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6 tips for shopping with hearing loss

shopping with hearing loss

While my hearing loss doesn’t limit the things I can do in daily life, it certainly does play a factor in every day tasks. I recently bought my first car, and noticed in this situation how shopping with hearing loss affected my purchase, especially in situations where I had to deal with sales people. 

As with any big purchase, whether it’s a piece of technology, a car or a house – there’s always a salesperson involved. As helpful as they are, they are trained to make you believe that you need the product or service, and that you will lose out if you don’t purchase it. If they have targets to meet, they will try and get the best deal for the company. So how can you ensure you’re in the best position to close a deal, as a person with hearing loss?

Here are a few of my tips to ensure that you get the best offer you can get!

  1. Do your homework! 


Before you set off to buy anything, always do your research into what you are looking for! I can’t stress how much it really helps. There are many places to look, this can be online or by talking to a family member, friend, etc. When we were shopping for my new car, my parents and I looked online at different car garages to see what they had on offer. We wrote down all the kinds of details we were looking for and these definitely helped on the day.

  1. Set a budget


Decide how much you would be willing to spend on this item. This can help when meeting with the salesperson as it can eliminate the more expensive products from the process. It also means that you won’t exceed what you may have available in your bank account!

  1. Write down a list of places to visit


It helps to write a list of places down so that you can plan where you need to go to look for the best offer. Don’t always go for the first place with the product or service, as there might be another competitor offering the same thing for a fraction of the price.

In my situation, the salesman was talking about all these different insurance options that were available with the car. Some people may argue that it would be easier to agree to certain insurance policies when purchasing the car, but be mindful that you might be able to get it elsewhere cheaper.

  1. Take someone with you, who knows a bit more about the product/service.


This person can be your extra set of ears. They can listen out for you in case you may miss something, or if you need something interpreted into simple English. They would often have a different view on things and can give you another side to it.

When we spoke to the salesman about this car we saw, he explained all these different insurance policies. For someone like myself with a hearing loss, the way they describe the product or service can be quite advanced. Often using confusing or unusual words in order to sound ‘impressive’ and ‘professional’, however deaf people need it simplified. My mum was quite good at relaying it to me to ensure I was involved in the conversation.

  1. Negotiate


To get the best deal, you have to be clever. This is a chance to show that you’ve done your research. Ask the salesperson questions, ask them if they would consider reducing the price. Other ways of bargaining are to ask them to ‘throw in’ extras such as warranties, service plans, the road fund licence or a tank of fuel. 

  1. Don’t look too keen and be prepared to walk away

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This is a salesperson’s worst nightmare! The last thing they want you to do is to walk out of the door. Be prepared to say “no.” They are trained to make you believe you need the product or service, and that you will lose out without it. They may claim that it will save you money in long run, but if you have a chance to think about it, also look into the small print, it might not be as good as the salesperson makes it out to be.

The salesman at garage spent an hour going through various different insurance products ranging from upholstery to dents and scrapes to accident coverage. As my car is a used car, we saw that the upholstery wasn’t worth getting, as it’s not likely that they would get worn. Eventually, he gave us a deal where we could get one of the big insurance policies for free if we purchased that car on the day – which was a result!

Have you got any tips? Please share them below!

Ellie Parfitt
Ellie Parfitt
Ellie was born profoundly deaf, uses verbal communication, lipreads and wears Phonak hearing aids. She is currently learning British Sign Language. Ellie hasn’t let her disability stand in the way and embraces every new challenge. Her deafness didn't prevent her from achieving major accomplishments in her life, such as excelling in her education, working as a Marketing Executive for a Spa & Health Club, Events and Promotions Staff for a local newspaper as well as blogging for Hearing Like Me. She is passionate about deaf awareness, campaigning for equality and helping others through her personal blog as Deafie Blogger.