To study interactions of airborne pathogens, e.g. Aspergillus (A.) fumigatus with upper and lower respiratory tract epithelial and immune cells, we set up a perfused 3D human bronchial and small airway epithelial cell system. Culturing of normal human bronchial or small airway epithelial (NHBE, SAE) cells under air liquid interphase (ALI) and perfusion resulted in a significantly accelerated development of the lung epithelia associated with higher ciliogenesis, cilia movement, mucus-production and improved barrier function compared to growth under static conditions. Following the accelerated differentiation under perfusion, epithelial cells were transferred into static conditions and antigen-presenting cells (APCs) added to study their functionality upon infection with A. fumigatus. Fungi were efficiently sensed by apically applied macrophages or basolaterally adhered dendritic cells (DCs), as illustrated by phagocytosis, maturation and migration characteristics. We illustrate here that perfusion greatly improves differentiation of primary epithelial cells in vitro, which enables fast-track addition of primary immune cells and significant shortening of experimental procedures. Additionally, co-cultured primary DCs and macrophages were fully functional and fulfilled their tasks of sensing and sampling fungal pathogens present at the apical surface of epithelial cells, thereby promoting novel possibilities to study airborne infections under conditions mimicking the in vivo situation.