5 Best Travel Headphones: Compare, Buy & Save (2018)

best travel headphones

Getty General view of headphones designed to virtually transport visitors to national parks during "PARKTRACKS" to celebrate the 102nd Birthday of the National Park Service at Westlake Park on August 24, 2018 in Seattle, Washington.

A good pair of travel headphones is a must. How else would you tune out airplane noise or screaming kids, endure blaring flight announcements or get through hours-long bus trips? Headphones allow better naps, higher-quality work calls on the go, and of course deliver your music, podcast, and audio books right into your ears, no matter where you are in the world.

Whether you travel for work or pleasure, travel headphones come in handy for watching television shows, working, listening to music, or chatting over the phone. You’ll also probably want something wireless, as dealing with wires while carrying luggage is a tangled mess waiting to happen.

This list ranges from luxury to budget, and includes a waterproof option for active travelers. Learn what makes each pair stand out to determine which pair of headphones to buy for your next trip.

Whether you want the best possible quality or simply need something decent and affordable, here are the 5 absolute best travel headphones available in 2018:

What Are the Best Travel Headphones Available in 2018?

anker wireless soundbuds Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Good sound for price
  • Good noise cancelling for price
  • Short charging time
Price: $29.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
bose wireless headphones Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Excellent sound quality
  • Noise cancelling is very effective
  • Comfortable and lightweight
Price: $249.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
travel headphones Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Water-resistant
  • Great sound
  • Portable charging case
Price: $94.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
best tech gifts, tech gifts for christmas, tech gifts Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great quality for price
  • 18-month warranty
  • Comfortable, swiveling ear cups
Price: $49.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
best travel headphones Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Attractive leather/metal combo
  • Active noise cancelling
  • 18-hour battery
Price: $79.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Anker SoundBuds

    Pros:
    • Affordable
    • Good sound for price
    • Good noise cancelling for price
    • Customizable ear tips
    • Short charging time
    Cons:
    • Not as high-quality as other brands
    • Shorter battery life than other brands
    • Earbuds don't fit in everyone's ears

    If you’re looking for an affordable pair of travel headphones, go for this Anker wireless set. Qualcomm aptX audio and cVc noise cancellation technology delivers crisp, isolated sound via Bluetooth.

    Mix and match the customizable EarTips to find the perfect fit for your ears. Reviewers especially liked this feature, and said it helped the headphones stay in place during workouts. The headphones are water-resistant thanks to an impermeable nano-coating, so you can sweat or run in the rain without worry.

    Users also love the long battery life. When fully-charged, the headphones stay powered for 12.5 hours of music, and if you’re short on  time, a 10-minute charge gives you one hour of battery life. Each pair comes with multiple ear tips and ear wings, a cord management clip, a charging micro USB cable, and a leather carrying pouch with an aluminum carabiner. All headphones come with an 18 month warranty.

  2. 2. Bose QuietComfort 35

    Pros:
    • Excellent sound quality
    • Noise cancelling is very effective
    • Comfortable and lightweight
    • Long battery life
    Cons:
    • More expensive than other brands
    • Some don't like over the ear style
    • Too noise cancelling for some

    Bose is one of the best headphone companies around, and the wireless noise cancelling QuietComfort 35 Series product is no exception. The headphones have more than 4,000 rave reviews for their superior sound quality and noise cancelling abilities.

    Volume-optimized EQ provides a balanced audio performance at any volume. Cancelling all outside noise makes music, television, and calls sound better. The headphones are wireless, connected via Bluetooth and with an NFC pairing aide for voice prompts.

    With a 20-hour battery life in wireless mode and a 40-hour battery life in wired mode, you can use them on any long trip. Aside from the sound, users liked that they’re lightweight and comfortable. one user said they had “great soundstage, great instrument separation,” and were the “best noise cancelling money could buy.”

  3. 3. Jaybird Run

    Pros:
    • Water-resistant
    • Lightweight
    • Great sound
    • Portable charging case
    Cons:
    • Shorter battery life than most
    • Fall out of some people's ears
    • Not as high-quality as others

    If you’re an active traveler, the Jaybird Run headphones are perfect for you. They’re built to withstand any form of moisture, so you can run new trails to your heart’s content and not worry about damage from sweat.

    They sit snugly in your ears and are so lightweight you would forget you’re wearing them–except for the fact that they deliver incredible sound. The way they sit in your ear is also great for flights, as they’re not disruptive or painful when leaning against the window or using a travel pillow. When you land, just pop them in the convenient carrying case.

    A single multi-function button allows you to take calls or access Siri. If you misplace your buds, simply use the Jaybird app to locate them. The buds have a four-hour battery life, though the portable case also includes a charger, which has eight hours of battery. Jaybird is available on Amazon or at T-Mobile, where you can pay monthly, and also get unlimited music streaming.

  4. 4. Cowin E7 Travel Headphones

    Pros:
    • Great quality for price
    • 18-month warranty
    • Comfortable, swiveling ear cups
    Cons:
    • Noise cancelling not as good as other brands
    • Sound quality not as good as some other brands
    • More expensive than some

    These headphones are an Amazon best seller because of their high-quality for a lower price than brands like Bose or Sony. They offer significant noise reduction and have advanced active noise reduction, which is great for cutting out airplane noise.

    They have a deep bass response thanks to 40mm large-aperture drivers, and overall deliver crisp sound whether listening to music or listening to someone speak. Users liked the quality of the built in microphone, which they said was helpful for taking calls on the go.

    The headphones fit comfortably around the ears and have Professional Protein ear pads and 90-degree swiveling ear cups. They last through 30 hours of playtime per charge, which users loved. Each pair comes with an 18-month warranty.

  5. 5. Böhm Wireless Headphones

    Pros:
    • Attractive leather/metal combo
    • Active noise cancelling
    • 18-hour battery
    • Foldable
    Cons:
    • Not as high-quality as some
    • Design might not appeal to some
    • Expensive

    If you don’t compromise style when you travel, go for these wireless headphones with a leather/metal combo. Not only are they attractive (and fit in worldwide), they’re also noise cancelling and wireless, making them great for sleeping on flights.

    Possibly the best feature is the 18-hour battery life. No matter how long your travel day is, you’re probably covered. The headphones deliver rich sound with extra bass, and connect via Bluetooth to any device.

    When it’s time to explore, they fold up into a small case that fits easily in your travel bag. And if brown isn’t your color, they come in black and silver, too.

    Need something to listen to on the trip? Sign up for Audible today and get two free audiobooks. That should last you a cross-country train ride. Or try a 30-day free trial of Amazon Music unlimited, and get access to tens of millions of songs.

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