Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor and Delivery

The best hospital bag checklist for the mom-to-be, complete with the simple essentials, extra items to consider, and a printable checklist!

Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor & Delivery | Modern Homestead Mama

Are you getting ready to pack your hospital bag? If you’re like me, you’ve probably been looking through different articles for inspiration on what to add in preparation for your big day.

Keep in mind that the main goal is to pack things that make your stay as comfortable as possible. There are few things that you’ll actually need, since the hospital provides most of the essentials for you. You’ll want to bring things that are sentimental, offer comfort, or that you know your hospital won’t have available. 

The third trimester is a crazy time, full of nesting urges, hormones, and back pain. Thankfully, these hormones usually kick us into high-gear, and we’re able to get everything together, even if it feels like we waited until the last second to prepare for baby.

If you’re ready to pack your hospital bag for labor and delivery, check out my printable checklist at the bottom of this article!

While you’re here, learn how to prepare for baby on a budget, and check out the ultimate baby checklist, full of the items you need for your newborn.

When To Pack Your Hospital Bag?

Unless you’re high risk for going into preterm labor, you should aim to have your hospital bag packed between 30 and 34 weeks. You can begin planning out what you want to take, and writing your own personalized checklist at the start of the third trimester!

With my first son, I think I had my bag packed around 35 weeks. It was wishful thinking, (not that I wanted him to come too early), since I ended up having to be induced at almost 41 weeks.

Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor and Delivery (1)

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Hospital Bag Checklist: Things To Pack

What To Pack in Your Hospital Bag: For Mom

  • Your birth plan and any other important insurance papers
  • Nursing Bras
  • Comfortable Underwear
  • Slippers (I prefer booties, like these)
  • Socks
  • Nightgown/Pajamas (nursing friendly)
  • Labor & Postpartum Gown (if you’re extra like me. You don’t have to wear the stiff hospital gown most places.)
  • Robe
  • Going Home Outfit (keep it comfy!)
  • Nursing Pads
  • Nipple Cream (the hospital will likely have some for you)
  • Breast Ice Packs
  • Deodorant
  • Toothbrush & Toothpaste
  • Hair Ties & Bobby Pins
  • Hair Brush 
  • Lip Balm
  • Shampoo & Conditioner
  • Dry Shampoo
  • Body Wash
  • Lotion (or any other creams or salves you use frequently) – remember that baby’s noses are sensitive! Nothing too perfume-y
  • Special Pillows or Blankets
  • Books or Magazines
  • Water Bottle
  • *Makeup (if you feel up to it)
  • *Glasses or Contact Lenses (if you wear them)

For Baby

Keep in mind that the hospital will have you covered on most things.

  • Receiving blankets
  • Swaddle
  • Newborn or Size 1 Diapers (if you want)
  • Baby Wipes (not necessary)
  • Baby Socks
  • Baby Hat
  • Sleepers
  • Onesies 
  • Pants
  • Going Home Outfit
  • Car Seat Canopy
  • Infant Car Seat and Base (already installed in your car)

Last-Minute Things To Add:

  • iPad/Laptop
  • Camera
  • Chargers (for your phone or any other devices you’re bringing)

Related: How To Document Your Pregnancy Effortlessly

Packing Hospital Bag for Labor and Delivery

What Will You Actually Use?

So, what items do you actually need in your hospital bag? Not much, honestly! I’ve listed out the things you might want to consider, but truly, you only need a few things.

The hospital is going to provide you with most of the things you and your baby will need for the first few days. So, while I do highly recommend buying your own postpartum care items (like this spray, some extra mesh undies, and some witch hazel pads), you don’t need to take them with you to the hospital.

Why use your own stash when the hospital will give you plenty during your stay? They’ll most likely send you home with some extras as well!

Same goes for baby items like diapers and wipes! Shoot, they even offer pacifiers if that’s something you want to introduce early on.

If you plan on pumping from the beginning, the hospital will provide you with a hospital-grade pump during your stay. There’s no need to bring all of that with you, either.

Here’s What You REALLY Need:

  • Birth Plan
  • Comfortable Clothes and Undergarments (enough for a few days)
  • Deodorant
  • Toothbrush & Toothpaste
  • Hair Ties
  • Hair Brush
  • Lip Balm
  • Your own Shampoo, Conditioner & Body Wash (You’ll feel more like yourself if you get to shower with your own products after giving birth.)
  • Sleepers/Outfits for Baby
  • “Going Home Outfit” for Baby
  • Car Seat

Hospital Bag Checklist Printable

Hospital Bag Checklist Printable

Print Your Checklist!

What items do you wish you would have taken with you to labor and delivery? Is there something I missed? Let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

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Hospital Bag Checklist for Labor & Delivery | Modern Homestead Mama

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