Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist: The Best List For FREE (2024)

Now that you’ve had the perfect baby shower, it’s time to prepare for baby’s arrival. It’s hard figuring out the best things to pack for your hospital stay as a new mom. You know you’ll need an outfit to leave in and a couple for baby but…what else? The more prepared you are, the less running around you’ll have to do when you’re in pain and the less trips you’ll have to send someone on postpartum. So I’ve saved you the hassle and compiled an easy hospital bag checklist just for you! What’s nice is you can check it off as you pack things.

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Where to start

First you’ll want to start by choosing a hospital bag to put all of your items in. Hopefully you got a cute bag as a gift at your baby shower. If not, The Mommy Pro Shop has some great options with tons of storage for all your items. I had a baby bag and a mommy bag, just to keep life simple. Next up is identifying things that you need (what you’re here for). Then, identify some stores that you want to shop at to obtain the items. I’ll have some links here for my suggestions but there’s a ton of other places you can get similar items.

Whether you choose The Mommy Pro Shop, Amazon, or another store, be sure to check out Rakuten first for deals to earn cash back on your purchases. That could add up to be onesie or bottle money! Get your money (and save it) where you can. A bottle here and there can get expensive, especially as you try out different nipples to see what your baby likes best. You even get a $10 reward when you sign up with my Ebates code, and make a qualifying purchase.

Hospital bag checklist essentials

So first things first, I made a note to confirm your primary physician for baby with your delivery hospital. This isn’t something you’re packing, but still an important step before you make it to the hospital. This makes the transfer of your baby’s records much simpler postpartum.

Flip flops and slippers

I cannot emphasize this enough. Don’t bring flip flops OR slippers. Bring both! Slippers are nice for walking around your room and on the few occasions you little one has to leave the room you can follow. But flip flops!!! Oh flip flops! I refuse to shower in a basically public (to me) shower without them.

You’ll likely have guests coming by that want nothing more than to hold baby. On the occasion that they can pry him away from you, utilize this time to clean yourself up. You’re going to feel a little gross because it’s like period on 10. You don’t want to get that on good shoes but you also don’t want to be bare foot. Bring some “burner” flip flops you don’t care about and this will also provide some stability and ensure you don’t slip.

Birth plan, ID, insurance cards

Some people have special instructions on how they’d like their birth handled. If you go to the hospital late in your labor, you may be in too much pain to communicate that plan. My personal plan went out the window because they didn’t take me seriously when I knew I was in active labor. So no pool was blown up and I wound up getting the epidural when I’d originally planned for natural birth. Having that birth plan ready, hopefully your doctors will stick to your wishes

ID and insurance cards are standard and will likely be in your wallet but take it out of the sticky part (where it’s impossible to slide your ID out) because you won’t want to be fumbling around when you’re trying to get through registration ASAP. Also bring any hospital registration forms necessary for your chosen facility. This could be nothing or a packet of forms if you haven’t previously filled out pediatrician information.

Outfits for you and baby

For you…

You’ll primarily be packing outfits for baby. You need just one for yourself, to leave. For your stay, pack BOXERS and a comfy robe. Do not pack panties and do not get the “women’s boxers” because they are tight in the leg area and you’ll practically be wearing a diaper. The boxers are really just to make you feel like an adult but they’re also comfy once you make it home. I highly recommend Hanes, especially if you’re a curvy girl because the legs are soooo comfy. You’ll also want a soft robe with pockets. You’ll appreciate it a lot more then a hospital gown. Be careful to not get a fluffy robe, as you’ll want it to not roll up as you get in and out of bed.

Also, while on the subject of undergarments, bring a bra. Whether breastfeeding or not, BRING A BRA. You’ll probably be lactating so buy nipple covers as well. If you are breastfeeding, buy the bras designed for this as they’ll easily snap and unsnap during feedings on both sides. Don’t try to get a cute structured one that looks like a real bra. I made this mistake for the both of us. I loved the ones that were similar to sports bras. Go up in band size because you’re unlikely to completely deflate initially.

Lastly, pack an outfit to leave in. Jogging pants preferred. Leggings are an option but you’ll have diaper booty. And jeans are out of the question. A large t-shirt will suffice. You’re just going home so it’s not ANTM.

For baby…

Now that we have you out the way, it’s time for the fun stuff, baby clothes! The hospital will likely provide a onesie and a swaddle sack. But you want your baby’s first outfits to be special especially when the photographer comes around for first pictures. I’d say pack at least 3-5 of your favorite outfits. Because we’re women and we need options! Also because you don’t know how long your stay will be and waiting on a circumcision for a boy takes more time.

Don’t forget to include socks and mittens. Babies are notorious for scratching themselves and hospitals are cold. There two are essential!


I HATE using toiletries provided from absolutely anywhere. Don’t get caught slipping when it’s time to leave. Pack your toiletries well in advance. Include, toothbrush, toothpaste, mouthwash, soap, lotion, deodorant, and hair are products. I’d usually opt for my own rag but in this case, I’d use what the hospital provides because, again, it’s going to look like a murder scene.

Also pack toiletries for baby like a manicure kit so baby doesn’t scratch himself (only use a file, you’ll thank me later), and Vaseline (take as many from the hospital as they’ll provide).

Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist: The Best List For FREE (1)

Home going hospital bag checklist essentials

Have the car seat ready and properly installed. I rode around with it a month before my due date and glad I did because he came 2 weeks early. I’ve heard that you can have it checked by your local fire department but mine only did it certain days throughout the month so I did not.

Pack another bag (empty) because you will absolutely leave the hospital with more than you came with. This extra bag will likely be easier to carry than the ones they send you off with. Hopefully your doctor will be as cool as mine getting you as much free stuff to stock up on. Get extra extra underwear and huge pads as you can. I think I still have some because I was terrified to run out.

