Flying during your pregnancy

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A common concern for expectant parents is whether flying during pregnancy is safe. The good news is that with a healthy pregnancy, air travel is considerably safe. The second trimester of a pregnancy is the best time to fly for many women since by that time morning sickness (nausea, vomiting etc.) which is common during the first trimester, has subsided and energy levels are high. However, for short-distance flights and single pregnancies, it is safe to fly up until the third trimester, more specifically, until 36 weeks along in the pregnancy. That number changes slightly if flying long-distance or for multiple pregnancies. In these cases, it is still safe to fly until up to 28 weeks for the former and no later than the 32nd week if you are pregnant with twins or more babies. However, there are a few things you should be aware of when flying while pregnant.

Pregnant woman on a plane

Things that pregnant passengers must keep in mind

Although flying during your pregnancy is safe, you'll want to keep the following in mind:

1. Walk and stretch frequently to promote circulation

The major concern for pregnant women in a plane is an increased risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT), particularly on a long-haul flight. DVT is a condition in which blood clots form in the legs or other areas of the body. Travelling long haul during a pregnancy increases the risks of this happening. To keep your DVT risk low, you should do things that promote good circulation. Frequently getting up and walking in the plane cabin, or stretching your legs if you can’t get up, will help keep the blood circulating. You can ask your airline for an aisle seat to ensure that you do not experience difficulties. 

Staying hydrated and wearing loose clothing also helps with this, and if you want to be extra careful to avoid all pregnancy complications, you can also try wearing compression stockings.

2. Wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothing

In addition to contributing to good circulation, loose-fitting clothing will help keep you comfortable while flying, which is a must for someone who is pregnant. 

3. Drink plenty of fluids

Flight cabins have low humidity which can lead to dehydration. Be sure to drink plenty of water to stay well hydrated, which also helps keep the risk of DVT low.

4. Avoid gassy food and drinks

You should, however, avoid gassy food and drinks since gasses expand at high altitudes. Moreover, eating or drinking gassy things can cause discomfort, especially for pregnant women.

5. Buckle up

Last but not least, even expectant mothers must wear their safety belt. Even if you will not be able to secure yourself in the same way when you are pregnant, the adjustment is not so different. Simply buckle the belt under your abdomen for a safe flight.

Air ambulance for pregnant women

Air ambulance jet

Unfortunately, even if you have a medical certificate stating that there are no pregnancy-related risks or you have decided to fly following doctor’s recommendations and you have followed all airline rules, complications can still occur. If you find yourself experiencing an emergency during your pregnancy while abroad or if your due date is close, you will likely want to fly back home to a hospital where you are familiar with the staff, the gynaecologists and obstetricians are already accustomed to your case, you do not experience any language barriers or you have your own midwife. In that case, you’ll need to travel with an air ambulance. Air ambulances often come in the form of a reserved space on a commercial flight provided by a regular airline. However, when dealing with complications during a pregnancy and for a low-risk trip, you want the shortest lead times and best care possible while flying. This means, you’ll want to travel in a private air ambulance jet. An air ambulance jet is an airplane fitted with the latest medical equipment. It doesn’t require you to wait for an availability on an airline's commercial flight schedule, which you cannot afford if your due date is near. 

Air ambulance services – regardless of insurance coverage

Insurance often covers air ambulance services, though at different rates depending on the company, plan, and country of residence. Some insurance plans cover all associated costs, and others only cover what they deem to be necessary services. Before travelling, contact your insurance representative to find out which services your plan covers. You can also contact us at Medical Air Service and our team will help you navigate your insurance policy and help you understand which of our services are covered. We can also help you go through the process of lodging an insurance claim and tell you the likelihood of your insurance covering the costs. However, our primary concern is ensuring that you and the baby have a safe flight home. We will fly you safely, with the best possible in-flight medical care, even if you don’t have a medical or travel insurance or your insurance company refuses to cover the air ambulance costs.

How we calculate cost? 

The costs of air ambulance services depend on several factors unique to each patient and medical situation, in this case a pregnancy. Our team calculates costs for each situation on an individual basis, ensuring we meet your medical and financial needs. Some of the factors which contribute to the costs are:

  • Distance covered and route taken
  • The state of health of both the pregnant patient and the baby
  • The type of air ambulance required
  • The urgency of the request, taking into consideration the health of the pregnant patient and the delivery date.
  • The number of accompanying persons

To discuss your air ambulance needs and to get a quote, contact us today.

Contact us

Our team is available 24/7 to provide a free consultation on your air ambulance needs if you need to fly during your pregnancy. We will work out the best solution for you and your baby.

Get in touch now