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The best true wireless earbuds for running and travel 2021

Wireless earphones rated on comfort, battery, bass, sound quality and style

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Are you after a pair of the best true wireless earbuds? Apple started the craze, but there are now many Airpod alternatives out there. TravGear is after truly wireless earbuds that impress for travel, of course, so we’re interested not only in comfort and sound quality but also in battery life and compact designs.

For travelers looking for something lightweight and functional, there are plenty of designs about, but these three are TravGear’s favorite; each has a travel-friendly feature, from long battery life and convenient recharging options to noise-canceling and standout sound quality.

So here’s TravGear’s best true wireless earbuds for travel:

The best true wireless earbuds for value and QI wireless charging

Padmate PaMu Slide Mini

Sold in black, while, pink and green, the Padmate PaMu Slide Mini poses a question: why bother with Apple AirPods? With a small battery case that recharges either wirelessly or via USB-C, the Padmate PaMu Slide Mini are ideal if you’re after some lightweight, reliable, and great-sounding true wireless earbuds. Boasting IPX6 water resistance, the Padmate PaMu Slide Mini sit comfortably in the ear and don’t suffer from any of the echo issues that some lower-priced true wireless earbuds do. Read TravGear’s full Padmate PaMu Slide Mini review.

Earbuds battery life: 10 hours
Charging case battery boost: 20 hours
Earbuds weight (each): 7g
Charging case weight: 39g

The best true wireless earbuds for noise canceling and aircraft

Sony WF-1000XM3

If you want to be alone with your music or podcasts, reach for the Sony WF-1000XM3, the only truly impressive pair of true-wireless earbuds with noise canceling. A better choice than Apple AirPods in almost every regard, the Sony WF-1000XM3 are equipped with adaptive noise canceling QN1e circuitry that cancels out ambient noise. So the sweat-resistant Sony WF-1000XM3 are ideal for use in hotel gyms, while on a running machine, and for use when in aircraft cabins. Should you be running while wearing noise-canceling earbuds? If you’re going to be crossing roads or around people, probably not, but the Sony WF-1000XM3 do have an option to double-tap the left earbud to toggle between noise canceling and regular mode.
Are the Sony WF-1000XM3 good for travel? Boasting a 24 hours battery life, they’re among the longest-lasting true wireless earbuds available.

Earbuds battery life: 6 hours
Charging case battery boost: 3 hours
Earbuds weight (each): 8.5g
Charging case weight: 77g

The best true wireless earbuds for comfort

AfterShokz Trekz Air bone conduction earphones

Do you need noise isolation and cancellation? Strictly speaking, the AfterShokz Trekz Air are NOT “true wireless” but you need to know about their clever design. An all-in-one product, the AfterShokz Trekz Air eschew noise isolation and cancellation by putting two small transducers outside your ears that send sound into your inner ear via vibrations in your cheekbones. Weird, but it works. The AfterShokz Trekz Air is so comfortable you forget you’re wearing them, and they also avoid you hearing the thud of your every step while running when wearing regular earbuds that block your ears. However, sound quality is not brilliant – the AfterShokz Trekz Air are best used on loud volume for podcasts and audiobooks, though if you’re running in a quiet area, anything goes. Battery life is six hours and they regard via micro USB. Read TravGear’s full AfterShokz Trekz Air review.

Product battery life: 6 hours
Charging case battery boost: N/A
Product weight: 30 g
Charging case weight: N/A

The best true wireless earbuds for going to the gym

Jabra Elite Sport

These ‘true wireless’ sports earbuds have a 4.5-hour battery life and come especially recommended if you tend to make calls while you’re in the gym stop that’s thanks to its four-microphone call technology, which also filters out background noise. And, of course, its sweat-proof design for gym work.

Earbuds battery life: 4.5hours
Charging case battery boost: 9 hours
Earbuds weight (each): 6.5g
Charging case weight: 67g

The best true wireless earbuds alternative to Apple’s airpods

Ugreen HiTune T2 Low Latency True Wireless Earbuds

If you’re the kind of traveler who always loses and mislays gadgets, the HiTune T2 do make a reassuringly cheap alternative to Apple AirPods. The earbuds work really well together and provide highly detailed stereo sound that’s perfect for general use, and particularly for noise-free video calls. They do lack a little bass response, but that’s not expected at this low price. As a cheap alternative to Apple AirPods – which they match for style – we were most impressed by the HiTune T2 Low Latency True Wireless Earbuds.  Read TravGear’s full Ugreen HiTune T2 Low Latency True Wireless Earbuds review.

Earbuds battery life: 4 hours
Charging case battery boost: 16 hours
Earbuds weight (each): 5.5g
Charging case weight: 43g