Being pregnant has never been a reason for me to slow down too much on my travel plans (although it has meant we’ve had to cancel trips). In my mind, booking a holiday or mini break before baby arrives is essential. Getting away for your last trip as a couple or a family with one less child is an opportunity which shouldn’t be missed – assuming you are having an uncomplicated pregnancy. But, if you are unsure where to go or when to travel, here are some tips and ideas for travelling when pregnant along with details of some of my own personal experiences.

The Best Time To Travel

Ideally, if you are planning a big trip or relaxing holiday in the sun, you want to go in your second trimester when the sickness and nausea should have subsided. During my first pregnancy we went to Barbados when I was in the early stages of pregnancy (7 weeks) with my husband and his family. Despite the picturesque location, I felt pretty sick and very tired for much of it and sitting watching everyone else drinking in the evenings was not a great deal of fun! Since then, we have stuck to short city breaks during the first trimester and then bigger trips to hot locations in the second trimester. If you are want to do something in your third trimester, how about a UK spa break (although steer clear of the sauna and jacuzzzi). I wouldn’t recommend going too far afield after 32 weeks.

Spa break at Rockliffe Hall
Enjoying a spa break at Rockliffe Hall, Co. Durham at 34 weeks

Where To Go?

It is totally up to you but here are some points to consider.

– You may not want to undergo a long-haul flight, especially in the latter stages of pregnancy. We went to Sri Lanka when I was 18 weeks (12 hour flight) it was manageable but I know if I was over 24 weeks it would have been far more uncomfortable

– Long distance travel also carries the risk of blood clots (deep vein thrombosis) so make sure you are moving around and drinking lots of fluids

– Consider flying premium economy or business as a treat. If that isn’t financially possible, it’s worth checking whether there is any chance of an upgrade when you check in.

– Avoid very hot and humid countries if you aren’t used to the heat. Your body temperature is already higher than normal in pregnancy and with the extra weight can be exhausting and rather unbearable

– If doing a road trip take regular stops as sitting in one position for too long can be very uncomfortable

– Avoid going anywhere which requires vaccinations

– Check with your doctor if going somewhere exotic and there is the risk of Mosquito-bourne diseases. For example, due to the Zika virus pregnant women are being advised not to travel to parts of south and central America and some areas of the Caribbean.

What To Do?

Many people just want to relax and have some time to read and sit by the pool in peace so opt for a beach holiday or luxury hotel – which is fab. But don’t be afraid to mix things up. A city break or walks out in the countryside are great for keeping kit and reducing those swollen ankles and easing water retention. First time around we had a lovely week in Sicilly when I was around 28 weeks which had a mix of sightseeing and sitting by the pool. During my most recent pregnancy, our Sri Lanka trip involved a mix of hill walking and time by the beach and we did lot of city travel (probably a bit too much) when I was 30 weeks pregnant. It did involve a lot of walking so a couple of days of relaxation at the end would have been ideal.

Hiking in the Sri Lankan hills at 19 weeks pregnant

Don’t Forget To Take…

– Anti-bacterial gel – always handy to have but good to have an extra layer of hygiene when pregnant
– If doing lots of travelling by car (like we did in Sri Lanka and France/Italy) or have a long flight, then take a headrest with you so can get a bit of shut eye.
– Pack loose fitting, stretchable clothes to accommodate your growing bump
– Comfy, flat shoes and trainers if you are likely to do a lot of walking. I took two pairs of heels to Sicilly and wore one – once!
– Healthy snacks to keep your energy up on a long journey
– Make sure you always carry around some water
– Doctor’s notes – just in case you need medical attention

Need To Know

– Check your airline. Some require a doctor’s note after 28 weeks. Many don’t allow you to fly after 36 weeks or, if pregnant with twins, at 32 weeks
– Check the country you are travelling to has good medical facilities
– Make sure your travel insurance covers pregnancy

Extra Tips

– Keep it to you and your partner (and children if you already have them and can’t get away without them). Being pregnant can be exhausting and being around a lot of people can make it worse. Plus, your hormones can affect your mood so you might not be as easy going or sociable in a group as you normally are (or is that just me?)

– Book a mum-to-be spa treatment. How about a pedicure…painting toenails gets a bit trickier the bigger you get.

– If staying in one hotel, check the location. You don’t want to be stuck on a hotel at the top of a hill or (as we did in Sicilly) have to walk up several flights of stairs to get to the main town

-Make sure you factor in lots of breaks and don’t try to do too much

– Be careful what you eat and be wary of drinking tap water. If in doubt, drink bottled water only! The last thing you want is to get ill and many medication is not suitable when pregnant

-If you are prone to hay fever or any such ailments, take medication suitable to take during pregnancy with you

– Check out the NHS guidelines before you go

Whatever you do, enjoy your baby moon and some time together as a couple or family  before the new arrival comes along. 

