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10 Ways to Make Traveling While Pregnant Easier

 

Traveling while pregnant is not as easy as doing it while NOT pregnant, but it is a whole lot simpler than traveling with a baby! To make those last pre-baby trips as enjoyable as possible, we've gathered some tips to keep you calm, cool, and healthy.

Talk to Your Health Care Provider

a pregnant woman talking to a doctor

Before embarking on any trip while pregnant, it's a good idea to talk with your healthcare provider first. She'll give you the all-clear or a "waaait!" depending on how far along you are, your medical history, and current state. For example, for a long flight she may prescribe a shot of blood-thinner to prevent clots; suggest holding off until you've reached the second trimester; or have you stay close to home.

Know the Rules

a plane flying over clouds

Some airlines have rules about how far along pregnant women can fly—and you may actually need a note from your doctor. Maybe crazy, but probably no crazier than potentially having seat 24B as your L&D room. Call ahead or look at the airline's website for policies.

Make a Bathroom Plan

a sign for the ladies bathroom

If you're driving for your trip, make sure you have a decent sense of where the bathrooms are—and aren't. There are even some apps that can help. Also discuss with your travel mate ahead of time your need to stop frequently. Some folks are pedal-to-the-metal till you get there, and that is not going to work for you. Get him or her on-board with a stop-as-needed policy. If you're flying, make sure you get an aisle seat.

Bring Water

a bottle of water

Once you've located your pit stops, you'll be free to stay plenty hydrated, which is essential for you and baby. This might mean bringing a few non-plastic water bottles (glass or stainless steel) if you're driving, since when plastic heats up in a warm car it can leach nasty chemicals in the water; if it tastes "plastic-y" ditch it. Or if you're flying, make sure to stock up on water bottles (plastic's just fine there) at one of those overpriced kiosks. Best $92 you ever spent.

Bring Healthy Snacks

a pile of nuts and dried fruit

As a mama-to-be, you will be much happier to have balanced blood sugar—and your baby will thank you. This means bringing food from home that's not too salty (you don't want to swell MORE, do you?) and not too sugar-y. Think baggies of nuts and raisins, bags of cut up carrots, fruit, hummus and pita, etc. If you're driving a cooler is your friend, even if you're stopping for full meals.

Dress Comfortably

a pregnant woman holding her baby bump

Perhaps this goes without saying, but pregnancy dressing can be weird. One dress may make your belly itch, or those maternity jeans may really dig in once you're sitting for a while. Think loose and flawy fit, in breathable, natural fabrics like 100 percent cotton.

Bail Out of Anything

a pregnant woman holding her hands in the symbol of a heart over her belly

Traveling is exhausting, pregnancy is exhausting. You now have a very round, prominent reason to say No to anything you don't feel like doing. Anything. Too tired for dinner? Yawn and head up to the room with a snack. Too tired to schlep around town? Put your feet up with a book. Almost no one will dare argue and you might actually have a kicked-back vacation you enjoy.

Wear COMFY Shoes

a photo of a womens shoes surrounded by drawings of hearts

Feet in pregnancy can be big and swollen. Make sure you put them in something they're comfortable in. And also, your whole center of gravity has shifted and vulnerable joints like your ankles and knees are holding way more weight than ever before. Make sure those shoes are also sturdy. Also, falling is the last thing you need right now. Trade flip-flops for secure sandals with adjustable straps. Swap sloppy flats for cute, grippy sneakers.

Time It Well

a pregnant woman lying on the sofa while reading a book

Most people take a babymoon at around six months. That's usually when you're out of the woods nausea-wise, actually look glowy-pregnant, and feel pretty good. Go too early and you'll be barfing into the barf bag or stressing hard about the results of prenatal tests. Go too late and you'll be less comfortable and more likely to be concerned about going into early labor.

Locate a Hospital or Doctor

the outside of a hospital building

Though it's unlikely that you'll go into early labor while traveling, it's a good idea to scout some medical places you trust beforehand. This is why you may choose travel in a developed nation with good healthcare. It's super-unlikely you'll need it, but good to have if you do.