Can You Bring AirPods On A Plane?

Amidst the plethora of gadgets passengers carry, AirPods — Apple Inc’s revolutionary wireless earbuds — have become as ubiquitous on flights as the smartphones they pair with. When AirPods hit the market in 2016, they rapidly became a popular accessory for on-the-go audio, offering both convenience and high-quality sound without the tangle of cords.

The consideration of whether one can bring AirPods on a plane taps into the broader history of air travel regulations, particularly those surrounding the use of personal electronic devices (PEDs). Over time, authorities like the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) have evaluated and often amended their policies to reflect the changing landscape of tech gadgets. With an eye on safety, these organizations had to ensure that devices such as AirPods did not interfere with aircraft operation, especially during critical phases like takeoff and landing. Today, AirPods are part of a cadre of devices seen as essential for air travelers, who rely on them for entertainment, work, and blocking out cabin noise. The ongoing discussions about aircraft safety, the potential for electronic interference, and the evolving guidelines for PEDs on flights underscore the importance of understanding how and when passengers can use their AirPods and other similar devices during air travel.

Can you bring air pods on a plane

Can You Take AirPods On A Plane?

Yes, you can take AirPods on a plane without any issues. AirPods are classified as personal electronic devices, similar to smartphones and laptops, which are allowed on flights. They are perfect for in-flight entertainment as they are compact, wireless, and offer noise cancellation to block out the ambient noise of the aircraft. Additionally, using AirPods can make your travel experience more enjoyable by allowing you to listen to music, watch movies, or catch up on podcasts without disturbing fellow passengers. For more detailed information on traveling with AirPods, including security protocols and airline-specific regulations, continue reading in the following sections where we delve deeper into the subject.

Usage of AirPods on USA Domestic Flights

Utilizing personal electronic devices like AirPods has become increasingly commonplace on flights across the United States. Passengers opt for these wireless earbuds for their convenience and portability, enhancing their in-flight entertainment experience without the annoyance of tangled wires. Passengers can use AirPods during most phases of the flight with certain restrictions.

Regulations for Electronic Device Usage

  • TSA Guidelines: The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) allows travelers to bring AirPods through security checkpoints. According to the TSA website, passengers need to place their AirPods and other small electronics in a bin during the X-ray screening. (TSA)
  • Federal Aviation Administration (FAA): The FAA permits the use of wireless devices like AirPods during flights but may require passengers to turn them off during takeoff and landing for safety reasons, depending on the airline’s policy.

Airline Policies and Airplane Mode

Each airline has its own specific policy regarding the use of electronic devices during flights. While most airlines allow the use of AirPods once the aircraft has reached cruising altitude, passengers are often required to switch their devices to Airplane Mode during takeoff and landing. This is to prevent potential interference with aircraft communication systems. Passengers should check with their specific airline for any particular rules before traveling.

Connectivity Considerations and In-Flight Entertainment

  • Bluetooth Connectivity: Passengers intending to use AirPods should ensure that their devices support Bluetooth connections. Many in-flight entertainment systems now offer Bluetooth compatibility for connecting to wireless headphones.
  • Airline App Usage: Some airlines may also provide a mobile app allowing passengers to stream content directly to their personal devices. The use of AirPods enhances this experience by providing a private listening option.

Charging and Battery Life Management

Given the limited charging options available on planes, passengers should fully charge their AirPods and the charging case before the flight. Some newer aircraft may be equipped with USB ports that allow passengers to charge electronic devices onboard; however, this amenity is not guaranteed on every flight.

Consideration for Fellow Passengers

While AirPods offer a personal listening experience, it is crucial for passengers to maintain awareness of their surroundings and any announcements made by the flight crew. Users should also be considerate of the volume levels to ensure a comfortable environment for all passengers on board.

Packing AirPods for Travel

  • Protection: AirPods should be stored in their protective case while not in use to avoid loss or damage.
  • Carry-on Luggage: It’s recommended to keep AirPods in carry-on luggage to prevent loss during baggage handling and for easy access during the flight.
✔ Pros ✘ Cons
Portable and wireless, easy to carry on a plane. Small size makes them easy to lose in transit.
Great for in-flight entertainment without the hassle of cables. Can be subject to misplacement especially during security checks.
Rechargeable case provides additional battery life for long flights. Charging options may be limited depending on the aircraft.
No need to buy or use airline-provided headphones. If not used with Airplane mode, they may interfere with aircraft’s navigational systems.
Noise cancellation feature on some AirPods models can help reduce cabin noise. Bluetooth signal can sometimes be weak or interfere with other passengers’ devices.

International Air Transport Association (IATA) Guidelines

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) provides guidelines for the safe transport of electronic devices on flights. AirPods, being wireless earbuds with lithium-ion batteries, fall under these regulations. According to IATA, passengers are allowed to carry electronic devices with lithium batteries in their carry-on baggage. However, there are certain conditions that must be met:

  • The lithium content must not exceed 2 grams for lithium metal batteries, or 100 watt-hours (Wh) for lithium-ion batteries.
  • Spare batteries must be protected from short circuit and carried in carry-on baggage only.
  • Devices should be protected from damage and should be turned off (not in sleep or hibernation mode).

