16 Perfect Times to Listen to Audiobooks

An audiobook on a phone and a pair of headphones surrounded by seashells.

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How to fit listening to audiobooks into your daily life.

Life is busy, and it can be hard to find time to read. If you’re struggling to get through physical books and have a list of books you wish you could read, audiobooks might be your new best friend.

Audiobooks are super convenient—you can listen to them anytime, anywhere, which makes them ideal for someone who is always on-the-go. They give you the opportunity to enjoy books you might otherwise not have time for.

Many people find listening to audiobooks to be relaxing. It can be a calming way to unwind, helping you to escape from the stresses of everyday life. Audiobooks can also transport you to another place and offer a sense of comfort and peace. This can come in handy when you’re doing something you don’t particularly enjoy, like household chores or commuting to and from work.

Once you get in the habit of listening to audiobooks it will come naturally to pop them on throughout your day. One of my favorite features of audiobooks is that you can slow down or speed up the narration depending on your preferences and how slow/fast the narrator speaks. It’s also easy to rewind if your mind starts to wander and you need to go back.

Listening to audiobooks doesn’t mean you have to give up reading paper books or ebooks. You can either read and listen to the same book at once, switching back and forth when it’s most convenient for one or the other (if you’re reading on a Kindle and using Audible, you can connect these to sync up automatically for you), or you can have one book that you’re reading and a different book that you’re listening to. When I’m reading and listening to different books at the same time I like to make sure they’re from completely different genres so I don’t get the storylines crossed, but that might not be a concern for you.

It might feel strange to start listening to audiobooks when you aren’t used to it, but once you’re in the habit it’s easy to turn them on and quickly get immersed in the story. If you’re having trouble getting into a new book in audio format, try listening to an old favorite. It can help you get used to this new format and to improve your listening comprehension while multitasking, which will make listening to new books easier in the future. Another tip for listening to audiobooks is to listen to them while doing mindless tasks, like tasks that you’re doing on autopilot, instead of tasks you need to concentrate hard on or think a lot about.

Overall, listening to audiobooks is a way to add a new level of enjoyment to your daily life when reading a regular book isn’t convenient.

16 Ideas for When to Listen to Audiobooks

Find your audiobook groove with these ideas for what to do while you listen to audiobooks.

Four books with a pair of headphones around them.

1. While lying in bed in the morning. 

When you’re lying awake in bed but not quite ready to get up, listening to an audiobook is a relaxing way to start your day and is much better than mindlessly scrolling on your phone. 

2. While you’re cooking.

Whether making breakfast, lunch, dinner, or baking a dessert, this is a great time to listen to your audiobook.

3. While you’re getting ready for the day or putting on makeup. 

This is an easy way to squeeze in 10-30 minutes of your audiobook, depending on how much time you spend putting on your makeup and getting ready.

4. While you’re commuting or traveling. 

A train/bus/subway/ferry commute is the perfect time for listening to an audiobook. Some people also enjoy audiobooks in the car while driving, as long as you won’t be too distracted. Additionally, audiobooks are great companions for long travel days and can help pass the time on flights and road trips.

5. While you’re doing the dishes.

Not everyone loves doing the dishes, but listening to an audiobook makes for great background entertainment. 

6. While you’re folding laundry.

The monotonous task of folding laundry is a lot better when listening to an audiobook. 

7. While Exercising.

This is an excellent time to listen to an audiobook and can even act as motivation to exercise if you’re excited to get back to your book. If exercising outdoors, whether walking, jogging, or running, make sure to stay aware of your surroundings. One way to do this is to only use one headphone so you can still hear what’s going on around you.

8. While doing simple tasks at work.

If your job includes tasks that don’t require reading or writing, or tasks that you’re mostly doing on autopilot, then this can be a good opportunity to listen to your audiobook.

If you’re enjoying these ideas about when to listen to audiobooks, check out: Seaside Stories: 12 Must-Read Beach Books

9. While experiencing insomnia. 

If you’ve awakened during the night and are having trouble falling back asleep, listening to an audiobook with your eyes closed is a desirable alternative to scrolling on your phone for hours.

10. While cleaning your house.

Listening to an audiobook while cleaning makes the task a lot more enjoyable.

11. While you’re waiting in line at the store.

Waiting in line feels like less of a waste of time when you can get in a few minutes of your audiobook.

