Dr Glenda McLaren
Obstetrician & Gynaecologist

Travel in Airplanes

Air travel is generally safe during pregnancy, however, there are a number of aspects to consider.

Most airlines allow women to fly up to 36 weeks domestically and 34 weeks internationally.

Before you fly, check with your airline as to their policy. You may require a letter from your Obstetrician stating that you are fit to fly and your pregnancy is progressing normally without any complications.

During pregnancy there is an increased risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) – blood clots forming in the legs – which is further increased while flying. Shorter trips are preferable as the risk of DVT  to reduce the time spent in an airplane.

Travel insurance needs to be considered. Due to risk of premature labour, it can be difficult to get travel insurance to cover your pregnancy after 24 weeks in some countries. Check with your travel agent regarding your policy and what you are covered for.

To reduce your risk of DVT the following tips are helpful:

  • wear flight socks or TED stockings
  • take a low dose aspirin (100mg daily) if on a long haul flight
  • drink plenty of water
  • walk around the cabin
  • do leg  exercises regularly during the flight

Travelling Overseas

Another aspect to consider is the standard of hospital care in some countries, should you need to be admitted while you are overseas, for a complication of pregnancy including the risk of infection. For more specific information please ask at your appointment or consult your GP or Travel Medicine specialists below.

If you are travelling overseas in pregnancy it is recommended that you see a travel medicine specialist for up to date advice regarding immunisations required in the countries you are visiting. For more information, visit travelmedicine.com.au