For more detailed information, please refer to the IATA guidelines on the transport of lithium batteries: IATA Lithium Battery Guidance Document.

Country Specific Regulations

When flying internationally with AirPods, it’s important to be aware that regulations can vary by country. While IATA provides general guidelines, each country may have its own specific rules regarding the transport of electronic devices with lithium batteries. It is essential to check the regulations of your departure, transit, and arrival countries to ensure compliance.

United Kingdom

  • Electronic devices should be charged and able to be powered on if requested by security.
  • AirPods are allowed in both carry-on and checked luggage.

For more information, please visit the UK government’s page on air travel hand luggage restrictions: UK Hand Luggage Restrictions.


  • Passengers are advised to carry electronic devices in hand luggage.
  • Devices with lithium batteries should be carried in the cabin and not in checked baggage.

For further details, refer to the European Union’s air safety list: EU Air Safety List.


  • Personal electronic devices like AirPods are allowed on flights.
  • They should be packed in carry-on baggage whenever possible.

The Canadian Air Transport Security Authority provides more information here: CATSA Headphones.


  • AirPods are permitted on flights, but it’s recommended to carry them in your hand luggage.
  • Lithium batteries must be carried in carry-on baggage only.

Check the Australian Government’s Department of Home Affairs for more details: Department of Home Affairs.

New Zealand

  • Electronic devices with batteries should be carried in carry-on luggage.
  • Passengers may be asked to turn on electronic devices at security checkpoints.

For more information, visit the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand: Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand.


  • Regulations can vary widely across Asian countries; always check local aviation authority guidelines.
  • Generally, AirPods are allowed in carry-on luggage.

For specific country regulations, consult the respective civil aviation websites.


  • Passengers are encouraged to pack electronic devices in carry-on bags.
  • Lithium batteries must not exceed the IATA specified limits.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore provides guidelines here: Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore.

10 Airline-Specific Regulations for Flying with AirPods

Airlines may have their own additional regulations for flying with electronic devices such as AirPods. It’s crucial to review the airline’s policy before your flight to avoid any issues at the airport. Below are regulations from 10 different airlines regarding the transport of AirPods.

American Airlines

  • AirPods are allowed in carry-on luggage.
  • Devices should be placed in airplane mode during the flight.

For American Airlines’ policy, visit: American Airlines Restricted Items.

Delta Air Lines

  • Personal electronic devices are permitted on board.
  • They recommend that such devices are carried in hand luggage.

Delta’s guidelines can be found here: Delta Prohibited or Restricted Items.

United Airlines

  • United permits AirPods in both carry-on and checked bags.
  • However, they should be turned off and protected from accidental activation.

United’s baggage policies are available at: United Airlines Dangerous Goods.


  • Electronic devices are allowed in carry-on baggage.
  • Passengers are reminded to comply with cabin crew instructions regarding electronic devices.

Emirates’ baggage policy details can be found here: Emirates Battery-Powered Equipment Rules.


  • AirPods are permitted during the flight but must be switched to flight mode.
  • They should be stored safely during takeoff and landing.

Lufthansa’s regulations are outlined here: Lufthansa Carry-On Baggage.

Air France

  • Personal electronic devices like AirPods can be used during the flight.
  • They should be kept in carry-on luggage to avoid loss or damage.

Air France’s policy is available at: Air France Cabin Baggage.


  • Electronic devices are allowed on board and can be used during the flight.
  • Devices must be set to airplane mode or switched off during takeoff and landing.

For KLM’s guidelines, visit: KLM Baggage Allowance.


  • AirPods are allowed on board and can be used during the flight.
  • Qantas advises keeping them in your carry-on baggage.

Qantas’ baggage information can be found here: Qantas Carry-On Baggage.

Cathay Pacific

  • Personal electronic devices are permitted in the cabin.
  • They should be stored securely during takeoff and landing.

Cathay Pacific’s carry-on baggage policy is detailed at: Cathay Pacific Carry-On Baggage.

Singapore Airlines

  • AirPods are allowed during the flight and should be kept in hand luggage.
  • Electronic devices must be switched to flight-safe mode when instructed.

Singapore Airlines’ baggage policy can be accessed here: Singapore Airlines Hand Baggage.

Essential Tips for Packing AirPods in Your Luggage

Packing your AirPods for travel requires careful consideration to avoid damage and loss. Whether you’re stowing your AirPods in carry-on or hold luggage, the following tips will ensure their safety and accessibility throughout your journey.

Packing AirPods in Carry-On Luggage

For most travelers, keeping AirPods in your carry-on luggage is the preferred option. Not only does it keep them within arm’s reach, but it also minimizes the risk of them being lost or exposed to extreme conditions in the cargo hold.

