Preparing for International Travel While Pregnant

Preparing for International Travel while pregnant

I have been so lucky with my prenatal care experience this time around with Hattie. So lucky, that I’m now partnering with my birthing center, Baby+Co, to help all you mamas-to-be with preparing for international travel while pregnant! Baby+Co’s slogan says it all: A modern birth center, built on evidence, delivered with love. Baby+Co.

When I was pregnant with Jude, I didn’t travel. Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to, but at the time, it just wasn’t plausible with finances. This time, I’m finishing up a graduate degree which requires me to spend the next two weeks in Spain (with a side trip to Portugal). I’m excited (and nervous) for this adventure, but between talking with my midwives and doing a lot of research, I’m feeling well prepared!

Preparing for international travel while pregnant can sometimes seem daunting. How the heck am I going to be comfortable for an 8+ hour plane ride? Will my belly fit in those small bathroom stalls on the plane? Will the person next to me get annoyed with me walking around the plane so much?

I have asked myself these questions, among others, multiple times over the past few months. Luckily, I found out I was pregnant prior to booking the actual flights. This came in handy because I was able to upgrade to economy plus. While not first class, economy plus allows me to still have a nicer seat with a double, rather than triple or quadruple, row and will get me better attention from the flight attendant.

When booking your flight overseas remember the following:

  • Upgrade your seat, if possible. If you can’t, be sure to call the airline and have them mark you as wanting a free upgrade if one becomes available.
  • Provide enough travel time between layovers. You tend to walk (or waddle!) a little slower when pregnant, so make sure you have plenty of time to make it to your next gate.
  • Reserve an aisle seat to make it easier to get up and walk around when needed.
  • Reserve a seat closer to the bathroom to make those frequent trips to pee easier.preparing for international travel while pregnant

Once I had knocked each of these off my list, I had to seriously think about how I’d stay comfortable during the actual flight. My midwife at Baby+Co suggested the following:

  • Wear compression socks (I got cute hot pink ones from Amazon) to avoid blood clots.
  • Stay hydrated!
  • Walk or stretch in your seat every hour or so to help maintain blood flow.

I’d also add these to that list:

  • Bring snacks from home on the plane. The worst part of airport food is the price, so bring a box of granola bars from home in your carry-on.
  • Wear comfy clothes that don’t restrict your belly.
  • Don’t wear a bra without underwire.
  • Wear shoes you can easily take on and off.
  • Bring a blanket, or a scarf that can function as a blanket, as well as a travel pillow. Yes, they give them to you for free, but they don’t really wash them frequently. I’d suggest using the free pillow as back support and the one you bring for your head.
  • Use the restroom right before boarding so you’re not stuck having to pee during the boarding process (this has happened to me on too many occasions to count).
  • If you have horrible heartburn like I do, remember to bring a small thing of Tums or other antacid with you!

preparing for international travel while pregnant

While I wasn’t able to plan my travel for the ideal time-frame, I am lucky to still be in my second trimester when I leave for Spain today. It’s recommended by pretty much anyone you talk to that you travel during your second trimester for safety purposes. If you’re traveling too late into your third trimester, you could risk having to have your child in a foreign country. Not a girl’s ideal vacation, if you ask me.

As I said, Preparing for international travel while pregnant can be tricky, but now that I feel prepared for my trip today, I’m excited to finally go! Do you have any other tips for traveling internationally while pregnant? Comment with them below! I’d love to hear.

And remember, if you’re looking for a more holistic approach to prenatal care and birth, Baby+Co!


*While I have been compensated for this post, all opinions are my own.*