The Best Wireless Bluetooth Headphones for Tangle-free Travel
With vacation season ahead of us, now is the perfect time to update your travel essentials with a new pair of Bluetooth headphones. After all — unless you can afford a private jet — a quality pair of headphones is the one item you really need to block out all the background noise that comes with using any kind of public transportation.
If you’ve already done some research, you’ve probably noticed the words “Bluetooth” and “wireless” thrown around a lot. So what’s the difference between Bluetooth and wireless headphones and how do you choose a pair that is the best for you?
In general, Bluetooth technology is used to connect two devices that are located within a few feet of each other. The goal is to facilitate the transfer of information between the two and to eliminate the need for cables. "Wireless" usually refers to devices that are connected via a network and it allows for a much greater distance range. Most wireless headphones, though, work with Bluetooth technology because it’s more consumer-friendly (read: easier to set up and use). But both types of headsets have one important thing in common that any traveler would be happy to take advantage of: no more tangled cords or accidental knocking off of your headphones while working out or sleeping.
Over-the-ear wireless headphones tend to be better for travel since most have noise-cancelling capabilities that reduce ambient sounds, while in-ear Bluetooth headphones are better suited to sports activities. Some earbuds are also water- and sweat-resistant so you could even wear them while running, surfing, or lounging in the hot tub.
Here, we rounded up the best wireless Bluetooth headphones for any budget and activity.
The Best Wireless Headphones Under $200
1. Sony MDRXB650BT/B Extra Bass Bluetooth Headphones: These wireless headphones deliver powerful sound and an enhanced bass experience. The battery offers up to 30 hours of playtime on a single charge, and there’s also a built-in microphone for taking phone calls.
To buy: amazon.com, $108
2. V-Moda Forza Metallo Wireless In-ear Headphones: These neckband headphones will impress you with their design and fit. Crafted from lightweight aluminum, you can customize the look with multiple 3D handcrafted caps or add sport fins for more stability during workouts. These weather- and sweat-resistant headphones also feature noise-cancelling microphones for crystal clear listening. The battery lasts up to 10 hours per charge.
To buy: amazon.com, $150
The Best Wireless Headphones Under $100
3. Sennheiser HD 4.40 Around-ear Bluetooth Wireless Headphones: Sennheiser is known for its audio products and these Bluetooth headphones do not disappoint. They deliver dynamic bass and well-balanced sound while the soft leatherette-covered ear pads guarantee comfort. The foldable design makes them perfect for travelers and you can get up to 25 hours of playback from a single battery charge.
To buy: amazon.com, $100
4. Cowin E7 Active Noise-cancelling Bluetooth Headphones: These noise-cancelling wireless headphones deliver crisp and powerful sound while blocking out ambient noise. They are lightweight, sturdy, and comfortable even if you wear them for a long time, which, with a battery life of 30 hours, you may be tempted to do. They also come in five cool color options: red, blue, silver, black, and purple.
To buy: amazon.com, from $70
The Best Cheap Wireless Headphones Under $50
5. Mpow 059 Bluetooth Headphones: With almost perfect reviews from over 13,000 Amazon customers, these Bluetooth headphones are the best you can get for the price. Their foldable design makes them easy to carry in your bag, and the battery life is estimated at 20 hours in wireless mode. The built-in microphone comes in handy when you want to make or answer calls.
To buy: amazon.com, from $35
6. Senso Bluetooth Headphones: These water-resistant wireless headphones feature ergonomically designed ear hooks that provide a comfortable and stable fit so you can enjoy up to eight hours of high-quality audio.
To buy: amazon.com, $30
The Best Over-the-ear Wireless Headphones
7. Bose SoundLink Headphones: Switch seamlessly between answering your phone and listening to music with these lightweight wireless headphones. The advanced sound technology lets you enjoy your favorite tunes at any volume without compromising audio quality. The headphones fold flat into a protective case that’s easy to store in your carry-on and the battery lasts up to 15 hours in wireless mode.
