No, Newark-Liberty International Airport is not closing. Nor is it moving from New Jersey. Nor is it changing its name. And it isn’t even losing its airport code of EWR.
It is, however, losing its status as a ‘New York City’ airport.
Due to new standards being imposed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Newark-Liberty will no longer be considered a New York City airport starting on October 3. That’s even though Newark, just across the Hudson River from Manhattan, is physically closer to some New Yorkers than John F. Kennedy International Airport and LaGuardia Airport, both in the borough of Queens.
Confused? Yeah, we are, too.
But according to a memo from Lufthansa Airlines and confirmed by Travel + Leisure, here’s how it affects travelers. Although Newark still maintains its EWR airport code, IATA is changing the way it classifies “multi-airport cities.” Those designations are used by destinations that have more than one major airport, like Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway, for instance. In the case of Newark, its city code – different from the airport code – has always been NYC given its proximity to New York.
That will no longer be the case.
It’s not a major issue, but it could be for some travelers as Scott’s Cheap Flights CEO Scott Keyes explained to Travel + Leisure.
“The primary way this change could impact travelers is by limiting their options to freely change flights,” Keyes said. “Currently, many airlines allow travelers to switch flights within a city code — say, from arriving in JFK to arriving in LGA — without a penalty. Removing EWR from the NYC city code could restrict that option for many passengers.”
The Lufthansa memo echoed that by implying changing airports could result in an airfare adjustment now that Newark will no longer be considered a New York City metropolitan area airport.
Newark will now have its own city code as per IATA. But if you search for flights in general to ‘New York City,’ Newark and EWR will still come up as options.
Like we said, confusing.
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