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My wife, 8-month old daughter, and I are on QF107 SYD-JFK this Saturday on our first visit to New York City. However after our (scheduled) arrival at 5:20pm we need ...
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    Established Member Homer's Avatar
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    First time at JFK - what can we do while waiting for our connection 3 hours later?

    My wife, 8-month old daughter, and I are on QF107 SYD-JFK this Saturday on our first visit to New York City. However after our (scheduled) arrival at 5:20pm we need to wait until 8.20pm for an AE flight from JFK-BOS as we are visiting friends in Boston first.

    My question is: what can we do at JFK to make the three hours pass quickly and enjoyably? We are flying in J so we expect to arrive feeling OK. I suppose we could sit in the AA lounge but I hear they aren't very good. Does anyone have any other suggestions for us?

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    Established Member Skyring's Avatar
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    Re: First time at JFK - what can we do while waiting for our connection 3 hours later

    Quote Originally Posted by Homer
    My wife, 8-month old daughter, and I are on QF107 SYD-JFK this Saturday on our first visit to New York City. However after our (scheduled) arrival at 5:20pm we need to wait until 8.20pm for an AE flight from JFK-BOS as we are visiting friends in Boston first.

    My question is: what can we do at JFK to make the three hours pass quickly and enjoyably? We are flying in J so we expect to arrive feeling OK. I suppose we could sit in the AA lounge but I hear they aren't very good. Does anyone have any other suggestions for us?
    Expect to spend an hour in immigration, maybe longer. I had a brief visit (of about 12 hours on 3/4 July, flying in from Heathrow), but I was met by a mate with a car and taken on a quick tour of Brooklyn and Manhattan, having breakfast about 0300 in some Hungarian cafe, and taking a freebie trip on the Staten Island ferry, before being driven back to JFK with about three hours before my next departure to Narita. The AA lounge in Terminal 9 was quite pleasant. I had a shower - I certainly needed one, predawn New York was like a sauna - and sat by a window with my laptop, using the Wifi and drinking coffee to stay awake until my flight.

    So my experience with JFK is pretty much limited to one AA lounge. Not unpleasant.

    Peter in Canberra
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    Established Member Homer's Avatar
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    Re: First time at JFK - what can we do while waiting for our connection 3 hours later

    Thanks Skyring

    Quote Originally Posted by Skyring
    Expect to spend an hour in immigration, maybe longer.
    I understand that we will clear immigration at LAX en-route to JFK as this is our first port of entry, so doesn't that mean a pretty quick passage through JFK?

    Quote Originally Posted by Skyring
    The AA lounge in Terminal 9 was quite pleasant. I had a shower
    That's good news. I couldn't see an AA lounge at JFK on the AA web site, even though they listed Newark and LaGuardia, which seemed strange to me - I guess I was looking in the wrong place. Qantas just lists "New York" which I assume is JFK and notes that it uses a BA Terraces Lounge - but we probably won't have access as arriving passengers.

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    Established Member Skyring's Avatar
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    Re: First time at JFK - what can we do while waiting for our connection 3 hours later

    Quote Originally Posted by Homer
    I understand that we will clear immigration at LAX en-route to JFK as this is our first port of entry, so doesn't that mean a pretty quick passage through JFK?
    I'd forgotten that. Yeah.
    Here's some info on AA JFK lounges.

    Peter in Canberra
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    "You know you travel too much when you have a favorite airport trolley."

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    Re: First time at JFK - what can we do while waiting for our connection 3 hours later?

    Note that the reason QF108 (which operates the return JFK-LAX-SYD) is often called QF10LATE is because the inbound QF107 into JFK is often running late. This is due to a number of reasons including late arrival of QF107 into LAX, delays at immigration/customs at LAX, ground delays at LAX, air congestion arriving into JFK, weather at JFK etc. So don't rely on having the full 3 hours for your connection.

    You also have to change terminals, which also means clearing the security checkpoint at Terminal 9. You will arrive into Terminal 7. The train is used to move between terminals and that will take around 10-15 mins depending on timing of the train.

    In theory, if you hold OneWorld Sapphire or Emerald status you could visit the BA lounge at Terminal 7 upon arrival. But unless you do have the full three hours I would probably be content to just head over to Terminal 9 and seek out the AA lounge there.


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    Re: First time at JFK - what can we do while waiting for our connection 3 hours later?

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    Not a lot, is my suspicion. JFK is not a great airport in terms of passenger facilities, compared with Australian or Asian airports. Shopping, dining and leisure facilities are pretty limited, and the lounges are not a patch on QF or CX ones. Expect to pay handsomely for any food in the AA lounges, and then get crap.

    If you're an architecture buff, you can check out the Saarinen terminal at JFK.

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