Date: Nov 24, 2008
Press Release Number: 139-2008
Nearly five million travelers are expected to use Port Authority airports, bridges, tunnels and PATH during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, November 26 through 30 -- one of the busiest travel periods of the year. More than 1.35 million passengers are projected to use John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, Stewart International and LaGuardia airports over the five-day period beginning Wednesday.
A new Welcome Center will open at La Guardia Airport this week to assist arriving passengers with information about ground transportation and hotels, as well as other related inquiries. The Port Authority’s first Welcome Center debuted at JFK last month, and more than 20 centers will be in operation at all of the airports’ terminals by 2012.
“The new Welcome Centers at our airports will make a real difference toward enhancing customer service at some of the nation’s busiest hubs," said Chris Ward, the Port Authority’s executive director. “It will make getting information much easier for fliers and help speed their way through the terminals.”
Port Authority Deputy Executive Director Susan Bass Levin said, “Hundreds of Port Authority employees will be at work throughout the long holiday weekend, helping to get travelers on their way for visits with families and friends. Customer service and safety will be their top priorities at our airports, on the PATH lines and at our bridge and tunnel crossings.”
About 629,000 passengers will use Kennedy Airport, approximately 440,000 will use Newark Airport and nearly 281,000 are expected at LaGuardia Airport during the holiday period. More than 5,000 are anticipated at Stewart Airport.
To ease congestion outside the terminals at JFK, individuals arriving to pick up family and friends can use the airport’s Cell Phone Lot, where they can wait for free to be notified about arrivals before driving to the terminals.
The Port Authority encourages travelers to use AirTrain service to and from Newark and Kennedy airports when possible to help ease congestion.
AirTrain JFK connects to New York City mass transit via stations at Jamaica and Howard Beach. More information is available by calling 877 JFK-AirTrain (877 535-2478). Travelers who must drive to the airport can call 718 244-4444 for parking information or tune in to airport radio 1630 AM for parking updates.
AirTrain Newark connects to Amtrak and NJ Transit via the Northeast Corridor rail line. More information is available by calling 888 EWR-INFO, which also offers Newark Airport parking information. Travelers also can tune radios to 530 AM when approaching the airport.
For LaGuardia Airport parking information, call (718) 533-3850.
More information on AirTrain and other public transportation alternatives is available by calling 800 AIR-RIDE. Airport information also is available at www.newarkairport.com, www.kennedyairport.com and www.laguardiaairport.com. Air travelers should check with their airline before leaving for the airport and arrive 30 minutes earlier than recommended by the airline.
For the U.S. Transportation Security Administration’s travel tips, including pointers on packing and dressing to help travelers pass through checkpoints more quickly, visit www.tsa.gov.
Tunnels, Bridges and Terminals
Approximately 3.4 million travelers are expected to use Port Authority bridges and tunnels during the holiday. No major construction projects are scheduled to take place at the George Washington Bridge, the Holland and Lincoln tunnels and the three Staten Island bridges during the holidays. For the most up-to-date information on construction, call the agency’s tunnels and bridges “Customer Connection” line at 800 221-9903 or visit the Port Authority’s Web site, www.panynj.gov.
At the Port Authority Bus Terminal, passenger traffic is expected to be heavier than normal, so customers are urged to allow extra travel time.
About 407,000 riders are expected to use PATH from November 27 to 30. PATH will operate on a holiday/weekend schedule on Thanksgiving Day, with trains running every 15 minutes between 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.
The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey
Ron Marsico, 212 435-7777
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, LaGuardia, Stewart International 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; 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.