Cash and change

This is a good thing to have for both you and your guest. It’s less essential than other things but for some labor can be long. You and your support team could be starving waiting around. As you may have read in my labor and delivery story, mine went pretty quickly. But postpartum you could want something between the meals they provide (I did). Most hospitals at the very least offer a vending machine, but mine also had a Wendy’s. I only knew this because I volunteer every at that hospital November 12th, giving a welcome basket to the first baby born on my Founders Day.

Cell phone, charger, headphones

When the time comes, the most you’ll grab will likely be your cell phone in the heat of the moment. You’ll be so ready to go that electronics will be low on your list of things to grab. Pack a charger and headphones in advance because there will be a lot of people trying to get in touch with you and you with them. A dead phone creates unnecessary stress. Headphones are optional because you’ll probably just want to look and listen to your baby in awe.

You’ve completed your hospital bag checklist!

Just like that your hospital bag is packed and you’re ready to go for your labor and delivery. I included links to some of my favorite items and hopefully this helps you prepare. Don’t forget you use Rakuten Ebates to save on all your purchases AND earn cash back.

Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist: The Best List For FREE (2)

Is there anything I missed that you found helpful having on you hospital bag checklist? Let us know below.


Ultimate Hospital Bag Checklist: The Best List For FREE (2024)


At what week should I pack my hospital bag? ›

Get a few things ready at least 3 weeks before your due date.

What should be in a go bag for the hospital? ›

Toiletries and personal items

Including a hairbrush, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, face wash, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, contact lens case and solution. (Remember, travel-sized products are your friends!) Our Pick: Here's a smart travel kit with most of the hospital bag essentials.

What hospital bag is essential for delivery? ›

Be prepared with a few nursing bras or other comfortable, well-fitting bras. Toiletries. Don't forget tissues, a hairbrush, a comb, deodorant, a toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, a hairdryer, hair clips, and hair ties. Pack a plastic bag to pop dirty clothes in.

Do you wear a bra during labor? ›

Studies suggest giving birth is the equivalent to running a marathon in terms of energy output, (and can actually result in similar injuries, but let's not go there right now!) so it makes sense to wear a bra and/or clothing fit for exertion and perspiration.

Should I shave before giving birth? ›

In previous years, traditional childbirth recommended hair removal on the pubic area before delivery. However, modern childbirth finds that it's not necessary to shave your pubic hair before delivery. Clinical research shows that shaving or not shaving pubic hair doesn't necessarily affect birth.

What to wear when giving birth? ›

2 nightdresses or pyjamas. comfortable day clothes which are loose-fitting (front-opening clothes are easy for breastfeeding) underwear, including large, close-fitting pants to hold maternity pads – you may find disposable pants useful for the first few days. a nursing bra.

What should you wear home from the hospital after giving birth? ›

Going Home Outfit

I keep it really simple. Usually, that's a pair of leggings, one of my favorite tank tops, and depending on the weather, I'll throw on one of my cardigans! A lot of what I wore during pregnancy (you can see my maternity must-haves here) is what I will wear postpartum.

What should I wear to the hospital after giving birth? ›

  • A robe, pajamas, and slippers with grip soles. "In most cases, it's okay to wear your regular clothes postpartum. ...
  • A comfortable outfit or two. Some moms prefer changing out of their PJs during their stay in the hospital, especially if they're expecting visitors. ...
  • Postpartum underwear. ...
  • Nursing bras.
Jun 7, 2023

How many outfits to bring to hospital for baby? ›

You can certainly overdo it when it comes to packing your hospital bag. Here's what not to bring to the hospital when you're ready to deliver: Too much clothing for you or the baby. Choose one outfit each and leave the rest at home.

What to buy when expecting a baby? ›

A list of things that will be handy to have:
  • Baby sling.
  • Baby lotion.
  • Nail scissors.
  • Nappy wrapper / bin.
  • Cot mobile.
  • Humidifier.
  • Breastfeeding cover.
  • Baby proofing accessories.
Feb 5, 2024

Do you bring your breast pump to the hospital? ›

Optional. Typically, women don't need to bring their breast pump to the hospital. However, if you are expecting to use your pump a lot (if you plan to pump exclusively, for example), then it may be useful to have the lactation nurses help get you comfortable using the device.

How many days do you stay in hospital after birth? ›

But knowing what to expect for your baby after delivery at a hospital can also help ease tension and create a smooth transition from the hospital to home. For an uncomplicated vagin*l birth, you can plan to stay in the hospital for a minimum of 24 hours – however, most people stay for about two days.

How many maternity pads will I need? ›

You will experience about four weeks of bleeding, so you will go through a minimum of a hundred and fifty pads. Do not be alarmed by these numbers; you might experience bleeding that isn't as heavy or did not last for exactly four weeks.

Is 27 weeks too early to pack hospital bag? ›

You can start packing whenever you want to. But it's a good idea to have your bag ready at least two weeks ahead of your due date .

Is 32 weeks too early to pack hospital bag? ›

Only five percent of babies are born on their actual due date. If you have a high-risk pregnancy, having your hospital bag ready around 32 to 35 weeks is also an option. However, there is nothing wrong with having most of your bag packed as early as 28 weeks.

Is 28 weeks too early to pack hospital bag? ›

It is a good idea to pack your bags 2-3 weeks before your baby's due date. If you are having complications in your pregnancy, or you are having multiples, you may want to pack your bag earlier. Having a bag for yourself and one for your baby helps you to find things more easily.

Is 24 weeks too early to pack hospital bag? ›

There isn't really a right or wrong time to get all your bits and bobs together, however, if you have reached 30 weeks and haven't started to think about it, now may be a good time to start thinking about it!


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