Best Travel Headphones according to expert travel bloggers
This is a list of the best travel headphones according to many travel blogging experts, as well as my own personal experience. Collectively we have tried dozens and dozens of headphones and/or earbuds over the years—this list represents our favorites at the moment and encompasses a variety of styles and different price points. Please leave a comment below if you have any questions. (NOTE: To make it easy to purchase any of these travel headphones, I have embedded Amazon listings. Full disclosure, these are affiliate links, which help support this channel).
As professional travel bloggers, we all travel a great deal! Many of us fly long-haul international flights where boredom can easily takeover. One of the best and most relaxing ways to pass the time is to watch movies, T.V. shows or listen to music or podcasts. Personally, even if I’m not doing any of the aforementioned, I am wearing headphones or earbuds to block out unwanted noise, be it from the airplane itself, or perhaps a crying baby. For me, a good pair of travel headphones is essential for a trip.
Suggestion for Traveling with Headphones
Most headphones today are Bluetooth enabled, which is great, but there is a case to be made for carrying a second pair when you travel. If you wish to watch the in-flight entertainment, or, the battery of your Bluetooth headphones runs out of juice, it’s nice to have a corded back-up. That said, some of the headphones featured below come with a cord so that you can use in either Bluetooth mode, or corded.
Sennheiser MOMENTUM 3 Wireless
The Sennheiser MOMENTUM 3 are the Rolls Royce of travel headphones in the over-ear category. As a video producer, I have been a long time user of Sennheiser microphones as they are the best in the business. Their headphones are no exception, even though they are not as well-known as the more consumer oriented Bose brand. Sennheiser products are very popular within the professional sector, but they also offer many types of headphone for consumers as well. When I want to fully escape from my surroundings, I wear the MOMENTUM 3 headphones.
- Pros: Superior sound. Soft/supple leather. Comfortable fit. Foldable, which also turns the headphones off/on.
- Cons: Doesn’t always connect to the Sennheiser app right away.
(Recommendation by: Mike of MikesRoadTrip.com)
1More Triple Driver In-Ear Headphones
A great set of ear buds for travel are the 1More Triple Driver in-ear headphones. These lightweight headphones come with a carry case, airplane adapter and multiple ear bud cushions to customize the buds to your own ears.
The sound quality is great, and they are super comfortable. The carry case is large enough for the headphones, adapter and one or two spare sets of cushions, and doesn’t take up too much space if you are taking them in your carry-on luggage. They are ideal for use with a laptop, tablet or smart phone or on a plane for the in-flight entertainment.
- Pros: Customizable ear bud cushions. Great sound quality. Handy carry case. Good value.
- Cons: Ear bud covers can pop off easily and only one set of each sized ear bud cushions are included.
(Travel headphones recommendation by: Cath with Travel Around Ireland)
Kids CozyPhones are the perfect travel headphones for young children on airplanes. The speakers are inside of a soft, fuzzy headband that sits snugly around the head and comes in several different fun styles. They are great for older babies, toddlers, and on up. Not only do they stay well on the child’s head, but they are comfortable enough for kids to fall asleep with them on.
- Pros: Comfortable to wear for an extended amount of time. Durable, with a braided tangle-free cord. Wide variety of styles to choose from.
- Cons: They are sound limited to protect kids’ hearing. Some parents complain that it is too quiet for use on a plane, but it is plenty loud as long as you adjust the speakers inside the headband to sit right over the ears.
(Recommendation by: Dani Ward – Diapers in Paradise)
Bose Wireless QC35 II
The Bose headphones have 3 noise cancelling settings and are comfortable enough to wear for extended durations including long haul flights. The battery life of 20 hours on wireless mode, and 40 hours with the cable means I rarely have to charge them. The headphones are also foldable so are easy to transport but remembering to bring the auxiliary cord on a flight is important so you can make use of the inflight entertainment.
- Pros: Three noise cancelling settings. Comfortable enough to wear for extended durations. Outstanding battery life – 20 hours on wireless mode, 40 hours with the cable.
- Cons: They are pricier than most brands.
(Recommendation by: Roshni of The Wanderlust Within)
Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo
My husband and I currently use the Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo. Anker is a relatively unknown brand but has a cult following, mainly because their prices are affordable, and the quality of their products are good as well.
