Press Release Article


Date: Feb 14, 2008
Press Release Number: 11-2008

Bistate Agency also Teams with American Heart Association and Local Hospitals to Provide Free Screenings for Air Travelers, Along with New Interactive Maps

The Port Authority is investing $3.5 million to expand a customer survey program that measures airport customer satisfaction to ensure the agency and its business partners meet customers' needs. The expanded research program was announced today, along with a partnership with the American Heart Association to provide free health screenings and the introduction of new interactive airport maps, as part of the Port Authority's ongoing campaign to improve customer service for air travelers at John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Stewart International airports.

The survey will ask customers about their travel experience including their mode of transportation to and from the airport, check-in process, retail services, and security wait times. The findings will be used to expand on the agency's current $34 million customer service improvement program at the airports.

The program will also measure customer service and standards by deploying teams of "mystery shoppers" that mimic an air traveler's experience, including parking, check-in, concessions, security and more, and report findings back to the agency.

Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, "Our renewed focus on customer service is more important today than ever, because the increasing numbers of air travelers demands that we do our jobs at the highest level possible. By taking the pulse of our customers - literally and figuratively - we'll be able to ensure that they remain happy and healthy, too. I thank the American Heart Association and the hospitals for providing this great service to our customers."

Port Authority Executive Director Anthony E. Shorris said, "Since 1998, we have conducted extensive research at our airports, but rather than simply relying on what people are telling us, we've also taken a proactive approach by sending teams of undercover 'shoppers' from parking lot to terminal and back to measure the customer's experience firsthand. The knowledge we've gained has helped us direct resources where they are needed, so that our customers truly receive a world-class experience at our airports. And this month, we're pleased to note, our customers will receive a little something extra, courtesy of the American Heart Association and its affiliated hospitals."

Free Health Screenings Offered

The agency also is teaming with the American Heart Association and its member hospitals in New York and New Jersey this month to provide travelers with free blood-pressure screenings and information about heart disease and stroke. To promote the heart association's "Go Red for Women" campaign and to celebrate American Heart Month, free screenings will be available today at Newark Liberty International and Stewart International airports, courtesy of the association, St. Luke's Cornwall Hospital of Newburgh, N.Y., and Newark Beth Israel Medical Center of Newark, N.J. The association also will have staff available at Kennedy and LaGuardia airports today to provide information. Free screenings will take place at those airports later this month.

"The American Heart Association is proud to team with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey," said Mark Hurley, Regional Vice President Communications, American Heart Association. "This partnership will enable us to reach so many people with lifesaving information that they might not have been able to receive."

New Interactive Maps

The Port Authority also announced today that it has introduced new interactive airport maps on its Web site - The maps show travelers how to locate airlines, gates, concessions and other services, along with important links to help them better navigate the airports. The maps were created in response to customers suggestions to an e-mail address established by the Port Authority:

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, and Stewart International airports; LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; the Port Authority-Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.

The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.