International Travel in 3Rd Trimester

Updated on November 10, 2010
K.R. asks from Fort Collins, CO
13 answers

Hi everyone. My boss has requested I come to London for work when I will be 33 weeks pregnant. He understands if I can't b/c of the pregnancy, but nonetheless, I would like to prove myself a committed team member, and if travel is deemed safe for me, I'd like to go. I have a midwife appointment tomorrow and intend to bring this up with my midwife of course.

That being said, I've traveled overseas while pregnant several times in the past, but never in the 3rd trimester (although I have traveled domestically on a plane as late as 35 weeks). I have always had low-risk, full-term pregnancies, and have no reason to suspect at this point that this one would be any different.

I also want to mention I will be in London, where there is great prenatal care, should I go into early labor, and I also have a brother who lives a few miles from where I'll be staying, so I have some family support. I'll be traveling in business class, so the flight will be relatively comfortable and I won't be too cramped. I also checked with my insurance and I'm covered should I need emergency care related to the baby.

How late did you travel while pregnant? Any experiences anyone could share?


***I just wanted to edit to add PLEASE read above paragraph. I am ok to travel according to the airline and my insurance covers care while I am there up until 40 weeks. I also have family there, so yes I have a safe place for baby on the remote chance she should be born there***

***Also wanted to add I am looking for experience from those who traveled late in pregnancy - I'm not looking for random opinions***

***I do not have an OB, just a midwife - she is my decision maker***
THANK YOU to the responses I have gotten so far.

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

Thanks everyone.

I'm not sure what to do. I definitely don't WANT to go in the grand scheme of things. I would prefer to stay home with my two boys and my large pregnant self! But I work for a company that is based in London, and part of my job requirements are to make occasional trips there to see my team in person, and help out during particularly busy times for our business. I have not been there since March of this year. If I choose not to go in January (when I'm 33 weeks), then I'll be pushing a year by the time the baby is born. My concern then is that I won't have much leverage to say "no" when they ask me to come, and I have a nursing baby at home. To me the lesser evil is to just suck it up and go now (if it is safe), and then be able to hopefully push off another trip for a year, until my baby is weaned. It's a catch-22. I do love my job, I have been with the company for 6 years, and they treat me VERY well. But unfortunately, since I negotiated to move and live in Dallas, part of the agreement is to travel to the home office. And so far they have been very fair and understanding that I have children at home. So....ugh. I wish I wasn't in this position.

Of course if I have a premature baby it would be a disaster for me to have to stay in London for 7+weeks until she is ready to leave the hospital. I have 2 little boys (1.5 and 3.5) here, that I could never be away from that long. So really I need to consider what the true odds are that I WOULD go into labor at that very early stage (after having two completely healthy and full-term pregnancies already). I can't avoid everything in my life due to unlikely "what-if" scenarios. I need to make a logical and educated decision. Again...ugh.

Thanks everyone for the feedback on your own experiences.

More Answers



answers from Charlotte on


2 moms found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

Depends on your Doctor okaying it....not just the Mid-wife saying so...
Depends on the airlines... each being different
Depends... on IF say, you do go into labor early... and thus can't work... and with a Newborn... will you then... feel good about traveling, with a newborn... back to the USA... on an overseas trip... and your newborn... not having had any vaccinations yet... or is exposed to anyone who is sick etc. on a plane? AND if giving birth in the UK... then, again, will your Insurance cover newborn care and subsequent well-baby check-ups etc... and do you have a Pediatrician here in the USA already? You would have to designate one... for Insurance... as well etc.
You said that you are covered for "emergency care" related to the baby... but is that for ALL baby care/check ups and everything??? Or are there exceptions???

How long... will you have to stay in the UK????
If it is just a short jaunt... I would not fly there, just for say 1 week... and being 33 weeks pregnant... just to prove to my boss... that I can do it.

How long have you been with this company?
Do you qualify yet... for FMLA leave???? After you give birth? Have you planned your maternity leave or absence with your Company yet???

Once baby is born, for me personally... I would not want to fly... overseas... with a Newborn... especially in the baby's first 3 months.. just because a newborn's immune system is not even fully developed yet. I heard of a couple, that lost their baby, on a domestic trip... because the baby contracted Pertussis, and had not yet received, the vaccination for it. For example.

Just some things I would think about... if I were 33 weeks pregnant. And of course, I would consult with my Husband about it... since it has to do with him as well... and how he feels about my and the baby's... well being etc.

Next: so you will be 33 weeks, at the time of this trip. But... then, how many weeks pregnant, will you be when the trip is over and you have to return to the USA???? Will you be too far long at that point, to take a plane ride... overseas???

And will it be winter time at that time??? If so, it will be darn cold... in the UK and for a newborn... if you have it there. Do you have baby gear/winter clothes/strollers/car seats at your disposal... in the UK, and for on the plane ride back... if you do need to and if your baby is born there????

