Whether you’re planning a trip for business or leisure, you’ll need to take a few extra steps if you’re traveling with hearing loss. Everyone loves to see new places, visit an exciting city, or relax in a beautiful destination, but if you have hearing loss, traveling can be more than a little stressful. Here are a few tips for traveling with hearing aids to ensure you have a stress-free holiday.
When you’re getting ready for a trip, be sure to plan ahead. Contact the hotel where you’re planning to stay, and ask for any accommodations you might need. Most hotels can provide you with a few accommodations such as flashing light notifications for the door bell or the phone. Even if you have your hearing aids out for the night, you won’t miss any important calls or warnings. You can also request a remote that controls closed captioning for the TV, and a phone with TTY technology.
Have a museum tour in mind? Call ahead to see if they have hearing loops, or any other assistive technology, such as a personal listening device, that will help you hear exhibits or a tour guide. This could make all the difference in an enjoyable visit, so take the time to plan ahead.
Plan to arrive early to any events or tours. Sit near the front if you’re heading to a conference or performance, and arrive early to tours and speak to the guide about your hearing loss. Ask them to stand closer to you so that you’ll be able to read their lips and use nonverbal cues to help you catch everything that’s been said.
When packing for your trip, make sure you have everything you need for your hearing devices. If you’re going to a humid place, be sure to pack your dehumidifier so your devices stay dry, and will be able to deliver clear hearing throughout your trip. Don’t forget your charger, or extra batteries, and be sure to pack your cleaning kit. Finally, make sure you pack all your hearing technology in your carry-on luggage, so that it will reach your destination in one piece. When going through security, you can leave your devices in place, so don’t worry about taking out your hearing aids prior to going through the airport scanner.
Protect Your Devices
When traveling with hearing aids, make sure your devices are safe at all times. Keep them in your carry-on luggage, and make sure that when you take them out at the hotel, they’re in a safe, dry place. If you’re only away from home for a few days it can be tempting to dispense with your normal cleaning routine, but when you’re traveling you should take extra car of your devices to make sure you’ll be able to hear the whole trip. In crowded places like tourist attractions or airplanes your devices can pick up extra bacteria, so clean them very thoroughly when you’re traveling.
Signing Up for Travel Updates
One of the hardest parts of your trip can be navigating the airport. These large spaces with garbled PA announcements can be your worst nightmare, and you’re always worried you’ll miss notifications about gate changes or flight delays. Before you travel, sign up for travel updates and receive email or text notifications right to your phone, so you can rest easy knowing you’ll be informed of any important changes.
Advocate for Change
If you’re not happy with the service you’ve received or run into problems due to lack of accommodations for your hearing loss, don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself. Tell your tour guide, or any fellow travelers about your hearing loss, and ask for help if you need it. Make suggestions to hotels or museums, and fill out comment cards on ways they can improve services to become more accessible for those struggling with hearing loss. Chances are you’re not the only one who’s had difficulty accessing certain services, and advocating for change can make all the difference for other travelers.
La Cañada Hearing Aids & Audiology
Planning a trip and want to make sure your hearing is in tip top shape? Visit us at La Cañada Hearing Aids & Audiology before you go, and we’ll give your hearing aids a thorough check to ensure you’ll have a great holiday and be able to hear all the sounds around you.