Each week during November, Nuts About Southwest will have an article that focuses on family travel.
As a Southwest Airlines Employee, travel happens to be my favorite part of the job! I LUV boarding the plane and dreaming about my next big adventure.
When I learned this past June that I was expecting a baby, I knew I wouldn’t be able to keep my feet on the ground for the next seven months, so I decided to talk to my doctor and research safety guidelines for traveling while pregnant.
While you should ALWAYS consult your physician if you have any questions about traveling while expecting, below are the top ten tips that my doctor recommends for safe and comfortable air travel.
Research airline policies before traveling. For Southwest Airlines, we advise against air travel beginning at the 38 th week of pregnancy.
Wear comfortable, loose clothing and layers so that you are able to adjust based on temperature.
Arrive at the airport early enough so that you have plenty of time to walk to your gate.
According the Transportation Safety Administration, the new Advanced Imaging Technology used during security screenings is completely safe for pregnant travelers. However, you may request to be pat-down if you prefer.
Check your bags or ask a strong Passenger to help you lift your carry-on luggage into the overhead bins.
Remember to hydrate before, during, and after your flight.
Bring healthy snacks that you can munch on whenever you become hungry.
During a long flight, maintain good blood circulation by doing some inflight exercises/leg stretches in your seat. Or, if the fasten seatbelt sign is not illuminated, you can stand and walk up and down the aisle when needed.
If you are past 20 weeks in your pregnancy, it’s always helpful to have your antepartum records, as well as your insurance card. Antepartum records could come in handy in the event of a medical emergency while away from home, and typically include: your doctor’s contact information, your due date, your medical history, information from last check-up, and current fetal information.
Bring a neck pillow, kick back, and relax!
Safe, happy travels, and congratulations to all the moms-to-be! Enjoy your next big adventure!
This article is not designed to and does not provide medical advice, professional diagnosis, opinion, treatment or services to you or to any other individual. Nor is it intended to replace the advice of your own physician. Each woman is different, as is each pregnancy, so please check with your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns about travel.
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Today's feature is a guest post from Fabiola Charles
Make-A-Wish Georgia, VP, Communications & External Affairs
Fourteen-year-old wish kid Jordan thought his parents were driving him to yet another doctor’s app ointment. But instead of arriving at the hospital, he found a sweet surprise from Southwest Airlines. After more than a year of battling bone cancer, Jordan never expected the routine visit was an elaborate ruse to spread a little LUV to him and his family.
It all started at our Make-A-Wish ® Georgia office. Jordan shared his love for football. He told us that he’s been an Atlanta Falcons fan for as long as he can remember and never misses an opportunity to cheer them on.
Lining up a Southwest Airlines Surprise for Jordan
When Southwest Airlines called our office with an opportunity to connect a child with the team, Jordan instantly came to mind. As the official airline for the team, Southwest was hosting the Falcons at their Trading Spaces event – a day when players swap their helmets and pads for boarding passes and act as honorary Southwest Employees. They wanted to include one of our kids and we knew Jordan would LUV it.
But, as with anything we organize, we wanted to make the day extra special for him. We shared the details of the event with his parents, who helped us plan the surprise and brought Jordan to this extra-special “appointment.” As they drove down the familiar route, they took a detour and arrived at the airport instead.
When they pulled up to the terminal, Southwest greeted Jordan and his family with colorful banners, decorated signs and famous Falcons players. The look of pure shock on Jordan’s face was priceless.
Face Time with the Falcons
Jordan spent the afternoon hanging out with Harry Douglas, Shan Schillinger, Dominique Franks, Joe Hawley, and William Moore. Together, they made boarding announcements and marshaled planes in and out of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. He fit right in with the players, thanks to the autographed jersey they gave him as a keepsake.
We were thrilled to team up with one of our national sponsors, Southwest Airlines, to give this experience to a great wish kid like Jordan. For the many families we serve, the wish experience is one of the few times they can forget about the illness and have moments of happiness to share.
Bringing hope, strength and joy to families across Georgia at a time when they need it most is part of what makes the Make-A-Wish mission so amazing. And we are so thankful to have supporters like Southwest Airlines who join us in making kids’ wishes come true.
Southwest Airlines donates roundtrip tickets every year for kids and their families on their way to and from a Make-A-Wish experience. Southwest employees also work together to make air travel part of the fun of a wish experience, from assistance during boarding to special recognition during flights.
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Today, as we reflect on the meaning of Christmas and time spent together with our families, think about your favorite Christmas tradition? Do you decorate the tree as a family; bake cookies with Grandma; wrap presents while watching your favorite movie? What if you started a new tradition this year? Over the past few weeks, we have talked about Going Green in our holiday preparation, but today we are going to share a few ways that your family can Go Green in your celebration as well! Recycle and Donate After presents have been opened and play time has commenced, take some time to clean through gently used toys and clothes, and bag them up for those less fortunate. This is a great way to remind children to count their blessings and give back! Nature Walk Before that big Christmas dinner, take some time to get out, stretch, and take in all the sights and smells of Christmas. Take a stroll through your neighborhood, or visit your local park. Bring your binoculars for bird watching, or a trash sack to clean up a bit along the way. Plant a Tree Many memories have been made while decorating a Christmas tree, why not try planting one this year? The act of “replacing” the Christmas tree you decorated with the new one planted in the ground is a great way to take care of our planet! Garnish a Tree for Birds and Squirrels Pick a tree out in the open and decorate with pine cones covered in peanut butter and a variety of seeds. Your kids will LUV watching the birds and squirrels frolic in their newfound food source, which is invaluable to these creatures in the winter months. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rejoice! What new traditions do you plan on starting in the name of Green? Let us know by commenting below or by e-mailing email@example.com. DING! You are now free to be Green!
