This is why the (in general) the hearing aid industry is so screwed up. There is no “standard” what so ever from one HA retailer to another HA retailer. Be it ordering HA’s, testing HA’s and paying for HA’s. In any case I’ve found that (by far) the majority of HA retailers (excluding Costco) sit down with a customer and after reviewing hearing level discuss options for trying/purchasing a new hearing aid. Once a specific hearing aid brand is decided the HA retailer orders that HA from the manufacturer. In most cases a contract will be signed stating the HA user has X amount of days to test HA and decide if he or she wants it long term. And the cost to test that HA is $100 to say $200. Maybe a touch more for two HA’s.
I’m not sure I’d want to test a demo unless it was just a chance to “try the HA of interest” before ordering for a 30 to 60 day trial test. A demo might to not give you the “hearing answers” you are truly looking for. And if you wear a “shell mold” a Demo HA won’t work - unless you have a shell mold made before testing. And as I’ve said early you don’t pay full price for squat - unless you want to run the risk of being locked into some bogus contract that can burn you short term or long term. Costco excluded on this, though I’m not sure Costco is going to be in the HA business long term if lots of customers return HA at the end of a 180 days.
I think the key thing some people are missing here is the word “Test”. And in my opinion when you “Test” something you don’t pay full price for it. You are trying some item or gadget or HA on a “test trial basis” that does not or should not require full payment. Seems to me Costco HA customers are tying to defend Costco full payment up front by adding the 180 day return policy. So one bad cancels out one good.
If Costco was more “consumer friendly” they would charge $200 to test a HA for 45 days. If HA is returned then maybe a refund of $75 to $50. If HA purchased then user pays in full, with option to return in 180 days for full refund if not satisfied with HA. Now that is what I call fair deal - but maybe the masses think paying out $2000, $3000, $4000 up front is just peachy.