latest in pregnancy you feel comfortable flying? — The Bump
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latest in pregnancy you feel comfortable flying?

I am living in the Caribbean and plan to go home to the U.S. to deliver baby #1.  I don't get much maternity leave (6 weeks paid then unpaid up to 12 weeks total), so I don't want to waste it by going back to the U.S. too early only to sit on my butt waiting to go into labor.  OTOH I'm not keen to deliver here.  It probably wouldn't be a disaster to deliver here, but I'd prefer my provider at home and to be near my family.  I already spoke with work and can do 2 weeks of work via internet with pay before starting my leave, so that will help.

The flights home (2) are both 3 hours each, with a total travel time door-to-door of just under 10 hours.  I'm sure in late pregnancy, that's going to be pretty miserable, but I don't have another good option.  I checked with the airline, and as long as they have an OB's note within 48 hours of the flight, they will take me up to 7 days before delivery (not that I would wait that long though!)  I'm a FTM which means I'm more likely to go past due date than early, but in my immediate family, all babies have come at 38 weeks.

When would you go back home to deliver?

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Re: latest in pregnancy you feel comfortable flying?

  • Because of my history of a preemie and other complications, I wouldn't fly on a 10-hour trip past 28ish weeks, I think. That's just me personally, though.

    If I were in your shoes, I would probably head over at 36weeks. Then you can work online for 2 weeks (takes you to 38 weeks) and then do paid leave for 6 weeks (even if you go 2 weeks overdue and have to be induced that would still take you to 2 weeks after baby's born) and then come back sometime during your 12 weeks unpaid when you're feeling up to it. If you end up having a c/s, you probably won't want to be dealing with an infant and suitcases and flying for a few weeks PP.


    BFP1: DD1 born April 2011 at 34w1d via unplanned c/s due to HELLP, DVT 1 week PP
    BFP2: 3/18/12, blighted ovum, natural m/c @ 7w4d
    BFP3: DD2 born Feb 2013 at 38w4d via unplanned RCS due to uterine dehiscence

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  • frlcbfrlcb member
    I flew at 34 weeks from the US to London, didn't have a doctors note, and the airline didn't blink an eye. Most airlines allow you to travel up to 38-39 weeks with a note. My flight was fine, I just got up and walked a lot and a drank a lot of water.
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  • I flew from Paris to Grand Rapids at 28 weeks. This was a day flight and I had no problems. I asked to have my bottle of water and I drank a lot, walked and wore special tights. But on the way back, it was a night flight and I didn't feel so well. I was extremely uncomfortable and I really needed to sleep. At one point I woke up not feeling well. It's a good thing I drank a lot and fell back to sleep otherwise something bad would have happened. Remember that when you go through security you need to take off you shoes! I was useless at that and thankfully my DH was there. I hope you will fly with someone and plan the possibility you will need to give birth in the Caraibeans'. I remember that the last month I sat on my butt because I was exhausted and because my DH didn't let me do anything. I was glad I rested before giving birth because afterwards you don't rest, you nap every two hours.
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  • frlcbfrlcb member
    imagemrscjmb9410:

    imagefrlcb:
    I flew at 34 weeks from the US to London, didn't have a doctors note, and the airline didn't blink an eye. Most airlines allow you to travel up to 38-39 weeks with a note. My flight was fine, I just got up and walked a lot and a drank a lot of water.

    Apparently, I flew a few weeks after BA had a woman go into labour on board...thankfully they diverted the flight and she was able to have the baby on land...but it is a costly situation for airlines if that happens.

    British Airways' current policy is: 

    Travelling while pregnant

    Although pregnancy is not considered to be a medical condition and you are able to travel until quite late into your pregnancy, please note that:

    • you can travel up to the end of the 36th week for single pregnancies and the end of the 32nd week for multiple births (e.g. twins).
    • after 28 weeks, you need to carry a certificate from your doctor or midwife confirming the estimated date of delivery and that there are no complications with your pregnancy.

     

    I wasn't on BA, it was on Delta, but that is a good point that every airline's policies are different.

     

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  • Double-check the airlines AND the airports rules. I flew when I was 20-some weeks to Russia and they weren't happy with me at the airport. I understand that I wouldn't have had any challenges at the other Moscow airport.

    I think that 30 weeks would have been the latest that I could have flown. My legs were swelling and I live in Germany, so it would have been an 8 hour minimum flight.

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  • Make sure is ok with the airline before you enbark on your trip, wish you all the best.am 14 weeks and I will be on a 15hours flight to africa.as long as u drink a lot of water and walk around I guess u be ok.
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