How about pinning for later?

Tips For Travelling When pregnant

My Travel Monkey
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You Baby Me Mummy

36 Comments on Tips For Travelling When Pregnant 

  1. Cathy (MummyTravels)
    May 8, 2016 at 6:03 pm (2 years ago)

    Great tips – I agree you needn’t stop travelling just because you’re pregnant but the second trimester was definitely easiest. I did my last overseas trip landing back at 29 weeks and I probably couldn’t have gone on flying much longer.
    Cathy (MummyTravels) recently posted…12 reasons to visit Burma: In photosMy Profile

    • Wander Mum
      May 9, 2016 at 10:53 am (2 years ago)

      Yes, the thought of flying after 30 odd weeks does not appeal – unless it’s really short haul!!

    • Wander Mum
      May 9, 2016 at 10:51 am (2 years ago)

      Aww thanks Hun! Yea, it can be stressful…you’re not always 100% yourself and it can get tiring being around lots of people.

    • Wander Mum
      May 9, 2016 at 3:28 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks for reading Kate!

  2. Sally@Toddlers on Tour
    May 10, 2016 at 1:02 am (2 years ago)

    Great tips, I would probably add: check your travel insurance as some policies may not cover pregnancy as it is consider a pre existing medical condition. So instead perhaps keep your travels to within your home country
    Sally@Toddlers on Tour recently posted…Bali Family Holiday 2015: All the Travel StoriesMy Profile

    • Wander Mum
      May 11, 2016 at 8:39 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Sally… I had travel insurance in there somewhere but thanks for expanding…it’s very important you check!

  3. Ava @ My Meena Life
    May 10, 2016 at 10:32 am (2 years ago)

    My sister in law will be visiting soon and will be breaking 90% of your tips! I’ll have to try to keep things as relaxing as possible and maybe go for that spa treatment idea. Thanks for this post!

    • Wander Mum
      May 11, 2016 at 8:37 pm (2 years ago)

      Haha! Oh well…she’ll definitely appreciate the spa treatment!

  4. Cindy
    May 10, 2016 at 9:59 pm (2 years ago)

    Lots of very helpful tips! Agree with keeping it to short haul trips during the first trimester; we went to Miami when I was in the early stages and I was always so tired. It’s great how you’ve continued to travel during your pregnancy. Lovely photos! #MondayEscapes
    Cindy recently posted…Snapshots from Fano, Italy #2My Profile

    • Wander Mum
      May 11, 2016 at 8:26 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Cindy, we did do a fair bit of travel this time around but definitely keeping trips in the first and third trimester to short haul helped! Those early weeks are so exhausting – and with jet lag thrown in – it can be tough.

  5. Luke Strickland
    May 11, 2016 at 8:35 am (2 years ago)

    We went to Florida the other month while my wife was in her second trimester – very doable but standing in queues in Disney was hard for her sciatica. Plenty of good advice in this post!

    • Wander Mum
      May 11, 2016 at 1:07 pm (2 years ago)

      Thanks Luke…I can imagine you wife’s pain. Hope you had a lovely time otherwise though.

    • Wander Mum
      May 18, 2016 at 6:37 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you – no – not long at all – eek!

  6. Emma
    June 3, 2016 at 7:44 am (2 years ago)

    Great tips and I agree that you shouldn’t stop travelling just because you are pregnant but I also agree that second trimester is the best time to do it. Also what you say about not going somewhere hot unless you are used to hot temps because your body will be feeling hot anyway, carrying a baby around, is a really good tip 🙂 #thelist
    Emma recently posted…12 steps to creating the perfect feminist wedding.My Profile

  7. wendy
    June 3, 2016 at 8:55 am (2 years ago)

    Great tips! I’m pregnant with baby number 2 and although we’re not going abroad we are going to centre parks when I will be 36 weeks pregnant! I’m gutted u can’t use the spa but I might see if they do some kind of mum to be treatments. I love the sound of all your travels though, looks like you’ve got the whole travelling when pregnant thing sorted 🙂 xx #TheList

  8. Julie S. @ Fab Working Mom Life
    June 4, 2016 at 12:50 am (2 years ago)

    Great tips here! While I wasn’t up for traveling abroad while pregnant, I did have a long road trip and a flight in my second trimester and being able to take lots of stops or sit at the isle and get up and walk was great.

