It can be challenging for hearing loss patients to embark on meaningful adventures. But thanks to the invention of hearing aids, you should be able to have a safe and rewarding trip if you apply the following tips.
1. Get Ready Beforehand
Before you book a hotel or Airbnb, ask if there are special accommodation facilities for hearing-challenged persons. Some popular hotels have rooms with amenities for hearing loss customers. You need to request these things in advance. Remind your tour company to make special arrangements for your condition. They may have plans for you to make the most out of your trip despite your hearing challenges.
Museums in larger cities may offer hearing loops and other assistive technologies for your problem if you request them. The same is true for top theaters and performance venues. It’s also better to learn more about your destination before you pay for your ticket. Try to get yourself accustomed to the names of the tourists’ attractions. This will make it easier for you to understand the names when they are mentioned to you.
2. Buy Hearing Protection
Noise pollution is the last thing you want to experience when you have existing problems with your ears. In big cities, noise levels can be quite annoying. You may be attending a musical performance as part of your trip, and that’s where hearing protection may be a good investment. Wear your hearing protection and get extra earplugs in your travel gear.
3. Talk to Your Audiologists Before You Travel
You can ask your audiologists if you need to buy other assistive listening devices that will enhance your conversation with fellow travelers. When you are driving, consider installing an extra rear-view mirror to allow you to broaden your field of view. Since you may not be able to hear the sounds of all approaching vehicles, you should prioritize good vision for safety.
If you are thinking about filling up your tank and hitting the highway, don’t forget to buckle up. See if you can install an induction loop. This piece of electronic device will enable you to hear and understand your radio, smartphone and conversations with your passengers. You can find induction loops at airports, travel hubs and some train stations. However, for those who often depend on texting or email for conversations, it is necessary not to compromise your safety. Make a stop and park safely if you have to send or read messages.
4. Sign Up for Travel Alerts When Flying or Using Public Transport
Whether you are boarding a bus, airplane or train, you will probably get yourself in a noisy environment at a point in time. You may not have to get rid of your hearing aids when you are going through airport security. You can also sign up for travel alerts over text messages; this is ideal if you want to hear every useful announcement. Visit the relevant websites to familiarize yourself with travel policies for hearing loss patients.
Many travel agencies require about two weeks’ prior notice to arrange for sign language interpretation. Give yourself more time if you will require this service. Your travel hub may have induction loop systems to allow you to hear announcements with ease. You may also want to pack your essential travel documents in a reachable place. Finally, learn to avoid airplane ears by knowing how to manage the pressure in your ears.
5. Advocate for Yourself
Discuss with your tour guide and other travelers about your hearing situation. Provide them with suitable suggestions on how best they can help you. For example, you can tell your guides or fellow travelers to get closer if they communicate with you. When you advocate for yourself, your friends will also do what they can to make your trip count.
Assisted listening devices such as pocket talkers and FM systems should be kept handy. These will ensure that you can transmit your tour guide’s voice directly to your hearing device and limit background noise. When you are dining out, ask for a quieter table. Your hotel concierge may recommend you make a reservation for a quieter restaurant. The best way to avoid last-minute challenges is to get the proper hearing devices before you set off for the trip.
Audiologists at the Natural Hearing Centers are ready to help you embark on a stress-free tour if you have hearing loss challenges. Call us today at (888) 221-9156 to learn more.