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Albert Schweitzer once said, “I don't know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know—the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.”
As a proud American, I have always held a special place in my heart for those who choose to serve our country. Whether it was with a hug, a card, a care package, or a meal, my parents ingrained in me the importance of saying thank you to those who lay it all on the line. However, it wasn’t until my 19-year-old brother enlisted in the Army, that I began to realize the depth of the choice that our servicemen and women make. The false perception of service I’d held in my head vanished as I went three months without hearing his voice. As Thanksgiving came and passed, and I realized that he wasn’t going to walk through the door and shout, “Surprise!,” I came to understand that Military Service meant far greater than I had ever known. Whether he was digging a hole in the ground for shelter, piling dirt beneath his head for a pillow, staying up for hours on end and then running miles in the rain, or standing at attention for so long in the sun that sweat burned and dripped into his eyes—he continued to serve. It was about 18 months ago. I was dressed in a white wedding gown, hugging my brother goodbye because he was leaving for boot camp the next day. As I struggled to let him go, I asked him to explain to me why he chose to serve. With a smile on his face he said, “If my decision to serve gives a husband the chance to hold his wife another day, a father the opportunity to see his first born child, or a mom the ability to make it home for her son’s graduation, then I would make the decision to go every single time.” There is a calling that they have answered and shoes that they have promised to fill. We can rest easier and dream sweeter because we know that they have sought and found how to serve—for OUR Freedom. As we enter this season as Thanksgiving, remember those who serve, remember our Military Heroes.
Patriotism runs deep at Southwest Airlines, and we are proud of all those who serve, especially the nearly 5,800 Active Duty, Reservists, and Veterans who are part of the Southwest Family. In celebration of Military Heroes Month in November, you’ll hear about and read blogs about service, how we honor the military, the sacrifice these heroes make, and how we celebrate the brave who fight for our Freedoms. Who’s your hero? How do you appreciate the military? Share your story by commenting below.
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In honor of National Volunteer Week, we wanted to give you a peak into a program that includes Volunteering, Southwest Airlines Pilots, and thousands of children across the United States! What do you get when you mix them all together? Why, its Adopt-A-Pilot! Encouraging fifth graders to follow their dreams is what Southwest Airlines Adopt-A-Pilot (AAP) is all about. More than 800 Pilots volunteer each year, sometimes driving hours to get to more than 1,300 classrooms, teaching students about the importance of their education and shooting for the stars! AAP is one of Southwest Airlines’ long-standing volunteer programs, and every year our Pilots give more than 10,000 hours of volunteer time to classrooms across the US. A way for students in AAP to show what the program means to them is through our annual Tie Contest. For the 2010 AAP Tie contest, we received more than 4,700 entries but one talented student, Rylee Arnott, who attends Hubert Bancroft Elementary in Sacramento, swept us away with her entry which truly captured what Southwest is about. Her winning tie will be worn with honor by all of Southwest Airlines Adopt-A-Pilot’s. On March 31 st , we had the privilege of putting on an assembly to honor Miss Rylee, which was attended by about 140 of her classmates, her family, her Adopt-A-Pilot, Captain Mike Van Voorhees, and OAK Assistant Chief Pilot Jim Randel, along with other Southwest Employees from DAL and SMF. Our Southwest Pilots truly Shared the Southwest Spirit with Hubert Bancroft Elementary as they encouraged students to build their education following the F.L.I.G.H.T. values, which are Fearlessness, Leadership, Imagination, Gratitude, Honesty and Tenacity. While Captain Mike Van Voorhees, a product of Hubert Bancroft Elementary, volunteers his time to these students and encouraging their dreams, we also wanted to encourage the staff of Bancroft Elementary by letting them know that we appreciate them pouring into the lives of students, especially in these difficult economic times. So to do so, SWA donated $500 to the school to use to increase their positive impact on the lives of those deserving kids. Seeing Rylee’s face light up as she received her own framed tie and realizing that she won her school a $500 donation was priceless and I felt so privileged to have been a part. The trip was an opportunity to see firsthand the impact of the Adopt-A-Pilot program and the difference the volunteer hours that SWA Pilot’s make in the lives of these kids! We all left with a smile on our face and a charge in our hearts to volunteer our time to help make a change. We’re excited for our Pilots to log their volunteer hours for our 40 Hours for 40 Years Challenge to our Employees! This week Southwest Airlines celebrates National Volunteer Week in a big way by issuing a challenge to our 35,000 Employees! In honor of our 40 years of service and our rich history of giving back, Southwest Airlines launched the 40 Hours for 40 Years volunteer pledge for Employees. For every 40 hours volunteered at a nonprofit by an Employee or group of Employees, Southwest Airlines will donate a complimentary, roundtrip ticket to that organization through its ongoing Tickets for Time program. The Tickets for Time program is Southwest’s way of supporting the causes that are closest to its Employees hearts.
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