Qantas Is Moving To New York JFK’s Terminal 8

Filed Under: Qantas

While this is specific, it’s great news for those flying Qantas from New York.

Qantas is moving from Terminal 7 to Terminal 8 at JFK as of April 3, 2018. For those of you not familiar with JFK, Terminal 7 is dominated by British Airways, while Terminal 8 is dominated by American Airlines, and is also significantly nicer.

The fact that Qantas is moving to Terminal 8 is great for those connecting from American Airlines flights, given that they won’t have to clear security again when connecting. Previously you’d have to exit Terminal 8, take the AirTrain to Terminal 7, and then clear security there again (which can be brutal in the evenings).

In terms of lounges, presently Qantas uses the British Airways Lounge at JFK, which I don’t find to be especially nice. The lounge is outdated, and food selection limited.

British Airways Lounge JFK

In Terminal 8, Qantas business class passengers, as well as oneworld Sapphire and Emerald members, will have access to the American Flagship Lounge. I’d say this is a significant improvement over the British Airways Lounge.

American Flagship Lounge JFK

So this move is great news in my opinion, especially for those connecting to or from an American Airlines flight. It’s nice to see the oneworld presence at Terminal 8 growing, as Cathay Pacific, Finnair, LATAM, and Qatar (at least for one of their daily flights), now depart from there as well.

Qantas offers a once daily flight between Los Angeles and New York, which operates with the following schedule:

QF11 Los Angeles to New York departing 8:20AM arriving 4:40PM
QF12 New York to Los Angeles departing 6:10PM arriving 9:00PM

This flight can only be booked in conjunction with an international itinerary. The flight is presently operated by a 747-400, and as of December 1, 2018, Qantas will begin using a 787-9 for the route, which seems like more appropriate capacity. Frankly I’m surprised the airline operates the route at all, given that they also codeshare with American on the route, and they provide plenty of capacity in the market. Qantas’ flight between Los Angeles and New York often causes flights to Australia to be delayed, given how tight the turn is. But I suspect Qantas wants to say that they fly to New York…

Are you happy to see Qantas move to Terminal 8 at JFK?

(Tip of the hat to The Points Guy)

  1. Going to be cool to see the Qantas 747 at Terminal 8, at least for a few months.

    FYI, BA is renovating the Terminal 7 lounges, so they will be better in the near future.

  2. After such a long flight to LAX, most Australians want a minimum of fuss if they are continuing onto JFK. They want to get back onto a Qantas plane, with Qantas crew and Qantas service. AA doesn’t have a great reputation amongst Australians. They also like knowing that if their QF flight is late landing at LAX, their onward QF flight will wait for them. Unless there’s a significant number of QF pax on a delayed AA codeshare, the onward flight won’t.

  3. As Ryan said, extensive renovations of T7 are underway – and are promised to end by the summer. But the current situation is pretty poor. There’s no separate 1st class lounge at the moment, but the business class lounge hasn’t been upgraded to cope. As always, there’s a desperate shortage of power points.

    The food offer in pre-flight dining is little better than a high school canteen – ghastly deep-fried chicken was the most substantial-looking item available last Sunday evening, looking very much the worse for wear (though in fairness deep-fried chicken rarely looks appetising to me). No champagne on offer, though the staff happily fetched it if you asked them.

    I know, I know … first world problems.

  4. Re: The purpose of the Qantas 747-4 JFK-LAX flight despite AA codeshare…. You can’t underestimate the lack of sophistication, fear, or plain stupidity of the average American traveler. Most American tourists to Australia still use a travel agent to plan / book their trip because they view it as some far-off exotic place. I recently had a travel agent convince a family member that it was worth a $3500 difference in airfare to take Qantas over United in business class (this person lives in NJ, and had to get to JFK to get on Qantas!) because on the Qantas flight, she could guarantee that there would be no terminal change at LAX. Who is so lazy and/or scared of changing airport terminals that they will pay $3500 for that? Also, the difference in business between Qantas an United on this route was minimal, in light of the old 747-4s used by Qantas. The only possible explanation is that old people get suckered by travel agents.

