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Travelling out of the country at 8 months pregnant

(24 Posts)
Kels13 Sat 08-Feb-14 23:44:09

Would I be mad? My bf has just got engaged and I'm chief bm... She is planning a French wedding (so we can drive not fly) and I would hate to miss it. Would this be a ridiculous idea or should I say I probably won't make it? She's going to have to have a legal ceremony in the uk so I could go to that instead... Is my first so I've no idea how I'll feel at 8 months xx

LittleBearPad Sat 08-Feb-14 23:55:35

I went travelled several hundred miles for a wedding when heavily pregnant. I felt fine. She did turn up the next week, early and back to back which made labour not much fun at all. I don't know how much this was due to lots of time sitting in the car. I took my notes and the car seat - just in case.

At best you should play it by ear. You can't promise how you'll feel.

You will need very very good travel insurance.

toddlewaddleflipflop Sun 09-Feb-14 00:08:15

I second the thing about travel insurance. My waters broke spontaneously at 35 weeks. Are you prepared for the possibility that your baby could be born in France? At 8 months it's a definite possibility. If that doesn't worry you then you'll probably be fine, but birth isn't always straightforward and the language barrier could make it harder in a French hospital.

alicebear Sun 09-Feb-14 11:07:54

If you feel happy to go for it you just need to find an airline that will let you fly late enough in pregnancy & an insurance policy that will cover you. EasyJet let you fly up to 35 wks with a git to fly note. If you'll be 8 months you may be just a little too late for that. Given term is anywhere between 37-42 wks you will be cutting it a bit fine!

alicebear Sun 09-Feb-14 11:09:30

Also if the date isn't set in stone yet if she could bring it forward even a couple of weeks it could make it quite a bit easier for you to be there.

PenguinsDontEatKale Sun 09-Feb-14 12:16:38

If flying isn't an issue because you can get the ferry, your main problem is going to be travel insurance isn't it? Make sure you are very, very well insured.

Personally I would have felt uncomfortable going that far given that 'term' is 37 weeks onwards, so only a little over 8 months.

thanksamillion Sun 09-Feb-14 12:36:04

I think that you might still need to equivalent of a 'fit to fly' note for the tunnel or ferry.

Second the good insurance, and you also need to specifically get 'Unborn baby cover'. You will probably need to ask for this (and possibly insist on it) as it isn't routinely given. Once the baby is born it's no longer covered by your own insurance even if you have special pregnancy cover.

Wuxiapian Sun 09-Feb-14 12:39:12

I wouldn't fancy giving birth abroad and, at this late stage, it's perfectly feasible.

Blondebrunette1 Sun 09-Feb-14 12:42:21

I would go bit I have had two babies very late and so wouldn't expect to be early, as this is your first you may feel differently. You will prob enjoy the break though and it'll give you something to look forward to and take your mind off feeling fed up. 8 months isn't quite term so if you're confident on your scan dates being accurate (itching kind are a week ahead going by my last period) there's been no complications and you want to go then do. Xxx

OrangeMochaFrappucino Sun 09-Feb-14 12:43:02

I couldn't physically handle the drive. I would struggle with it now at 29 weeks! It's awful to imagine missing an occasion like this but I would find it too uncomfortable, stressful and tiring to get any kind of enjoyment from it. The additional worries about potentially going into labour en route are another reason to say a definite no!

Blondebrunette1 Sun 09-Feb-14 12:43:22

I think mine not itching kind (strange auto correct.)

Kels13 Sun 09-Feb-14 13:20:20

Thanks all, really appreciate your comments. I think I'll just have to be honest with my friend and say that I can't guarantee I'll be there and see how it all goes. The more I think about it the more I think if rather not risk it. I'll be so sad to miss it but baby is more important. Thank you! X

sarahquilt Sun 09-Feb-14 14:57:51

I don't think it's a great idea. What if you went into labour on the ferry?

InFrance2014 Sun 09-Feb-14 15:14:02

Am aware that lots of people do travel very late on, but I'm just under 8 months now and am amazed how much harder travelling even short distances is than I expected (this is my first). I've been lucky with 'textbook' pregnancy, not even gained much weight, but it's just that walking very far and sitting in one position is really uncomfortable now, plus I feel exhausted a lot, am breathless. And I need extra duvet under me and big pillow to sleep properly.
I would suggest to your friend now you might not make it, in case you later develop serious problems with mobility, or are just more shattered than you expected like me. Would be worse to disappoint them at the last minute?

