Press Release Article


Date: Apr 03, 2003
Press Release Number: 41-2003

Foreign Passengers Put at Ease at John F. Kennedy and Newark Liberty International Airports, Thanks to Travelers Aid International

Airport passengers will continue to receive specialized assistance from an internationally recognized non-profit organization under a new contract agreement that was recently approved by the Port Authority.

Travelers Aid International, Inc., which provides a variety of services to international passengers at John F. Kennedy International and Newark Liberty International airports, will continue its important work under terms of the agreement.

Volunteers from Travelers Aid, who are trained to assist foreign passengers who are lost, separated from companions, confused or who have misplaced important documentation, are stationed at counters in the arrivals areas of most terminals. These volunteers, who together are fluent in more than 20 languages, are supported by professional social workers equipped to provide assistance to passengers in a crisis.

Passenger assistance services began at Kennedy Airport in 1965 and the program started at Newark Airport in 1992. Travelers Aid International has provided these services at both airports since June 2000.

Port Authority Chairman Jack G. Sinagra said, \"It can be a harrowing experience when a foreign traveler is in need of assistance and does not know where to turn for help. Travelers Aid International provides immediate and visible support resources, whether it’s contacting consulates’ offices or helping them find family or friends who are awaiting their arrival.\"

Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, \"Nearly 60 million travelers pass through John F. Kennedy International and Newark Liberty International airports annually. The passenger assistance program underscores the Port Authority’s commitment to continued customer service, and these knowledgeable representatives are on hand to assist distressed passengers and to help ensure that they have a worry-free trip.\"

Port Authority Director of Aviation William R. DeCota said, \"Travelers Aid International staff are an invaluable asset at John F. Kennedy and Newark Liberty airports. Their knowledge and assistance augments the Port Authority’s progressive customer service initiatives, which include red-jacketed customer service representatives at our three major airports.\"

Travelers Aid International, Inc., has been in business since 1850 and currently services 23 major airports and a significant number of train and bus stations throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates some of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; the
George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH rapid-transit system; the 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.

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