That number was expected increase even more Tuesday, with as many as 24,500 leaving – just shy of their record number of around 25,000 during Bonnaroo, CMA Fest and the Predators Stanley Cup run.
Outside the departure terminal of the airport, dozens of heartfelt goodbyes took place. People from all over the world stood and said goodbye to their loved ones after having experienced a possible once in a lifetime event.
"It was a journey, it was not easy, but it was worth," said Florence Edward Miller who was heading home to Wisonsin with her 15-month-old daughter.
"Bye dad! Love you," she could be heard saying as the two parted ways in front of the curbside check-in for Southwest.
About one dozen flights were delayed throughout the day on Tuesday but there were no major issues or cancellations even given the heavier than usual travel volume.
Officials said Wednesday was expected to be another busy day with about 23,000 departures. Around 18,000 fly out on a typical day at the airport.