CrispyFB Sun 09-Feb-14 19:12:04

Honestly you could go either way. Some people see pregnancy even at a late stage as a minor irritation and still go out running, cycling to the gym etc.

Others have a lot of discomfort but can muddle by with every day things in a bit of discomfort, anything more is a bit much.

Then there are loads like me, who can't walk for more than 5-10 minutes without being in severe pain, sit upright for a similar amount without being in extreme agony and getting limited sleep at night due to the pain too.

I'm normally very fit and healthy (40-50 miles of walking a week, ski, cycling, bit of running) but pregnancy hormones destroy my body to the point I am overtaken by 80 year olds in the street most days. This is my fourth, so I know I'll go back to normal, but pregnancy does not "agree" with me, heh.

And that's leaving aside the whole early labour thing - my first came in a few hours at 36w6d, second was 35w5d, third 38w2d. And you never know what complications you may have later on that prevent you from travelling (high blood pressure, preterm labour, placenta issues, nausea..)

As it's your first you won't know for sure how you'll be so leave it open if you can. It could well be you're totally fine but don't completely commit!

niffynoo Sun 09-Feb-14 19:46:00

Do check with the ferry company. I went to Jersey at 33 weeks pregnant and the ferry company demanded a "fit to travel" note from my doctor. We thought ferry would be easier than flying and I only found out I needed the note two days before we went - was a bit of a nightmare getting an appointment to get the note.

LastOneDancing Sun 09-Feb-14 20:22:45

I'm 32 weeks and have had a nice easy pg so far - but I would not want to do a car journey to France!

I get very uncomfortable after about an hour on the sofa - let alone being crunched up in the car (plus needing to stop for frequent loo breaks!). I think I'd be ok to fly with a fit-note though.

I have a few pregnant friends due around the same time and I know they would NOT go, due to back aches and fanjo pains and being very tired.

My advice - leave it as open as you can, but plan to fly rather than drive.

Misty9 Sun 09-Feb-14 21:57:36

I would also plan to fly rather than drive - as I'll be flying to Spain soon at 33wks, with a toddler! It's to see my mum, so will at least be able to rest when there, but it is too uncomfortable to do long car journeys now (SPD and big bump) so I'm trying to ignore the 3hr trip to gatwick and I definitely wouldn't drive as far as France.
If you can leave it open I would. Have you had 12wk scan yet? As you could be moved forward in terms of dates...

thanksamillion Mon 10-Feb-14 07:11:50

I did a long journey at 35 weeks (1 hr drive, 2 flights totally 4 hours, 3 hour drive) with two under 5yo DCs in tow. But it was DC3, I was heading to the UK to give birth so I knew once I got there all would be fine, and both previous DCs had been late.

For a pfb I'm not sure I would do it.

RaRa1988 Mon 10-Feb-14 13:58:05

I probably wouldn't - but I couldn't afford the travel insurance and my French is pretty rusty nowadays! If you can afford good travel insurance, you (or someone who would be with you if you went into labour) can speak good French, and you're feeling well at the time, I don't see why not.

Mim78 Mon 10-Feb-14 23:01:50

I hear French maternity hospitals are vg- own room, baby cared for at night, several days in hospital etc they laugh about our system tbh. So could be a good move!

OrangeMochaFrappucino Tue 11-Feb-14 06:55:33

I had my own room in an NHS birth centre, stayed for five days with midwives on call 24/7 and always happy to come in and help get the baby latched at 3am. And they provided a bed for my husband. The system here can be great! Whereas my impression of the French system is that it's heavily medicalised with no bf support. I wouldn't risk it!

noblegiraffe Tue 11-Feb-14 07:01:55

If the baby is born in France, how do you bring it home re passports? Sounds like an admin nightmare.

And if you end up with a c-section, you will really not want to be driving home with a seat belt sat on your fresh wound. Getting home from the hospital in the UK is bad enough! And you'd need a car seat.

LettertoHermioneGranger Tue 11-Feb-14 07:02:46

You're not meant to travel in the third trimester, with good reason. The stress of travel on your body alone can cause you to go into labor, it's not worth the risk imo.

I can't imagine giving birth in a different country, with a different system and completely new doctors, would be pleasant.

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