Thursday, July 24, 2008

Tips for pregnant mums who are flying

Having made some plane trips while I'm pregnant, I've learnt some things.

  • Always go for a check-up before you fly and if your doctor okays you to fly, ask him for a letter that states how far along you are in your pregnancy, your estimated due date and your state of health. I've discovered that once I looked obviously pregnant, airlines required me to show the letter and to sign a document that absolves them of any liabilities in the case of injury to me and/or the baby. It doesn't matter that their fine print says you are okay to fly until so-and-so week. Some overzealous ground staff will insist on seeing your letter anyway and may bar you from flying if you don't have one.
  • Sit close to the toilets and use the disabled toilet if you can, especially when you're getting big. You don't want to bump your little bump into things if there's turbulence.
  • Bring your own snacks. While I found the meals on my flights to be agreeable to my changed tastebuds, I found that their serving times did not match my hunger pangs. I was glad for the muesli bars I brought along on our Canada trip.
  • Wear panty liners and bring extras. This is in case the line for the bathroom is looooooooong and well, you know you leak more when you're pregnant! Don't be afraid to ask to go to the front of the line if you really can't hold it. People were actually offering to let me go in front when they saw me get up for the loo.
  • Wear compression socks to avoid DVT. Pregnant women are at a higher risk for developing DVT.
  • Exercise while on the plane. I never did it when I wasn't pregnant but I do now! I get up to walk up and down, do leg exercises when seated or I simply stand next to my seat and stretch. Don't worry about people giving you funny looks. I'd rather have funny looks than DVT and cramps later on.

Dads-to-be can help out by:
  • giving back rubs when we're sore
  • getting down on your knees to help us tie our shoelaces. It's hard to tie something we can't quite see/reach comfortably. My husband dropped to his knees in the middle of Soekarno-Hatta airport to tie up my shoelaces and I'm sure everyone else thought he was about to propose with a giant diamond ring! LOL
  • helping us put on our compression socks. They're bloody difficult to put on because of their compression factor and when you have a bump, it gets even harder. Dear Hubby huffed and puffed mightily while helping me on with mine
  • clueing on quickly when we hiss, "I need the bathroom NOW!" and scrambling out of the seat to let us get out
  • hassling the stewards on our behalf to ensure we're always supplied with drinks to keep us hydrated
  • giving us portions of your meal, knowing we eat more than you do at this stage (thank you, my Dear Hubby for giving me half of some of his meals on our flight to Canada)
  • offering a comforting shoulder for us to nap on in those terribly uncomfy airplane seats


  1. Yes yes, sounds like your hubby is learning quickly! Just wait until he discovers his duties when flying with a baby! I now call myself the "mule" and I am completely at the mercy of my wife while flying now to ensure our little one is satiated. How sweet that he tied your shoes for you...that's true love.

    Hey panty liner comment...TMI TMI! haha

  2. Marc: Heh.. yeah, I thought it was very sweet of him to tie my shoelaces especially when there's a crowd gawking at him.

    LOL @ panty liner... well, I never promised not to tell the truth about pregnancy!

  3. Panty liners are must have even after pregnancy, my dear. Make sure you practice your kegels religiously!

    BTW, when I was in KLCC and in my third trimester (when I was as big as a house), no one offered to let me pee first despite there being a line being a mile long and halfway out the door.

    We asked the cleaner to open the disabled toilets (which you need anyway because try closing the door in a small cubicle when your belly sticks out a mile in front of you) and the cleaner said, "No key."