Traveling while pregnant may be not easy for some, but it can be done. Even at this modern age it is not encouraged here in the Philippines because we have a lot of pamahiins. Some would say “wala naman mawawala kung sumunod ka,”but as much as I deeply respect and appreciate these concerns, Some are just so hard to believe, especially now that we have information right in our fingertips, we could easily debunk most of it because cultures and knowledge from other countries are available for us to read anytime.
If you are not having difficulty with your pregnancy, I don’t see any reason not to go on a trip. But of course, you also have to listen to what your body tells you. During my first pregnancy, I missed two flights I purchased in advance. I was 3 months pregnant at the time we were supposed to go to Dumaguete, but I was so tired and I had a spotting episode so we decided not to go. I was also warned by my elders (aka mom and the titas) that pregnant women are not supposed to go to liblib provinces (we were planning to go to Siquijor, too) because of manananggal! lol. The second trip is the one I regret a bit. It was supposed to be my first time to go to Batanes. One of my dreams is to visit the place and I still have to realize that dream. The reason we postponed is that weeks before the flight I was advised by my OB to have a bed rest twice, and I was diagnosed with GDM (Gestational Diabetes) so I had no choice but to postpone the trip. There is nothing more important than the safety of your baby.
If you read my first post, I mentioned that I am an avid stalker of Cebu Pacific flights. So I was able to book a flight to Cebu in advance. I booked the ticket around January and the flight is in August. I got tickets for the three of us for only 2500 back and forth! Score! Lol It was around May when I realized that I am pregnant again. So the moment we knew, we did not get our hopes high because it might get postponed just like before. Thankfully, my second pregnancy is a lot easier than the first one. I did not even had morning sickness. Ha! So we decided that we pushed through our family trip! Yey!
Before going on a trip, there are a lot of precautions that a pregnant woman needs to check.
Here are the no-no’s:
You may have to postpone your trip if you:
- Carrying twins/multiples
- Have diabetes or high blood pressure
- Have placental abnormalities or vaginal bleeding.
- Under observation for preterm labor
- Have a history of forming blood clots (including prior to pregnancy)
- In your final month (36weeks above)
you can read more about it here.
If you don’t encounter any issues as stated above, then here are some of the things I did before going on a trip which I hope you might find helpful:
Read articles around the net but check with your OB
It’s always best to do your research. Of course, just because you read an article that it’s ok, you have to remember that not all pregnancies are alike so the best person to ask is your OB. He/she knows all about your pregnancy and he will be the one to confirm if it’s safe and of course give you a recommendation.
Check airline policy
For Cebu Pacific, they allow passengers until 34weeks for single pregnancy, 32weeks for multiple pregnancy. If you’re beyond 34weeks, you may have to present a consent from OB but will not allow you to board if you’re on your 36th week
You also have to get a special handling form which you will present on their staff so that they can give assistance during your boarding and flight.
Choose your destination according to accessibility
Choose destinations that are easily accessible and where you will easily find a hospital just in case something happen. Also check if there’s a lot of walking involved, specially if you’re not used to walk a lot or get tired easily. Most pregnant moms find it hard to stand and walk for a long time. Take a rest if you’re tired so that your body will not be pushed to its limits.
Limit your baggage
In our case, we have a toddler, we don’t have a yaya and I’m not supposed to carry heavy stuff. So my poor husband has to do all the lifting. We traveled with one backpack, one handcarry luggage and my personal bag which doubled as diaper bag as well. It wasn’t a problem at the airport because there trolleys available but getting around will probably be a problem. Traveling with a toddler is another thing that we can talk about in another posts.
Have a checkup day before the flight
Some moms I know skipped this part or had their checkup at least a week before. Personally, I find it necessary specially on your second and third trimester to have a checkup so that you can check your condition before you go on a trip. It is needed because your OB will be able to recommend things that you can do during the trip in case something occur. It’s also best that you also check your blood pressure because the plane is a pressurized vehicle and it will be uncomfortable.
