Traveling While You Are Pregnant

While there are few concerns associated with traveling while you are pregnant, the information below is provided to help make your trip the safest and most comfortable it can be.

Is it ok to travel during your entire pregnancy?

As long as you have no identified complications or concerns with your pregnancy, it is generally safe to travel at all times during your pregnancy.

The ideal time to travel during pregnancy is during the second trimester. In most cases, you are past the first trimester morning sickness, yet have not reached the later stages when getting around is difficult.

What about travel on land while you are pregnant?

Whether you are traveling by car, bus, or train, traveling while pregnant is generally safe. Nevertheless, some things can make your trip safe and more comfortable.

  • It is essential to buckle-up every time you ride in a car. Make sure that you use both the lap and shoulder belts for the best protection for you and your baby.
  • Keep the air bags turned on. The safety benefits of the air bag outweigh any potential harm to you and your baby.
  • Buses tend to have narrow aisles and small bathrooms. This mode of transportation can be challenging. The safest thing is to remain seated while the bus is moving. If you must use the restroom, make sure to hold on to the rail or seats to keep your balance.
  • Trains usually have more room to navigate and walk. The bathrooms are usually small and thus uncomfortable. It is essential to hold on to rails or seat backs while the train is moving.
  • Try to limit the amount of time you spend cooped up in the car, bus, or train. Limit travel time to five to six hours.
  • Use rest stops to stretch and take short walks to maintain good blood circulation.
What about travel by air while you are pregnant?

Travel by air is considered safe for pregnant women. The following ideas however, can make your trip safer and more comfortable.

  • Most airlines allow pregnant women to travel through eight month. Traveling during nine month is usually allowed with doctor’s permission.
  • Most airlines have narrow aisles and small bathrooms. Walking is challenging and using the restroom is uncomfortable. Because turbulence can potentially shake the plane, hold on to the seat backs while you are navigating the aisle.
  • Choosing an aisle seat allows you to stand up more easily to reach the restroom or just stretch your legs and back.
  • Restrict air travel to major airlines with pressurized cabins and avoid smaller private planes. If you must ride in smaller planes, avoid altitudes about 7,000 feet.
What about travel by sea while you are pregnant?

Traveling by sea is generally safe for pregnant women, although the motion of the boat may accentuate morning sickness or make you nauseous all over again. There are a few considerations to make your trip safer and more comfortable.

  • Check with the cruise line to ensure that there is a physician on board in case of any complications.
  • Review the route and port-of-calls to ensure access to any medical facilities, if needed.
  • Make sure any medications for seasickness are approved for women who are pregnant and do not pose a risk to the developing baby.
  • Seasickness bands use acupressure to help prevent upset stomach and may be a good alternative to medication.
How to make the best of your travels during pregnancy
  • Dress comfortably in loose cotton clothing, and wear comfortable shoes.  
  • Take your favorite pillow.
  • Plan for plenty of rest stops, bathroom breaks, and stretches.
  • Carry snack foods with you.
  • No matter how far you are traveling, carry a copy of your prenatal record.
  • Wear your seatbelt and take other safety measures.

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