Air travel rebounding as more passengers return to BNA

Sunday marked the busiest day at BNA since March
Posted at 8:43 PM, Oct 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-14 08:49:23-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — As Nashville continues to rebound from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are traveling through Nashville International Airport.

Officials at BNA said numbers are still fluctuating, but Sunday was the busiest day since March. 14,524 passengers departed from the airport.

Overall, officials said numbers are still down from 2019, when an average of 25,000 passengers visited the airport each day. However, numbers have increased substantially since 1,000 people a day were passing through the airport in April. Officials said the strong numbers from the weekend are encouraging, and they expect passenger travel to continue to increase over time.

Nationwide, numbers have increased, as well. On Sunday, TSA agents screened more than 984,000 people at checkpoints across the country - which is the most since April.

Some passengers at BNA on Tuesday said they were taking their first flight since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

"We felt safe," said James Machinski, who was traveling for the first time since March. "People want to get out and see family."

"We chose to fly Southwest in particular because they were spacing out the seats, and that felt good," said Aima Ahoynkhai, who flew to Philadelphia.

Multiple safety measures continue to be in place throughout the airport. Plexiglass has been installed at all ticket counters, masks are provided for all travelers, and hand sanitizer is available throughout the terminal. Airport officials also close all restrooms every two hours for cleaning and gate areas are cleaned regularly, as well.

"Don’t be afraid, that’s the big thing," said Bonnie Clark, who was traveling with her grandson to Milwaukee. "Take your precautions, and do what you’re supposed to do. You just have to take one day at a time and be cautious."