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Author: hootie

Joined: 3/7/2010
Posts: 133
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

China, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Transylvania, Bulgaria, Chech Republic, Slavakia, Bratislava, Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Crete, Greece, Turkey, Istanbul, Italy, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Tahiti & French Polynesia/Society Islands, Hawaiian Islands, Bermuda, Alaska, Costa Rica, Mexico, United States, Panama Canal, Caribbean (extensively), Canada/Nova Scotia, Canary Islands, Gibralter, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Vatican City, France, Holland, Belgium, Tasmania, Australia, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia.

Traveler Since: 2001

October 03, 2010

I've read that each traveler is now given headphones to better hear the program director and guides while out on tours.  I wear two hearing aids and when they get covered, they WHISTLE.  On past trips, since I have trouble hearing/understanding even with the two aids, I would stand near the guide in order to hear as much as I could.  I always buy books on places visited to learn what I could not hear spoken.  However, it is very IMPORTANT to know the groups meeting times and locations and especially, where the bathrooms are!  I'm hoping the headphones will be useable for me so I don't have to keep asking everyone questions. 

I know I will have to wait to see how they work for me personally, but can anyone in my situation comment on their experiences with the headphones?

Author: grammyflo

Joined: 3/15/2010
Posts: 170
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2002

October 03, 2010

I totally identify with your problem. Outdoor tours and traffic frustrated me terribly. I too would try to stand close to the PD. Amusingly, so did several others. On our last trip to the Rhine and Mosel cruise was the first experience I had with the listening device.  I have Siemens hearing aids. They go behind the ear with a plastic tube and earpiece. I LOVE THEM. Have no trouble with the wind or crackling. Can wander off a bit from the tour if my attention and camera is focused elsewhere. I suggest you ask your audiologist how to combat the crackling. Everyone is different. On the aids we used, you could control the volume.  I could  easily hear if I removed my hearing aids.Wished I had them on several of our other trips. Any other questions, please feel free. cajasu@tampabay.rr.com

 

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

October 03, 2010

I wear hearing aids.  Currently, I have the kind that go behind the ear.  Before, I had the kind that went in the ear.  I haven't had any problems with the ear phones.  The ones they issue us have the ear piece that fits on the ear rather than inserted into the canal.  I think they're wonderful, because not only am I hard of hearing, I'm very short.  And I was always missing something.  You keep your earphones for the entire trip and turn in the radios for recharging at the end of each tour.

My only problem was that I also wear glasses, so I had three things going over my ears and I had to be careful one or more didn't get knocked off.

If you're concerned, speak with your audiologist well ahead of the trip.

 

Author: hootie

Joined: 3/7/2010
Posts: 133
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

China, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Transylvania, Bulgaria, Chech Republic, Slavakia, Bratislava, Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Crete, Greece, Turkey, Istanbul, Italy, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Tahiti & French Polynesia/Society Islands, Hawaiian Islands, Bermuda, Alaska, Costa Rica, Mexico, United States, Panama Canal, Caribbean (extensively), Canada/Nova Scotia, Canary Islands, Gibralter, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Vatican City, France, Holland, Belgium, Tasmania, Australia, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia.

Traveler Since: 2001

October 04, 2010

Thank you grammyflo & pauline for your prompt response on my hearing aids dilemma.   I appreciate it. 

My hearing aids are "in the ear" so I may be OK depending on how the unit sets on/over my ear as Pauline has mentioned.  I too wear glasses & can't see much without them.  If the hearing aids are out...I don't hear anything.  I'm a real mess without my hardware.   It has made for some interesting conversations tho!

If anyone else cares to comment,  I'm all (battery operated) ears.

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 417
Trips Taken: 10
Traveler Since: 2002

October 10, 2010

I don't wear hearing aids (yet) but I do wear glasses. I had no problem with the "Whispers" head set. Most of the time I was using them I had one ear piece covering one ear and the other ear uncovered. I could still hear the guide perfectly but could also hear what was going on around me.

A perfect example of the value of the Whispers was when our group was riding the strassebahn (street train, or trolley) in Basil, Switzerland. We filled about three cars of the train. With the Whispers we could all hear the guide even though she was stationary in one of the cars.

Our program directors were very knowledgable about the use and care of the Whispers. If you are having a problem give the PD a chance to help you correct the situation. Chances are that he or she can make your outing much more enjoyable.

Author: captainlarry

Joined: 4/24/2010
Posts: 417
Trips Taken: 10
Traveler Since: 2002

April 01, 2011

OK, we just returned from a tour on which the "Whispers" came with ear buds rather than head phones. I know that those in our group who use hearing aids were able to use the Whispers, but I am sure they had to work around the hearing aid situation. I didn't really ask or even think about it until now.

Author: gobuckeyes

Joined: 7/7/2010
Posts: 158
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2005

April 02, 2011

I just returned form a Great Rivers Of Europe rvier cruise and there were people with hearing aids that didn't seem to have a problem with the system. GCT's system did have a volume control.  The ear phones the gave us sort of looked like these:

However everyone's hearing aid situation may be different. Another possibility is that you could bring your own ear phones (i.e. that are compatable with your unique hearing aids). Their system's ear phone plug hole is the "standard one plug stereo design" (i.e. 2.5 mm) like the one that many of the airlines use, etc.

