Low-risk pregnant women may fly through most of the third trimester without complications; however, many airlines place restrictions on how late pregnant women may board flights; in some instances this requires a note from a physician.
Plan ahead for an enjoyable trip and pack anti-nausea medication, travel-sized antacids and snacks as needed. In addition, consider arming yourself with hand sanitizer and wet wipes since traveling can increase susceptibility to germs.
Assuming you are healthy and at no risk for preterm delivery, traveling up until 36 weeks into your pregnancy should usually be okay; however, most OB-GYNs advise moms at this point to remain closer to home as labor could occur at any moment. Airlines often have restrictions regarding pregnant women flying international flights; you may even be prohibited from flying earlier depending on which airline or international flights your flight is on.
Flying is still possible up until 37 weeks (32 in twin pregnancies), but you will require a letter from your OB/GYN or midwife detailing why it is safe for you to travel. Airfare can be expensive and slow; before booking any trip it is advisable to consult with them first as this can save time and money in the long run. You should also consider healthcare standards of your destination country before embarking on such travel in your third trimester.
When planning a cruise, always inquire with the cruise line about its pregnancy policies. Many cruises allow women to travel right up until their due date as long as they present a doctor’s note and remain healthy; however, most will no longer permit women after 24 weeks gestation.
McKinney-Kirk advises pregnant travellers to bring an electronic copy of their prenatal chart and keep it easily accessible during their journey, as well as anti-nausea medicines and extra pillows for extra support. Furthermore, pregnant travellers are encouraged to sit on the left side of the plane wearing compression stockings to aid with blood flow during flight – or research local medical facilities before their departure date.
Travel during pregnancy should ideally take place between 14 weeks and 27 weeks of gestation, when morning sickness should have subsided and your risk for premature labor has receded to its lowest point.
Avoid driving while pregnant in the third trimester unless specifically advised by your physician, due to risks for premature labor and prolonged sitting that increases the chance of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). If traveling by car is unavoidable, make sure that comfortable clothes and snacks/water are brought along along with an emergency kit in case any unexpected complications arise.
Consider that every mother-to-be is unique and that her OB may offer differing travel advice. Keep in mind that most airlines restrict air travel after 36 weeks for singleton pregnancies and 32 weeks for twin pregnancies – prior to booking any flight inquire about any possible restrictions before booking it.