Newark airport soon will lose NYC label you likely didn’t know it had

Confused? Know this: It won’t impact travel

Forgive the snarkiness: But we just wanted to let you know, as of Oct. 3, Newark Liberty International Airport no longer is in New York City.

We know, we know — you’ve known it all along. But, apparently, the International Air Transport Association just realized it.

When the association resets the classifications of multi-airport cities (think O’Hare and Midway in Chicago) this fall, Newark no longer will be part of the New York City grouping.

What does that mean for the average traveler: Not a thing, a United Airlines spokesperson said.

“There will be no differences for those who fly out of Newark,” the spokesperson said.

Actually, there are a few subtle differences. 

Here is a rundown of things that will and will not change:

  • City code: For Newark Liberty, it will change from NYC to EWR. Yes, the same as the airport code that you’re familiar with. In fact, most travelers were unaware that Newark Liberty had a city code, too. 
  • Here’s the only place you will notice the difference: If you’re out of the area and you’re looking at the arrival/departure boards, it will now say EWR-Newark instead of NYC-Newark.
  • Fees for destination changes: In the past, those flying into Newark Liberty could switch to Kennedy or La Guardia without a fee if, for some reason, a direct flight into Newark was not available. 

That being said, most of those fees for flight changes already have been eliminated. And, if you live in New Jersey and you’re flying into Newark, do you really want to land at La Guardia or Kennedy? It feels like this change may impact those in New York who actually live closer to Newark than their home-state airports.

  • Online flight searches: This won’t change at all. If you’re looking to leave or land in Newark, web searches still will give you all three airports.You still shouldn’t believe the arrival times, though.
  • State branding: You can bet that New Jersey officials are happy about the announcement. You can be sure that no one was pleased that United, one of the largest employers in the state, was able to refer to Newark Liberty as a New York City airport.

Anything to get the Newark name out in the public is welcome.

Remember, state and city officials were thrilled when United’s in-flight magazine did a travel story on “Three days in Newark” as opposed to New York City.

I want to be a part of it: New Jersey … New Jersey

Now that Newark Liberty International Airport has come around — it will officially have Newark as its city code, not New York City, as of Oct. 3 — there are a few more landmarks that could use a new designation.

Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty: Portions of the land are considered New York, the water around it is New Jersey. Hundreds of years and multiple court cases have not settled the issue.

The Giants and Jets: Let’s see, they play in New Jersey, train in New Jersey, have their company headquarters in New Jersey, pay taxes in New Jersey … hmm.

And United officials have long known they’ll hear it from New Jersey officials if they refer to Newark as an NYC hub.

Of course, this is all anybody really wants to know: Will the change in the city coding impact flight delays and cancellations or long Transportation Security Administration lines?

Unfortunately, no. Those will stay at Newark Liberty, which has one of the worst on-time ratings in the country (as do Kennedy and La Guardia). And, although United officials like to point the finger at the Federal Aviation Administration, the problem still can be connected to Newark.

That’s it.

And, since the actual changes are so small, the United spokesperson said the airline didn’t feel the need to issue a release or make a statement.

“It would just confuse people,” the spokesperson said.

You mean, confuse people even more.

To be clear: Much of Newark airport actually is in Elizabeth.

But, head to Newark when it comes time to catch your flight.