Nashville International Airport is the airline hub for Nashville, Tennessee. The first airport in the city, Hampton Field, operated until 1921, followed by Blackwood Field, which was in use until 1928.
Nashville‘s municipal airport was established in 1937 as Berry Field, which is where the airport code BNA comes from. It was an early WPA project. The current terminal was completed in 1987 and it took its current name the following year.
All major airlines pass through this airport, including American, Delta, and United, along with budget carriers JetBlue, Southwest, Allegiant, and Frontier. There’s even a nonstop service to London on British Airways.
The Nashville airport has four concourses, named A through D, with a total of 42 gates. In 2021, 15.5 million passengers traveled through the airport. The Tennessee Army National Guard also has a presence at the airport.
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Nashville Airport Tips
Getting Through Security at the Nashville Airport
There is one airport security area that has a separate line for TSA PreCheck. The MyTSA app is helpful in tracking wait times. You can also sign up for Clear and TSA PreCheck, which expedite lines and don’t require you to take out electronics and liquids. You can sign up for Clear at the airport on the day of travel, but PreCheck requires an interview in advance.
If you don’t want to shell out for these services, be prepared with your ID and ticket out, with slip-on shoes and laptop and liquids taken out. A clear toiletry case is a must-have, along with a standard-size carry-on bag.
Going Between Terminals at the Nashville Airport
The Nashville Airport is currently undergoing construction that will separate it into two sections. Passengers will be able to travel between A and B or C and D. But if you want to go between the two sides, you’ll have to go through security again. But it is easy to walk between.
Food and Drink at the Nashville Airport
Over the last few years, the Nashville airport has really upped its game in terms of dining options. There is a mix of local and national chains, along with craft breweries where you can walk with your drink between gates, found before and after security.
Highlights include outposts of Barista Parlor coffee shop, Party Fowl hot chicken, and Pyramids Cafe, a vegetarian-friendly Mediterranean restaurant. Tennessee Brew Works and Yazoo Brewery have craft beer and Tootsies Orchid Lounge is a smaller version of the Broadway landmark.
Want to know the best places to eat at BNA? Check out the guide on Eater.
Shopping, Art, and Other Features of the Nashville Airport
In terms of shopping, the Nashville Airport has standard stores like Brookstone and Hudson News. There is a James Avery jewelry store and the Tennessee Trading Post, which sells locally made goods and the all-important Tennessee whiskey.
Enjoy some peace and quiet at the Meditation Room on the Departures level before security at the South Terminal. Na’Sah’s Nail Salon at Concourse C provides manicure and pedicure services. Passengers also enjoy free wifi and live music, offered daily both at the rotunda and in the terminals.
Club Lounges at the Nashville Airport
There are airport lounges to relax for those with status in between flights. Delta Sky Club is at Concourse B and has snacks and drinks, available to those who qualify. American Airlines Admirals Club at Concourse C has snacks, beer and wine, and computers with printers.
Minute Suites at Concourse D is available for a fee, with private suites by the hour and showers for an additional rate. For those looking for a smoke, the Graycliff Divans Lounge is a smoking lounge at Concourse B.
Going from the Nashville Airport to the City Center
WeGo Transit is the city’s official public transportation and there are buses from the transportation center at the airport to downtown. An all day pass costs $4. Route 18 runs from the airport and stops near the state capitol and on Murfreesboro Pike.
All of the rental car companies have a presence at the Consolidated Rental Car Facility, located next to Terminal Garage 1. Avail and Turo also offer peer-to-peer car rentals from the Nashville Airport.
If you’re taking rideshare apps, including Lyft and Uber, they pick up at the Ground Transportation Center, which is located on the first level of Terminal Garage 2. Each app has its own zone for pickups. Taxis pick up in the Ground Transportation Center on the first level of Terminal Garage 2. Rates start at $30.
The Nashville airport has plenty of onsite parking, including decks, lots, and even valet parking. Prices vary from $16 to $36 per day. Offsite parking options include Fly Away Airport Parking, The Parking Spot, and Flight Park.
There are plenty of hotels near the airport that have shuttles running from the transportation center. Element Nashville Airport by Marriott, Hilton Nashville Airport, and Hotel Preston Nashville Airport are a few of the best.
What to Do on a Nashville Layover
If you are spending a layover in Nashville, you can see some of the landmarks if you don’t mind bringing your bags with you. The bus drops you off in the heart of downtown but a Lyft might be quicker. Here you can see iconic Music Row, home to the Country Music Hall of Fame, the National Museum of African American Music, and the Ryman Auditorium.
If you’d rather stay closer to the airport, the Grand Ole Opry is only fifteen minutes drive from the terminals. Even if you’re not there at night for a show, it’s still incredible to see. While here, check out the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Opry Mills, a large shopping and dining district.
Have you traveled through the Nashville airport? Share your tips!