Planning a holiday abroad
Is it OK to fly?
According to guidelines issued in February 2015, it’s safe for pregnant women to fly until 37 weeks – which means you can fly safely while you’re in your 36th week. If you’re pregnant with twins, you can fly safely until 32 weeks if there are no pregnancy complications.
However, this isn’t law and airlines have different policies on letting pregnant women fly – some will not carry a woman in her 35th or 36th week. So you must check with the airline before you buy your ticket and let the airline know when you book. Once you’re more than 27 weeks pregnant, you’ll also need to get either a signed doctor’s note or an airline fit to fly form signed by your doctor or midwife.
From a personal safety point of view, you need to think about your own health history. “If you’re having a healthy pregnancy, flying’s fine,” says midwife Pat Gould. “If you have a history of miscarriage or premature labour, or problems with blood circulation, check with your midwife first.”
“Will travel insurance cover my pregnancy?”
Generally, yes, but check the small print for restrictions. “Most insurers cover you up until 12 weeks before your due date,” says Graeme Trudgill of the British Insurance Brokers’ Association. “Although BIBA members insure pregnant mums up until eight weeks before due date, you must tell them about your pregnancy and any medical complications. If you’re pregnant with heart problems and want to climb mountains in Nepal, they probably won’t insure you. But if you have mild diabetes and fancy a week in France, that should be fine.”
“Should I carry my antenatal notes around with me?”
You never know when you might need them, so always have your notes handy. “These days, most mums keep their own antenatal notes,” says midwife Pat Gould. “Pop them in your hand-baggage if you’re going away. If you need to see a doctor while you’re away, your notes will contain important information about your pregnancy.”