As an aviation geek, I don’t just think about my favorite airlines while flying, but also when I’m at home. One of the most consistent ways that I integrate my favorite airlines into my daily life is by listening to airline boarding music. Yes, the concept of listening to airline boarding music while at home might sound wild to some, but when you hear some of these tracks, maybe you’ll understand why…
The best airline boarding music
I know I’m a weirdo, but I really have a thing for airline boarding music. I tend to think we associate a lot of memories with music, either based on what we were listening to when something happened, or just because different music sums up different moods.
As someone who is obsessed with flying and associates a lot of memories with it, I can’t help but notice the boarding music that airlines use. To me it’s a small touch that can help set the tone for a flight.
Almost without exception, I remember the boarding music (or lack thereof) that airlines use. For many people boarding is a stressful time, so I think a good soundtrack can help set the tone for a relaxing flight.
I wanted to make an updated list with my favorite airline boarding music for a couple of reasons:
- For those who have shifted to “working from home,” I feel like some kinds of music really help with productivity, and for the most part airline boarding music music is great in that regard; it’s intended to be relaxing without being distracting
- For many of us this is such a nice way to be reminded of our favorite airlines
With that out of the way, here’s a list of my favorite airline boarding music (interestingly there’s a significant overlap between this list and my list of the best airline brands):
1. Qatar Airways
Qatar Airways introduced special boarding music to coincide with the introduction of Qsuites several years ago. There are two versions of this — the original one is the first one below, and then the second one is the more recent one, which is currently playing. The music is created by a local Qatari composer, Dana Al Fardan, and I just find it to be so incredibly calming and relaxing.
2. Etihad Airways
Next on my list is Etihad, because the Abu Dhabi-based airline actually has three “generations” of amazing boarding music. Personally Etihad’s boarding music from several years back is still my favorite, and this is my go-to track to listen to while working.
The newer track is great as well, though.
Then there’s the latest track that was introduced in 2021, which is nice, but my least favorite of the three.
While Qantas isn’t an airline I’ve ever had a major emotional connection to, the Australian flag carrier does have some spectacularly soothing boarding music, and I don’t think there’s a better track to relax or work to. The soundtrack was created by Australian composer Haydn Walker and guitarist Nathan Cavaleri.
4. Emirates Airline
I love Emirates’ old boarding music, though unfortunately the carrier doesn’t play it anymore. Now Emirates just plays radio hits, which to me just can’t compare. There was something so familiar about stepping onto an Emirates A380 and hearing the below music.
5. All Nippon Airways
When I listen to the below track I close my eyes and imagine myself boarding ANA first class, with endless “thank you for waiting” and “so sorry” apologies. Gosh I miss Japan… fortunately it’ll be opening again shortly!
6. Oman Air
Yep, the Gulf carriers seem to get boarding music right. I love flying with Oman Air in general, and in particular love the Muscat-based carrier’s boarding music.
7. Turkish Airlines
Okay, this isn’t actually boarding music, but I can’t talk about any airline music without mentioning Turkish Airlines’ ridiculously addictive (and probably not in a good way) hold music.
PSA: LISTEN AT YOUR OWN DISCRETION, because the music may be stuck in your head for weeks.
In all honesty, Turkish’s actual boarding music isn’t half bad either.
8. Singapore Airlines
Singapore Airlines’ music is simply beautiful. There’s something about it that doesn’t feel quite as upbeat as some of the other boarding music out there, but it doesn’t get more calming than this.
9. Japan Airlines
This isn’t necessarily the best music to work to (given the vocals), but it’s a pretty cool song anyway. Japan Airlines has a theme song played during boarding that’s called “I Will Be There With You.” It was produced by Katharine McPhee and David Foster in 2008, and its introduction coincided with Japan Airlines launching 777-300ER flights to the United States.
I’ve been listening to airline boarding music at home for years. It’s fantastic music to work to, because it’s relaxing without being distracting. There are so many great tracks out there, and I’d say on the average day Im listening to this for at least a couple of hours while working.
I’d love to hear what other boarding music OMAAT readers enjoy! Ideally include links to the songs, because I’d love to add more music to my rotation.