IATA To Cut Newark Airport Out Of The New York City Herd


There is longstanding friction over whether New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) “belongs” to New York or the Garden State. It is controlled by the cross-state Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, along with Teterboro Airport—also in New Jersey—and New York’s JFK International and LaGuardia Airports. And for many destinations in Manhattan, EWR is much closer and more convenient than the airports listed on New York’s “City Code” that rest on New York state soil.

But a recent decision by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) will remove the #NYC code from EWR and give the airport its own new code (which is … EWR). Aside from bragging rights, a memorandum reportedly released by Lufthansa could offer some clarity on what it could mean for airline passengers.

As reported on internet news sources, the new airport code would also impact whether passengers could make flight changes without penalty fees. Many airlines currently don’t charge for changes within the same airport code, enabling passengers to switch a ticket from one airport within the City Code to another, such as from EWR to JFK to LGA. But with EWR’s new airport code, passengers arriving or departing could be liable for fees to switch to a flight to or from another airport within the NYC City Code.

The IATA document, circulated on Twitter, reveals IATA’s changes to multi-airport city codes—those meant to regulate cities that are served by more than one major airport. According to the memo, “Starting October 3, 2022, some existing airport codes will become stand-alone City Codes—and will therefore receive their pricing structure in the global route network of the Lufthansa Group Airlines.” The memo goes on to list four other international airports that have also been removed from their previous City Codes.

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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    • For reasons that aren’t clear to me, IATA maintains its own list of airport codes. For most US airports, the IATA code is the same as the last three digits of the ICAO code. For foreign airports, they are usually unrelated to the ICAO code. It seems that some airlines use the IATA code for billing purposes.

      The change is silly, because although EWR isn’t in New York, it’s obviously in the NYC metro area, which is all that matters.