The state capital of Tennessee, Nashville, is the hometown of country music with a vibrant music and entertainment scene spanning a wide array of genres. The ‘Music City’ welcomes a major influx of visitors, including aspirants, fans, and music-makers of all types year-round. But Nashville is more than just the music center of the nation and offers an endless way to escape everyday for people, from historical attractions to thrilling outdoor adventures. Flying to Nashville International Airport (BNA) lands you right in the capital city, located just 10 km southeast of downtown Nashville. Nashville Airport is an aerial gateway to Music City and one of the fastest-growing airports that served over 18 million passengers in 2019. The beat of music flows through the airport, paying tribute to Nashville’s rich history. What can passengers expect at Nashville Airport? Which major airlines fly into Nashville? Let’s learn more about BNA Airport.
Introduction to Nashville Airport
Nashville Airport is a medium-sized US airport situated 8 miles southeast of Nashville at an elevation of 183m above sea level. The facility serves Nashville metropolitan area and also acts as a jumping-off point to explore the rest of Tennessee State. Whether you want to go on a family vacation in Nashville, dive right into the city’s energy or vibrancy, or enjoy wildlife at the Great Smokey Mountains National Park, your journey will be much easier with several hundred daily flights offered by Nashville International Airport.
Nashville Airport is a fast-growing US airport and a significant economic driver for the entire state of Tennessee. At the end of June 2022, BNA Airport announced that its passenger number had soared to an all-time record-high of 18.4 million, 7% higher than the previous record year, 2019. The airport hosts flight operations for around 30 carriers, the largest airline customers being Southwest Airlines and American Airlines, respectively.
Airlines flying in and out of Nashville International Airport
Thirty airlines (26 passengers and four cargo-only) serve Nashville International Airport, offering an average of 261 daily departures to 97 nonstop destinations across the US, Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. BNA Airport offers more flight options for travelers from different places as its flight network is stretched to four countries, 37 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Major carriers include Southwest Airlines, American Airlines, Allegiant Air, Delta Air Lines, SkyWest Airlines, United Airlines, JetBlue, Spirit Airlines, British Airways, Avelo Airlines, Contour Airlines, Flair Airlines, Frontier Airlines, etc., fly in and out of Nashville Airport.
The ultra-low-cost carrier Southwest Airlines is the largest operator at BNA, serving around six million passengers flying in and out of Nashville annually. The Dallas-headquartered airline comprises more than half of BNA’s total passenger market share, offering over 50% of the airport’s total seat capacity. Southwest Airlines is considering establishing a flight crew base-including cabin attendants and pilots-at Nashville Airport, in light of airport improvements, its geostrategic position, and rising air demand to/from the capital city.
Major legacy carriers American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines take the second, third, and fourth spots for the largest airline market shares in Nashville. BNA Airport is also the focus city for ultra-low-cost airline Allegiant Air to operate year-round and seasonal flights around the country.
Although domestic US carriers largely dominate Nashville BNA Airport, it still has a presence of a handful of foreign carriers, including Air Canada, Air Canada Express, British Airways, Swoop Airlines, Viva Aerobus, and WestJet.
In addition to being a thriving passenger hub, Nashville BNA Airport is a fledging cargo destination for freighter giants like Amazon Air, Atlas Air, DHL Aviation, FedEx Express, etc.
Top destinations from BNA
Some of the busiest domestic routes from/to BNA include Newark-Nashville, Dallas/Fort Worth-Nashville, Atlanta-Nashville, Chicago-O’Hare-Nashville, Denver-Nashville, New York JFK-Nashville, Orlando-Nashville, etc. If you are searching for flights from Newark to Nashville (EWR-BNA), United Airlines, United Express, and Spirit Airlines will cater to your air travel needs. Delta and Southwest Airlines serve Atlanta-Nashville (ATL-BNA). Similarly, American, Delta, Southwest, and Spirit Airlines operate domestic flights from Nashville to New York-LaGuardia (LGA) and Los Angeles (LAX). Travelers seeking flights on the DFW-BNA route can fly with Dallas/Fort Worth-based American Airlines. For vacation, passengers can fly BNA to Hawaii. Numerous airlines serve passengers from BNA to HNL airport. American Airlines links BNA to HNL through Dallas, while Delta connects BNA to HNL via Atlanta.
