Traveling with hearing loss and hearing aids can seem overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some travel tips to make your trip more enjoyable.
Before your trip begins
Prior to leaving, you can make arrangements that make traveling significantly easier. You can add disability information or request services based on your hearing device and hearing loss when reserving flights, hotels, transportation and activities. A travel advisor can help with notifying the various businesses if you decide to work with one. Always bring copies of written confirmations with you on your trip. Some people may not want to call attention to themselves as being disabled; however, alerting airlines and hotels when booking reservations will save time and prevent misunderstandings later.
Communication is key
Transportation can also be difficult if you’re traveling with hearing loss. You may miss announcements in the airport or on the airplane. It’s best to tell the representative when checking in that you are hearing impaired and ask to be notified personally when it’s time to board. Also, inform the flight attendant that you are hearing impaired and request that in-flight announcements be made to you in person.
Having a comfortable stay
Hotel rooms should be reserved in advanced, but bring a copy of your reservation with dates and prices to help you communicate with the front desk. Also, tell them again that you are hearing impaired even if you have noted this in your reservation. In addition to ordering room service or wake-up calls, this is very important for emergency situations. Some hotels provide visual or vibration alert devices to help hearing impaired guests recognize a telephone ringing, knock on the door or a fire/emergency alarm. Most established hotels also have telecommunication services specifically for hearing impaired guests. Request these additions when reserving your hotel and tell the front desk again at check-in.
Get the most out of your hearing device
Activities are often the best part of traveling, but it can be difficult if you’re hearing impaired. You may want to bring assistive listening devices with you or confirm they are available at places such as museums before you go. FM listening systems can provide direct amplifications in large areas using a radio frequency. This can be helpful for lectures, tours and other larger attractions. There are also portable TV band radios that can be tuned to compatible TV channels and listened to through an earphone. Check with the activities you have planned to see if they offer anything for hearing impaired guests or speak with your audiologist about items you may want to bring.
Don’t forget to pack
Hearing aids should be easy to travel with if you follow some simple tips. First, be sure to pack all the cleaning and repair items you need for daily use including plenty of batteries. You may also want to bring a dehumidifier especially if you are traveling to a warm, humid climate. Don’t pack your hearing aids in checked luggage in case your bags are misplaced. Remember too that the security scanners shouldn’t harm your hearing aids and you should be able to leave them in during the security check, but you should let security know that you are hearing impaired.
If you are hearing impaired or traveling with hearing aids and have questions, please contact Concierge Hearing Group at 310-906-4447.