Pregnancy hospital bag checklist: What to pack to get ready

·7-min read
 (Mamas & Papas)
(Mamas & Papas)

Nine long months have passed - and finally it’s time to get ready for the arrival of your baby. In those last few weeks, it is time to focus on your hospital bag. Most experts recommend you start packing, or at least start thinking about packing, at about the 32 to 34 week point.

But what do you actually need to take with you? Here’s a packing list.

The bag

Before we get to the nitty-gritty of what to pack, here is a selection of bags. Depending on a variety of factors, you could be in for a few days - so make sure you pick something big enough that is nice and easy to carry.

Two Tone Large Capacity Duffle Bag

A total bargain, this neutral holdall is stylish and practical. While not the roomiest of the bunch, it will still carry a number of essentials for the big day with ease.

 (Shein)
(Shein)

£14 | Shein

John Lewis & Partners Orlando 56cm 4-Wheel Cabin Case

This roomy, bright yellow wheely number is nice and easy to transport around. Made from an ABS and Polycarbonate blend shell and featuring a matte finish, it is certainly easy to spot - and will be perfect to reuse for holidays in the future.

 (John Lewis/PR)
(John Lewis/PR)

£75 | John Lewis

Oliver Bonas Hattie Leopard Strap Orange Rectangular Weekend Bag

Another vibrant choice, this orange bag with woven leopard spot straps is bold but beautiful. The weekend bag has one large main compartment and two internal zip pockets to keep all your essentials.

 (Oliver Bonas)
(Oliver Bonas)

£69 | Oliver Bonas

Herschel Supply Co. Novel Holdall

Herschel’s vintage American design is practical and stylish. The shape has various pockets and a shoe compartment to keep them separate from your clothes. Includes detachable shoulder strap to make it easier to carry.

 (John Lewis PR)
(John Lewis PR)

£85 | John Lewis

List for birthing parent

There are, of course, several items that are essential - such as something to give birth in and clothes for you and baby once it arrives. But also, make sure you pack some things that bring you joy - such as music, favourite snacks, magazines, a phone with podcasts loaded on to it. It will make you feel more comfortable as you settle into life as a new mother.

Something to give birth in

Desmond and Dempsey Jag Print night dress in navy

This luxurious gown will bring a touch of glam to your birth. Its spaghetti straps make it good for skin-to-skin contact post-arrival and there are matching pyjamas and robes in this print should you wish to get some other matching items.

 (Desmond and Dempsey)
(Desmond and Dempsey)

£80 | Desmond and Dempsey

Seraphine hospital bag kit

This set of hospital essentials is excellent for all expectant mums as it ticks off various essentials in one. It includes a super-soft pyjama top and pyjama bottoms, a dressing gown and a nightie with poppers at the front for easy nursing and skin contact snuggles.

 (Seraphine PR)
(Seraphine PR)

£139 | Seraphine

H&M ribbed nightdress

This calf-length nightdress is made from a soft ribbed jersey and features a round neckline with comfortable dropped shoulders, short sleeves - good for keeping you cool - and slits in the sides. A practical, well priced and comfortable modern choice.

 (H&M)
(H&M)

£12.99 | H&M

Sleepwear to wear during your time in hospital

Viscose Rever Pyjama Set with Eye Mask

These well-priced pyjamas have a chic design. There are buttons down the front for easy breastfeeding and come with a matching eye mask.

 (Marks & Spencer)
(Marks & Spencer)

£35 | Marks & Spencer

MAMA Maternity/nursing pyjamas

A wrap top and leggings in supersoft jersey, these pjs can be worn during pregnancy, at the hospital and when nursing afterwards and are somewhere between pyjamas and loungewear.

 (H&M)
(H&M)

£29.99 | H&M

Pure Cotton Dobby Woven Nightdress

Made from pure cotton, this floaty nightdress combines elegance with comfort. Buy it a few sizes up so that the front is nice and loose for access to your chest after the birth. Great for summer babies when delivery wards get hot.

 (M&S)
(M&S)

£25 | Marks & Spencer

Dressing gown and slippers

Sleepy Swallow Print Black Robe Dressing Gown

A beautiful and eye-catching robe that is a perfect hospital cover up. It will also be fantastic for breastfeeding and skin-on-skin bonding when you get home. The gown also comes with matching pyjamas.

 (Oliver Bonas)
(Oliver Bonas)

£69.50 | Oliver Bonas

Navy stripe maternity robe

A bit of a hybrid, this gown is part robe, part night dress and a great all-rounder for hospital and home.

 (Jojo Maman Bebe)
(Jojo Maman Bebe)

£29 | JoJo Maman Bébé

Faux Fur Open Toe Slippers

You’ll be the envy of the maternity ward in these super modern slippers featuring cream-coloured faux fur with a leopard print ankle trim.

 (Marks & Spencer)
(Marks & Spencer)

£25 | Marks & Spencer

Change of clothes and going home outfit

Poppy jumpsuit

Beyond Nine are known for their sustainable, stylish and practical maternity clothing made for mothers by other mothers to go beyond the nine months of pregnancy (the clue is in the name). The Poppy jumpsuit - which comes in various colours - can be worn alone or layered up for cooler months. Great for breastfeeding and oh-so comfortable.

 (Beyond Nine)
(Beyond Nine)

£79 | Beyond Nine

Faith stripe cotton jogger

Comfortable and cool thanks to the rainbow stripe detail, these jogging bottoms are a great choice - even more so when you buy the matching sweater.