12. While you’re trying to get tired enough to fall asleep.

If you’re someone who has trouble falling asleep because you have too much on your mind, then listening to an audiobook can be the perfect solution. Instead of focusing on your to-do list, your mind can focus on the story as you relax and drift off to sleep. You can bookmark where you started and set the sleep timer so your audiobook isn’t playing endlessly all night, making it easy to find where you left off.

13. While watching a sports game.

If you watch sports games on TV but aren’t interested in the commentary, you can listen to audiobooks while you watch.

14. While doing yard work or gardening.

Weeding, planting, raking leaves, and other yard work is a great time to listen to your audiobook.

15. While working on a hobby.

Painting, needlepointing, doing a puzzle, crafting, and other hobbies are excellent opportunities for listening to an audiobook.

16. While eating a meal.

If you’re enjoying a meal by yourself it’s the perfect time to listen to your audiobook. Your hands are already occupied so it’s hard to scroll social media on your phone or do anything else during this time, and you might prefer it to watching TV.

For the perfect books for fall, check out: 10 Fall Books to Get Cozy With

Does Listening to Audiobooks Count as Reading?

Opinions on this topic can vary, but I say yes, listening to audiobooks is a form of reading! While listening to audiobooks doesn’t involve physically looking at words on a page, it still engages the same cognitive processes involved in understanding and interpreting a story or information. Both reading and listening to audiobooks can improve comprehension, vocabulary, and critical thinking skills. Ultimately, the goal of reading is to understand and enjoy the content, and audiobooks offer a way to achieve that.

How to Listen to Audiobooks

If you’re not sure where you can listen to audiobooks, here’s a list of popular options.


Libro.fm is my favorite place to purchase audiobooks because they share profits from your audiobook purchases with a local bookstore of your choosing. You can buy books individually or sign up for a monthly membership, whichever works best for the amount of books you listen to. Books can be listened to through the Libro.fm app.


With a Spotify account you’ll be able to purchase individual audiobooks, and depending on your subscription level you may have access to a certain number of free audiobook hours per month. You can also listen to some classic books that are in the public domain for free.


Everand is a monthly subscription that gives you access to millions of audiobooks, ebooks, magazines, newspapers, and more. This was spun off from the service Scribd.


Audible is an audiobook subscription service from Amazon with a large variety of titles. You can sign up for a free trial to see if you like it. With Audible, some audiobooks are able to be synced with Kindle books if you’re reading and listening to a book at the same time.

Where to Listen to Audiobooks for Free

Besides using free trials of paid services to listen to audiobooks for free, you can get free audiobooks from the places below.


Libby is an app used by libraries to provide ebooks and audiobooks. You use your library card to sign in, and then have access to your library’s catalog. Since the audiobooks that are available is dependent on your individual library’s catalog, availability of books can vary. You’ll be allowed to borrow the audiobook for a set number of days, usually 21.

Audible’s Free Listens

Audible is a paid service, as mentioned in the list above, but they also have a section called Free Listens with a rotating selection of new, bestseller, Audible original, and classic books. Free Listens don’t require a trial or a membership, just that you’re logged into a free Amazon account.

Save These Ideas for When to Listen to Audiobooks

Pin this graphic on Pinterest, or bookmark this page, so you can continue to refer back to these ideas for the best times to listen to audiobooks. And don’t forget to follow Stars & Anchor on Pinterest for more coastal lifestyle and beach inspiration.

A graphic showing an audiobook on a phone and a pair of headphones surrounded by seashells, with text that says, "16 perfect times to listen to audiobooks and how to fit them into your daily life, from Stars and Anchor .com."

Pin on Pinterest: 16 Perfect Times to Listen to Audiobooks

As you’ve seen, if you’re looking for more opportunities to enjoy audiobooks there are countless moments throughout your day when you can dive into a captivating story or learn something new.

Whether you’re commuting to work, cooking dinner, or hitting the gym, audiobooks are the perfect companion to your daily activities. You can also listen while doing household chores, taking a walk, or waiting in line at the store. And don’t forget about long road trips or flights—they’re a great time to immerse yourself in an audiobook. With so many possibilities, there’s always an opportunity to press play and escape into a new book.

Are you trying to listen to audiobooks more in your daily life? Where do you like to get your audiobooks from? Let us know in the comments.

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