The New JFK Terminal 5 Featuring JetBlue Airlines

The New JFK Terminal 5 Featuring JetBlue Airlines
If you can’t believe that you would actually plan your travel day to include spending extra time in an airline terminal, believe it. The new Terminal 5 at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York is worth visiting early. It offers multiple options for food, great shops, and many conveniences for the business traveler.

JetBlue flights into JFK for several months were a bit of a nightmare. Construction of the new Terminal 5 caused passengers to board small cramped buses to be shuttled between gates. The buildings were temporary, and although clean, they felt as if they might roll away at any minute, like the flatbeds they came in on. Then, an oasis rose up from the concrete.

The security area of Terminal 5 is bright and sunny which helps with the natural claustrophobia that comes with being around masses of people in long lines. There are several self-help kiosks that allow you to check-in, check your bag and then proceed to the line to get your bag tag and drop your luggage on the conveyer belt. Even during busy hours, the design seems to move the masses along smoothly.

Once past security, it’s as if you have entered an IKEA store minus the arrow-lined pathways requiring you to follow a maze of norsk lighting to the exit. It has a modern feel in a wide open space with clean lines and blonde wood fixtures. The openness seems to disburse the hustle and bustle of the traveling foot traffic surrounding you.

In Terminal 5, there is no shortage of electrical outlets for the business traveler. There is even a set of seats that look like bleachers featuring comfy cushions that are meant for you to plop down and plug in. The best feature though is the rows of bar-like seating that have computer screens for ordering food, called “Revive”. It’s what I call “screen food”. The stations consist of computer work stations with multiple plugs in the event more than one of your electronics need charging. The computer screen is an electronic menu on which you can tap in your order. Alcohol is served at the stations, but the selection is limited to beer only. After ordering food from the touch screen, and sliding your credit card (which includes 15% gratuity), your food arrives delivered by a waiter (my experience has been approximately 10 minutes). You can sit and eat while working on your laptop and recharging your electronics. It’s like a cybercafé with delivery.

The dining alternatives are numerous in Terminal 5. Most options can be eaten there, or carried on board. These options include Boar’s Head, CIBO Express, Cheeburger Cheeburger, Roma pizza, and many others. For seated more upscale dining (by airport standards), there is 5ive Steak, Deep Blue Sushi, and Aeronueva. Shopping options include La Coste, Exofficio, Brighton, Muji To Go, Borders, Ron Jon Surf Shop, and various others including a duty free shop. Terminal 5 also hosts an Xpres Spa for massages, pedicures and facials.

Another wonderful feature about Terminal 5 is the “Just Ask” stations. JetBlue has come a long way since the unfortunate events on the runway that day where passengers were stuck for hours. Since then, in my experience, it is difficult to find an unhelpful employee working for JetBlue. There is the occasional event where employees are stressed, or sometimes there is an occasional bad apple in the bunch. However, the combination of Terminal 5 and the “Just Ask” stations makes me wish that JetBlue had more flights to more destinations so that I could come here more often. My flight from New York to Long Beach consisted of an extremely professional, friendly and fun crew. Also, recently JetBlue has been handing out promotional items on their flights. On my most recent flight they handed out hand lotion. It was welcomed after leaving the cold weather. If only all flights could be like that one.

Lastly, because JetBlue offers free Wi-Fi to its waiting passengers, this article was written and posted while in Terminal 5 between flights and eating “screen food”. I recommend the hummus.

For your convenience, your JetBlue flights through T5 can be booked here.

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