    • Wander Mum
      June 5, 2016 at 9:24 am (2 years ago)

      Thank you Julie, second trimester is definitely the best time to get away! x

      • Zara
        June 9, 2016 at 10:42 pm (2 years ago)

        Did you have any vaccinations? I will be going to Sri Lanka at 18 weeks preggers and no health professional seems to know what the hell to do with me lol!

        • Wander Mum
          June 10, 2016 at 2:14 pm (2 years ago)

          Hi Zara, I didn’t have any vaccinations…but make sure yours are all up to date. I was 18 weeks too. We only visited central Sri Lanka and the southern coast. It may differ if going north but I don’t think so. Hope that helps.

    • Wander Mum
      June 9, 2016 at 7:38 pm (2 years ago)

      Thank you. Oh my goodness you poor thing! Pregnant AND crutches… nightmare! Thanks for hosting #thelist

  9. Claire
    August 14, 2017 at 11:11 am (7 months ago)

    Hello there, iam travelling to sri lanka soon, I will be 10weeks pregnant when we go, iam nervous about the mosquitos/dengue, we are planning one week site seeing and one week on the beach, wandered if you had any advice, thankyou

    • Wander Mum
      August 14, 2017 at 3:07 pm (7 months ago)

      Hi Claire, thank you for getting in touch. We avoided Colombo as Dengue is particularly bad in urban areas. Instead we went to Kandy, the tea lands and then to the beach. Take a look at my literary here I was careful with what I ate – no salads or food which may have been washed with water. We also stayed in quite high end accommodation. We had a great time! Do get in touch my email if you’d like any further information. Happy to help!

    • Zara
      August 14, 2017 at 7:32 pm (7 months ago)

      Hi! I went to Sri Lanka when I was 4 months pregnant last year. Stayed in Negombo. I had all the jabs and had no affect on the baby. I took boots brand sun cream and after sun with insect repellent already in it, and then any day trips we went on I took the jungle formula spray, think you can have it as long as it’s under a certain % Deet. I also got a little mosquito fan from boots, has a filter in it that send out bug repellent and kept it by the balcony door! As for food, if your staying in hotels your be fine, they know the waters not good so are quite hygienic in the hotels, it’s been the only place I’ve ever been where I’ve not had a dodgy tum! Also if venturing out into fields or tree areas then wear loose long trousers and long sleeve tops. I didn’t get bitten once following all the above! Xxx

      • Wander Mum
        August 23, 2017 at 8:01 pm (7 months ago)

        That’s great to hear Zara! So glad you had a good time in Sri Lanka without any issues. I was careful with what I ate too and stayed in higher end places. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your tips. Xx

  10. Laura
    October 16, 2017 at 9:31 pm (5 months ago)

    Hello! Great post. We’ve just booked our honeymoon to LA and Indonesia over Xmas and New Year. And now we’ve just found out we’re pregnant. We’re thinking of cancelling Indonesia given the current advice not to travel there due to Zika. So we’re looking at Sri Lanka where there’s no Zika. But there is Dengue Fever! I was interested to see you travelled to Sri Lanka. What precautions for Dengue did you take? Thanks!!

    • Wander Mum
      October 23, 2017 at 7:41 pm (5 months ago)

      Hi Laura, thank you for reading and getting in touch. We didn’t take anything for dengue fever and I’m not sure there is anything you can take other than the usual protection against mosquitoes. What we did do was avoid Colombo. The disease is more common there and in urban areas as a whole. Have a look at our itinerary. Good luck planning the honeymoon and huge congratulations on the pregnancy! I didn’t have any issues travelling in Sri Lanka while pregnant although I was careful what I ate (no street food) and we stayed in high end places. Please do see a health advisor before you travel though. All the best. Elizabeth

  11. Lou
    January 9, 2018 at 5:43 am (2 months ago)

    Hi Elizabeth! Great post. I want to travel to Sri Lanka but I will be around 19 weeks pregnant, like yourself. Not sure if anyone asked this question yet, but did you go to any safaris? Would love to go but not sure if it’s safe at 19 weeks. Thanks!

    • Wander Mum
      January 9, 2018 at 10:25 pm (2 months ago)

      Hi Lou, thank you for your kind words! I didn’t go on a safari while we were out there. I’m not sure there would be issues with being pregnant as such but do check with your GP. I suspect it’s more of a personal choice…what sort of safari would you do? When I did one in South Africa, it was early starts and there was a fair bit of bumping around in the jeep so may get uncomfortable but then it’s easier to do now than with a young child! Have fun whatever you decide. There are lots of other things to do in Sri Lanka too! Enjoy!


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