 (Brodie Cashmere)
(Brodie Cashmere)

£135 | Brodie Cashmere

Nursing bras

Set of two soft bamboo nursing & maternity bras

You’ll have likely bought a non-underwire maternity bra in the later stages of your pregnancy (they are so comfy!). But if you haven’t, this two-pack by Seraphine is a good practical choice. The brand has other, prettier designs - but this basic bra is a good place to start.

 (Seraphine PR)
(Seraphine PR)

£35 | Seraphine

Warrior Soft Cup Wirefree Nursing Bra

Beautiful to look at and functional, this is a fantastic nursing bra available in 32-38 band and B-H cup. Hot Milk lingerie also offer online fitting services.

 (Hot Milk Lingerie)
(Hot Milk Lingerie)

£39.99 | Hot Milk Lingerie

Large knickers

Pack of two maternity briefs

At this time in your life, bigger really is better! These are comfortable and go over the bump so won’t be tight on any potential C-section scars.

 (Seraphine)
(Seraphine)

£15 | Seraphine

MAMA 2-pack briefs

Again, note the high waist for light tummy support for the tummy. Buy in a bigger size for peace of mind - you can’t be too comfortable.

 (H&M)
(H&M)

£12.99 | H&M

Other items to remember...

Don’t forget to pack your birth plan and hospital notes, breast pads if using, washbag (including toothbrush, hairbrush, flannel, soap, lip balm, deodorant, hair ties and other toiletries including medicine), towels, fan or water spray to cool you down, TENS machine if using, extra pillows, packets of super-absorbent sanitary or maternity pads. Also throw in a couple of things you love/home comforts - whatever they might be.

List for baby

At the end of the day, the most important items to remember are things that will keep your baby warm, comfortable and fed!

Clothing

Welcome to the World range

Mamas and Papas have got you covered here. Their newborn range includes all the essentials - sleepsuits, hats and mitts, booties, vests, socks, pramsuits... Here are a few must-buys.

Safari Jersey Cotton Sleepsuits 3 Pack (Mamas & Papas)
Safari Jersey Cotton Sleepsuits 3 Pack (Mamas & Papas)

£19 | Mamas & Papas

Star All Over Print Hat & Mitts (Mamas&Papas)
Star All Over Print Hat & Mitts (Mamas&Papas)

£14 | Mamas & Papas

Bear Booties (Mamas & Papas)
Bear Booties (Mamas & Papas)

£8 | Mamas & Papas

5 pack Pure Cotton Printed Sleepsuits

Classic prints and neutral colours make these another excellent option - and a great gift to buy new parents.

 (Marks & Spencer)
(Marks & Spencer)

£25 | Marks & Spencer

Shawl or blanket

Large Cellular Blanket

Cellular blankets are an excellent choice for newborns thanks to the breathable material that can be layered up for warmth. Mamas & Papas has various sizes and colours on offer.

 (Mamas & Papas)
(Mamas & Papas)

£22 | Mamas & Papas

Pure Cotton Animal Shawl

Made from cotton, this shawl will keen any newborn snug - and is cute to boot.

 (Marks & Spencer)
(Marks & Spencer)

£10 | Marks & Spencer

Muslin squares or bibs

Essential for newborns - bibs and muslins are great for mopping up spillages and accidents or using while feeding or winding your baby. Muslins are bigger and more versatile, while bibs can have adorable designs.

5 Pack Muslin Squares - Balloon

Great value pack of neutral muslins.

 (Mamas & Papas)
(Mamas & Papas)

£16 | Mamas & Papas

Extra large elephant print muslin

This is huge! Great for a variety of things - including getting a bit of privacy when breastfeeding.

 (Jojo Maman Bebe)
(Jojo Maman Bebe)

£10 | JoJo Maman Bébé

Animal Alphabet Bibs 3 Pack

Beautiful bibs that will go with any number of sleepsuits and other outfits.

 (Mamas & Papas)
(Mamas & Papas)

£9 | Mamas & Papas

Other items to remember...

Lots of nappies; cotton wool balls, newborn wipes or reusable wipes; formula and bottles if using; car seat for the trip home.

List for birth partner

At points, you will no doubt feel useless, but you can bring a few items to help your partner in what is going to be one of the most tiring and overwhelming experiences of their lives. Here’s some nice extras you could pack.

Items to remember

Healthy snacks and drinks; books, magazines, podcasts and music to pass the time; phone charger/portable charger; change for vending machine and car park; washbag including toothbrush, deodorant.

Read More

Best baby changing bags of 2021 to store nappies and other essentials

Best STEM toys for kids so they can play and learn

Best bath products for baby and mother that care for your skin

Best tablets for kids of 2021 to help your little ones learn and play

Best laptops for children: from study sessions to gaming with friends

Best children’s clothing brands in the UK to order online

Best maternity and nursing bras of 2021

Best maternity underwear for you and your growing bump

Best white noise machines 2021 to help you drift off to sleep

Best compact strollers for travel: Lightweight pushchairs to take on holiday

Best maternity clothing brands in the UK that we love

Best nursing chairs for a comfortable feeding time for mum and baby

Best baby carriers your little one will love

Best babies and children’s mattresses UK for a great night’s sleep

Best baby monitors: Audio and video devices to keep your little one safe

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting