Costa Rica, one of the more popular deaf travel destinations

Costa Rica, one of the more popular deaf travel destinations
Photo by: Kurt Raihn (Stock Exchange)

Good day, all, and welcome!

It’s time for July’s Disabled Travelers deaf travel update … and just as I predicted, there’s more and more going on in the deaf travel world every month!

Granted, I haven’t found what I would call “access guides” for the globetrotter with hearing loss, but I’m kicking up my search a notch and hope to report back with more findings very soon.

There’s so much to share lately, you might see a deaf travel doubleheader from me this month!

From Travel Weekly, the insider news source for the travel industry, ‘My heart is with the deaf’ tells the story of travel agent Rod Smith and his company, Harvesttime Deaf Travel, based in Minnesota. Smith, raised by deaf parents at a time when “experts” warned against teaching children sign language, became interested in travel at an early age, and now operates Harvesttime on a part-time basis while teaching at North Central University. His heart is definitely in it, and we wish him luck growing his business!

The tour operator of the day is Great Deaf Vacations, an affiliate of Cruises and Tours Unlimited providing information on group travel for the deaf. Accessible cruises are a big feature here, with an upcoming selection including a Halloween cruise, new Disney dream vacation for families, and even the “epic” seven night round trip bringing you through the Caribbean from beautiful Miami. Next on the horizon? A trip to Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island, Bahamas. Sounds like a place I want to visit!

In partnership with GoPhilanthropic, the new handicapped organization Discovering Deaf Worlds is offering travel opportunities including Costa Rica, Cambodia, and Thailand. In addition to great sightseeing at sites like Thailand’s world famous temples, you’ll learn all about local deaf communities, meet local deaf leaders, and find out how you can contribute to international solidarity and full integration for the deaf.

When you think of handicapped travel, the tiny African nation of The Gambia probably isn’t at the top of your list. Interestingly, though, an article on the UK’s Deaf Travel site suggests there is a thriving deaf community there, very proud and protective of its recently developed Gambian Sign Language. The Gambian Association of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing is working diligently to develop the language, which is unique in a region where most deaf folks use American Sign Language. Aside from info on the deaf lifestyle in The Gambia, there are interesting facts here about travel and tourism.

One of the big challenges I always face when traveling abroad is getting a good alarm clock for the journey. and it can be extra difficult for those who are deaf. Though I don’t usually endorse products here at Disabled Travelers, I would definitely recommend taking a look at Harris Communications, which provides a whole array of products keyed into the needs of the deaf and hard of hearing abroad. Vibrating clocks, ADA-compliant hotel kits, closed captioning decoders, and much more are available. There’s a healthy selection in every category, so you should be able to find exactly what you need!

That’s a wrap for today, but tomorrow’s another day at Disabled Travelers. There’s more coming down the pike for our deaf readers, and we still have a lot to do to finish up our ongoing Australia adventure, which has looked at accessibility in the Outback, Canberra, Sydney, and Brisbane so far! See you soon, and adventure on!

Submit Comment


(required) (This will not be published)