How to Get to JFK Airport on Public Transit

Here are your options for getting to John F. Kennedy International Airport via public transportation.

If you’re coming from...

  • Midtown Manhattan or Downtown Brooklyn and don't mind a higher fare: Take the LIRR and the AirTrain.
  • Outside of Midtown Manhattan or Downtown Brooklyn, or want to save on fares: Take the subway and the AirTrain.

Either way, you’ll take the AirTrain for the last leg of your trip. The AirTrain connects to all airport terminals.

Tips

  • AirTrain fare is $7.75 on top of your subway or railway fare. You can’t use unlimited passes on the AirTrain. Have a MetroCard with money on it before you head to the airport, to avoid lines that can get long.
  • Sit near the front of a LIRR train if you take one. That will put you closer to Jamaica Station when you disembark.
  • The A train runs local overnight. Allow extra time if you’re taking the A to JFK.
  • Check elevator and escalator status before you go if those are services you rely on.

Option 1: Take the A train and the AirTrain

Fare: $10.50 for most riders.

This is an accessible trip.

1. Take a Far Rockaway-bound A train to Howard Beach Station.

Make sure your train is headed to Far Rockaway. Lefferts Boulevard-bound A trains don't connect to the airport.

Train signs and announcements will tell you where the train is headed. You can also ask the conductor, who sits in the middle of the train.

2. Transfer to the AirTrain at Howard Beach Station.

You can board any AirTrain that arrives.

Details about fares

This includes a $2.75 subway fare and a $7.75 AirTrain fare. You can use unlimited ride MetroCards on the subway but not on the AirTrain.

Check which terminal you need at JFK's website, or by asking the airline.

Option 2: Take the E, J, or Z and the AirTrain

Fare: $10.50 for most riders.

This is an accessible trip.

1. Take a Jamaica Center-bound train to Sutphin Boulevard/Archer Avenue/JFK Airport.

Follow signs to the AirTrain after you get off the subway. You'll leave the subway fare zone (by going through the turnstiles).

Look for elevators, an escalator, and stairs to the upper level.

Once you're on the upper level, Jamaica Station is straight ahead.

 

2. Transfer to the AirTrain at Jamaica Station.

You can board any AirTrain that arrives.

Check which terminal you need at JFK's website, or by asking the airline.

Details about fares

The price we calculated includes a $2.75 subway fare and a $7.75 AirTrain fare.

People with luggage take escalators and wait for elevators, with signs on columns nearby pointing to the AirTrain on the upper level.

Option 3: Take the Long Island Rail Road and the AirTrain

Fare: Between $12.25 and $18.50 for most riders.

This is an accessible trip.

1. Take the Long Island Rail Road from Manhattan or Brooklyn to Jamaica Station.

You can board Long Island Rail Road trains at Penn Station in Manhattan or Atlantic Terminal in downtown Brooklyn. All LIRR service except the Port Washington branch goes through Jamaica Station, though not all trains stop there. Make sure the train you board stops at Jamaica Station.

You can buy your rail ticket at the station (from a ticket vending machine or a ticketing desk) or on your phone, via the MTA eTix app.

You'll show your ticket to the conductor on the train.

2. Transfer to the AirTrain at Jamaica Station.

When you arrive at Jamaica Station, take the stairs, elevators, or escalators to the upper level. You’ll board the AirTrain from there.

Use your MetroCard at the AirTrain turnstiles to pay the $7.75 fare. Use a MetroCard ticket machine if you need to add value to your card. (Do this in advance to skip the lines.)

You can board any AirTrain that arrives. Check which terminal you need at JFK's website, or by asking the airline.

Details about fares

The exact fare depends on whether you're traveling during peak hours and if you're eligible for a reduced fare.

On weekends, you can buy a CityTicket from Penn Station to Jamaica Station for $4.50.