  5. @Ben

    AA don’t have a good reputation with anyone outside the US. I’d even take BA rather than AA on a comparable flight. Qantas, no question…I would go for Qantas every time, hence the need for the JFK to LAX sector.

  6. As others have hinted at, maybe the reason for more and more oneworld partners switching terminals is because of renovations under way at BA’s “own” terminal 7 ?

    When going through JFK last September it was a zoo, although we used the equivalent of “The First Wing” near the first-class check-in counters there. They can’t seem to accommodate their own status passengers at peak times, so why would Qantas want to squeeze in ?

    By the looks of it, the American lounges are a way better option definitely. Thanks for the heads-up, Lucky.

  7. @ Mike M – I think most pax on the JFK-LAX service are Australians! Wouldn’t American pax with a ‘lack of sophistication, fear, or plain stupidity’ as you put it, stick with US carriers that they know rather than trying an Australian carrier?!

  8. @Mike M

    Citation needed. The fact that you have a dumb family member doesn’t mean anything about the broader population.

  9. Having just done QF11 from SYD through to JFK, (and as an American!), I agree with with Ben (2nd comment).
    After the SYD>LAX, a short break and shower in the Qantas lounge I just “…want[ed] to get back onto a Qantas plane, with Qantas crew and Qantas service”. Getting on AA would have been jarring to say the least, fine on a good day, abysmal on a bad day. Flying transcon on Qf11 was a lovely experience. I think the terminal change will be great, as currently the baggage claim at JFK was a pretty horrendous welcome to NYC!

  10. This is a welcome change. T7 has been renovated at least twice before, and the results remained inadequate. The issue is the size of the terminal relative to the amount of traffic it handles. QF is now the second oneworld carrier to move to T8 from T7 (Cathay moved last year). The situation at T7 is particularly bad in the customs and immigration hall when many flights arrive at the same time, though arriving QF passengers clear customs at LAX, not JFK so it is a domestic flight with no local traffic permitted.

    The BA lounge at JFK is overcrowded, noisy, and not nice. It needs more than just a few cosmetic changes.

  11. Good on Qantas. T7 is in truly awful as it currently stands. I’m sure it’ll be tolerable once the renovations are completed but it’s clear nobody at BA gave much consideration from a PaxEx experience and as a result everything is in shambles and services are woefully inadequate.

  12. Tend to agree with Ben and Maria. I’m a Qantas stalwart, and having a QF crew as much as possible is streets ahead to AA crews. And being QF Platinum1 and Chairman’s Lounge member I want to be flying my national carrier as much as possible.

  13. I would have hoped that before they open T8 to airlines which are not there yet, they’d make room for Qatar Aioway’s 2nd daily flight. This sharing of 2 terminals by one airline is unheard of and does not seem to make much sense. Is there a logic behind positioning the flights where they are now ? Maybe, especially locating QR in T8 to allow more US connections but then why leave one flight in T7 ?

  14. Since moving to the UK, I no longer need to fly NYC to the Aussie East Coast, so this change doesn’t directly affect me – but a few comments:

    – there is nothing nicer than hearing an Aussie greeting when boarding a plane when you’ve been away for a while. I’m not an uptight person, but I’m immediately relaxed when boarding QF metal (at least I used to be – see question below).
    – AA don’t serve Bundaberg ginger beer, so being able to get it 7 hours earlier is a bonus
    – I find the security line at terminal 8 to be ridiculous – even in the express channel. The terminal 7 express line around the corner rarely has more than a few people waiting. Although my last trans-atl flight was from terminal 4, and that was a lot worse than terminal 8
    – The BA first lounge is worse than the dreaded QF Business lounge in Melbourne. I’m glad to read that it is being improved.

    One question: QF uses a lot of British staff with an Aussie supervisor on LHR / DXB flights, and then Aussie staff on DXB / MEL ¦ SYD flights. I’ve always found the Brits to be hit & miss in their attitude and friendliness. Are Aussies or Americans used on the JFK / LAX sector?

  15. @Ren a dogs LAX_JFk leg are all Aussie crews,proper hot meals and drinks served, proper AVOD at every seat. More like Sydney_Perth service.

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