Advice for hearing aid wearer when travelling

Travel advice for the wandering hearing aid wearer

Last Updated11/08/2020

The world is out there and full of beautiful sound, make sure you've got the volume turned up for it. 
The ability to travel and experience all that the world has to offer is one of life’s greatest luxuries. Whether you’re cruising the Caribbean islands, strolling down French sidewalks, or camping underneath the redwoods, the world beckons to be explored.

Before any big trip, preparation is key. If you're a hearing aid wearer, there are only a few more things to add to the checklist before departing. There's no need to let hearing loss hold back your adventurous spirit.

Here are some tips to keep in mind while traveling:

What to bring with you

  • Your hearing aids
  • It may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised. If you have hearing loss, your are essential to experiencing the unique sounds and culture of your destination.
  • Extra batteries/Charger
  • Depending on the length of your travels, you may want to consider bringing an extra pair of batteries for your devices. If you've got rechargeable hearing aids, bring a charger. 
  • A protective carrying case
  • If you don’t already have one – get one. A carrying case is one of the most effective ways to keep your listening devices clean and working longer. Your absorb moisture and will inevitably have wax buildup. When the time comes to take your hearing aids out and place them inside. Some cases also double a drying station.
  • A pen and notepad
  • This one is more for those with a significant hearing loss or deafness. Airports, train stations, or public transport vehicles can be stressful. Consider bringing along one of the more classic ways of communicating. A pen and notepad give you a quick and easy way to communicate with others through writing.
  • A voltage converter
  • If you're traveling internationally, remember that wall power outlets may be different at your destination. Invest in the respective electrical adapter for your trip. This will let you power your cell phone, tablet, or rechargeable hearing aids. International voltage adapters exist with multiple prongs that are good world-wide.

Find a hearing clinic in your destination

Finally, you should make a note of the closest hearing center or physician in the area that you’ll be staying in. More often than not, this is just an extra precaution, in the chance that something happens to your hearing devices or you need assistance. It's also advisable to look up the emergency numbers of the country you're traveling to. 

Ticketing and plane information 

Traveling by plane can be particularly frustrating at times for individuals with hearing loss. Airports can be crowded with lots of conflicting noises. High altitude can also create challenges.

  • Before your flight, check for your hearing aids' "airplane" sound filter option. Many hearing aids have sound filters that optimize your sound settings according to your respective noise environment. 
  • If your hearing aids are a bit older and don't have an airplane sound filter, the amount of noise emitted from the air conditioning may be a bit overwhelming at times. Keep your hearing aid volume lower or consider taking them off for a little while if necessary.
  • Make sure you have text and email notifications on that can alert you should your flight times or bookings change.
  • When choosing seats on the plane, an ideal spot is closer to the flight attendants' seats in case you have a question or need the announcements explained in closer proximity.
  • Similarly, consider the aisle seat to be in closer hearing distance to the attendants.