3 Things to Have in Mind If You’ll Be Using Public Transportation with Hearing Impairment

Traveling with hearing loss can seem overwhelming or even daunting at times if we’re being honest. But when using public transportation with a hearing impairment, there are a few things you may want to keep in mind so that you can have a successful and uneventful journey. Whether you’re going on a short trip through town or taking a cross-country ride, these three tips can help you feel more prepared while you are traveling.

1. Have an Assistive Hearing Device
If you are hearing impaired, then you know how important it can be to be able to hear better, even in noisy environments like public transportation systems. That is why it is important to have an assistive hearing device with you when traveling by public transport. Not only will it make you more comfortable, because you feel more connected to what is going on around you, but it will also decrease your chances of missing your stop. It will give you the ability to communicate with the vehicle operator or another passenger. If the trip is likely to be a long one, it is a good idea to carry backup batteries and any other accessories that may be needed.

2. Plan Ahead
Whether you’re hearing impaired or not, planning ahead is a must. But when you are hearing impaired it is a big help to plan a little differently. Planning ahead can ensure that you get to your destination early enough to prepare for the next phase of your journey or your day. Before getting on public transportation it helps to have already mapped out your route. Know beforehand what transfers you need to make and which steps are necessary to get you where you want to go. Know how you want to communicate with others. Whether that’s with pen and pad or a smartphone application or something else is up to you, but deciding ahead of time makes for one less decision to make while you’re in a busy environment. Even when you have to make an unexpected trip, having a travel protocol in place will make those impromptu journeys less stressful.

3. Inform the Driver
As long as you are comfortable doing so, it can be to your advantage to inform the vehicle operator of your impairment. Speaking up for yourself can mean the difference between getting to your intended destination on time or not. When a driver knows that you are deaf or have hearing loss, they can make sure to specifically alert you to upcoming stops, get you priority seating and repeating any cues you may have missed. Letting someone know your situation will likely make the trip smoother and put you more at ease.

When you are prepared and have all the tools necessary to facilitate a smooth trip, you can feel more peace of mind and confidence. You can also feel safer when you have an idea of what to expect. You don’t have to be fearful of public transportation when you’re mentally prepared.

Speak Your Mind