Travel at 39 weeks — The Bump
3rd Trimester

Travel at 39 weeks

My baby sister will be graduating on May 7th in Indianapolis. My due date is May 13th. I plan on going but of course I have alot of concerns. I have two other adults riding with me to do the driving because it takes 9 hours to get there.  I haven't told my OB yet. I will be breaking the news to him at my next appointment.

Anyone else traveled so close to their due date before?

Re: Travel at 39 weeks

  • I wouldn't do it.  I'm sure you're Dr. will tell you not to as well.  9 Hours is a long time, but they also want you to always be near a hospital.
  • If it were me, I wouldn't go. Nine hours is a bit too far at 39 weeks for comfort. I also know my OB would highly recommend against it (he wants us to stay around home from I think 36 weeks on).
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  • I have a feeling your doctor is going to advise against it. If you still plan on going, I'd have some sort of plan in case you do go into labor while you're out of town.
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  • Oh goodness - I wouldn't do it.  As much as my lil sis graduation is, I wouldn't risk being that far away from my doctor and hospital. 

    I wouldn't be surprised if your doc advises you not to travel that far away during the last few weeks.  

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  • i had eyebrows raised when i said i was travelling 5 hours at 36 weeks by my MW - so i don't think i'd be encouraging travel at 39 weeks for a distance that far....
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  • My MW said their guideline is not traveling more than an hour from the hospital at this point in pregnancy.  If you know that there will be good emergency facilities where you are going to be then maybe, but I'd be really nervous about a trip that long.
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  • image blathnat:
    My MW said their guideline is not traveling more than an hour from the hospital at this point in pregnancy.  If you know that there will be good emergency facilities where you are going to be then maybe, but I'd be really nervous about a trip that long.

    This - but also, I don't know what hospitals/insurance policies are for delivering at a hospital out of your area.  If you go into labor, you will most probably be admitted - meaning that you will deliver and recover at that hospital.  If it is 9 hours away from home, that means you will also have to travel 9 hours home - with a newborn while recovering from childbirth...

     

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  • I would not do it. That is just too close for comfort to your due date. Plus you will be uncomfortable in the car, not to mention sitting in those uncomfortable seats during the ceremony. If for some reason you decide to go, pm me after you see what hospitals your insurance covers and I can give you advislce about which one might be a better option...although I still don't think you should go.
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  • Sorry, but that is a very bad idea and I'm sure your sister would realize that's not a safe thing for you to do. Regardless of possibly going into labor in Indianapolis, what if you go into labor halfway there? Just randomly try and find a hospital along the way? No way could you even pay me to do it.
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  • I know after 36 weeks, you are not allowed to travel farther than 2 hours from home.
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  • kg_08kg_08 member

    Not a great idea. Nothing may happen, but then again something could. Would you be comfortable going into labor and delivering at a hospital you've never been to with people you've never seen? It could happen.

    Oh also that 9 hour car ride would be more like 11 by the time you keep getting out to pee and stretch your legs (which is important!)

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  • It is ultimately up to you, but there is no way I would go. Besides being so far away from your hospital and OB, the car ride alone is not worth it. I am uncomfortable after 20 minutes in the car, 9+ hours is out of the question.

    If you do decide to go, make sure you get copies of your prenatal records to bring with you, have your carseat and anything you might need for at least a week postpartum, and get out of the car and stretch your legs at least every 1.5 hours. 

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  • Frankly I don't even know how you could physically do it, I would be SO uncomfortable and the pee stops would costs us at least an hour of time lol.

    But my insurance won't even cover me if I go more than a couple (I forget, 2, 3 hours?) hours away from my hospital at this point.

    It doesn't sound worth risking to me. Ask them to record it for you. :(

  • 39 weeks is not a pleasant time in pregnancy.  Regardless of what your OB might say, it would be physically way too uncomfortable and difficult.  And 9 hours there, also means 9 hours back.  I can barely manage the grocery store right now, much less 18 hours of driving in a short timeframe.
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  • I'm all for travel late into pregnancy because I travel a ton, but I think this may be a little too far, a little too late. 
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  • I think it's crazy to go - and I'm about the furthest thing from an alarmist and have very easy pregnancies.

    Aside from the logistics of what happens when you go into labor 9 hours from home...no way would I be comfortable in a car for 9 hours at this point (or even 5 weeks ago!) - and again, I have easy pregnancies! 

