Safety Tips for Low Vision Travelers

Traveling is a wonderfully enriching experience. It helps us learn more about the world through directly interacting with people and places.

Here on Sunu we believe that being visually impaired shouldn’t stop someone from experiencing the beauty of travel. While it can be an inconvenience it should never hold you back. Here are a few safety tips low vision travelers can keep in mind:

Pack smart and light

Your travel experience starts with what and how much you pack. A good tip would be to use texture as a guide.

Pack things of a similar type into smaller bags with different textures. This way, it’ll be easier to pull out something important from your bag in case of an emergency. Another important tip is to pack as light as possible.

Remember that you don’t need to bring everything from your wardrobe. Very Well Health explains how packing light helps when someone with low-vision gets into an inconvenient situation.

In the event of getting lost, packing light means you won’t have to lug around big bags while trying to navigate back to a recognizable place.

Make use of tourist desks

Low vision travelers should always check in with the local tourist bureau because they can help personalize a travel package for you, or at the very least help you select a travel itinerary that you will enjoy.

Never pass up the chance to visit a tourist desk because they may have services especially for the visually impaired that could greatly benefit your travel experience.

Research on the nearest medical facility

People with low visibility need to know in advance where the nearest medical facilities are. This should include local clinics and the nearest city hospital.

Low vision travelers should also be aware of the country’s healthcare industry. For instance, if you’re traveling across the U.S., it’s important to be aware that due to a shortage of doctors and nurses, some places may not be equipped enough to help them if they are seriously injured or become ill.

In Maryville University’s examination of why nurses are in high demand, they note that there is a shortage of primary care physicians in rural areas and inner city communities. This is an indication of how stretched the U.S. healthcare industry is, from hospital nurses to university graduates.

While most town clinics can provide basic care, low vision travelers should carry a document that has enough information on personal health to ensure they get sent to the right hospital immediately. While it may sound trivial, this is something those with low visibility should be aware of.

It’s also essential to always pack your personal medicine with you and understand what to do in case of a medical emergency.

Getting lost is inevitable

Remember that getting lost is inevitable. If you are well prepared however, you can approach this incident as a detour and not a setback.

Mobility aids such as the Sunu Band compass will be very helpful during these instances. This band helps people with low vision navigate their surrounding environment using compass directions. T

o know the direction they’re heading, all a user needs to do is raise their hand to point. They can also find out if they’re facing north or south based on different vibrations. Devices like this are perfect for helping the visually impaired when they lose their bearings.

Traveling for the visually impaired may have its challenges, but it doesn’t mean it can’t be done.

If you’re a low vision traveler and are still apprehensive about traveling, remember that a blind and deaf man named Tony Giles has traveled to 127 countries. There are various ways to make low vision traveling easier, and it’s really just a matter of preparing and using all the resources at your disposal.

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Prepared by Alicia Clarke