Divided Skies

The carrier’s presence at the Queens airport will be drastically altered.


SImpleFlying Images

A United Airlines Boeing 777 (top) and a United Airlines Boeing 787 Dreamliner. These two widebody aircraft will not see the tarmac of JFK anytime soon.

Ishan Pahwa, Staff Writer

   On Oct. 1, United Airlines announced that it would be halting service to John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York at the end of this month.  

   The Chicago-based carrier issued a warning weeks ago that it may suspend service if the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) did not grant the airline additional flights at the aforementioned airport, according to CBS News.

    “Given our current, too-small-to-be-competitive schedule out of JFK – coupled with the start of the winter season where more airlines will operate their slots as they resume JFK flying – United has made the difficult decision to temporarily suspend service at JFK,” a memo from a United Spokesperson stated. 

   The FAA responded by stating that it is “dedicated to doing its part to safely expand New York City airports and airspace capacity,” adding that they would adhere to their tried and true process in order to generate additional competition among airlines.

   This is not the first time that the carrier has repealed its operations from the airport. Last year, United resumed flights out of JFK, making usage of slots – permission granted by an airport in order to take off or land on a specific day – that were originally held by other airlines but were not utilized during the COVID-19 pandemic.

   However, these slots have since been retaken, as the demand for travel returns after restrictions imposed by the pandemic were lifted.  

   Furthermore, the airline stated that they continue to discuss opportunities to acquire more slots so they are able to continue their operations at the airport.

     At the time of writing, United operates four flights out of JFK on a daily basis: two to Los Angeles and two to San Francisco.