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JFK, LaGuardia, Newark: How Low Do New York-Area Airports Rank for Holiday Travel?

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When New Yorkers head out of town for the holidays, they have three major airports to choose from: John F. Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark. A new analysis suggests that one of the three is just below average compared with other busy airports in the U.S., and the remaining two are among the worst in terms of cancellations, delays and food options.

To determine the best and worst airports for holiday travel, NerdWallet started with the 50 busiest and analyzed November and December cancellations for the past three years from the federal Bureau of Transportation Statistics. We also factored in each airport’s restaurant ratings from Yelp reviews. See the full report for a ranking of all 50 airports, a detailed methodology and tips for using credit cards to temper a lousy travel experience.

New York’s uninspiring airports

Of the three New York-area airports, JFK performed the best in our analysis — but that’s not saying much. JFK placed 34th out of 50, with a cancellation rate of 0.78%, compared with an average of 1.24%. LaGuardia and Newark Liberty International landed near the bottom of the list at 46th and 48th, respectively. Both had higher-than-average rates of delays and cancellations, and were among the lowest in terms of restaurant Yelp reviews in our analysis.

The worst and best airports across the U.S.

Dallas/Fort Worth International, San Francisco International and Chicago O’Hare International join LaGuardia and Newark at the bottom of the list, ranking as the worst airports in the country for holiday travel.

Honolulu International fared the best in our analysis, followed by Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International, Phoenix Sky Harbor International, Seattle-Tacoma International and Miami International. New Yorkers might want to try traveling to one of these spots — aloha! — to counter what may be a subpar experience in their hometown.

Laura McMullen is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: Twitter: @lauraemcmullen.