Pro Tip: How to enjoy dining out again with hearing aids

The best hearing aid tips are from hearing aid wearers. We publish a new one every month in our Pro Tips column.   

There is nothing scarier for those of us with hearing aids than going to a new restaurant. Will it be loud? Will it be crowded? Will I be able to understand people, or will the background music drown out everything but the clanging of dishes from the kitchen?

We ask ourselves if it’s even worth it. Sometimes, we even look for excuses not to go, because who enjoys dinner with friends when you can’t hear your friends? Part of the dining-out experience is to catch up with friends and family, share updates about your work and social life, and to plan for the next time you’ll see each other.

Fortunately, with Halo or Halo 2 hearing aids, I got my dinner “dish” sessions back! Here are three things to try if you have Halo or Halo 2 hearing aids:

  1. Use the “Restaurant” memory: In most cases, the “Restaurant” memory will help you enjoy eating out again. It’s specifically programmed to deal with noisy, busy restaurant environments and will help focus the hearing aid microphones on speech versus everything else. This is my go-to memory when I hit up CRAVE for pizza on a Friday night.
  2. Make a new memory: You have the ability to create personalized, custom, geotagged memories — use it! If you have three different restaurants you frequent with friends but each has its own environment, then make a new memory for each place. The best way to do it is use SoundSpace to adjust the bass/treble and loudness/softness of the sound. Then, when you save the memory, make sure you use the restaurant’s name as the memory name and also geotag the exact location. By doing so, you never have to manually set it up again. 
  3. Ask for a booth: I have this abhorrence for restaurants without booths or plushy bar stools. If I’m escorted to a table in the middle of the restaurant, I look at the table once and then give the maître d’ a nervous stare until he suggests a different option. While my hearing aids still work well at a table in the middle of a restaurant, it’s much easier for me to enjoy dinner and understand my friends talking when I have a booth that helps block out other diners’ conversations.

Got a tip you’d like to share with other hearing aid wearers? Email it to If we use it, we’ll give you the credit.


By Sarah Bricker