The 5 Best Travel Headphones

Headphones are game-changers for travel. From noise-canceling sets to barely-there Bluetooth ones ready to stow in your bag, let's put it this way: If you're on the go a lot, you need the best travel headphones.

Specs aside, you’ll obviously want a lightweight, comfortable pair that won't take up a lot of space. But that doesn't mean you should ignore your specific headphone needs. For instance, do you crave stellar sound quality for listening to music? Or are you comfortable with sacrificing top-grade audio to save some money? Are wireless capabilities must-haves? Traveling will be so much easier with headphones you actually want to use and take with you.

Here's where I should mention that input requirements have changed for iPhone users since Apple decided to abandon its traditional headphone jack for an all-in-one lightning port on iPhone-8-and-beyond models. As such, some of the below best headphones might require a converter, but no big deal — you can get one here. If you wan't to totally avoid the hassle and you're not keen on Bluetooth options, just be sure the pair you select is, indeed, compatible with wherever you plan to plug in. Without further ado, let's dive into your options!

1Noise-Canceling Headphones That Fit Comfortably Over Ears

In terms of sound quality, these noise-canceling Bluetooth headphones have it all. Their over-ear design features NFC technology that seals in your music while actively blocking out surrounding noise. The powerful, 40-millimeter aperture drivers inside the 90-degree swiveling ear cups create stunning sound that will last for up to 30 hours per charge. Of course, they can be used when plugged in, but their noise-blocking Bluetooth capabilities definitely give them a travel edge that warrants their higher price. For superior sound, active-noise-canceling, and a built-in mic, they're worth it, amirite? Plus, you can get them in other colors including blue, purple, red, and white.

2Bluetooth Earbuds With A Unique Neckband That Folds Up

These foldable Bluetooth headphones offer an innovative design that — thanks to an attached ergonomic and sweat-proof silicone neckband — eases the pressure on your ears, giving them a super lightweight feel. Unlike traditional earbuds that are prone to tangling, these actually retract into the flexible neckband with the push of a button, making them perfect to drape around your backpack or fold up and tuck into your luggage. And since you can pull out just enough cord for a truly custom fit, there won't be any awkward draping as you listen. In addition to handy design specs, they also feature noise-canceling technology with Hi-Fi sound, speedy Bluetooth pairing — up to 32 feet — and a cool vibrating alert that lets you know when you have an incoming message or call.

3Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds That Are An Affordable Alternative To Apple's Airpods

With a super sleek carrying case that also doubles as a portable charger, these ultra compact Bluetooth headphones are the perfect accessory to toss in your bag when you travel — and, yes, they're an affordable, universal alternative to Apple's $159 AirPods. Requiring no cords at all (though they do come with two for charging, just in case), they're literally wireless and make it easy to share your tunes with a friend or hop on a call using the built-in mic. Expect quick device pairing, quality sound, and up to two hours of operating battery life within a vast, 33-foot working range.

4A Headband-Headphone Hybrid That's Easier To Sleep In

If you're someone who likes to nap during travel, you will adore this unique, cozy earphone headband. Featuring thin, removable noise-reducing speakers, the washable band — which is made of breathable mesh that won't leave your ears hot and sticky — provides sound quality you'll want to curl up with. This one-size hybrid pair comes with a lengthy 52-inch braided cord that's super durable and won't get tangled. But don't forget that it's a two-in-one! Removing the speakers morphs this $20 product into a headband you can use to wash your face or even keep your ears warm in cooler weather. After something a little higher end? Try the similar, albeit $100 SleepPhones headband.

5Apple-Compatible Headphones With A Lightning Connection

Should you own any of Apple's newer iPhone models (iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X) and don't want to deal with getting an adapter, this rose gold pair of active-noise-canceling travel headphones with a lightning connection is for you. Featuring one-click volume and track controls with a built-in mic on the cord and top-grade aluminum alloy earbuds that mimic the contours of your ear canals, this pair provides superior comfort and sound quality. Even better? They come with their very own carrying case. One Amazon reviewer raved, "They are by far the most comfortable, best sounding, and best-looking earbuds I have ever owned. I highly recommend them to anyone who uses Apple products and is in the market for nice and affordable earbuds."

Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.