To buy: amazon.com, $229
8. B&O PLAY by Bang & Olufsen Over-ear Beoplay H4 Wireless Headphones: In addition to their simple and minimalist design, these Bluetooth headphones deliver a powerful and well-balanced audio experience that Bang & Olufsen — a high-end Danish company — is known for. Equalizers in the Bluetooth chip ensure perfect sound in wireless mode and the battery delivers 19 hours of playtime per charge.
To buy: amazon.com, from $250
The Best In-ear Wireless Headphones
9. BeatsX Wireless In-ear Headphones: Meet your new favorite wireless travel companion. These in-ear headphones deliver the same crisp audio quality that Apple's Beats by Dre is known for. Select the best ear tips for the perfect fit and you won’t have to take them off for the entire duration of your flight. And with the "Fast Fuel" feature, you can get two hours of playback with just a five-minute charge.
To buy: amazon.com, $120
10. Jabra Elite 65t True Wireless Earbuds: If you want to go truly wireless, opt for these Jabra earbuds. The four-microphone technology delivers superior wind noise–reduction on calls while the speakers let you block out ambient noise so you can focus on your music. The battery will last up to five hours on a single charge and 10 more with the pocket-sized charging case.
To buy: amazon.com, $170
The Best Wireless Headphones for Working Out
11. Samsung Gear IconX Earbuds: Track your speed, distance, and calorie intake with Samsung’s new completely wireless earbuds. What makes these headphones really stand out is their storage capacity. Now, you don’t need your smartphone to play your favorite tunes — you can download up to 1,000 songs directly onto the earbuds and enjoy them while you work out. The battery will last up to five hours and you can get a full hour of playtime from a 10-minute charge. The earbuds are compatible with both Apple and Samsung devices, as well as Android via the Gear Manager app.
To buy: amazon.com, from $160
12. Vava Bluetooth Headphones: The value and quality you’re getting with these aluminum headphones are impressive. The battery streams audio for up to nine hours and the nano coating will keep the headphones functional in light rain. The built-in microphone also lets you answer or reject calls without having to reach for your smartphone.
To buy: amazon.com, $34
The Best Wireless Noise-cancelling Headphones
13. Bowers & Wilkins PX Active Noise-cancelling Wireless Headphones: Features like adaptive noise-cancellation (and three environment filters), superior sound quality, and a built-in smart system that responds to your behavior put these headphones at the top of our list. In addition, they are also equipped with a battery that lasts an impressive 22 hours on a single charge.
To buy: amazon.com, $400
14. Bose QuietComfort 35 Series II Wireless Headphones: These headphones let you adjust the level of noise cancellation to suit your environment. A volume-optimized equalizer always delivers the best sound quality whether you turn your music up or down, and a built-in microphone system with noise-rejecting technology makes taking calls even in noisy environments a total breeze. The battery gives you up to 20 hours of play time in wireless mode.
To buy: amazon.com, $349
The Best Waterproof Wireless Headphones
15. Leophile Eel Wireless Neckband Headphones Sports IP67: Surf, work out, or take a shower while listening to your favorite tunes — these lightweight water- and sweat-proof headphones can endure any high-velocity water activity. The silicone neckband fits different neck sizes and includes a wire clip that prevents it from falling off. In addition, it can also be bent to fit in your pocket. The battery gives you up to 10 hours of listening time.
To buy: amazon.com, $40
16. Sardonyx SX-918 Bluetooth Headphones: These headphones were made for intense workouts, hiking, running, or any other sport that makes you break a sweat. The flexible over-the-ear hooks ensure a secure fit while you stay active. In addition to the great sound quality (and impressive bass), the headphones are compatible with the iPhone, iPad, Kindle Fire, Samsung Galaxy, HTC, LG, and all other Android devices. Enjoy up to eight hours of play time on a single battery charge.
To buy: amazon.com, $40