If you’re pregnant, there’s no need to avoid travel completely. In fact, many people use the opportunity to go on a babymoon – one last holiday together before the baby arrives. If you’re thinking about travelling while pregnant, here are five things you need to know to make the most of your trip:
“If you’re pregnant, there’s no need
to avoid travel completely.
Think about how you’re feeling before
you book and plan accordingly.”
1. What type of holiday do you want to have?
If you’re used to active, adventure-filled trips or city breaks, now might be the time to opt for a more restful holiday. Think about how you’re feeling before you book and plan accordingly. Of course, you can still go for an active holiday if that’s what you want to do. We recommend factoring in some downtime alongside your other activities – and remember to listen to your body.
2. You wil l likely feel best in the second trimester
Pregnancy affects everyone differently, so there’s no sure fire way to tell how you will feel in each trimester. In general, people report feeling exhausted and nauseous in the first trimester. This means it might not be the best time to travel.
Most women report feeling much better in the second trimester, between weeks 13 and 28 of their pregnancy. Any morning sickness should start to fade, and you will probably have more energy than you did in the first trimester. This makes it the ideal time to travel, before the tiredness returns along with the aches and pains of the third trimester.
3. Some destinations are best avoided
Anyone who is pregnant or trying to conceive should avoid areas with a high risk of Zika outbreaks. It has caused birth defects in infants and no vaccine currently exists. This currently affects travel to South America and the Caribbean, as well as parts of the USA, Africa and Asia.
You should also speak to your health care provider if you plan to travel to a destination with a high risk of other tropical diseases (e.g. dengue, malaria and yellow fever). Although vaccines are often available, they are not always advisable for pregnant women. It is important to seek medical advice before booking your trip to find out what, if any, precautions you need to take.
4. You’re at an increased risk of DVT
When you travel by aeroplane, especially on long haul flights, your risk of developing deep vein thrombosis (DVT) increases. This risk increases even further during pregnancy, with pregnant women 5-10 times more likely to develop DVT when flying than women who aren’t pregnant.
However, the risk is still small and there are ways to minimise it even further. For example, by drinking plenty of water, wearing compression socks, and moving around whilst on the flight.
5. Different airlines have different requirements in the third trimester
If you plan to fly after week 28, make sure you find out the airline’s stance on pregnancy before you book. Most airlines will allow you to fly until week 36, but may require a letter from your midwife or GP. Others may have a different policy altogether, so it’s always best to double check.
What are your favorite tips for traveling while pregnant?
Share your thoughts and comments with us.