our UK / European Union passports the officer snapped questions at us: where are you from? Where are you staying? Why are you going there? Only when we said we would be at Notre Dame University did we get a flicker of human warmth! There were more US Homeland Security officers 30 metres further on who were even more intimidating and unfriendly: sarcastic, arrogant, rude; we came off relatively well - a small group of Chinese visitors got very rough treatment. Anyway, they were ordered to get into two groups and marched off somewhere - and New York aspires to be the most visited city in the world!! That was arrival at JFK - our departure from the USA, 3 weeks later was worse! On our journey home from the Midwest, JFK was our transit airport; we'd had a very easy, trouble-free short early morning flight from South Bend (IN) to Newark, took the frequent (and reasonably-priced) NYC Airporter bus service to JFK, and settled down to a patient wait till around 4 to check-in; no problem, plenty of time, no need to rush. We took turns to check the monitors for boarding information. Appreciating that it's a busy time of day to travel, we tried to queue over an hour before necessary - just to be sure of being in good time - Gate 9, the overhead display showed. Gates 1 to 8 are marked, in order - no Gate 9. Altogether we asked 5 different airport staff about this; replies ranged from 'I don't know' to 'it's all the same' to nothing because they had insufficient English! So, we dutifully waited in an undifferentiated snaking queue. This was so densely packed that it was very hot (outside air temp only 8 degrees C) - small children got very fractious; some elderly people looked distressed; a fight nearly broke out when one passenger (accidentally) barged another. The numerous airport staff just looked on, or looked away! None of them seemed to realise that passengers needed to be sorted according to their flight's departure time! It was only pure luck that we got through security checking exactly at the moment that the last call for boarding our flight went out! The airport's damned chaotic, inefficient systems had almost made us miss a flight which we'd arrived for 6 hours ahead! I don't actually blame the 'foot soldiers' - the lowly airport staff are hopeless but they're probably on minimum wage and get zero training! Surely one of the main functions of any airport, of any size, is to enable passengers to arrive and depart safely, comfortably, and punctually!!
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"JFK is to be avoided"

(United States)

Terminal 7 was a nightmare. On arrival the immigration process was over 1 hour 30 mins. Not all desks were in use. Apparently three large planes arrive about the same time. A large number of passengers in the queue did not speak English so gave the officers printed pieces of paper to read when initially given instructions by the officers. This slowed the process considerably. The aircon did not cope with the heat. At other airports in the US they have APC machines to process visitors which really cuts down the time taken to clear immigration and do the job efficiently. They are needed at JFK. On departure the Fast Track security check did not live up to it`s name. Only one machine is available in what looks like a corridor. Most planes leave in the evening so a large number of passengers are checking in. Once more the aircon did not cope efficiently. JFK is to be avoided if there is an alternative.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages N/A
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"whole system was a shambles"

(United Kingdom)

We had one aborted landing after the New York air traffic controllers got their timings wrong. Once we finally did arrive, we had to queue for over an hour to get through customs. However it was our departure that was really shocking. The staff at the airport were so rude and aggressive to everyone. They shouted at the elderly who couldn't walk fast enough and made sarcastic remarks if anyone didn't understand what they were supposed to do. The whole system was a shambles, completely disorganised with no clear instructions and certainly no assistance. We were shocked by the staff, who seemed intent on upsetting anyone and everyone. Even simple things like having a table to put your tray on once through security was missed - you had to put your shoes back on, belt, jumper, coat, watch, put your computer back in it's bag and collect your bags at the bottom of a staircase with the tray on the floor, as they shouted at you to remove it from the conveyor belt as soon as it was through the scanner. I would avoid this airport in the future.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerFamily Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
2/10

"not a good experience"

(United Kingdom)

Arrived at Terminal 7 at 3pm. It was like an easyJet queue at Gatwick. The queue was massive and moved exceedingly slowly. It took over an hour to check in and then there was the queue for security. There is nothing like New York for rudeness so this was not unexpected. We were impressed at the drinks prices, $20 for a beer and a cider. Altogether it aws not a good experience at all.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitApril 2016
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
8/10

"immigration and security efficient"

(China)

The AA terminal at JFK has had some useful renovations and is now good. There is a special area for Elite members, with good service. The lounge is decent and immigration and security efficient. I hated JFK before but now it is not bad. The arrival was good too, they have a semi-automated system for a passenger like me, with a visa-waver passport. It is not a fancy airport like in Asia or the Middle East but it is good.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitJanuary 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages N/A
Airport Staff 12345
yes
1/10

"airport itself is outdated"

(United States)

I cannot say enough bad things about JFK airport. The staff in Terminal 4 were rude and treated all incoming passengers poorly. The airport itself is outdated and an embarrassment to the great state of New York. I felt disgraced for even asking the attendant at the luggage pick up where my suitcase might be, he grumbled at me, stating "you don't even know your own flight". Terrible service, especially after coming back home from Taiwan where everyone was respectful and courteous, even if they didn't speak your language.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitMarch 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no