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Why You’ll Love Traveling by Train

By | Travel | No Comments

Many of us are more than familiar with the hassles of air travel. Having to arrive 2 hours early,  baggage limits, terrible food, and airline travel isn’t exactly a bargain. What if you could avoid all those headaches and still get where you wanted to go at the same for a lower price? That’s just one of the great reasons why train travel could be a great option. Here are 3 more reasons train travel could be a part of your next vacation or work trip.

LOW STRESS:

Train travel is relaxing travel. To start, you don’t have to arrive until about a half hour before the train is due to depart. Since there’s no TSA there won’t be any lines to wait in or x-ray machines.  Not only that, but a porter will be there to help you load your luggage. Amtrak allows you to bring two carry-ons and two checked bags, so no need to worry about cramming everything into that one carry on like you do when you fly.  On a train, you’ll never contend with the fasten seatbelt sign. When you want to stretch your legs you can walk the aisle without having to maneuver around a cart. 

THE FOOD

On some trains, there could be a cart that serves hot drinks and snacks. However, when you are truly ready for a meal, you don’t have to wait for a flight attendant to come by with a sandwich and grapes. Instead, you go to the dining car and order from a menu at a proper table. You won’t be trying not to elbow elbow your seatmate and you might even make new friends.  The food is cooked right there on the train by a chef and is generally very good. The best part is, if you happen to spill something all over yourself, you can take a shower. 

COMFORT

In addition to amenities like full bathrooms with showers, many trains offer roomy seats and overnight compartments where you can relax in privacy. Just for comparison, your seat in Economy Class on any airline is 17-1/2 inches wide and the seat in front of you is about 8 inches away from the edge of your seat. Your seat on a train is 20-1/2 inches wide and it reclines. Plus, when it reclines a leg rest pops up.  You can sleep in your seat, read, meet other travelers, or just look out the large windows and watch the countryside pass by.  Since you aren’t flying over it or zooming past it like you would in a car, a train is the perfect way to see and learn about the places you are traveling through. 

ENTERTAINMENT

Train travel is for the true adventurer.  For people who like to explore, learn new things, and meet new people.  There are no movies or television, but if you really, really must have digital entertainment, bring along your tablet because trains generally have wifi.  But the best part of train travel is seeing something new, and if the train offers local streaming of audio over their WiFi, you can use your own device to learn about what you are seeing through the window.  And talk to your family or your seatmates about it.  

If you’re thinking about traveling this fall, consider making it a train trip. It is sure to be an unforgettable experience. 

Audio Solutions to Help Your House of Worship

By | Churches, Hearing Assistance | No Comments

Baby boomers represent about one-quarter of the American population and as they age, they may begin to experience hearing loss.  Along with that, approximately 5% of the total population experiences some type of hearing disability.  This makes it important for any religious organization to consider and anticipate their needs and give consideration to the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Many houses of worship are looking for ways to leverage technology to make hearing assistance simpler, more effective, and less costly.  

For decades, houses of worship have used inductive loop systems to assist the hearing impaired, but these systems are cumbersome, expensive and still require the use of a hearing aid which many people find embarrassing. Recent developments in hearing assistive technology however, can be a great solution both for houses of worship with tight budgets to assist parishioners experiencing hearing loss.  Some devices use BlueTooth technology, which allows the pairing of cell phones and hearing aids to assist the congregation in hearing the service directly without having to use a headset.  

Audio streaming solutions that use built in WiFi technology work similarly to BlueTooth. These assisted listening solutions for churches allow listeners to hear the service via an app on their own device (phone or tablet) using their own earbuds or headset which can be great for those who do not to wear a hearing aid but still need the audio boosted. By having guests bring their own device to use and listen, houses of worship can save the time and money that would otherwise be spent on upkeep of other audio solutions. For those who cannot afford a smartphone or iPad, some houses of worship have been sourcing inexpensive smartphones or asking parishioners to donate their old phones and iPads.  And, of course, people can borrow a phone during the service or share with another parishioner. 

Not only can a local audio streaming system allow your hearing impaired members to hear the service better, it also opens doors for other creative uses like offering translation services or creating an outdoor movie fundraiser. 

If you’d like more information on how an audio solution that streams over wifi could help transform your house of worship, contact us today.