This is a guest Blog Post written by Colleen Lanin of Travel Mamas
Expectant parents often take a babymoon, or final trip as one last hurrah before that bundle of joy comes along to interrupt your meals and make reading a magazine on an airplane impossible. With the first child, the thought is often, “We’ll never be able to travel again after the baby is born!” Of course, that’s just not the case. Travel with children requires more planning and may not be as relaxing as a trip sans kids, but it certainly can be every bit as joy-filled. Nonetheless, a babymoon is a wonderful way to celebrate couplehood with your partner before a baby’s arrival.
With subsequent children, a babymoon may be a needed little reprieve from parenting to prepare for the increased chaos of an additional baby. Or, it may be easier to convince the grandparents or babysitter to watch just the existing kid(s) than it will be with an expanded brood.
Here are five tips for a successful babymoon:
1. Book a refundable trip only.
It is impossible to know how you are going to feel during every phase of a pregnancy. You might assume that the morning sickness will dissipate by the time the second trimester rolls around, only to find yourself even greener with sickness. Or, complications may arise unexpectedly that keep you grounded.
A refundable trip is probably is going to mean booking last-minute air tickets or going somewhere within driving distance. A staycation in a swanky hotel with lots of yummy meals and lazing about might be just what you need!
2. Stick to the second trimester.
In the first trimester you may be too nauseated to enjoy your time away. In the third trimester you may be too uncomfortable and not feel up for doing much of anything. Plus, there are flight restrictions for flying later in a pregnancy which can require a doctor’s note to board the plane (which you may be unable to obtain, depending upon your pregnancy and your obstetrician).
Another idea is to skip town the minute you find out your preggers. For our first babymoon, the hubs and I took an impromptu trip to San Francisco to celebrate the discovery that we were to become parents less than a week after taking that at-home pregnancy test. I found a sweet deal on the Internet and I got my way when I showed my husband those two little blue lines. It was so early in the pregnancy that I didn’t have any sign of morning sickness yet!
3. Choose a destination reasonably close to a hospital.
Do as I say, not as I do. With the second baby, I was craving long walks in piney woods and snuggling up with my honey beside a fireplace in a rustic cabin. So, my husband and I did a road trip from San Diego to Big Sur. First of all, that meant a lot of uncomfy time spent confined to a car with my burgeoning belly. Secondly, Big Sur is pretty dang remote. In fact, there were no landline phones in our cabin and our cell phones rarely got but a blip of signal. And, if we had needed to drive to a hospital in the middle of the night, we would have had to do so along an inky black, two-lane, swerving highway perched atop seaside cliffs.
So, avoid a destination like Lanai, Hawaii (where locals take the boat over to Maui during their last month of pregnancy because there is no hospital for labor and delivery on the isle) or a third world country (where you may not speak the language and/or you are unsure of medical practices). Instead choose a location where you can easily reach a hospital equipped to handle any complications or an unexpected early delivery.
4. Adjust your expectations.
Keep in mind, this is a babymoon. You will probably be more tired, less mobile, and not quite as sexy in a bikini as you were on your honeymoon. I have friends who embarked on a trip to Hawaii during the wife’s second trimester. Even though she’s a wee bitty thing, she still felt uncomfortable lounging on the beach with her belly (and other parts) busting out of her swimsuit. That’s not to say you won’t feel like a total goddess in your pregnant body, but it is something to take into consideration.
Very active trips (like, say, skiing) are not the best bet either. Pregnant women aren’t the most agile of people. Plus, falling can have dangerous consequences. On one of those Big Sur hikes, for example, I fell flat on my bootie – hard! Thankfully, my crushed sunglasses (that I had been holding in my hand) were the only casualty.
5. Ask your doctor first!
Chances are, if you are experiencing a normal pregnancy or even one with some minimal complications, your OBGYN will give you a thumbs-up for a little getaway, but you’re better off safe than sorry!
Share it with other future Travel Mamas in the comments below!