You have a baby on the way, or plan to do so? Note that under normal circumstances, pregnancies are not supposed to hamper your passion to travel. If you are an avid traveler, like I am, you would not think twice to plan a babymoon — or even babymoons.
Actually, travelling during pregnancy would gives several benefits.
First, you and your spouse have intimate time alone before the baby is born. You have time to resolve the unresolved. You have the chance to exercise your teamwork. Mind you, raising a kid DOES needs parents strong collaboration.
Second, a happy mommy equals a healthy baby. Ever heard of this? Picture it, which one make you happier: sitting in the cubicle trying your ass off to please your boss or lying on the white sand with your husband rubbing you bulging belly.
Third, you introduce your baby to new places, as she/he will be citizen of the world.
A babymoon would be much easier if you are pregnant with number one.
During my first pregnancy, I traveled extensively from the first trimester until the very last days before the delivery. Two of the trips were backpacking trips overseas, where I still had to carry up to 40 litres backpack. More on this here.
Now I am pregnant with my second child, with the first one being 3 years old. Compared to my first pregnancy, I am more careful this time (drink less coffee, maintain my folic acid intake, drink milk, less heavy lifting etc) although — similar to my first — I don’t experience any kind of morning sickness, vomiting, nausea, etc. In short, I’m healthy like a race horse.
So far (10 weeks pregnant) I have travelled overseas twice: to Hong Kong and Macau (6 weeks pregnant but I had not found out) and Yogya in Indonesia (8 weeks). I plan on having two more trips overseas before my pregnancy reaches 7 months.
Here are some tips from me on how to plan your babymoon:
Feel it and consult your Obgyn
If you feel healthy and strong, you may be healthy and strong. If you are not sure, consult your Obgyn (it reminds me that I have not yet had an Obgyn in Kuala Lumpur). A healthy mom with healthy baby should be okay to travel, even for a long haul.
Location does matters
I backpacked to India during my 4th month of first pregnancy, which I don’t recommend. Babymoon is the time for mommies to relax, breathe the fresh clean air, enjoy every bits of goodness universe offers. When I found out that I was pregnant (8 weeks), immediately my husband suggested Nepal for babymoon. I dropped the offer from the table, no excuse. When you are pregnant, you will experience shortage of breath. Going to a 4000+ meters above the sea levels is a big no. Getting an AMS (altitude motion sickness) is the last thing you want to have.
The best timing
In my opinion, the best timing to travel during pregnancy is the second trimester. In the first trimester, there is still a huge chance of miscarriage (and morning sickness for most). In the third trimester, many of the airplanes will not fly you anywhere. Also, your tummy will be huge, it’s getting heavy to walk around, and you will experience back pain as well. Hence, second trimester is the very best phase for your babymoon. Your have accustomed to your pregnancy, but your mobility is still pretty intact.
Means of travel
During my first pregnancy I took airlines, trains, buses, private cars, motorcycles. I was okay flying although the seat is so tight as it is a low cost airlines. I favour trains to buses during long haul land travel due to minimum bumpiness. I traveled 12+ hours in our sedan car when I was 8.5 month along, it definitely killed my butt, and I had to cross my legs through bumpy roads of Central Java, Indonesia. Plus, I checked every signage of midwives along the way.
Documents and Regulation
Airlines have different regulation, but most of them allow pregnant passengers below 30-32 weeks. Check accordingly. In addition to that, I always asked my Obgyn to write me a letter stating that I was healthy and had no problem to fly. Airlines would also ask you to sign a disclaimer.
What to bring
Aside from my normal luggage, I would bring these:
1. Fruits (my fave is strawberries), good for a land travel because it will reduce the chance of nausea.
2. Biscuits, preggers are hungry all the time. Heavy meal is not recommended, better to have light meals often. Bananas will fill your empty stomach and give the folic acid your baby needs.
3. Medicine. I had several cases of bad headaches (my worst was when my husband and I were lost in a wood in West Java. It was dark already and pouring rain. Even the GPS in our car could not trace where we were). Not: I only took the Panadol when the pain was unbearable I couldn’t open my eyes. I also have Minyak Angin Cap Kapak (Axe Brand Oil) to rub my head or belly with when they ache mildly.
4. Vitamins, whatever your doctor gives you, folic acid supplement or whatever.
5. Wet tissues and dry tissues. There will be time you need to wipes your vagina because you tend to pee very often. Make sure it is clean, dry, and odourless. You will be much more comfortable during your trip. Extra underwear if necessary.
6. Pillow. Normal pillow, neck pillow whatever makes you more comfortable. You can you the pillow when you want to sleep, put in under your butt, or behind your back. Whatever necessary.
7. Cream. Travelling in a car or planes will cause your skin dry due to the aircond. When it dries, it itches. The cream will help you soothe the skin, especially your tummy.
That’s it for now. I’ll let you know if I discover more tips during my next trips. Drop a comment of questions on the box, I’ll try to reply asap.
Enjoy your pregnancy and happy travelling!