Considering I fly about every 3 weeks, I’ve been through too many travel headphones to count. Although I have both wired and wireless pairs of headphones that I like to take on my trips, Bluetooth has typically taken the cake in regards to convenience and effectiveness, especially when you want to be as relaxed as possible when traveling. In the past, wireless headphones were considered to be a risky investment since sound quality was often affected by Bluetooth connectivity. However, thanks to the rise of aptX technology, there is a wide array of reliable wireless headphones to choose from in today’s market.
Finding the best Bluetooth travel headphones
If you’re in need of a pair of travel Bluetooth headphones that aren’t going to break on you easily, especially as you’re more susceptible to damage while traveling, you’ll need to invest a bit more money than we typically recommend in our headphones guides. Build will be important, and grabbing a super cheap pair of “whatever” at your local electronics store isn’t going to cut it.
Next, whenever we’re asked about headphones for travel, we’re almost at “noise-cancellation or bust” at this point in time. Technology is really starting to grow nowadays, and ever since we started using ANC for travel, especially on airplanes, we don’t think we can ever go back. The immersion we attain (with some real noise-canceling headphones, not just ‘noise isolation’) really brings us into a different world. And we’re not sure about you, but we aren’t necessarily considered super social while we’re on a plane or bus. We like to just keep to ourselves and listen to what we want without being bothered while we reach our destination.
Other than these factors, lastly with any Bluetooth shopping, keep in mind some important key specifications: Bluetooth range, playback time (with full charge), codec’s used, Bluetooth version (up to 3.0 now), etc.
The best traveling Bluetooth headphones
Bose QuietComfort 35 II
Not that the QC 35 was insufficient with specific regards to its sound quality, but it lacked the very essential Google Assistant feature. And this is where the Quiet Comfort 35 II comes into the picture. It is the updated QC 35 model complete with Google Assistant and many more features. Both headphones are essentially identical in all possible ways save for the Google Assistant button. To this end, the QC 35 II offers great sound quality as is characteristic of Bose products. However, what makes it stand out from the rest is its high-end noise cancellation feature that allows you to listen to your favorite tunes from any location; be it the bus ride home, a noisy plane or at your favorite outdoor joint. Weighing in at a meager 0.68 pounds and with a battery life of 20+ hours, it is easy to see why the QC 35 II is ranked as one of the best Bluetooth headphones for travelling.
What’s more, it is NFC enabled and comes with a 3.94 feet cable for extra connectivity. On the flip side, a lot of people describe its design as boring plus the QC 35 is a more expensive alternative as compared to many other noise-canceling Bluetooth headphones out there. Regardless, if you’re in need of high-end travel Bluetooth headphones, the Bose QC 35 II is a beautiful pick.
The COWIN E7 comes in five colors; black, blue, red, white and purple. This, added to its unique design, gives the headphones a hip look making them an ideal choice for music lovers. On top of that, the E7 features 40 mm proprietary drivers, state of the art active noise-cancellation, NFC-enabled, a built-in mic, protein ear pads, 30-hour playback at full charge, and 90 degree swiveling cups. It is one of the few models in the market that offer hand-free calling, thus, is ranked highly majorly due to its convenience. The swiveling ear cups also allow for sudden movements and increased comfort.
Unlike most wireless headphones, the E7 comes fully equipped with skin texture on the ear cups for added comfort and a good fit. Additionally, you do not need to worry about noise while travelling. Its professional feed-forward and feed-back noise cancellation technology is ideal for all environments. Lastly, the Cowin E7 lets you forget all about wire bonds with the NFC and Bluetooth 5.0 connections. It is easily one of the best Bluetooth headphones for travel as its offers convenience and comfort without comprising the quality of sound offered.
As the slogan goes, “no wires, just music”! This is an accurate description of Sony’s WH-CH700N which has been designed to allow users listen to music for hours while on the move. One of its standout features is the 1-Push AINC (Artificial Intelligence Noise Cancelling) feature which lets you adjust the settings to your current environment. This makes it easy to get rid of all manners of noise by simply pressing the NC button at the edge of your headphones. Another unique feature of the WH-CH700N is the NFC One-Touch that creates seamless and hasty connections to all gadgets that are NFC-enabled. For devices without NFC, one can easily connect the devices manually using the WH-CH700N settings panel. What’s more, the headphones are rechargeable using USB cables.
You get up to 1 hour of playback with only 10 minutes of charge and up to 35 hours of playback at full charge. More importantly, the headphones have an extensive frequency range and a deep bass that is made possible by the 1.57 inch dome drivers. Combined, all these features make Sony’s WH-CH700N arguably one of the best Bluetooth travel headphones if you’re in a stricter budget than our past few picks allow.
