Romantic retreat or your worst nightmare?
With romance in the air, we are looking at the very modern and popular trend of the babymoon!!
This is when parents-to-be take one last holiday together before the arrival of bubs – whether it’s your first or third child it’s a perfect opportunity for ‘us time’ before your world becomes all about late-night feeds, leaky boobs and stinky nappies.
The key is relaxation, so don’t let your dream location become your worst nightmare, here are 5 tips to make the journey a little smoother for all three of you:
1. Research medical facilities
It’s a commonly held view of medical practitioners that in a normal, healthy pregnancy commercial air travel is fine, and the best time to travel is during the second trimester; most women have passed the worst of the morning sickness and the risk of miscarriage significantly decreases after 13 weeks (do note, there is no evidence to support that air travel has any impact on the likelihood of miscarriage).
That being said, at any point in your pregnancy, you might need to seek urgent medical help. Have a plan in mind if anything is to go wrong; do you know where nearest hospital/clinics are at your destination? Can you speak the language or at least learn a few key words related to pregnancy (eg how many weeks you are, bleeding, pain – pointing with a pained expression only gets you so far).
Take any maternity notes with you to help bring any new doctor up to speed.
2. Forget remote islands
Remove the notion of how romantic a tiny little island to yourselves might be (oh I wish!); besides the lack of medical facilities, getting to your remote little island is also a big problem.
If travelling by boat, speed boats are certainly out of the question even if the motion sickness on a ferry doesn’t get you; but more importantly, pregnant women shouldn’t be travelling on small, unpressurised aircraft – see why on my flying while pregnant page.
Related Reading: Best babymoon destinations around the world
3. Help, I’m stranded!
Every airline has their own rules about when they will take an expectant mother (we have a very detailed guide to over 40 international airlines expectant mothers’ policies here).
As a general rule, most airlines will require a doctor’s letter after 28 weeks in a single pregnancy to show that you are fit to travel (read more about doctor’s letters here) and after 36 weeks they may refuse you to fly. Rather than finding yourself stranded, make sure you get a letter from your doctor/midwife within 7 days before flying to ensure your safe passage, there AND back and read the airlines rules carefully, including any code-share arrangements that may differ from the airline you booked with.
Related Reading: What are the top gifts you should buy for travel-loving parents-to-be?
4. Veto the long and winding road
If flying feels completely out of the question for you, or you are well into your third trimester you may prefer a destination a little closer to home and consider a road trip. Think carefully about how far from home you want to drive and the terrain.
You will likely need to pee much more frequently than you usually do (will there be sufficient motorway stops?) and windy roads can make you incredibly nauseous, even if you don’t usually suffer. Remember how much blood you have pumping around your body working overtime – perhaps save the romantic mountain retreat for another day?
5. Good news, sex is safe, bad news – err, how?
Ok, this is a family website people – I won’t go into the ins and outs – you’ll need to find a mommy blog for that, but think logistics; you want this to be a romantic escape but if you are feeling nothing short of a bloated whale that’s beached itself with puffy ankles, haemorrhoids and a bad case of reflux, you are not going to feel terribly romantic.
Try to time your babymoon before you are too close to the end of the road and the worst of the pregnancy symptoms kick in so you can actually enjoy it still. (Do note when you are 10 days overdue and you’re convinced that semen softens the cervix, there are means and ways to have sex still, bloated whale or not!!)
Lord is there anything left I can do??
Yes! – Don’t get me wrong, I am not all negative-nancy about all things babymoon but remember they are meant for you both to relax!
- Listen to your own body and discuss any travel plans with your medical practitioner.
- Ensure they are in agreement that you are O.K. to travel and ask for any further advice they may give you for your journey ahead.
- Choose a destination not too far from home and not too far along in your pregnancy.
- Understand your emergency options before you go.
And my best advice? Take this time to do your pelvic floor exercises and sleep, sleep like you will never sleep again!!
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Have you had a babymoon go wrong? What advice can you give to other mums and dads to enjoy those last precious moments together? Feel free to comment on your experience below.
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