by EMILIE FILOU
Provided you are fit, healthy and enjoying a trouble-free pregnancy, with a little planning and some minor concessions you can have a great trip while pregnant.
Check with your doctor or midwife that they’re happy for you to travel. They’ll also be able to advise on medications and what to do about immunisations and other disease prevention.
Policies vary depending on where you live, so check the fine print. Broadly speaking, if you're European travelling in Europe, most policies will cover you if you have a trouble-free pregnancy.
As with every condition, you’ll be covered for unexpected events, not routine appointments. Just take your medical notes with you, should anything happen.
But in Australia, for example, insurance provider won't cover a pregnant woman past 32 weeks. Contact your insurer before you set off; it could be extremely costly if you go into labour while abroad.
Many airlines put restrictions on pregnant women in their third trimester and the restrictions vary depending on whether you are flying long or short haul.
Check the requirements before you book. In Europe, as a rule, the cut-off point is 36 weeks for a single pregnancy, 32 for twins/triplets.
Once you’re past 28 weeks, some carriers ask for a letter from your doctor or midwife confirming your due date and that there are no complications with the pregnancy.
Ferry companies tend to be fairly accommodating, usually allowing pregnant women to travel well into their third trimester, though restrictions vary.
Ferries & cruises
Cruise companies are much more restrictive due to lengthy periods at sea: the cut-off point is 24 weeks. Some river cruise operators lift these restrictions but this isn’t universal.
Health professionals advise pregnant women not to travel to malaria-prevalent areas because pregnancy reduces the body’s immunity to the disease.
Malaria, zika and dengue fever prevention
If you must go, your options for prophylaxis will be more limited than usual: some drugs cannot be taken at all during pregnancy; others can only be prescribed during the last six months.