The History Of New York John F. Kennedy International Airport & JetBlue Airways

The History Of… Series!

New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (IACO: KJFK)

Early History

John F Kennedy international airport was first originally called Idlewood Airport, which would hopefully replace of the old LaGuardia field which was nearby. In 1941, mayor LaGuardia announced that an area near Jamaica Bay would be the construction site for the new airport that would relieve some stress off of all the traffic arriving at the old the LaGuardia airport. The first flight ever out of New York John F Kennedy airport was a flight from the US president, Harry S Truman. It took place on July 1, 1948. In 1949, the terminal has expanded to over 200,000 ft.², with further expansion‘s coming in 1952 with a new control tower in new taxiways. Just three years after opening, in 1951, the airport soon had over 70 operations (takeoffs + landings). In 1954, Idlewood airport had the highest volume of international traffic throughout the entire world. The port authority said that they wanted to build a new 55 gate airplane terminal, but airlines complain that this would be too small. In 1955, they came back with a new plan for seven terminals. They would each be divided for individual airlines, except for one which would have three airlines in it. In 1960, American Airlines open Terminal 8, which boasted a 317 foot glass design.


On November 22, 1977, British Airways had inaugurated transatlantic supersonic flights on the Concorde, which ended up being retired in 2003. Air France also start offering the service to Paris not too long after, and ended the service at the same time, and 2003. From then on, the airport was pretty quiet until new construction start happening in 1998, when the AirTrain was built, and completed in 2002. They opened a new terminal 1 on May 28, 1988. They also opened a new international terminal, which is now home to Delta and many other international airlines. And 2001, and built JetBlue terminal five, which replaced the TWA Flight center.


Terminal 1

Terminal one opened in 1988. It is served by most sky team carriers. This includes; Aeroflot, Air France, I will tell you, China eastern, Korean air, and Saudia. It also posts the star alliance carriers; Air China, Austrian, Brussels Airlines, Eva air, Lufthansa, and Turkish. Air also boasts some OneWorld carriers; Japan Airlines, and Royal air Maroc. Other airlines that serve the terminal are Cayman, Azerbaijan, Interjet, Norwegian, Viva, and Philippine. Fun fact, this in terminal four are the only two terminals in the entire airport that can use the Airbus A380!

Terminal 2

Terminal two opened in 1962. It is currently only used by Delta Airlines. Delta also operates most of their operations out of terminal four, but a lot of their domestic departures also leave from terminal two as well. This terminal will be demolished soon, once the extra 16 gates are added to Concourse A of terminal 4.

Terminal 4

Terminal for functions as the main hub for Delta Airlines. It also operates most of the international services at the airport. It boasts; AeroMexico, air Europa, China airlines, Delta, Kenya Airways, KLM, Xiamen airlines, Air India, Asiana, Avianca, Copa, EgyptAir, Singapore, South African, Swiss, air Serbia, Caribbean, China southern, Eastern Airlines, El Al, Emirates, Etihad, he nine, Kuwait, LATAM, Uzbekistan, Virgin Atlantic, Volaris, and WestJet. It is also used by very minimal JetBlue flights, for late international arrivals. This terminal costed over $1.4 billion to build!

Terminal 5

Terminal five is one of the newest terminals in the airport. It was open in 2008 specifically for jetBlue, but also has some TAP Portugal flights, Hawaiian, Cape Air, and Aer Lingus. JetBlue Airways expected to launch some of their London flights starting from this terminal. In 2016, jetBlue completely renovated the entire terminal, making the check in area much larger and more open. In the same year, TAP Air Portugal reinstated flights from the terminal to Lisbon. Them and Aer Lingus are the only two airlines to fly transatlantic from this terminal… Until jetBlue starts in 2021

Terminal 7

Terminal seven was originally built for BOAC and Air Canada. It is currently operated by British Airways, and it works the only terminal in United States that is operated by a foreign carrier. Other airlines operating out of the terminal include British Airways, Iberia, all Nippon, lot, Aerolineas Argentinas, Alaska, your wings, Iceland air, and Ukraine. In 2022, British Airways will leave the terminal to go to terminal eight.

Terminal 8

Terminal eight is mainly home to American Airlines. Other carriers that operate out of there are Cathay Pacific, thin air, Qantas, Qatar, Ethiopian, and Royal Jordanian. As I said before, British Airways will move here in 2022. Construction began on the terminal, and will be completed in 2022. It is 29 gates, and it is twice the size of Madison Square Garden.

You Voted For It!

Back in my The History Of Montréal-Trudeau International Airport topic, you voted for the jetBlue brief history. I’m going to give you a short history description about one of the main airlines here.

JetBlue Airways

JetBlue was founded in 1999, by David Neeleman. They were originally going to be called NewAir. They try to follow southwest approach at low cost travel, but they wanted to offer some more perks like in-flight entertainment TV screens, and SiriusXM satellite radio. They were showing what is 75 takeoff slots at New York JFK airport. They started operations on February 11, 2000. The first leaping to Fort Lauderdale. Then, following later that day they flew to Buffalo. In 2007, a giant blizzard hit New York stranding passengers on planes throughout the New York area. Within this, the CEO, David Neeleman was fired. In 2007, Lufthansa acquired 19% of jetBlue. In this, Lufthansa offered connections for JetBlue flights to Boston, New York, and Orlando (Orlando is no longer a connection). JetBlue, having hubs in New York JFK, Boston, Fort Lauderdale, and Long Beach sign opportunity in Orlando, and Added Orlando florida has a focus city on March 19, 2008. In 2019, jetBlue ordered Airbus A321XLR’s, As well as the LR variant which would take them to London. In June 2020, they also added a routes to Newark Liberty International Airport. It also started mid service at Newark, with service to Los Angeles and San Francisco. They also moved their main west coast hub from Long Beach to Los Angeles.

I hope you enjoyed! Please vote for which one you want next!

Vote For What YOU Want Next

The Four Biggest European Carriers
  • British Airways - London Heathrow 🇬🇧
  • Air France - Paris Charles De Gualle 🇫🇷
  • KLM - Amsterdam Schiphol 🇳🇱
  • Lufthansa - Frankfurt 🇩🇪

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My Other History Topics:

The History Of Fort Lauderdale Airport!
The History Of Newark Liberty International Airport
The History Of Salt Lake City International Airport
The History Of Perth Airport
The History Of Montréal-Trudeau International Airport


A giant what now? Like Godzilla lol

Thanks for the Info about JFK and JetBlue, that was a fun read!


I didn’t know that there was a newly invented airline that operates to JFK

I always love the history of airports, and this one doesn’t disappoint!

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Well, if King Kong happened to the Empire State building… everything is possible…

Uhm what is this?

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Sorry @AviationFreak. You guys are pretty much my editors, I don’t read through these a lot after I’m done with it. They take me so long, I’m just sick of looking at it anymore and I just post it.

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No, you’re all good 😂

I had to do a double take

Great Job @CaptainZac, this is incredible!! Although, I am going to have to continue the trend of finding typos

Might want to fix that one. Thanks for information about JFK!

Oh my. I kind of see a resemblance o_o

Looks just like todays JFK

That’s so cool! Do you have any information about the history of terminal 3 and terminal 6?

where can I buy them lol

Also why is there no Terminal 3 or 6?

Yes, but I didn’t include the, since they are not in service anymore. I recommend checking out this link for more about those terminals:

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At the store… duh

@dca.iad.aviation, please read above

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I can see the resemblance… a little

Please get your votes in! I am going to start planning my next topic tomorrow

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