Nine months is a long time in anyone’s books. It’s little wonder that expecting mothers plan a holiday and head abroad to enjoy a relaxing break away from it all.
Some of you may be worried about taking a holiday when pregnant, therefore we have put together a brief guide telling you everything you need to know about Pregnancy Travel Insurance.
When to travel during pregnancy
Most women will choose to travel between the fourth and sixth month of pregnancy. Many don’t want to travel sooner than 15 weeks due to the heightened risk of a miscarriage.
It is important to check with the airline you wish to fly with that they are happy for you to travel with them. Many airlines won’t allow pregnant women to fly with them if they are more than 36 weeks pregnant (32 weeks if twins or triplets). A letter from your doctor or midwife confirming the due date and whether you are fit to fly may be requested by the airline.
Pregnancy Travel Insurance
Taking a holiday without travel insurance isn’t worth the risk, especially with a little one to think about and how cheap travel insurance policies can be. With this in mind, the following information shows the amount of cover you can expect from our travel insurance policies.
Pregnancy is not a medical condition and therefore does not need to be declared when you purchase a policy. However, you need to be aware that expenses related to pregnancy or childbirth will only be offered up to 26 weeks of pregnancy. From week 27 there will be no pregnancy travel insurance cover for any medical costs relating to normal childbirth. If there is an emergency or complication relating to pregnancy or childbirth whilst you are away cover will be available.
Flying when pregnant
Cover for loss or expenses incurred if you are denied boarding by the airline and can’t make your planned trip will not be covered as this is something that should be checked prior to booking the holiday, as mentioned above.
Most airlines won’t allow you to travel after week 36, this is around week 32 if you are having a multiple birth. We recommend you still check directly with your chosen airline as they may have a different stance. We also recommend that you carry the aforementioned doctor or midwife letter with you when travelling to avoid any delays and to ensure check-in staff know your circumstances.
When travelling by air we recommend only short-haul flights of two to three hours or less as long-haul flights can be more stressful on the body. Taking a short-haul flight within Europe also means you can use your EHIC card to reduce your excess to Nil and reduce the price of emergency treatment if required.
Wearing flight socks is a good idea as they help circulation in your legs, preventing swelling, and reduce the risk of DVT or a blood clot. You should also drink plenty of fluids and try to move around the cabin every half an hour.
Giving birth abroad
If you give birth abroad your new arrival will be automatically covered under your travel insurance policy.
If you give birth prematurely it is important to know that premature babies cannot be flown as they are at a high risk of serious complications. Even a well-equipped air ambulance con’t be able to safely transport a premature baby as the heart and lungs need to be fully formed to withstand the higher air pressure when flying. If this were to happen this could mean that you and your baby may end up staying abroad for several months. Additional travel, accommodation and repatriation costs are available under the Emergency Medical Attention section of our policy.
Sailing when pregnant
The risk of feeling nauseous when travelling by sea can increase when pregnant. There are medications available for this, but these may not be suitable for pregnant women, therefore wearing a travel sickness band, using acupressure, may be a safer alternative to help relive the symptoms of nausea.
If you are thinking of taking a Cruise to help you relax, be sure to check out our Cruise Travel Insurance for additional Cruise specific cover along with the usual pregnancy travel insurance.
It is important to note a baby must have a passport to travel or a birth certificate if they are on a domestic flight. When travelling by air, allow the baby to suckle during take off and landing as this will prevent the pressure change causing ear pain. If you are concerned about this, it may be worth looking into alternative modes of transport that do not involve pressure change i.e. a cruise or rail travel.