Regulations regarding air travel for pregnant women vary widely from airline to airline. Some impose no restrictions for expecting mothers, while others require a doctor’s visit and signed note 48 hours prior to liftoff. These rules were designed with the safety of moms and babies in mind. The following is a breakdown of how some of the world’s biggest airlines handle travel throughout a woman’s pregnancy.
Air France is one of the most accommodating airlines for pregnant women. While the airline advises against travel in the final month of pregnancy, they don’t have any official restrictions in place. The Air France website offers tips on how to stay comfortable during your flight as an expecting mother.
Alitalia requires all pregnant women to fill out and carry their Medical Information Form. Women who are eight months along, or more, must have both the Medical Information Form and a signed note from their doctor permitting travel.
American Airlines will not allow any woman on board within one week of her due date. To board an American Airlines aircraft within 10 days of her due date, a woman must gain approval from American Airlines’ Special Assistance Team and have a note from her healthcare provider. International flights within one month of a mother’s due date requires that she visit her doctor within 48 hours of traveling.
British Airways, Lufthansa, and Singapore Airlines do not allow women to board a plane after 36 weeks. After 28 weeks, expecting mothers must provide a physician’s note confirming the due date and clearance for travel.
Cathay Pacific does not permit anyone on its aircrafts after 36 weeks of pregnancy. At 29 weeks, women must provide proof of a doctor’s visit within 10 days prior to travel and a note confirming their due date and clearance for travel.
Delta imposes no restrictions on traveling pregnant, but does enforce the ticket change fee for everyone, including pregnant travelers.
JetBlue and Virgin America’s only restrictions apply to women within seven days of their due date, who must visit a doctor no more than 72 hours prior to travel to gain clearance.
United asks mothers in their ninth month of pregnancy to obtain a doctor’s note no more than 72 hours prior to departure stating her due date and that it is safe for her to travel.
Virgin Atlantic requires women between 28 and 36 weeks pregnant to obtain a doctor’s note stating their due date, lack of health complications, and clearance for travel. After 36 weeks, women may only fly in urgent situations, and must have gained clearance from both their own physician and Virgin’s medical advisors.
Share this story