Can You Listen to Audible on Airplane Mode? [Explained]

Yes, you can listen to Audible on airplane mode provided you have downloaded the books in advance, using WiFi or cellular data. Audible requires internet access to download a title and sync your listening position.

Once you have downloaded an audiobook, you have a local copy on your device. You can listen to it without connecting your device to the internet.

Benefits of Audiobooks During Travel

Here are some of the benefits of audiobooks that make them an ideal format for traveling.

  • Portability: Carrying physical books with you while traveling is not easy. The audiobook format is perfect for listening to your favorite title on an airplane and any other form of transportation.
  • Unlimited Supply of Books: Audiobook format means you can download and listen to as many books as you want, on the go—no need for a trip to the bookstore or any storage space. 
  • No Need for Dedicated Reading Gadgets: You do not need to carry a Kindle or Tablet to listen to an audiobook. Your smartphone works just fine.
  • Ideal for Road Trips: Audiobooks offer entertainment during driving and traveling, whether you are on a solo trip or a family vacation.

Explore more pros and cons of audiobooks.

How to Listen to Audible on a Plane

The first (and most important) step is downloading the audiobook on your device for offline listening. When you purchase an audiobook (on Audible or Amazon), it automatically appears in your account’s library section. 

The recently purchased titles (that are not yet downloaded) feature a downward arrow on the bottom corner.

downloaded titles on audible

To download an audiobook, tap on the audiobook cover. You can also tap on the three dots in front of the title and tap Download from options. The book will be downloaded and the book cover will now appear without the downward arrow.

You now have a local copy of the audiobook on your device which can be played in airplane mode without any internet access.

Note: After downloading the audiobook, play it for a few seconds. Some users noted that audiobooks need some kind of authorization to play for the first time after the download.

Testing whether the book is properly downloaded and ready to be played in airplane mode is important. You do not want any surprises on an hours-long flight.

Audible Not Working in Airplane Mode? [4 Reasons & Fixes]

If Audible is not working in airplane mode, it can be because of one of the following issues.

1: The Audiobook is Not Properly Downloaded

Delete and redownload the audiobook and do not interrupt during the downloading process.

2: Device OS or Audible App is Not Updated

Ensure you have the latest version of the device OS and Audible app. If not, update the device’s OS first followed by the Audible app update as sometimes the latest Audible version works on the latest OS.

3: Clear Audible Cache

The new and old cache data can conflict and cause problems with playing the audiobook. Clear cache regularly to keep the Audible app running smoothly.

To clear the cache on Android devices, go to Settings > Apps > Audible > Storage and tap the Clear Cache option.

clear Audible cache

To clear the Audible cache on your iPhone, go to Settings > General > iPhone Storage > Audible and tap on Offload App.

clear iPhone cache

4: Restart Phone/ Redownload App

Some users still have issues where Audible is still not working in airplane mode after trying all of the above fixes. In that case, restart the phone. If the problem persists after restarting the phone, uninstall the Audible app and redownload and install it.

In most cases, you either have an older version of the phone OS or Audible, and updating them will fix the problem.

5 Tips for Using Audible on a Plan and During Travel

Here are some tips to use Audible on vacations.

1: Choose Books Sensibly

I would recommend picking the short titles. Choose the audiobooks by your favorite authors and narrators. Listen to the sample before buying a book and get an idea of what to expect.

Do not try a new genre during travel as you may not like it. It is also a good idea to listen to something you have read and loved in the past.

You can pick the books that complement your travel plan, like books about the country that you are visiting.

Here are some suggestions to get you started.

2: Carry Lightweight Headphones

Always carry lightweight headphones or earphones. If your earbuds need charging, make sure they are fully charged.

It is also a good idea to carry an extra earphone. It can be handy if you run out of earbuds charging or lose them.

3: Download at the ‘Standard’ Quality

Always carry more books than you think you will listen to as you may not like some of the titles during the travel.

The best practice is to download at the ‘standard’ quality to fit more books in less storage space.

  • Open the Audible app and tap on Profile
Audible app settings

  • Tap on the Settings gear at the top right of the screen and then tap on Data & Storage
Audible app: data and storage

  • Select Standard as download quality here
Audible app: download quality settings

High-quality downloads take more storage space and data to download. You can carry more audiobooks in the same storage space if downloaded at the ‘standard’ quality.

4: Download Audio Books to SD card

If your device supports an SD card, you can move the Audible book on the SD card. This means you can carry more audiobooks for offline listening.

5: Delete the Unwanted/ Finished Audiobooks

The best practice is to delete an audiobook from your device after it is finished. The books you purchase (through credit or cash) are yours for life. You can redownload them anytime to listen to them again.

You can also archive the finished books to declutter your Audible library. Check out the detailed article on Remove vs Archive features.

You can also check the How to reduce Audible storage article for tips on carrying more audiobooks with you.

I hope this article helps you with your questions like, Does Audible work in airplane mode? and how to listen to Audible on a plane.

An audiobook is the best way to keep you entertained during your travel and Audible gives you access to thousand of titles in each genre.

Sohail Ahmed

I love Audiobooks and this blog features my first-hand experience with all major audiobook apps and services … Know More

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