Delta’s new concourse is a tantalizing preview of the LaGuardia renovation

Nov 21, 2019

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Delta Air Lines officially moved all of its shuttle flights to its new concourse at New York’s LaGuardia airport on Nov. 16. TPG got a preview of the building before it opened, but — now that it’s up and running — we wanted to see what it was like as a passenger.

In the next few years, LaGuardia (LGA) will have an entirely new slate of terminal buildings (aside from the landmark Marine Air Terminal, which currently houses JetBlue’s operations at the airport). As that effort moves along, the new Delta concourse is a great preview of how much the project will improve the traveler experience at LGA.

For more TPG news delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Even from the highway, the new building stands out. Bright and airy, you can see into the terminal across the water as you approach the airport on the Grand Central Parkway.

Inside the concourse, which houses gates 92 to 98, it felt for once like LaGuardia was a clean and efficient modern airport.

(Photo by Zach Wichter/The Points Guy)

“This is much nicer, it’s brighter, open. The other one is cramped,” said Ted Woehrle, a management consultant who was flying on Tuesday’s 7:59 a.m. Delta Shuttle flight to Washington.

Woerhle said he lives in Atlanta and that it was his first time on the Shuttle, though he added he has plenty of experience with LaGuardia. He often flies into the older terminal buildings when visiting family or coming to New York for business. He wasn’t aware of the new concourse when he booked his flight, and when he saw he had been assigned a gate number in the 90s, he braced for the worst.

“I thought it would be run down and under construction. I thought it would be an old building,” he said. “This is good!”

(Photo by Zach Wichter/The Points Guy)

In many ways, Delta’s new concourse feels like a new, much smaller airport in some other city. It’s on the very edge of LaGuardia’s property, so close to the water it can seem like the East River is lapping up against the windows from the right vantage point. And since it primarily serves Delta Shuttle flights, the gates are mostly occupied by regional jets. Still, there were a few mainline services on Tuesday morning: a flight to Birmingham, Alabama, and a delayed flight to Jacksonville, Florida. (Even a new building can’t help late-arriving aircraft.)

(Photo by Zach Wichter/The Points Guy)

The building itself was fairly empty and quiet at 6:30 a.m. this past Tuesday. But the crowds had begun to swell by the time my 7:59 a.m. flight to Washington Reagan National began to board.

Subtle Christmas decorations added to the celebratory atmosphere of the new concourse, which was still trumpeting its own newness with signage announcing its recent opening. Even the bathroom was nice.

(Photo by Zach Wichter/The Points Guy)

During a press preview of the building last month, officials made special mention of the concessions, which are stocked by local vendors. And the prices were in line with what you might pay outside of the airport.

The H&H Bagel shop was selling a bagel with cream cheese and lox for $12.95, the same as it would in its Manhattan location.

Of course, some things still seemed to have an airport premium. Among those: a $17 omelette at the Flatiron Tavern, or a $3.25 bottle of water at the Fiorello Market. But even those prices weren’t beyond the pale for a post-security airport concession.

As construction at LaGuardia continues, passengers using the rest of the airport can look forward to more improvements and comforts like those available in the new Delta concourse.

All photos by Zach Wichter/The Points Guy.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.