 

Author: hootie

Joined: 3/7/2010
Posts: 133
Trips Taken: 8
Countries Visited:

China, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland, Serbia, Croatia, Romania, Transylvania, Bulgaria, Chech Republic, Slavakia, Bratislava, Egypt, Israel, Cyprus, Crete, Greece, Turkey, Istanbul, Italy, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, Tahiti & French Polynesia/Society Islands, Hawaiian Islands, Bermuda, Alaska, Costa Rica, Mexico, United States, Panama Canal, Caribbean (extensively), Canada/Nova Scotia, Canary Islands, Gibralter, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Vatican City, France, Holland, Belgium, Tasmania, Australia, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia.

Traveler Since: 2001

April 02, 2011

HEADPHONES....HEARING AID COMPATIBLE

I started this post in Oct. 

In Dec. 2010 we did the Christmas Markets along Rhine (with ext.) and used the headphones as pictured.  They worked well for me, except for the aggravation of having a box hanging off my neck & getting tangled in the cords!  It was worth it to be able to hear for a change.

Earbuds would require removing my hearing aids and keeping them someplace safe on me.

At the beginning of this year, I thought GC made an announcement that they were going to have wireless headphones.  Has anyone else heard similar?  ...used them?

hootie

Author: gobuckeyes

Joined: 7/7/2010
Posts: 158
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2005

April 02, 2011

In Dec. 2010 we did the Christmas Markets along Rhine (with ext.) and used the headphones as pictured.  They worked well for me, except for the aggravation of having a box hanging off my neck & getting tangled in the cords!  It was worth it to be able to hear for a change.

At the beginning of this year, I thought GC made an announcement that they were going to have wireless headphones.  Has anyone else heard similar?  ...used them?

hootie

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I had a travel vest something like this one:

The receiver went in one of the top pockets. The ear phones fit in an inside pocket (when not in use). The vest held everything I needed (i.e. sunglasses, money, boarding pass, asprin, key card, and camera too). Worked great. No cord problem and nothing around my neck.  No agrivation at all. The vest worked great.

Don't know anything about GCT getting wireless headphones. Technically these may be considered wireless (i.e. no wire from tour guide's transmitter to your receiver, etc.).  If the receiver was in the headphone it would make the headphone a lot heavier and maybe more uncomfortable. In addition, they probably would cost GCT a lot more too.  

 

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

April 02, 2011

As I posted earlier, I had three things going behind my ears  -  the hearing aids, the bows of my glasses, and the earphones.  I did have to take my glasses off to put the earphones on and then replace the glasses.  The first time I tried, everything fell off as soon as I moved.  The strap for the radio was too long for almost everyone and, especially for me, as I am only 5 feet tall.  Our PD demonstrated the best way of shortening the strap, using mine as an example, so that worked fine.  And there's a clip on the radio that I found I could use to attach it to my shoulder bag, so it wasn't pulling on my neck. 

All the earphones on the Russia Revealed trip last summer were of the type in the picture gobuckeyes posted.  But a few years ago, on another trip they had only a few of those and the rest were the kind that go in the ear.  People with hearing aids were first in line to get the ones like the picture.  Based on that experience, I think I'll get a set of my own before my next trip.  My audiologist can advise me.

Author: gobuckeyes

Joined: 7/7/2010
Posts: 158
Trips Taken: 13
Traveler Since: 2005

April 03, 2011

Re: (pauline): The strap for the radio was too long for almost everyone and, especially for me, as I am only 5 feet tall.  Our PD demonstrated the best way of shortening the strap, using mine as an example, so that worked fine.  And there's a clip on the radio that I found I could use to attach it to my shoulder bag, so it wasn't pulling on my neck.   

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Apparently GCT has some different transmitters/receivers on various trips. My receiver (on the M/S River Aria) was very light weight and it didn't have a strap of any kind. There was a little clip on the back. It looked like this (without the microphone):

The approximate size was 4" x 2' x 3/4 ". The hole for the earphone and on/off switch was on the top and a volume control "wheel" was on the side. The channel setting was on the back. It has 16 channels so each group had it's own frequency. It has 16 channels. It fit very easily into a pocket. The range for hearing the guide was at least 20 - 25 yards so you really didn't have to be right next to guide to hear.  It was really light (plastic case) and used 2 rechargeable AA batteries. You turned your unit in each night for recharging.  If you lost yours they said they would charge you $75 (to replace it). Your cabin number was on a small sticker stuck on the back so they could readily tell if yours was missing.

Author: pauline

Joined: 3/9/2010
Posts: 970
Trips Taken: 11
Countries Visited:

England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Malta, Israel, Australia, New Zealand, China, Mexico, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Canada, Russia, Ukraine

Traveler Since: 1999

April 03, 2011

That looks much easier to cope with.

Author: rscrawford

Joined: 1/20/2011
Posts: 4
Trips Taken: 5
Traveler Since: 2005

October 19, 2011

 I took my hearing aids out and cranked the volume up!  Worked like a charm.

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