Babymoon – noun ba·by·moon \ ‘ba-be-mün \ – A relaxing or romantic vacation taken by parents-to-be before their baby is born.
Most moms-to-be don’t care where they go, but a relaxing, romantic, stress-free vacation celebrating the last few weeks of alone time is often the perfect way to cap off a long pregnancy. A babymoon can be as glamorous or as low-key as mom wants it to be, but no matter the type of trip, it should be all about relaxation and decompressing before the baby comes.
Here are a few things to consider if a babymoon is on your calendar:
First question: When to go?
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the best time for travel for moms-to-be is in the second trimester, between 14 and 28 weeks. At this point, you’re likely past the first trimester morning sickness, and yet to have reached the exhaustion and discomfort often associated with pregnancy in the third trimester.
Be aware that some airlines require a doctor’s note for pregnant women. Check your airline’s policy before boarding, but just to be safe, get a note anyway – that way your doctor can give you thumbs-up on your travel and you’ll have a note in the event you need to change plans or planes.
Next up: Where to go?
What do you want to do? What are you into? Make a list of the things you want to see and do with your partner and start narrowing your list down to options that will offer rest and relaxation, as well as inspire you and help you feel recharged. Some women prefer beach getaways or quaint cottages in the woods, while others opt to jet to a new city and live in hotel bliss. Many resorts, and even local hotels now, are getting into the babymoon mindset and it’s worth mentioning your plans to them to see what deals, activities or perks they offer to expectant moms.
Tip: Choose somewhere that isn’t too far away. You’re likely to be tired at this point in your pregnancy and excessive hours in a car or time spent dealing with layovers can be physically and mentally draining – the opposite of what a babymoon should be providing you. Plus, the sooner you get there, the sooner vacation begins!
Prepping for the trip
Once you’ve got your destination and timeframe down, it’s time to make an itinerary. An itinerary will not only help you sort out what you’ll be doing (or want to do) but it will also help set the tone for the trip. Even if you simply jot down “Saturday: Nap” it will act as a reminder for what you want to get out of the vacation.
Be sure to Google and write down important information, like local addresses and numbers of hospitals, especially if you’ll be out of the country or somewhere with spotty internet. Don’t forget to pack your insurance cards, doctor’s contact information and a list of emergency contacts (who aren’t your partner) in case they need to be contacted.
It might also be worth purchasing trip cancellation insurance as a “just in case”.
Focus on romance
Once your new baby comes, you may have a more difficulty finding time for intimacy and romance. A babymoon is a great opportunity to reconnect with your partner and focus on one another, reflect on your relationship and make new memories.
Some romantic ideas: Take a long walk together, do a crossword puzzle, reflect on when you first met and where you are now, share a dessert, get a couple’s massage, cook a meal together, check out a museum or find a local spot that offers karaoke and do a duet together. Keep it light, fun and relaxing.
Consider a staycation vacation
Babies cost money so it’s understandable to want to pinch pennies a bit at this point in your pregnancy. If a flight to Key West or a drive to Niagara Falls don’t seem doable because of the price tag, it’s worth considering saving money and having a vacation right at home.
Take time off from work and totally unplug – no checking email or texting with friends. Even though you’re at home, you should create an itinerary to make the best utilization of time so that you’re able to focus on one another and destress. If you don’t, it’s easy to fall into the normal routine of tackling things like household chores and errands.
If you’re sticking close to home, consider hitting up a movie, taking a day trip to a local town you’ve never visited or just ordering food and relaxing. You may also want to look into renting a local Airbnb or spending a night in an in-town hotel. It will make you feel like you’re on vacation without all of the travel costs.
Going on a relaxing vacation before the birth of your baby doesn’t have to be all about romance. You could also plan a trip with a friend, sibling or parent – whoever makes you feel the most at ease – or take your own weekend away from it all. What’s most important is that you take the time to focus on you and your own needs before the birth of your child. Sometimes a little “me-time” is the best type of vacation.
Whether you are staying home or you choose to explore a new location, a babymoon is about rest, decompressing and having some quality fun. Before you head out, don’t forget to let your physicians know so they can give you the green light so that you and your baby are safe to travel. Bon voyage!