  • image alyson686:
    I'm all for travel late into pregnancy because I travel a ton, but I think this may be a little too far, a little too late. 

    This except I don't travel a ton.  Of course you are "allowed" to travel.  No one can physically stop you.  And I would not be bothered by delivering at a strange hospital, either.  But that is a long trip, made longer by water/stretch/pee breaks that could potentially get even longer with a newborn.

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  • image MrandMrsAndrews:

    If it is 9 hours away from home, that means you will also have to travel 9 hours home - with a newborn while recovering from childbirth...

    This is a great point. Sure getting and returning will be uncomfortable and painful, I think traveling 9 hours at 39 weeks sounds miserable. But think about what it will actually mean if you go into labor there. You can have everything planned out on what you would do but you still have to drive 9 hours home, most likely bleeding and with a newborn. You'll have to stop all the time to feed and change. 11 hours in a car with a newborn baby...no way.

    And I don't want to be one of those 2x mom's that says "oh you just wait" but if this is your first baby then you probably don't realize how difficult it would be to do that drive with a newborn child. The possibility of that alone would be my reason for not going.

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  • image Gastro:

    DH and I are going away this weekend (38 weeks) by car, but only two hours away. 9 hours seems to far and like pp I would check to make sure your insurance will cover you that far away. I have travel insurance that covers me once I am 100 miles radius outside of my home, but I still need a doctor's note saying I am fit to travel to be covered by travel insurance for pregnancy/labor. 

    I am taking my hospital bag with me too - just incase we have to go straight to the hospital. Also remember if you deliver once you get there and you deliver at a different hospital 9 hours away you'll still need the car seat etc to take baby home in...

    who knows...by may 7th is just a few days before your due date, you may have already delivered by then... 

    All of this- you have to be jammed in a car for 9 hours (and at that point in your pregnancy it's going to be UNCOMFORTABLE) with a car seat that needs to be properly installed, your stuff for the trip, your hospital bag, and all the supplies you would need for LO in the event they arrive and you need to make a 9 hour trip home with them. You're going to do what you're going to do, but I think this is a TERRIBLE idea.

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  • I'm moving + traveling 5+ hours at 40w. I have a contingency plan for most of the entire trip. Other than that, if LO wants to show up mid-trip, it'll make for a good story. Just make sure that if you do go, you're comfortable and moving. 
  • I'm a very low-key person, not too worried about some of the mild risks (yes, I drink occasionally while pregnant! Lunchmeat several times a week!) and am flying ~2 hours to Milwaukee for my best friend in the world's wedding at 36.5 weeks.  My OB actually suggested that I fly instead of taking Amtrak for 15 hours (which I had first suggested). Worst case, I have the baby in Milwaukee and BFF's parents will help me out for a few days until we can fly home. :)

     

    Anyway, coming from me, I absolutely would not drive 9 hours to see graduation. Your OB will in no way sign off on it, either. Would you want to have baby in an intermediate state and get stuck there for several days with family staying in a hotel?

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  • I can't imagine being in the car for an hour, let alone 9 hours right now.
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  • AZ123AZ123
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    1. Check your insurance, you may not be covered if you deliver a certain distance away from home (this happened to my friend and she wound up with a c section and had to pay the bill herself).

    2. Bring the carseat.

    3. Map out hospitals along the way. Especially, because you might have a quick labor.

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  • Well since my water broke the day I hit 39 weeks theres no way I would recommend traveling that far that late. I wasn't dilated three days before at my last appt and I had no contractions. I never would have thought I would go early.

    As everyone else said would your insurance cover you that far away if you go into labor? Not only that but you would have a long drive back. I was in pain driving home from the hospital which was 30 mins. I couldn't have handled 9 hours.

    I will be surprised if you OB okays the trip. Yes, you don't have to listen but they do know what they are talking about. That long in a car is going to be incredibly uncomfortable and you would hve to stop and walk around a lot and thats going to add more time to the drive.

    Travel is not recommended at that point for a reason. I know most airlines wouldn't let you fly that far along either.

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  • I definitely wouldn't feel comfortable with this.  I'll be traveling 1.5 hours at 39 weeks pregnant for BIL's graduation (if I don't have any signs of going into labor before my due date by that point), and the only reason I'm okay with that is because DH and I would leave immediately if I began having contractions and head straight to the hospital.  9 hours is way too far to consider this.
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