Tips for Traveling with Hearing Aids

Tips for Traveling with Hearing Aids

In Hearing Loss, Tips & Tricks by Zach Kenealey, HIS

Zach Kenealey, HIS

Even though much of the world is still off-limits due to COVID-19, many individuals are thinking about summer vacation options right now. But with a bit of planning, your vacation will be a success. However, before you pack your bag, consider the following suggestions to make your vacation go as well as possible.

Prepare for COVID restrictions

Many travel experts believe we won’t be traveling ‘as normal’ until well into 2023, so prepare for delays and limited options when traveling through airports. 

Then there are vaccine / COVID-19 test requirements. Domestic travel, for the most part, does not necessitate any testing or confirmation of vaccinations. In general, Americans are still not accepted in many nations, and vice versa. All travelers, including U.S. citizens and those who have been vaccinated, will have to test negative again three days before departure to return to the United States.

It’s unlikely that your favorite airport restaurants or lounges will be open. Check your airport website before leaving home to see what’s open near your terminal; if your selections are limited, bring a meal with you. 

Things are also not likely to be back to normal in your destination city, either. When you arrive at your destination, check the websites of the restaurants and tourist attractions you want to visit for their operating hours. 

Prepare your equipment

  • Stock up on batteries. Make sure your hearing aid has extra batteries. It may appear straightforward advice, but you’d be shocked how many people are caught off guard when they discover they can’t find batteries when they arrive. If everything else fails, phone your hotel to see if local supplies are close by.
  • Voltage converter: If you have a rechargeable hearing aid, there will be no battery runs, but don’t forget the voltage converter! Specific destinations have different voltages than the United States, which could cause problems if your power supply is only 110V. Check to determine if your charger is compatible with 220V plug sockets to be used safely abroad. You may also require a plug adapter depending on your destination.
  • Dry your devices. It’s a good idea to bring a dehumidifier if you’re going to a humid location. You’ll also want to bring your hearing aid cleaning supplies since you never know what you’ll come across on your journey! This device aids in the removal of excess moisture from your hearing aids, allowing them to function more effectively. Cleaning hearing aids can also be done by your local hearing center prior to your trip!
  • Carry it all with you. Batteries and other hearing aid supplies should be included in your carry-on bag when flying. Don’t take the chance of being without your batteries if your luggage is delayed. Also, keep in mind that all batteries must be stored in a separate container during airport security screenings, so pack them in a bag that allows you to separate them for a faster movement through security.

Before you leave

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) mandates that hotels and motels in the United States be accessible to hearing loss. Call ahead to check whether the hotel offers any services to assist you during your stay. Here are some questions you might want to ask about:

Safety warning gadgets include flashing doorbells, visual alarm clocks, closed caption services for televisions, hearing aid compatible telephones, and visual alarm clocks.

If you manage to make it outside of the United States, check with places ahead of time to determine if they offer these services. If you’re staying with a friend or relative, make sure they’re aware of your requirements. They could even be able to offer helpful local recommendations.

Because it might be difficult to hear announcements over the PA systems at airports, it’s a good idea to sign up for email or text message notifications in the weeks leading up to your departure. These will keep you informed about any flight modifications or delays.

At the airport

For individuals with hearing loss, airports can be intimidating, but with a bit of planning, you should traverse them with relative ease. Fortunately, you can wear your hearing aids through body scanners when going through security.

Many individuals are unaware that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has printable cards on their website that inform TSA agents and other airport workers of your hearing loss. If you require particular support, they will be able to provide it.

Hearing loops, which you may connect with your hearing aids to broadcast essential announcements straight into your ear, are available at several airports. Check online to see whether the locations you’ll be going through have something similar.

It’s a good idea to have your equipment professionally cleaned and maintained before your trip. Contact us today to schedule an appointment! We offer everything you need to ensure your hearing aid doesn’t fail you while you’re on the road.