Travel During Second Trimester

Ah, the second trimester. The supposed “golden time” of pregnancy. You are finally starting to show, so people know you’re pregnant instead of wondering if you ate too much for lunch. Maybe your energy is coming back, and you require fewer naps. For some, the second trimester is when you start feeling much better. (For others, it’s just three more months of sickness. I didn’t start feeling a lot better until about halfway through, and then I was like a whole new—hungry—person.) Regardless, traveling during this period of pregnancy does require a few adjustments. Here’s what helped me get through:

Eat often. Once I started feeling better, I was hungry All. The. Time. During one trip, I got to the office and not only was there no on-site eating option, there was no time built into the schedule for a lunch break. Not okay. Now I make sure the food situation is figured out before I arrive. Also, make sure before you fly that you have enough snacks to tide you over until landing. In fact, bring extra in case you’re stuck on the plane longer than expected.

Use the restroom every chance you get. One of the super fun parts of pregnancy—frequent trips to the loo. Make sure you take advantage of every opportunity you have. It’s no fun holding it on a flight where too much turbulence means no one can get up for two hours!

Sit in the aisle. Easy access to the lav plus a little extra room to stretch and move your legs are two good reasons to sit in the aisle. I’m sure there are others as well.

Get up and walk. Whether flying or on the ground, get up every hour or so to walk for a few minutes. During flights, this helps to avoid any potential blood clot issues. Also, walking will help you avoid getting stiff and make your back less likely to hurt later.

Ask for extra pillows. You will probably need more pillows than the hotel gives you. I usually need five—one for my head, two for my back, and two for my front. Of course, nothing is as good as my huge maternity pillow, which I have been taking with me on longer trips.

Don’t be afraid to preboard. On days where you feel especially slow, go ahead and preboard. It will give you that extra time to get settled without worrying about impatient people glaring at you for holding up the line.

Compression socks. I didn’t realize how badly I needed compression socks on every flight until it was too late. I was in Florida for two weeks, and my ankles puffed up on the flight there and never really deflated. Finally I stopped in a drugstore to get a new pair. Even on short flights your ankles can swell, so just wear the darned things so you don’t have to worry about your shoes not fitting when you arrive.

Go slowly. You’re not in a race! Move at the speed that is comfortable for you. Faster people will go around you. It helps to build a little extra time into your schedule so you don’t have to hurry.

Now that I’m in the middle of my final trimester (wow time passes quickly) I’m dealing with a whole new set of travel challenges. But that’s a story for another day! Look for that post sometime in the future….

(Newly pregnant? Click here for tricks to surviving travel during your first trimester.)

Readers, what are your best tricks for making travel easier during the second trimester?

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  1. As a midwife, and world traveler, I am enjoying your posts related to your pregnancy. I would add, it is really important to avoid dehydration in pregnancy, especially since flying is dehydrating, drink even more than you normally do while pregnant.

  2. Even though you mentioned fluids/avoiding dehydration in the first trimester post, I think it bears repeating 🙂

  3. Looking forward to hearing about your experiences traveling in the third trimester! My last flight was at about 36-37 weeks, and it was entertaining. Can’t wait to hear about your adventures!!

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