Bring your prenatal record and emergency contacts
Bring your monthly checkup record with you in case it’s needed, so that the hospital or clinic you visit on your travel will have access to your prenatal history.
If traveling internationally, you can pay your travel tax in advance
Sometimes there are long queues to pay for your travel tax and it’s not always assured that you are given a priority. If there is a TIEZA branch that is near your location or if somebody can process it for you, you may opt to pay it in advance so that your queues in the airport will be reduced.
Make yourself comfortable during the trip
If you’re traveling on the road, make sure you are comfortable with your seat and not crowded so that you can move easily. If you’re traveling by air, especially if your flight is more than 2 hours, it’s best that you find a comfortable seat, for economy passengers, you may want to select seats in front if available or at least a seat near the aisle so that you can walk from time to time and you can easily access the toilet. You can bring a pillow for your back so that it will be a bit comfortable during the flight.
Wear comfortable clothing and footwear
Don’t forget to pack comfortable shoes and clothes for you especially if you’re on your 2nd-3rd trimester. There will be some backaches here and there, and walking for hours can sometimes cause edema. for some reasons, my back always hurts lately. I find wearing support bellybands help alleviate the problem.
So there you have it, i’ll update in case I forgot to add somethong. At the end of the day, it’s you who can tell if you can do it, some even advised me to talk to your baby to cooperate and be comfortable during the trip. Do you have any tips and tricks that you can add? how were you able to manage traveling? share your thoughts by commenting below.
I remember when I was a first time mom-to-be, one of the things I looked forward to was baby shopping. My office is just beside a mall so during lunch break, I would take a walk around the department store baby section or Mothercare and most of the time I end up buying something. I guess being close to a mall has its perks. But I consider it a curse sometimes because I also sometimes buy things I don’t need. Oops! Luckily I have a lot of mommy friends who gave me tips and of course I have my mother, the frugal queen, who prevented me of possibly buying more unnecessary stuff.
Having a second baby makes you think you almost have everything covered, only to realize that you now want the items you weren’t able to buy the first time. Your mind will be occupied with thoughts of the items you want, because you already have most of the things you need. So I guess when it comes to expenses, it’s not really that different. The difference now is that you are now wiser when it comes to shopping, you will be able to restrain yourself to buying items that you really really want. Lol.
While I know some parents are not fond of hand-me-downs mainly because of the reasons is that they don’t want to tipid their baby. Personally, I’m ok with hand-me-downs because it’s good for the environment to reuse items rather than throw them. Another reason is that you won’t need them for long because babies grow up too fast! One day you’ll notice they don’t fit on the clothes they wore last month! It’s crazy! For my second baby, I was able to keep Reese’s comforters and pillows, lampins, stroller, breast pump, glass feeding bottles, car seat still being used, and some newborn clothes. I wasn’t able to keep a lot of clothes because my cousins who gave birth after me needed newborn clothes as well for my nieces and nephews so I gave most of them away but I kept my favorites. But since I’m having a boy this time, he won’t be able to use most of it so more shopping for me! Yay!
This time around I’m sticking to buying things he will need for his first 3 months. One reason is that expenses could be overwhelming and I’m waiting for Baby Company’s Annual Grand Baby Fair which is normally scheduled on January or February. Another reason is that, not that I’m assuming or expecting anything but I’ve also come to learn that the excited titas and titos especially the lolo and the lola wants to buy items for your little one. Which is why Reese ended up with piles of stuff. They’re such a blessing.
What are you going to need anyway? Although I have bought some items before, I still added them on the list because I found them useful. Here is my Baby Essential List.
- 2 Receiving blanket (some recommend 4pcs, but our pedia don’t like the baby being wrapped a lot because of the heat)
- 6-10 Tie side or snap on sleeveless shirt/onesies
- 4-8 short sleeves tie side or snap shirt/onesies
- 4-8 longsleeves tie side or snap shirt/onesies
- 4 pajamas (i did not buy a lot because i bought a sleeping sack and swaddle)
- 3dozens lampin
- 5sets Mittens
- 5sets socks
- 3pcs bonnet
- 4-6pcs bib
As for me, I bought both tie side and onesies. Onesies are good because it’s secured at the bottom. On the other hand tie side shirts are good too because it’s easier to change. I use onesies usually when going out. You can also purchase less quantity of each clothing depending on the frequency of laundry.