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Starting November 2, the new, year-old Breeze Airways has added nonstop flights to Westchester and one-stop service to Norfolk, VA, from Nashville Airport.
Passenger facilities at Nashville Airport
Nashville Airport has a main terminal with 40 gates spread over four concourses: A, B, C, and D, with 6, 10, 18, and 6 gates, respectively. With the expansion and huge traffic growth as a key focus, the airport has pursued the BNA Vision expansion and renovation program to develop state-of-the-art landside and airside facilities, expand the concourse and lobby areas, add new gates and security lanes, etc. The airport envisages handling 36 million passengers in a year by 2024.
If you are traveling to Nashville International Airport for the first time, you can expect these facilities and amenities:
1. Free wi-fi
A must-have facility for today’s travelers, free wi-fi facility is available in all areas at BNA Airport frequented by the public.
2. Dining options
Because Nashville is a culinary treasure known for meal-and-three diners, hot fried chicken, southern barbeque, and the like, it seems fitting that Nashville Airport offers a wide array of dining options with a unique Nashville taste for on-the-go passengers. Tantalize your tastebuds and relish savor delectable gourmets served by Nashville staple restaurants such as 400 Degrees Hot Chicken, Arrington Wine Bar and Grill, Bar-B-Cutie Smokehouse, Burger King, Chick-fil-A, etc. inside BNA Airport.
There are many one-stop shops at BNA Airport where travelers can buy a wide variety of products, from grab-n-go items and beverages to travel accessories with premium local and global brands. Also, souvenir stores sell local gifts and apparel to remind you of your trip to Nashville. Brookstone, air essentials, District News, Evolve by Hudson, Hudson Nonstop, InMotion, James Avery, etc., are popular shopping destinations in Nashville BNA Airport.
4. Music and entertainment
Music and entertainment are the cornerstones of Nashville, and the airport reflects the region with musical performances on stages in the passenger terminal. Your journey to Music City begins right at the airport, which provides a warm welcome in true Music City style to people who visit and call Nashville home. To offer visitors enjoyment and an enriched experience, Nashville International Airport host daily live music events on stages near the A/B Waiting Lounge, the C/D Waiting Lounge, Concourse C Food Court (beyond security), etc.
BNA Airport features award-winning arts presenting an ever-growing, ever-changing showcase of cultural diversity and creative talent in Tennessee throughout the terminal. Public art pieces reflect Nashville’s vibrant mural culture in the ticketing lobby and rental car facility. This year, a new sculpture resembling a cloud-like figure worth $900,000 has joined Nashville International Airport.
Nashville Airport parking has several lots: valet parking, terminal garage, terminal lot A, economy lot B, economy lot C, and BNA Express Park. Valet parking has a flat daily rate of $36, and the service is available 24/7. It is located on the ground floor of terminal Garage 1 and only a few footsteps away from the terminal entrance.
Terminal Garages 1 and 2 charges $26 per day and have 2000 and 2200 covered spaces, respectively. The Economy terminal lot A has a daily rate of $18, and it is the closest surface parking lot to the terminal with no shuttle service. Economy lot B and C charge $16 daily and have complimentary shuttle service every 10 minutes. BNA Express Park service is available 24/7 on-demand and features a courtesy shuttle service, a free electric vehicle charging station, and a quick 5-minute ride to the terminal.
If you need Nashville Airport parking service, consider booking off-site valet parking as it offers better value, faster service, more convenience, and benefits like frequent parking programs, carwash and auto maintenance service, etc.
Soaring passenger traffic at BNA Airport
While it’s obvious that Nashville is the spiritual home of country and western music, the city is also gaining popularity as a significant automotive and high-tech hub. Thanks to Nashville’s thriving economy and strong business and tourism appeal, BNA Airport has been witnessing double-digit growth for the last couple of years. The number of travelers moving through Nashville International Airport is peaking as the city continues to see a great influx of tourists and new residents.
Although BNA Airport fell victim to the dramatic downturn in air traffic caused by the outbreak of the COVID-19 crisis, it has emerged quickly from the pandemic and continued increasing air service opportunities for business and leisure travelers. The airport ended the pre-pandemic year 2019 on a high with a record 18.3 million passengers. But the strong rebound in air traffic has enabled the airport to achieve another record-breaking year of18.4 million passengers at the end of its fiscal year 2021-22.