Traveling with Hearing Loss

aircraft-666832_1280Traveling should be filled with fun and excitement, however for individuals travelling with hearing loss, whether for vacation or work, it can often be scary and complicated. There are a few simple things you can do though, that can help to make your trip smooth and comfortable.

Air Travel

Maneuvering through the airport can be hectic enough. Add to that, not being able to hear flight changes, gate changes and the extra commotion, can make flying daunting for someone with hearing loss. One solution to help ease the stress of flying – enlist a travel partner. While sitting next to someone, kindly ask them to let you know if there is an announcement of any kind regarding your flight. Most fellow travelers are quite happy to help.

Another simple solution while flying. Let the flight crew know about your hearing loss and ask them to keep you informed of any situation that may arise on the flight. Most will be more than happy to make sure your flight is smooth and stress free. Keep in mind, hearing aids and other hearing devices do not need to be removed prior to airport screenings.

Many airlines offer mobile alerts via text or email. When booking your flight make sure to sign up for mobile alerts. This can be a life saver when your gate changes several times and your flight is delayed by hours.


Travel by car, can also pose a few problems. Unless you are traveling alone, most of us taking a summer trip have the car packed from roof to floor with luggage and passengers.  If driving, make sure your phone is connected to Bluetooth so you can have hands free driving and see and hear map directions and other notifications. Remind passengers that they should wait to ask you questions when you don’t need to be focused on the road.  Making sure you can see them talking to you, will help with communication. Have passengers wear headphones so that there isn’t as much background noise while driving and listening for directions.

Out of Town Accommodations

So now you have reached your final destination and it’s time to relax. When checking into a hotel, ask for an “ADA Kit”. This will provide visual alerts for doors and alarm clocks.  Most new TV’s have simple closed caption (CC) buttons now that make watching TV easier.

Final Thoughts

A few other things to think about before heading out the door. Make sure that your adventures, tours, meetings and sightseeing events offer audio or interpreters. If you haven’t been treated for hearing loss, or know someone with symptoms of hearing loss, please see an audiologist to have a comprehensive hearing test.  There are solutions out there for hearing loss, and the sooner you or a loved one receives help, the sooner you can enjoy your travel adventures.

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