Bose SoundSport Free
If you find wires to be cumbersome, then the SoundSport Free headphones by Bose will definitely impress you. Just as the name suggests, this pair of headphones has been designed purposely for sports enthusiasts looking to enjoy their favorite tunes while working out, but are a great option for those who travel and need an alternative to AirPods. They are ranked among the best Bluetooth travelling headphones due to their solid features which include 5 hours of charge, weather/sweat resistant and NFC.
Despite its good fit, the design is a bit bulky which makes carrying these headphones around slightly strenuous and be scary if you lose one of them. A number of reviews have also explained that the Bose SoundSport Free is highly susceptible to intermittent connectivity drops. Nonetheless, they offer pretty good sound quality and are on the whole high quality for their price.
With a battery life of up to 30 hours, weight of only 75 grams, impedance of 45 Ohms, and frequency response range of 4Hz-40kHz, Sony’s WH1000XM3 easily comes out as the best Bluetooth travel headphones currently available in the market. They rely on two wireless codecs; LDAC technology by Sony and aptX, which go a long way in boosting its connectivity range. Also, the WX1000XM3 includes some unique features such as the Quick Attention mode that allows users to listen to the outside world without necessarily having to take off the headphones as well as the enhanced noise-cancelling algorithms. Noteworthy, the design is quite fragile especially at the hinges.
All in all, the Sony WH1000XM3 is still a cut above other traveler headphone models before we get into some in-ears.
What makes the Linner NC50 one of the best Bluetooth travelling in-ear headphones? The answer lies in its good sound quality and heightened portability, matched with it’s very affordable price-tag. Be it at the office, out mountaineering, operating heavy machinery at the factory, or at the gym, the Linner NC50 offers reliable sound performance that keeps you focused on your music. These ear buds come in three colors, namely; white, blue, and black. The neckband is magnetic for increased convenience and they also include a mic for mobile calling.
The Linner NC50 is a highly reviewed model majorly due to its unique blend of features including Bluetooth 4.1, standby time of up to 400 hours, voice prompts, a maximum of 13 hours talk time, and sweat proof material. Definitely an off-brand here but the reviews won’t lie. They are ideal for workout or busy environments. Read our Linner NC50 review for some more information.
Avantree’s ANC032 Bluetooth headphones also make it to the list majorly due to their ultra-light build, custom fit, and AVC function. They are ranked as one of the best Bluetooth travelling headphones largely because of the comfort and convenience they offer. The ear pads are made from soft protein while the ear cups swivel at 90 degrees. When it comes to noise cancellation, the ANC032 is also quite effective.
With the ANC technology working towards reducing background frequencies, you can easily focus on your videos and music from virtually anywhere. Other notable features include 40mm stereo drivers for solid sound quality, up to 18 hours of playtime (10 hours with ANC on), and wired plus wireless functionality with a 3.5 mm Auxiliary port right below the left ear bud. Look into the Avantree ANC032 if you want a budget-friendly pair of over-ear Bluetooth travel headphones.
Anker Soundbuds Sport
When it comes to mobile accessories, Anker is one of the highly rated companies with global footing. Among its most recent releases is the Soundbuds Sport Bluetooth Headphone that features 8 hours of playtime when fully charged, noise cancellation, magnetic ear buds, and sweat proof design. These features make this one of the best Bluetooth headphones for travel and also for your routine gym or training sessions. One of its standout features is the customizable fit that makes this headphone a comfortable pick for individuals in need of small, medium, or large ear hooks.
On top of that, the neckband implies that you will not need to bear the burden of extensive wire connections. The Anker Soundbuds Sport weigh 1.44 oz., making them lighter than most ear buds currently available in the market. IPX4 certified splash proof feature, on the other hand, lets you utilize this headphone in all kinds of weather. They are also sweat proof, so you do not have to worry about getting them wet.
For wireless freedom and reliable sound quality, make sure to choose the Bose SoundLink around-ear wireless headphones. They are engineered to provide you with solid quality sound performance that is guaranteed to remain consistent at all volumes. What’s more, its connectivity is enhanced by the multi-function control which lets users switch between multiple Bluetooth devices without skipping a beat. These controls are positioned at the edge of the right ear cup for easy accessibility. One can also connect these headphones to all NFC-enabled gadgets by simply tapping the right ear cup. More importantly, the SoundLink has been engineered using some of the latest technologies including Active EQ and TriPort Technology that deliver good quality sounds at both high and low volumes.
Better yet, the Connect Application that is unique to Bose devices makes it possible to manage all the active Bluetooth connections from one platform. Its built to withstand impact and with high levels of aesthetic appeal. Materials utilized in designing the SoundLink headphones include corrosion-resistant stainless steel and nylon that is filled with glass. In sum, durability, aesthetic appeal, and uncompromising performance, added to its extensive Bluetooth connectivity, makes the Bose SoundLink our last pick as the best wireless Bluetooth travel headphones.