What to Pack in Your Hospital Bag

What to pack in your maternity hospital bag

Getting ready for the big day?  Here’s a comprehensive list of everything to consider packing in your hospital bag.  Aim to get your your bag together by around 35 weeks, so you don’t risk being unprepared and have less to worry about when the time finally comes.

For you:

  • Towel and/or trash bag (for car)
  • ID / insurance info / hospital paperwork
  • Birth plan
  • Labor/delivery gown (hospital will provide one — but some people like to bring their own)
  • Pen / notebook / watch or timer
  • Gum / hard candy (for labor)
  • Relaxation tools / comfort objects (whatever you need to make you comfortable in your room): e.g. music, family photos, bouncing ball, massage oil, etc.
  • Favorite pillow (if desired), with a non-white pillowcase (so it doesn’t get mixed up with hospital pillows)
  • Favorite snacks (for after labor, and in case cafeteria is closed)
  • Hairband(s)
  • Pajamas / comfortable lounge clothes
  • Robe
  • Socks
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Flip flops or slippers
  • Nursing bras/tanks or sports bras
  • Nursing pads
  • Nipple cream and/or gel pads
  • Nursing pillow (as needed)
  • Breast pump (as needed)
  • Bottom balm, Tucks, or witch hazel (for tears/hemorrhoids)
  • Maternity underwear and heavy maxi pads or Depends (if you don’t want to use the mesh underwear and super thick pads provided by the hospital)
  • Lip balm
  • Toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, brush, deodorant, any favorite shampoo / conditioner / soap, face wash, lotion, hairbrush)
  • Glasses, contact lenses, contact solution (as needed)
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Makeup (if desired for photos)
  • Going-home outfit; possibly also a second presentable outfit for pictures or visitors (think second trimester)
  • Phone & charger
  • Camera, batteries, memory card
  • Entertainment, e.g. music, magazines/light reading, portable DVD player or digital videos, deck of cards

For your partner:

  • Toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant)
  • Change of clothes
  • Pillow and/or blanket (if not provided by hospital)
  • Favorite snacks
  • Change for vending machines
  • Phone & charger
  • List of people to call/text/email
  • Entertainment (see ideas above)

For baby:

  • Diapers & wipes (if you’re picky or hospital doesn’t provide)
  • Pacifier/soother
  • Scratch mittens
  • Hat (hospital usually provides generic ones)
  • Receiving blanket (hospital usually provides generic ones)
  • Going-home outfit
  • Baby/memory book (if desired)
  • Books on newborn care and/or breastfeeding (if desired)
  • Car seat (installed in car ahead of time)


  • Gift for elder siblings
  • Thank you gift or note for nurses
  • White noise machine (if desired)
  • Take-out menus for local restaurants

Hopefully having everything you need on hand will make your delivery a little easier.  All the best for a smooth delivery and a healthy new addition to your family! 🙂