- Cloth Diapers/Disposable – If you decide to go with cloth diapers,
the quantity depends on how often you do your laundry. A newborn change diapers at least 8-12times a day so you may need 24-30 cloth diapers
For disposable diapers you may need at least 12/day on the first week.
- Wet wipes or you can make one.
- His own dipper or tabo
- Bathtub or Batsa
- Organic baby bath soap (I use Human Nature brand because it’s mild and so good for the skin) or a mild soap that does not have SLS and Parabens.
- Human Nature Baby Oil – or some baby oil that is not made from mineral oil. I use this for massage and also a good substitute for diaper creams.
- Breastmilk Storage Bottles
- Manual or Electric Pump – you may not need this if you can master hand expression.
- Feeding Bottles/Cup – DOH actually recommends cup feeding. I think it’s being taught in the hospital when you give birth, but if for some reason, it doesn’t work for you, you may use feeding bottles but keep in mind that it may cause nipple confusion. I’ve tested a lot nipples with Reese, even Medela Calma but what worked for us is Pigeon Peristaltic.
- Cleaning and drying paraphernalias for the bottles and pump parts
- Optional – nursing pillow, nipple cream
- Nasal Aspirator – I recommend the one where you can control the suction rather than the normal type that you squeeze to get suction.
- Natural Baby Balm – for booboos and insect bites
Furnitures and Safety
- Carrier – Personally, I find carrier practical because it’s less bulky and keeps your baby close to you. For carriers, avoid buying narrow-based carrier because it’s not comfortable for the baby because the pressure is in the crotch area. There are lots of ergonomic carriers like ring sling,Soft structured carriers (SSC) like Ergo Baby, Tula, Lillebaby available in the market. You will also find that these types of carriers provides comforts to the wearer as well.
- Stroller – although I use the carrier more often, I still find stroller useful at times specially for super long walks, it’s more comfortable for the baby to sleep in it and you won’t get you tired carrying him/her the whole day. The only disadvantage of using stroller is that Philippines is not really stroller friendly but you’ll find it useful when traveling in countries like Singapore.
- Car seat – not required here in the Philippines but this is one of the items that we used very much. Specially when travelling for long hours, it’s much safer to put the baby to sleep in a car seat rather than holding them the whole time. Putting your child in the carseat is a safety precaution that may not be compulsory but I think should be practiced.
- Co-Sleeper – while it’s not practiced by many in western countries, I think it’s more common here in the Philippines to co-sleep with the baby. Some actually co-sleep in bed, some kick out their husbands and let them sleep on the floor haha (this might be us this time) you may opt for a co-sleeper. Sleeping close to the baby will really get you more sleep. Based on my personal experience, we tried to let our firstborn sleep on her crib, although in the same room as ours, it was exhausting because I have to get up every time feed her at night. So after 2 days of trying, we co-sleep with her and gave us more sleep.
- Mom– I didn’t know about this before but I was gifted by a friend with this and it’s one of the things that I really find helpful. It holds all medical records of your baby. Including weight and height charting, feeding record when you need it, temperature records as well when your baby has a fever. you’ll be able to record his/her health history for the first sixteen years! talk about extensive.
Things I bought that I didn’t had before
- Swaddle – I never swaddled Reese even with normal receiving blankets because I didn’t know about it, but I know a lot of moms find it useful because it minimizes the jerking movements.
- Sleep Sack – I haven’t used it before but I saw a cheaper one in Ikea so I bought one.
I have so many things to share like my cheap but super quality Ikea finds, where to buy cheap baby items here in the Philippines, packing my hospital bags (yes, nesting came early that I have semi-packed our hospital bag. haha), but more on that later.
Did I miss anything? Please share your newborn essentials on the comment section below!