The Best Hearing Aids for Travelers: Meeting the Unique Needs of Explorers

Traveling is an enriching experience, allowing us to immerse ourselves in new cultures, explore breathtaking landscapes, and create lasting memories. For travelers with hearing loss, having the right hearing aids can significantly enhance their journey. In this article, we will explore the key features that travelers desire in their hearing aids and present the best options available in the market.

What Travelers Want Most in Their Hearing Aids

1. Long Battery Life

One of the top priorities for travelers is extended battery life. Being on the move often means limited access to power outlets. Therefore, a hearing aid with a long-lasting battery can provide peace of mind and uninterrupted hearing throughout the day.

2. Background Noise Suppression

Travelers encounter diverse acoustic environments, including bustling airports, crowded streets, and noisy tourist attractions. Advanced background noise suppression technology in hearing aids is crucial to improve speech clarity and ensure a seamless communication experience, even in challenging situations.

3. Rechargeable Case

Travelers value convenience and a rechargeable hearing aid case eliminates the need to carry spare batteries or worry about running out of power. A portable charging case allows for easy recharging on the go, ensuring that hearing aids are always ready for the next adventure.

4. Reliability and Comfort

Reliability is paramount for travelers who rely on their hearing aids. Robust construction and durability ensure that the devices can withstand the rigors of travel, including changes in climate and exposure to dust or moisture. Additionally, comfort is vital for extended wear, particularly during long flights or sightseeing excursions.

5. Wireless Connectivity

Wireless connectivity has become a sought-after feature for travelers. Seamless integration with smartphones, tablets, or audio streaming devices allows travelers to enjoy hands-free phone calls, listen to music, and stream audio from navigation apps or guided tour services directly to their hearing aids, enhancing their overall travel experience.

Two Hearing Aids to Consider

FeaturesOticon RealStarkey Genesis AI
Clear Sound Quality
Advanced Noise Reduction
Wind & Handling Noise Prevention
Feedback-Free Experience
Compact and Portable Design
Long Battery Life24 hours51 hours
Customized Hearing Experience
Wireless Connectivity✓ (Bluetooth)✓ (Bluetooth)
Remote Control
Smartphone App Integration✓ (Oticon ON App)✓ (My Starkey App)
Speech Enhancement
Tinnitus Relief
Telecoil Compatibility
Health and Wellness Tracking✓ (3D sensors, step counting, fall detection)
Translation in Multiple Languages✓ (language translation in 77 languages)

Starkey Genesis AI

Introducing the highly anticipated Starkey Genesis AI hearing aids, I am thrilled to share this groundbreaking innovation with travelers seeking the ultimate hearing aid experience. Announced on Feb. 28, 2023, these state-of-the-art devices will soon be available for purchase at your local audiology clinic or through ZipHearing, promising a significant leap forward from Starkey’s previous Evolve AI models.

Design and Style

Source: Starkey

The Genesis AI hearing aids offer a range of models, including receiver and canal styles, as well as custom options. For travelers, two models stand out:

  1. Receiver in Canal RT (Rechargeable Telecoil): This model, featuring a rechargeable battery with telecoil functionality, is worn behind the ear and boasts an impressive battery life of up to 51 hours on a single charge. Its sleek, discreet design ensures both durability and comfort for prolonged use during travel.
  2. mRIC R (Small Rechargeable): The mRIC R model, known for its compact size, is rechargeable and can last up to 41 hours on a single charge. This travel-friendly option combines reliability with a comfortable fit, allowing travelers to experience optimal hearing without compromise.


At the heart of the Starkey Genesis AI hearing aids lies the groundbreaking Starkey Neuro Processor, the smallest and fastest processor ever developed by the company. With a processing speed four times faster than previous technology, the Genesis AI hearing aids ensure swift and precise sound processing, enhancing the traveler’s auditory experience.

The Neuro Sound Technology incorporated in these devices automatically adjusts the hearing aids over 80 million times per hour, enabling travelers to enjoy optimal hearing in any situation. Additionally, the new compression system reduces listening effort and presents a clean, clear soundscape, further enhancing the overall travel experience.

The Genesis AI stands apart as the only hearing technology system to feature an all-new processor, all-new sound, all-new industrial design, all-new fitting software, and all-new patient experience. This comprehensive approach ensures that every aspect of the hearing aids is optimized to deliver exceptional performance and unparalleled comfort.

App Features

Travelers seeking a seamless and personalized experience will find the My Starkey App an invaluable companion. This intuitive app empowers users with full control over their hearing aids, providing access to helpful tips and intelligent features designed to simplify their lives.

One unique feature, Edge Mode Plus, prioritizes clearer speech, allowing travelers to effortlessly engage in conversations, even amidst bustling environments. Furthermore, the app offers language translation capabilities in 77 different languages, facilitating communication with individuals from diverse backgrounds during travel adventures.

The incorporation of built-in 3D sensors in the Genesis AI hearing aids sets a new standard for health and wellness tracking. Travelers can effortlessly monitor their step count, track social engagement, and even receive fall detection alerts, ensuring their well-being throughout their journey.

