It’s over the river and through the woods time again! For many, the holidays are synonymous with hectic schedules and unfamiliar surroundings, and the stress and inconvenience of travel can be tough to deal with if you’re expecting. Whether you’re headed out for a long Thanksgiving weekend or a Christmas-through-New Year’s vacay, jet-setting while pregnant takes some careful planning — including revisions to your good ol’ packing list. Check out these packing tips for mamas-to-be — and enjoy child-free travel while you still can ;)
1. Wheeled Luggage: That bulky, heavy carry-on may have worked in your pre-pregnancy days, but you don’t want to strain your already overworked baby bod. Forget about the cute messenger-style bags, or anything else that you have to actually carry, for that matter. Choose a wheeled bag you can easily drag behind you. A sleek, four-wheeled suitcase like this one from Away (it also has built-in USB chargers) will help you travel light(er).
2. Comfy Shoes: Traipsing around the airport and running from terminal to terminal isn’t fun for anyone. Add on a pregnant belly and it makes the running (read: waddling) all the more awkward. Even though those adorable knee-high boots look fabulously festive, they probably aren’t super comfortable. Opt for your go-to pair of sneakers — like the incredibly stylish wool Allbirds — or if you absolutely, positively have to wear those stylishly uncomfortable shoes of yours, at least pack a foot-friendly pair in your carry-on.
3. Water Bottle: That dry, stale plane air will suck the moisture right out of you on a regular day, and now that you’re pregnant, staying hydrated is even harder. Keep yourself feeling fresh and maintain a dewy glow with plenty of H2O. No, a diet soda in the airline club or at a highway rest stop won’t work; instead, tote along a water bottle to refill. We’re partial to S’well bottles, which are stainless steel, insulated, and come in a variety of fun colors.
4. Steady Stomach Snacks: Morning sickness and a turbulent flight or hours-long car ride do NOT mix. Keep that rocky stomach away with plenty of snacks to choose from. Plain crackers, pretzels, or other bland foods are better for your pregnant belly than greasy fast food — or whatever the airplane meal is.
5. Prenatal Vitamins: Vacation doesn’t mean you can forget about everything you’re doing to support your pregnancy. Pack your prenatal vitamins in your purse or a carry-on bag (if you’re flying). In the event that your checked bag doesn’t make it to your destination at the same time that you do, having those prenatals with you will mitigate the stress you’ll feel. Even if you don’t have a change of clothes, you will have those all-important vitamins.
6. The Right Medications: Traveling can be a headache, literally, and if you do get an ache or pain, you want to make sure you’re stocked with doctor-approved meds. This isn’t a time when you can just take whatever the airport store has in stock, so bringing your own is the way to go here.
7. Super Socks: Take your footwear packing seriously — choose the right socks that work for your travel needs. Keep your tootsies toasty during a cold-weather journey with warm socks, and be sure to pack a pair of compression stockings on a long flight.
8. Medical Info: Your insurance card, a birth plan (if you have one), and any specific doctor’s orders are essential travel items for a pregnant woman. Just in case things don’t go quite as planned, you need that info with you. There might not be time to have your doc email orders or get your BFF to text an abbreviated version of your birth plan if you go into labor or need some other type of medical attention.
9. Travel Pillow: Whether you need extra back support or a place to rest your head during a way-too-long layover, a travel pillow will come in handy. Try a Trtl pillow, which is easy to pack and carry, and helps hold your head up in an ergonomic position through long trips. A full-sized version might seem like a nice idea, but your seatmates would beg to differ.
What’s your travel must-have? Share your carry-on pick and tweet us @BritandCo!
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