Any opportunity to travel or go off on holiday is an exciting one, but those who suffer from hearing loss can often feel apprehensive. The good news is, you don't need to worry. We've put together some top tips for traveling with hearing loss. We will provide tips for preparing for your trip, getting to your destination and having the time of your life on your holiday.
Preparation is key
Like all things in life, prepapation is key, and it's no different when it comes to traveling with hearing loss. Below we've compiled a list of travel tips for those who are hard of hearing.
- Visit your audiologist: It's important to make sure your hearing aids are as prepared for your trip as you are. Arrange an appointment in advance and make sure you ask about assistive listening devices (such as Bluetooth® wireless connectivity to TVs and phones, a vibrating alarm, and FM systems.) These can help make your stay much more enjoyable.
- Packing: Remember to bring extra hearing aid batteries and tubing and don't forget to store these in your carry-on as your hold luggage is at risk of being misplaced. Don’t forget a protective waterproof travel case and a cleaning kit. It's also a good idea to bring a dehumidifier if you can, especially if you’re traveling to a humid, hot and tropical area.
- Remember to also bring an outlet converter with you to help ensure you can charge rechargeable batteries and other assistive devices when traveling internationally
At the airport
- Print your reservations and tickets ahead of time or have them on your phone: This makes it easier to show them to airport staff for a smooth check-in.
- Don’t be afraid to tell a staff member or fellow traveler of your hearing loss. They can help assist in making sure you don't miss any changes in boarding times/gates or delays.
- Embrace your hearing loss: Those who are hard of hearing don't need to shy away from that. The majority of people are happy to assist you in any way they can.
- Check your seat: Don't forget to check your seat selection when flying. Those with hearing loss cannot sit at the emergency exit seats. Be sure to inform staff if you have been allocated this eat.
- It's important not to remove your hearing aids on flights to prevent missing information.
- If you are traveling via bus or train and there are no visual stops, then ask someone sitting next to you to let you know when your stop is coming up. Alternatively, alternatively, you can try counting the number of stops until it’s your time to disembark.
At the destination
- When out on a day tour of cities or towns, FM listening systems can help you hear the commentary. Ask the tour operator to use a transmitter microphone, which will allow you to listen to the presentation over radio waves via your hearing aid’s receiver.
- When you are at your hotel, don't forget to inform the front desk about your hearing loss in case of emergency.
- The last travel tip for traveling with hearing loss is an important one: advocate for yourself. When you do this, it makes traveling easier for both yourself and those who surround you.
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