The Soundcore Liberty Neo is completely wireless – all you need to do is turn on the Bluetooth on your device, and it will sync with earbuds completely.
The sound quality is amazing, and it fits so wonderfully on our ears. The carrying case is small and also acts as a charging station for extra power, perfect if you’re on the road. Our only qualm is we’re scared of actually one earbud falling off if we fell asleep while traveling!
- Pros: Price/great value. Excellent sound quality for the price. Easy to pair with devices
- Cons: Only available online. Relatively unknown brand. You have to use both earbuds at the same time.
(Recommendation by: Ruby with A Journey We Love)
1MORE Stylish True Wireless in-Ear Headphones
The 1MORE Stylish True Wireless in-Ear Headphones are my holy grail earphones that get me through all types of travel.
- Pros: wireless so there are no cords to get tangled up. Store in super small case. Soft tip head buds are easy on the ear and fit seamlessly.
- Cons: Headphones only have a 6.5-hour battery life, however the case offers 24 hours of battery life.
(Travel Headphones recommendation by: Samantha at Sam Sees World)
Jabra Elite Active 65t
I’ve been using the Jabra Elite Active 65t as my go-to travel earbuds for the past year. They are wonderful with long-lasting battery, and are completely waterproof. This is super important for heavy sweaters, like myself, who like to exercise on the road.
- Pros: Fit snugly, never fall out. They are “true wireless” earbuds with no cords. Completely waterproof.
- Cons: The only thing I don’t like is you always have to put in the left earbud first in order for sound to play in both ears. Also, they don’t work right if you try to share one earbud with a friend.
(Earbud suggestion from Mitch Glass with Project Untethered)
I originally bought these Sony headphones when I was pregnant and wanted some Bluetooth headphones I could wear to play music and to cancel out noise. I was looking for a comfortable, lightweight pair that would also be sturdy and reliable. After surviving 12+ hours of labor, a number of long-haul flights and many hours of running, walking and working with them on, I can confidently say that they are all the things I was looking for in a pair of headphones.
- Pros: Very comfortable. Generous adjustments…can wear over a hat.
- Cons: If the headphones are on noise-cancelling, they still have to be connected to a device to stay switched on. Also, ears get really hot after extended wear.
(Headphone recommendation by: Frankie with As the bird Flies)
Plantronics BackBeat PRO 2
The BackBeat PRO 2 is an over-the-ear pair of headphones that come with a travel sleeve and the ear cups that can be rotated 90° for easier storage. In that position, the ear cups rest more comfortably and securely on my shoulders when taking a break from listening.
The BackBeat Pro 2 has a wireless range of 100 meters thanks to its version 5 Bluetooth capabilities. Lower quality Bluetooth headphones tend to crackle or break communication between the device and headphones. If you run out of power, you can still use the as wired headphones thanks to its 3.5mm jack. I really like deep bass and oomph these headphones deliver.
- Pros: Up to 24 hours on a single charge. 21 day standby. Great range up to 100 meters. Auto pause/playback when you remove or place the headphones on.
- Cons: The ear cups get warm during extended listening and the track control buttons difficult to landmark.
(Recommended by Ivan from MindtheTravel.com)
Sennheiser Ambeo Smart Headset
The Ambeo smart headset by Sennheiser is one of the standouts on this list as they do something that none of the others do…they record 3D sound! These headphones are not just for listening to great audio, but they also record sound when filming with an iPhone or iPad. The headset is fitted with omnidirectional microphones that capture sound just like your ears would. These are some truly remarkable headphones/mics and are perfect for vloggers and content creators who want to dazzle their audience with amazing audio. To understand what I am talking about, watch the short video below provided by Sennheiser.
- Pros: Records amazing audio. Great headset for music and talking on the phone.
- Cons: Capable only with Apple products.
(Suggestion by: Mike of MikesRoadTrip.com)
Xiaomi AirDots is one of the most budget-friendly wireless earphones in the market, yet offering amazing sound quality seen in other higher-end brands. With the Bluetooth 5.0 technology, there are almost zero delays between what you see on the video and what you hear.
- Pros: Fantastic bass. Effortless connection between devices. Good battery life. Great price.
- Cons: The downside to these earphones is that the only charger port is Micro-USB.
