Traveling by commercial airplane before week 36 of pregnancy is generally considered safe if you have a healthy pregnancy. Even so, if you are pregnant, check with your healthcare provider before you fly. For healthy pregnant women, traveling by plane from time to time is almost always safe. Most airlines allow pregnant women to fly in the country until approximately 36 weeks of pregnancy.
Your gynecologist or other health professional can provide you with proof of your due date if you need it. If you are planning an international flight, the cut-off time for travel may be earlier. The best time to travel depends on how you feel. Many pregnant women like to travel during the second trimester.
At this time, you may not have as much morning sickness or be as tired as you were in the beginning of your pregnancy. And as your belly gets bigger, you still find it comfortable to move. As you get closer to your due date, walking, sitting, and even sleeping can be very uncomfortable. Pregnant travelers can generally travel safely with proper preparation.
However, they should avoid some destinations, including those at risk of Zika and malaria. Learn more about traveling during pregnancy and what steps you can take to keep you and your baby healthy. Some women prefer not to travel during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy because of nausea and vomiting and feeling very tired during these early stages. The risk of miscarriage is also higher in the first 3 months, whether you are traveling or not.
If you're enjoying a healthy pregnancy, traveling by plane is likely to be safe. Pregnant travelers should avoid traveling to areas with malaria, as it can be more serious for pregnant women. Pregnant travelers may want to include in their kit prescription medications, hemorrhoid cream, antiemetic medications, antacids, prenatal vitamins, medications for vaginitis or thrush, and support hoses, as well as items recommended for all travelers. With the right precautions, such as travel insurance, most women can travel safely well into pregnancy.
You should check that your travel insurance covers you for your travel destination, the stage of your pregnancy, and any pre-existing health conditions. Also, see the CDC's Blood Clots While Traveling page for more tips on how to avoid blood clots while traveling. The International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers (IAMAT) has a worldwide directory of doctors who provide medical care to travelers. If you traveled and you feel sick, especially if you have a fever, talk to a healthcare provider right away and let them know about your trip.
It is possible to travel by air, sea, road or train, including international travel, although some types of travel may be restricted towards the end of your pregnancy. Some steps you can take to plan for unexpected events include obtaining travel insurance, learning where to get medical care while traveling, packing a travel kit, and enrolling in the State Department STEP. Cruise ships may not allow you to travel after 24 to 28 weeks of pregnancy and you may need to have a note from your doctor stating that you are fit to travel.