If you have dozens of tabs open in Safari on iPhone or iPad and need to clear them out quickly, it can be tedious to “X” them out one at a time. Luckily, there are two ways to close all your Safari tabs at once, and they also work in Private Browsing mode. Here’s how.

First, open “Safari” on your iPhone or iPad. While on any page, locate the tab switcher button, which looks like two overlapping squares. On the iPad, you’ll find it in the upper-right corner of the screen.

The tab switcher button in Safari on iPad.

On the iPhone, it’s in the lower-right corner of the screen.

The tab switcher button in Safari on iPhone.

Place your finger on the tab switcher button and hold it there for a moment, preforming a “long press.” In the menu that pops up, select “Close All Tabs.” (There will be a number in the choice that lists the number of open tabs.)

In the menu that pops up, select "Close All Tabs."

When Safari asks you to confirm with another pop-up, tap “Close All Tabs” again. After that, all of your browser tabs will close.

How to Close All Safari Tabs on the Tab Switcher Screen

There’s another way to quickly close all tabs in Safari on iPhone and iPad. First, open “Safari,” then tap the tab switcher button once.

The tab switcher button in Safari on iPhone.

On the tab switcher screen, locate the “Done” button, which is located in the upper-right corner of the screen on the iPad and in the lower-right corner of the screen on the iPhone.

Long-press the “Done” button—place and hold your finger there for a moment until a pop-up appears.

On the iPhone or iPad, do a long-press on the "Done" button in the tab switcher screen.

In the pop-up, select “Close All Tabs.” The exact name of the pop-up action will vary, depending on the number of tabs you have open.

In the pop-up, select "Close All Tabs."

Safari will ask you to confirm closing all the tabs with another pop-up message. Select “Close All Tabs” again. Then all of your Safari tabs will close instantly. The same action works in Private Browsing mode. Pretty handy!

How to Reopen Recently Closed Tabs

If you accidentally closed all of your tabs and would like to get them back, you can retrieve them one at a time as long as you aren’t in Private Browsing mode. Just tap the tab switcher button, then long-press the “+” button until a “Recently Closed Tabs” list appears. From there you can tap on entries in the list to open them again in Safari. Good luck!

RELATED: How to Reopen Closed Tabs on an iPhone or iPad

Profile Photo for Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is a former Associate Editor for How-To Geek. Now, he is an AI and Machine Learning Reporter for Ars Technica. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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