  • Use the Original Case: Always store your AirPods in their original charging case. It is designed to protect them from damage and the elements.
  • Charge Before Travel: Ensure your case and AirPods are fully charged before your trip to avoid searching for power outlets at your destination or during layovers.
  • Protective Cover: Consider adding a silicone or hard-shell case over the original case for extra protection from drops and scratches.
  • Keep Them Accessible: Store your AirPods in an easy-to-reach pocket of your carry-on bag to quickly access them at security checkpoints or when you want to use them.

taking air pods through airport security

Packing AirPods in Hold Luggage

If you must place your AirPods in your checked baggage, take extra measures to ensure their protection against rough handling and the stress of transit.

  • Enclose in Hard Case: Choose a sturdy, rigid case that can absorb impact and keep your AirPods cushioned against pressure and jolts.
  • Inner Luggage Protection: Wrap the case in clothing or bubble wrap and place it in the center of your luggage, surrounded by soft items to act as an additional buffer.
  • Waterproof your AirPods: Place the AirPods’ case inside a waterproof bag or container to safeguard against any liquid spills that could occur.
  • Secure Positioning: Secure the case within a compartment or use luggage straps to prevent it from moving around during the flight.

Essential Travel Gadgets Similar to AirPods

When preparing for a flight, alongside your AirPods, consider packing a portable power bank to keep your devices charged during long trips. Noise-cancelling headphones are also a great alternative to AirPods, offering a more immersive audio experience and blocking out cabin noise. For reading enthusiasts, an e-reader loaded with your favorite books saves space and provides entertainment without the strain on your eyes that comes from a phone screen. A travel adapter is crucial for international travel to ensure all your devices can be plugged in, regardless of the destination’s outlet type. Lastly, a compact Bluetooth tracker attached to your luggage can provide peace of mind, helping you locate your belongings in case they get misplaced during your journey.

FAQ’s About Can You Bring AirPods On A Plane?

Traveling with technology is commonplace, and AirPods have become a go-to accessory for many. Given their compact size and wireless capabilities, AirPods are ideal for in-flight entertainment or communication. Understandably, passengers may have questions regarding the policies and guidelines for bringing AirPods on an airplane. This section addresses some of the most common inquiries and provides informative responses to ensure a smooth travel experience with your AirPods.

Are AirPods allowed during a flight?

Yes, you can bring AirPods on a plane and use them during the flight. They are approved by most airlines for use during the cruise portion of the flight.

Can I use AirPods during takeoff and landing?

Generally, you may be required to turn off and stow all electronic devices during takeoff and landing. However, some airlines might allow the use of AirPods if they are in Bluetooth mode and connected to a device that is in airplane mode.

Do AirPods need to be removed from my carry-on bag during security screening?

Usually, small electronics like AirPods do not need to be removed from your bag during the screening process. However, follow the instructions provided by TSA agents as requirements can change.

Can AirPods interfere with aircraft systems?

AirPods use Bluetooth technology, which is low-power and should not interfere with aircraft systems. Airlines consider them safe for use during the flight, particularly when devices are in airplane mode.

Is there a limit to the number of AirPods I can bring on a plane?

There is generally no specific limit to the number of AirPods you can bring, but it’s best to check with the airline for any restrictions on the number of personal electronic devices you can carry on.

Will the AirPods’ performance be affected by the plane’s altitude or pressure?

Altitude and pressure changes in the cabin should not affect the performance of your AirPods.

How do I connect my AirPods to the plane’s entertainment system?

Most in-flight entertainment systems do not support Bluetooth. You may need a separate Bluetooth transmitter that connects to the airplane’s headphone jack to use your AirPods wirelessly.

Can using AirPods during a flight drain the battery faster?

The battery drain on your AirPods during a flight would not be significantly different from using them on the ground under normal circumstances.

Are there any special cases where AirPods might not be permitted on a plane?

While generally permitted, specific situations, such as a particular airline’s policy or a medical device restriction, may prevent the use of AirPods. Always check with your airline prior to flying.

Should I notify the flight crew that I am using AirPods?

It is not required to inform the flight crew that you are using AirPods, but you should always pay attention to the flight crew’s announcements and safety instructions. Remove the AirPods during safety briefings and when otherwise requested by the crew.

Packing It All Up

In essence, travelers can indeed bring AirPods on a plane without any hassle, providing a convenient and wireless audio experience during their flight. AirPods are allowed by airport security during the screening process and can be used on the plane once the airlines’ electronics regulations permit, typically when the aircraft is not taking off or landing. The AirPods’ compact nature and absence of tangled cables make them an excellent choice for in-flight entertainment or communication needs. They can be safely stowed in carry-on luggage or even kept in a pocket for easy access during the journey.

Furthermore, AirPods’ compatibility with Bluetooth-enabled in-flight entertainment systems means passengers have the option to sync their personal AirPods, avoiding the need for airline-supplied headphones that may be of lower quality or hygiene standards. However, it’s critical to remember to charge the AirPods beforehand and consider bringing a charging case on longer flights to ensure they remain powered throughout the journey. AirPods can seamlessly enhance the travel experience, allowing passengers to immerse themselves in music, movies, or audiobooks while minimizing disturbance to fellow travelers, provided the volume is kept at a considerate level.