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Watch: Tips for flying with hearing loss

flying with hearing loss

When it comes to flying with hearing loss, Phonak hEARo Jaime can give you awesome tips so you can make your travel experience more accessible. 

When you travel with hearing loss, do you let the airline know ahead of time that you are deaf or hard of hearing? Did you know that you can easily bring your service animal on board with you? Jaime explains more about her experiences with flying and how deaf and hard of hearing people can make the most of their travel experience. Here are the tips you need to know before your next adventure.


1) Flight safety

As more flights are available for cheaper prices, more people are interested in flying. Jaime talks about how her hearing loss doesn’t impact how safe she feels on the flight 

“You don’t need perfect hearing to fly safely,” says Jaime. 

You can let the airline know when you are booking that you are deaf or hard of hearing. This helps Jaime feels safer so the airline crew knows that there is a deaf person on the airplane. 

“So if they needed to communicate with me, personally, to make sure
that I got information, then they would know exactly where I am,” she says. “Which I think is really helpful.”

Since Jaime can’t hear the safety announcements that are said at the beginning of the flight, she recommends using the safety pamphlet located in your seat pocket to go over all the safety features of the aircraft.

2) In-flight entertainment is more accessible than before

 Years ago, there used to be limited options when it came to in-flight entertainment accessibility

“So I remember when I first started flying, the movies would be played on a flip down screen, watched by everybody on the plane,” says Jaime. “They never had subtitles!”

Jaime describes how she would have to sit throughout the flight without access to any entertainment. She felt left out when everyone would be laughing or crying, but she didn’t know why.

Nowadays, most planes have individual screens on the seat in front of them. Or an app you can download to watch entertainment on your personal device. 

3) You can easily bring your service animal with you!

When you book your flight and mark the option that you are deaf or hard of hearing, there is often a box to check if you have a service animal. You do have to let the airline know that you will be flying with a service animal before the flight.

“Whenever I fly with my service animal, people are usually very accommodating and very helpful in terms of having us both be comfortable for the duration of the flight,” Jaime explains.

If there is no option to let the airline know online, you may have to call them. Jaime usually asks for a bucket seat, which is the first row in economy class, so there is more room for her service animal.

Read more: Packing Essentials for the Hard of Hearing Traveler

Learn more about what Jaime has to say about flying with hearing loss in her latest vlog!

Author Details
The HearingLikeMe editorial team includes Jill Blocker von Bueren and Lisa Goldstein.