Cost of Starkey Genesis AI Hearing Aids

At the time of this writing, ZipHearing (affiliate link) offers the following prices but your local clinic may be different:

  • Genesis AI 2400: $4598 / pair
  • Genesis AI 2000: $3798 / pair
  • Genesis AI 1600: $3198 / pair
  • Genesis AI 1200: $2798 / pair

It is important to note that the mentioned prices encompass the devices and the initial audiology fitting appointment at a local clinic. Different offices may offer bundled services with varied pricing structures.

Oticon Real: Perfect Companion for Travelers

As an audiologist, I understand the importance of selecting a hearing aid that meets the specific needs of travelers. The Oticon Real hearing aids, equipped with cutting-edge features, offer an exceptional solution for individuals on the go. Let’s explore the key features that make Oticon Real an ideal choice for travelers:

Clear Sound Quality

Oticon’s Brain Hearing Philosophy centers around providing clarity and excellent sound quality. With Real BrainHearing Technology, Oticon has achieved a balance between clarity and comfort, ensuring that travelers can hear well without compromising on sound quality. This feature enables users to fully enjoy their travel experiences, whether it’s the sound of bustling city streets or the tranquility of nature.

Advanced Noise Reduction

Travelers often encounter noisy environments, such as airports, train stations, or crowded tourist attractions. Oticon Real excels in managing background noise through its advanced noise reduction capabilities. By reducing unwanted noise, these hearing aids enhance the signal-to-noise ratio, allowing travelers to focus on important sounds like conversations, announcements, and the beauty of their surroundings.

Wind and Handling Noise Prevention

For those who enjoy outdoor activities during their travels, Oticon Real’s wind and handling noise prevention system proves invaluable. The sensors within the hearing aids stabilize the sound signal, even in windy conditions or when handling objects. This feature ensures a cleaner and more enjoyable listening experience, whether you’re exploring a windy mountaintop or capturing precious memories on a breezy beach.

Feedback-Free Experience

Feedback, often manifested as an irritating high-pitched whistle, can be a nuisance for travelers using hearing aids. Oticon Real incorporates advanced feedback management technology that proactively eliminates feedback before it becomes problematic. By maintaining stable gain without compromising on high-frequency sounds, travelers can fully immerse themselves in their adventures without any interruptions or discomfort.

Compact and Portable Design

Travelers value convenience and portability. Oticon Real hearing aids boast a sleek and discreet design, making them easy to carry and wear throughout the day. Their compact size ensures comfort during extended travel periods, and they fit seamlessly into any travel routine without drawing unnecessary attention.

Long Battery Life

When exploring new destinations, travelers need hearing aids with reliable battery performance. Oticon Real hearing aids are equipped with long-lasting batteries, allowing users to enjoy up to a day of usage without worrying about frequent recharging. This extended battery life provides peace of mind, particularly during long flights, bus rides, or outdoor excursions. The charger case also has a built-in battery that can provide 3 charging cycles of power without the need for a power outlet.

Customized Hearing Experience

Every traveler has unique hearing needs. Oticon Real offers personalized solutions through its adaptive compression strategy, which adjusts amplification based on individual requirements. This ensures optimal hearing in various environments, whether it’s conversing with fellow travelers, listening to tour guides, or immersing oneself in cultural performances.

In conclusion, Oticon Real hearing aids provide a range of features specifically tailored to meet the needs of travelers. From clear sound quality and advanced noise reduction to wind and handling noise prevention, these devices offer a comfortable and hassle-free listening experience. With their compact design, long battery life, and customizable settings, Oticon Real hearing aids are the perfect travel companion, allowing travelers to fully embrace their adventures while staying connected to the world around them.

What Hearing Aid I Would Choose If I Were A Traveler

When it comes to choosing between the Oticon Real and Starkey Genesis AI hearing aids, I understand your dilemma as both devices offer impressive features and have satisfied patients. Based on my experience and recommendations, I would lean towards recommending the Oticon Real hearing aids for those who prefer a receiver-in-canal (RIC) style, while the Starkey Genesis AI aids would be a great choice for individuals seeking an in-the-ear or invisible style.

The Oticon Real hearing aids excel in providing clear sound quality, advanced noise reduction, feedback-free experience, and a customizable hearing experience. They also offer features such as wireless connectivity via Bluetooth, remote control options, and integration with the Oticon Companion smartphone app. Additionally, the Oticon Real devices are known for their speech enhancement capabilities and tinnitus relief features.

On the other hand, the Starkey Genesis AI hearing aids offer clear sound quality, advanced noise reduction, and longer battery life. They come with the convenience of wireless connectivity through Bluetooth and are compatible with the My Starkey App, allowing users to have control over their hearing aids and access helpful tips. The Genesis AI aids also incorporate health and wellness tracking features, including 3D sensors for step counting and fall detection.

Considering the style preference, if you are inclined towards a RIC style, the Oticon Real hearing aids would be an excellent choice. However, if you prefer an in-the-ear or invisible style, the Starkey Genesis AI aids would be a suitable option.

Ultimately, the decision should be based on a thorough discussion with your audiologist, taking into account your specific hearing needs, lifestyle, and personal preferences. They can provide you with a comprehensive evaluation and guidance to help you make an informed choice between these two exceptional hearing aid options.

Jonathan Javid Au.D.

Jonathan Javid Au.D., a seasoned audiologist with an extensive background in the field of audiology. With over 11 years of invaluable clinical experience, Jonathan has dedicated his career to helping individuals enhance their hearing and improve their quality of life.

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