Couples that want to start a family by working with a surrogate mother have increasingly been going to other countries to find the right partner. However, the decision to travel for the purposes of surrogacy can mean an even more significant investment than what’s called for with local surrogacy. In some cases, couples choose to do this because the surrogacy options in their local area don’t meet their needs, but just because there is an extra cost involved in surrogacy abroad, that doesn’t mean there are ways to reduce this cost.
Where Does The Cost Come From?
The breakdown of finances for surrogacy comes down to a few major areas:
You’ll be expected to travel to the country of the surrogate mother, especially when searching for a candidate, and, of course, when it comes time for the birth to occur and the family to be united to return to the country of residence.
As the pregnancy progresses, the surrogate mother cannot fend for herself. Regardless of whether she usually has a career and is financially independent, she will not be able to maintain this in the later stage of pregnancy, nor should she to protect the growth of the baby. The hopeful couple must pay for considerations like food, toiletries, and other everyday expenses.
A safe pregnancy means regular checkups with experienced medical staff. It also means access to good facilities when the time comes to give birth. Covering the medical expenses of the surrogate mother over the course of the pregnancy is another financial responsibility for a hopeful couple.
The surrogate mother may receive additional financial compensation depending on the surrogacy type. “Altruistic surrogacy” is a type of surrogacy that is essentially volunteering. Aside from medical and living expenses, no additional money is given to the surrogate mother. However, compensated surrogacies mean that the surrogate mother profits from the surrogacy and receives a fee of sorts for services rendered. This is often the case when couples want more surrogacy options, as countries that allow compensated surrogacies have much larger selection pools to work from as a result.
A few of the ways for a couple to lower some of these costs abroad include:
While it is important to travel to the surrogate country for the initial search and meeting with a surrogate mother and to visit once more to receive the newborn, the visits in between can be mitigated with regular online conferencing. The pandemic has greatly advanced the options available for people to meet with each other virtually; this can save on what would otherwise have been regular visits.
Natural Cycle Embryo Transfer
If the preference is for a gestational surrogacy with the hopeful mother donating her egg instead of using the surrogate mother’s egg, then a natural cycle embryo transfer can lower costs significantly versus using a frozen embryo cycle. This option is only available for women regularly menstruating, with a typical ovulation cycle for medical staff to monitor and utilize.
Depending on the country of residence and the country of surrogacy, there may be significant savings due to currency conversion. The costs of surrogacy, medical, and living expenses between the United States and Georgia, for example, are all lower due to the greater value of the American dollar versus the Georgian lari. Currency conversion differences can lower expenditures than if the same costs were incurred locally.
It also helps to work with experienced medical facilities to minimize unexpected expenses, like these services in Georgia:
The GGRC clinic focuses on surrogacy support, even in the early phases, like helping couples find the right surrogate mother. This is a good clinic for end-to-end service, right at the beginning, all the way to legal considerations like citizenship post-birth.
Zhordania IVF Center
The Zhordania center in the capital of Tbilisi is an In Vitro Fertilization facility with experienced lab and personnel resources. This center includes the infrastructure for collecting donor eggs. If eggs are already in cryogenic storage in another location, they have the expertise to ensure they are safely transported to the center and used for implantation.
Chachava Medical Center
Chachava Medical Center, located in Tbilisi, has served residents of the capital city for over 100 years. It first opened its doors to Georgian patients in 1875. Today, it accepts patients from around the world. It offers complete support for surrogacy needs, including obstetric and gynecological-related medical assessments and treatment.
Inova IVF Center
The Inova IVF center is a recent addition to the Tbilisi medical community, only opening in 2015. Like Zhordania IVF Center, this facility offers IVF services for those interested in gestational surrogacies. They also provide the Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis service for couples with a risk of hereditary disorders. This screening technology ensures the baby will not carry on any family diseases.