Taking public transportation can be a great way to save money and help the environment. It allows you to kick back on your commute and read a book or relax at the end of a long day. It can take you as far as Boston or as close as Sully’s Ice Cream Stand.
Finding inclusive ways to navigate the public transportation system can help make travel easier for approximately 15% of adults in the United States with hearing loss.
Tips To Make Traveling With Hearing Loss Easier
There are a couple things you can do to make traveling with hearing loss a little easier, including:
- Planning your trip. Checking your route prior to departure can help keep you aware of stops, delays and the estimated time of arrival. Consider writing down or printing your trip itinerary and keeping the hard copy with you in case of phone reception issues.
- Downloading a transportation app. Transportation apps can be great ways to get up-to-date information regarding your trip. Some apps release real-time updates of delays, extra stops or trip cancellations that you may miss from over-the-intercom cues.
- Informing staff or seat partner of hearing loss. If you feel comfortable doing so, telling a staff member or even a kind stranger about your hearing loss and asking them to update you with trip information can help keep you informed.
- Picking a good seat. If possible, select a seat facing an information screen or banner so that you can read any verbal announcements. While this is not guaranteed on all public transportation, a move towards inclusivity is making it more commonplace. Feel free to call ahead with accessibility inquiries.
- Arriving early. It is always good to arrive a little early for your trip in case of early departure. But it can be even more helpful for those with hearing loss. Arriving early could give you extra time to find your seat and discuss accommodations with the staff.
Public Transit Safety
Safety on public transit is essential. While staff members work to make transit as safe as possible, some things are out of their control. Remain aware of your surroundings, alert others to your location and consider traveling with a buddy when possible.
Using hearing aids is a great way to keep you safe and in the know with hearing loss. Hearing aid loop systems can pick up speech sounds from the loop system microphone and avoid amplifying background noise. These systems will help you hear announcements and keep you better oriented in your environment.
Contact a hearing specialist at Massachusetts Hearing Group today to make an appointment for your hearing treatment.