ALSO.... if your baby is born there in England... she/he will not be a "US" Citizen??? I would check on that....

My OB/GYN for example... from about 35 weeks, forbids travel. AND he typically signs off a woman from work... from about 37 weeks or 38 weeks.

All the best,

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

As someone who writes a lot of documentation for the travel industry, just make sure that you have documentation for an actual MD (I know you're using a midwife and that's great, but to a pesky ticket agent or the wrong airline official -not the same), showing that you are fine to fly. Before you purchase a ticket, speak to the airline you plan to fly and ask them if they have any policy about pregnant women flying. A number of airlines can and will refuse you boarding privileges if you're in your 3rd trimester! It's great that you've flown before when pregnant, so have I, but a lot of times it comes down to the individuals you're dealing with when you are at the airport and boarding the plane. Make sure you have a name, job title and ph# if possible of the person from the airline who tells you it's fine with that airline to fly. Perhaps you can get them to email you and you can print that out and take it. Better to be safe than sorry (or worse -to be angry, frustrated and have your blood pressure go up because of problems at the airport)!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Topeka on

Nope i'll stay right here at home..

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Spokane on

Personally I wouldn't risk it, but it's totally up to your doctor/midwife and you. It sounds like you're being really responsible about the whole thing and I'm sure if you go with your instincts you'll make the right decision for you :)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I also use a midwife & have had 4 healthy full term pregnancies. I am 33 weeks right now and just got back tonight from a short 2 night trip from Dallas to Birmingham. No problems at all. Didn't even think about not flying. BUT, London is far away, that's a super long flight & you have 2 young boys to think about should anything happen while you are there. I have never flown overseas, but would not like to deliver by myself, without my husband, in a premature situation like that. Can you go right now, when you are not so far along? I'm like you, I wouldn't want to leave my new baby either should you be "forced" to go after the baby arrives. I'm interested to see what you decide! Good luck with this one!



answers from Dallas on

I flew to the UK when I was 35 weeks there was no issues. I just ensured that every hour I got up and walked up around the plane to avoid clots and swelling. That was my only side effect ankle swelling but no real issues



answers from Dallas on

I haven't flown in late pregnancy, but I have been on a 3 hour car trip at 31 weeks. All the little bumps brought on some contractions - my husband and I had to pull off the road a couple times for me to pace and take some deep breaths to stop them. I promised myself that I would never do that again! A plane ride may be more or less bumpy, just depending on the weather that day.



answers from Dallas on

My midwife wasn't thrilled about me traveling at 33 weeks, but I did it anyway. No problems. I didn't fly as far as London. Although you can never know what's going to happen for sure, the odds are in your favor. You've had normal full-term pregnancies before and haven't shown any signs (I'm assuming) of anything other than a normal full-term pregnancy this time. Do what you have to do. It's just my opinion, but I think it would be easier to go now than to leave a nursing newborn at home.



answers from Dallas on

The latest I have ever traveled while pregnant is 7 1/2 months. I prefer not to travel after that, mainly because I am so uncomfortable, but it sounds like you have that covered.

Since it's okay with the airline and your midwife to travel, and it sounds like having the baby overseas wouldn't be a huge issue, here are my only concerns:

1. If you were to have a preemie while overseas, would you be willing and able to stay overseas for 7-10 weeks if your baby needed to stay in the hospital for a while?

2. Will you really want to travel? If this is a trip you really want to go on, I would say go. If you're at all ambivalent, I wouldn't. Especially if this is your first time being pregnant, you don't know how you'll feel at 33 weeks. You may not want to go anywhere.



answers from Dallas on

I flew on a domestic flight at 35 weeks and had no problems with the actual flying. My only issue was the long treks across the airport terminals. My advice would be not to be afraid to ask for assistance if you have a long way to walk. They can get you a ride if you ask. It is important that you stay calm and relaxed. If you are going to worry while traveling that can cause the most problems. Have fun! Sounds like you have your bases covered if there is an emergency.


answers from Dallas on

I flown to Guatemala 3 times during pregnancy. I too have family there. I was 33 weeks my last trip. Got a little crampy from sitting in COACH for 3 hours and I needed to potty 3 times but other than that no problems! My doc. did require I come in for a below the belt check 24 hrs before leaving and upon my return!

US airports sent me right through xray security but Guatemala padded me down because they said it wasn't safe to walk through! More considerate toward expecting moms in Central America.

I think your safe to go. Sounds like a fun trip! BUT don't do it because you feel you have to prove something to your boss team. It's your call... follow your gut!

Best of Luck!



answers from Anchorage on

I moved to the UK in my 7th month. The doctor told me I could fly until my 35th week, and the airlines never asked about how far along I was or anything, and I was very obviously pregnant. The only issue I had was really bad swelling in my feet, so I would were loose shoes just in case so you can still get them on. But of course, talk with your midwife before you confirm with your boss.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions