Can You Use AirPods on a Plane? Yes, Here’s How!

Last Updated: August 2, 2023By
Close up of AirPods

Air travel often brings with it the question of how to best occupy one’s time during the journey. Thanks to the proliferation of personal electronic devices, there’s now a myriad of options to keep boredom at bay.

One such device that has gained significant popularity is Apple’s AirPods, offering an exceptional auditory experience for users. But can we use them during a flight? This blog post intends to provide a comprehensive answer to this question.

Air Travel and Electronic Devices

Before we dive into the specifics of using AirPods during a flight, it’s essential to understand the broader context of electronic device usage on planes.

Evolution of Technology Use During Air Travel

In the early days of aviation, electronic devices were viewed as potential hazards. The fear was that signals from these devices could interfere with an aircraft’s navigation and communication systems.

Fast forward a few decades, and we have made considerable advancements in both aviation and consumer technology. Today, the use of electronic devices during a flight is not just allowed, but also encouraged by airlines as a means to keep passengers entertained during long flights.

Current Trends in Electronic Device Usage on Planes

As we navigate through the 21st century, it’s become commonplace to see passengers glued to their devices. Smartphones, laptops, tablets, e-readers, and wireless headphones like AirPods are now staples of air travel.

From streaming movies, listening to music, reading books, or catching up on work, electronic devices have fundamentally transformed the in-flight experience.

Flight Mode Versus Normal Mode

While electronic devices are widely accepted on flights, there is still a crucial aspect to remember – Flight mode. This feature, available on virtually all modern devices, disables cellular, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth signals that could potentially interfere with aircraft systems.

Most airlines require passengers to switch their devices to Flight mode during the flight. However, many airlines now offer in-flight Wi-Fi, allowing passengers to turn on Wi-Fi even in Flight mode. And for our AirPods users, don’t worry, you can still connect to your device using Bluetooth even when in Flight mode.

This allows you to enjoy your favorite music or podcast without any interruptions.

Can You Use AirPods on a Plane?

The Simple Answer: Yes, You Can

You may have been pondering, can you use AirPods on a plane? The simple and straightforward answer is yes, you can. There’s no issue with using AirPods during a flight, as they operate using Bluetooth, a short-range communication system that doesn’t interfere with a plane’s communication or navigation systems.

Once your flight has taken off and the cabin crew allows the use of electronic devices, you’re free to use your AirPods.

Addressing Common Misconceptions

There are often misconceptions that Bluetooth devices, like AirPods, could interfere with aircraft systems, leading to potential safety risks. However, Bluetooth operates at a frequency and power level that doesn’t pose a threat to aviation safety.

Many airlines now clarify that Bluetooth devices, like wireless headphones, can be used during a flight.

The Importance of Flight Mode

While using AirPods is permissible, it’s important to note that your device should be in Flight mode. Once this is activated, you can manually turn on Bluetooth to connect your AirPods.

Keep in mind that Flight mode disables all signal transmissions, preventing potential interference with the plane’s systems. Therefore, while using your AirPods, ensure that your connected device is in Flight mode, with only the Bluetooth enabled.

Best Practices for Using AirPods on a Plane

Knowing that we can use AirPods on a plane, it’s essential to understand how to use them responsibly and effectively.

Pair Your AirPods Before the Flight

In the bustling environment of an airport or plane, it’s advisable to pair your AirPods with your device before boarding. Not only does this save time and reduce hassle, but it also ensures your device is ready for use once the aircraft reaches cruising altitude and the use of electronic devices is permitted.

Charge Your AirPods Fully

AirPods offer excellent battery life, but the length of your flight might outlast them. To avoid running out of power mid-flight, ensure your AirPods and the charging case are fully charged before you embark on your journey.

If your flight duration exceeds the battery life of your AirPods, you can always charge them in the case when not in use.

Ensure Comfort and Safety While Using

AirPods are designed for comfort, but everyone’s ears are different. For extended use on a long flight, make sure they fit well and don’t cause discomfort.

Also, remember to keep the volume at a level that doesn’t harm your hearing. In the event of an announcement from the cabin crew, remove at least one AirPod to ensure you can hear any important information.

Respect for Fellow Passengers

While on a flight, it’s crucial to respect the personal space and comfort of your fellow passengers. Make sure your audio isn’t leaking out from your AirPods and disturbing others.

If you are watching videos or playing games, try to avoid content with loud or sudden noises that may be startling to those around you.


Wrapping up, we can confidently affirm that yes, you can use your AirPods on a plane. Not only do they add a layer of entertainment and comfort to your journey, but they’re also perfectly safe and within the guidelines of air travel, provided the device they’re connected to is in Flight mode.

Throughout this post, we have navigated the waters of air travel and electronic devices, highlighted the usage of AirPods on planes, and shared some best practices for using them. As technology and air travel continue to evolve, the relationship between the two will continue to grow and shape our in-flight experiences.

Still, it’s crucial to remember the importance of respect and consideration for fellow passengers when using electronic devices, including AirPods, during a flight. While technology can significantly enhance our travel experience, let’s ensure it doesn’t impact those around us negatively.