(Suggestion by: Yen from WanderingJournal.com)
Beats Powerbeats Pro
The Beats Powerbeats Pro are perfect for active travelers and adventurers. Their signature ear hook design means they stay right in the ears no matter how strenuous the activity. They’re insanely comfortable and can be worn for an entire day without any discomfort.
- Pros: Incredible battery life. More than 24 hours of playback using the supplied charging case. Intuitive controls. Impressive sound. Water-resistant.
- Cons: They’re not noise-cancelling but do provide noise isolation. The earbuds don’t support USB-C and must be charged using a Lightning cable.
(Suggestion by: Alexei with Travel Lexx)
Bose SoundSport Wireless
The Bose SoundSport Wireless Headphones are the perfect headphones for traveling or working out. Not only do they provide an amazing audio experience, but their multi-sized earbuds are designed to fit comfortably and securely in any ear. I love how the lightweight earbuds always stay in place and how easy it is to connect to any Bluetooth enabled device. With multiple colors to choose from, and a portable carrying case included, I never travel without them.
- Pros: Amazing sound quality balanced at any volume. Button controls for volume, skipping tracks, and taking calls. Comes with a variety of earbuds.
- Cons: Not completely wireless. Not noise cancelling. Only 6 hours of battery life.
(Suggestion by: Allison with Viva La Travelista)
Dveda Bluetooth Wireless Headphones
The small independent Bluetooth earbuds have become very popular this past year. I wanted to try them out without spending a lot of money, the Dveda Wireless earbuds are highly rated on Amazon and also have the “Amazon Choice” certification, so I thought I would try them out. I was blown away at how good they work and how great they sound. They hold a charge for up to 8 hours and come with a combo storage/charging case, which allows you to get 12-15 charges until having to plug in the case. The price is also very reasonable, I believe I paid around $60 and now they are even cheaper.
- Pros: Long lasting charge. Great sound. Comfortable to wear. Good price point.
- Cons: When traveling on a plane, train or bus, you can easily drop and loose one of the earbuds. Not great for talking on the phone, other party finds it difficult to hear.
(Recommended by: Mihaela – WorldTravelBug.com)
Bose QuietComfort 25
I rarely travel without my Bose QuietComfort 25 headphones. Bose is known for its excellent noise-cancellation, and these headphones block noise really well and also have excellent sound quality. These over-the-ear headphones are also super comfortable making them easy to wear for hours. Bose is now selling a newer model of these headphones, so the Bose QuietComfort 25 are very inexpensive for the quality and less than half the price of the newer model.
- Pros: Inexpensive compared to newer model. Excellent noise-cancellation. Comfortable.
- Cons: These headphone are wired while the newer model is wireless.
(Headphone suggestion by: Matilda with The Travel Sisters)
If you’re looking for a great pair of headphones to take traveling, be sure to check out a pair of Sony MDR-V55 DJ headphones. If you’re the type of person who is big on sound and loves electronic music, these noise-isolating headphones offer a big bang for your buck. With the average retail price of $59.99USD you really can’t go wrong. My favorite features are the swiveling reversible padded earcups and the tangle-free cord which make them great for bundling into a backpack.
(Recommendation by: Daniel James with Layer Culture)
SENSO Bluetooth Headphones
I first discovered the Senso wireless Bluetooth headphones during my search for a replacement to my bulky wireless headphones to use at the gym about a year ago. For a while, I considered buying Apple or Bose brand. I ultimately decided to get this under $20 earphones because of the price, functionality, and ratings.
Since then, this set has become my favorite travel headphones and workout companion. I love that this earphone can be used for up to 8 hours on a single charge, enough for several days of workout or one full day of international travel.
- Pros: Can easily be charged with a standard USB port. Ergonomic design prevents the earbuds from falling out. IPX-7 waterproof rating. 1-year warranty.
- Cons: Poor noise-canceling.
Recommendation by: Louisa Moje of La Passion Voutee
Beyerdynamic Soul Byrds
The Beyerdynamic Soul Byrds are a superb pair of sub-$100, wired in-ear headphones. The timing is excellent, the sonic balance perfectly poised, and they extract a surprising amount of detail for the money. For the money, these travel headphones are a a no-brainer.
I hope you enjoyed this post on some of the best travel headphones and earbuds for 2020, brought to you by a collective group of travel bloggers with extensive headphone experience. If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.