Every year I travel by coach to Spain on holiday because I'm really scared of flying. If I was to go this year I'll have just turned 27 weeks pregnant on departure and will just have turned 29 weeks pregnant on return. The journey is not up everyone's street but it's never troubled me. We have a rest stop every 3 and a half hours and the ferry crossing breaks up the 24 hr travel time but I'm worried about developing DVT. I plan to get the special socks and do the recommended exercises but I wouldn't want to go if there was a high/ moderate risk. I'm currently 21 weeks pregnant and have had a smooth pregnancy so far (thank god) so think I would manage. This would be our last holiday as a couple but we haven't booked it yet. What should I do? Xx
Thanks for your advice unfortunately flying isn't an option for me as the stress from the fear would probably be more dangerous for me. I'm probably being naive about the comfort on the coach as I'm already 21 weeks and not having too much discomfort with my bump
It's hard to say how you feel by then, but personally I would have struggled with needing the loo at that stage! And I found long (car) journeys of over two hours very uncomfortable to sit. What's the latest you can book?
Definitely agree about needing the loo - there's a toilet on board all the coaches . Latest I could book would be in about 2 weeks. But it's not the discomfort that concerns me, it's the risk of DVT. All I can find online is advice on flying but wasn't ensure of the risk is the same on a coach? Is 24 hours too much of a higher risk? X
Check your insurance. Many only cover you and not the baby if there's an early arrival - I'd give them a call to check this. It's one of those things that's unlikely but very expensive, potentially. With the DVT, do they stop regularly? You could ask to get out when passengers get on and off?
Thanks for your advice StonedGalah. 24 hrs on a coach doesn't bother me, but do you think the getting up - like you can do on a plane makes it more dangerous for dvt on a coach? We're you pregnant when you flew to Australia? X
If your stopping every 3 or so hours to get up and walk around you should be fine. I used to fly to Australia every six months which in total is about 23 hours, and even then the chances of actually getting DVT are very slim. Your more likely to get it if you suffer from poor circulation to begin with.
Make sure your insurance is OK and you can get a refund if you have to cancel last minute. I got a nasty scare at my 25w appointment which meant a cancelled holiday & rebooking flights to a wedding. Luckily it was just a scare, but an expensive one. (And one that I am still moaning about to anyone who will listen. :-/)
Also, you may be a lot more uncomfortable at 27 or 29w than 21. I was fine & chipper (& flying around Europe) at 21w. At 27 I have pelvic girdle pain which is relatively mild but makes sitting in the car a pain in the something-close-to-ass.
DVT is more of a risk when you can't move around. How about taking the train part or all the way? I know it's more faff and probably more money, but there's the new direct service to Marseille from London, and the routes through France are easy even if you just do a change in Paris. You can easily get up and walk around on the train, maybe even get a sleeper. Try seat61.com for your destination in Spain as an alternative.
You may also need a fit-to-fly type note for the coach journey on the way back. I know the ferry companies ask for fit-to-travel notes at about the same time as the airlines start to (28w) so you should check that with the holiday company.
A tip for those - I was told by a midwife, that midwives can sign them after a routine visit and usually don't charge. My GP charged £50!
Insure and Go for your insurance. I just flew to Spain for a friend's wedding, back just a few days before the 32w flight cut off. Journey was so uncomfortable, I certainly wouldn't do it again. Only 2.5 hour flight and an hour in the car either side. I wouldn't fancy 24 hours on a coach, sorry-I realise that's probably not what you want to hear.
Aside from DVT, you should think about your feet swelling up. My last trip on a plane and sitting down on a long journey, my feet swelled up massively, to the point the flight socks were super uncomfortable and cutting off the circulation in my legs!