What do I pack In My Hospital Bag when having a baby

Apr 1, 2021 | Newborn

There are so many posts about what to pack in your hospital bag, it’s all a bit overwhelming so I thought I would do some research to try and help my expectant clients out.

When I started printing some off I quickly realised they were either American not making them as relevant,

or they just didn’t seem to include everything, like should you take different size sleep-suits?

What should I pack in my hospital bag?

Some people believe the contents depends on your birth plan, Well not everything always got to plan. So the plan is to be prepared for the unexpected.

Keep open minded, anything could happen, be prepared that you might have to stay in a hospital instead of a home both or you might have to stay in hospital for a longer timescale so packing should be sufficient for this also. So hopefully whatever your birth wish this hospital bag checklist should have you covered.

If you are planning a home birth still have a hospital bag packed. If you are planning a water birth be prepared that it might not be possible.

It is also a good idea about 4 weeks before baby is due to have an emergency car pack. So many babies

are actually born in the car on the way to the hospital. Some people get stuck in traffic, others baby just suddenly comes unexpected and very quickly so not enough time to get to hospital. Some people might be on an evening out so no hospital bag in car and no time to go home and get it to so the emergency pack is then with you.

Emergency car pack contents

Several towels, baby wipes, antibacterial hand gel, scissors, baby grow, nappy, bottle of water sanitary towel

For Baby

Hospital bag checklist

  • Cotton wool pads
  • Water wipes (this is a bit of a controversial one, health visitors recommend wipes of no kind are used sometimes the cotton pads just don’t do the job so have them as a back up)
  • Nappies. It is worth taking a few tiny baby size nappies and some newborn size as well as sometimes
  • babies are very small and the newborn ones swamp them.
  • Nappy cream – Not essential most newborns do not get nappy rash
  • Muslins x3. To clean up sick etc
  • Waterproof changing pad liner.- You can buy disposable changing pads these are very useful as babies will pee as soon as you take their nappy off this will save their crib sheets and clothes and prevent it going all
  • up their back as it will soak the pee up.
  • Swaddle blankets x2. Nice to keep baby warm and secure
  • Car seat blanket. You will need a blanket to put over baby in car seat when going home.
  • Ready made formula bottles You can buy them with sterilised teats included so need for any sterilising
  • (even if you are planning on breast feeding it is still worth taking them as not every baby can latch on.
  • Dummies -again you can buy sterilised disposable dummies or buy ones that can be sterilised in the microwave . Even if you don’t want to give baby a dummy it is worth having them as a backup . Sometimes they help babies that are struggling getting the sucking reflex properly.
  • Bibs x 4
  • Hats x 3
  • Scratch mits x 2
  • Socks x 3
  • Bodysuits x 5. It is worth packing 3 newborn size and 2 tiny baby size
  • Sleep-suits x 4. Pack 4 newborn and 1 tiny baby just in case.
  • Cardigan. To put over going home outfit
  • Going home outfit. Take 2 maybe different sizes also think of what the weather might be and be prepared you could be discharged in the evening so it could be cold
  • Teddy’s. It is nice to have a little teddy as babies first teddy so you can photograph baby with.
  • Dirty clothes bag. Just a couple of Tesco bags to bring the washing home in.

For Mum-to-be

  • Large t-shirt or nightshirt to give birth in
  • Bikini top. Worth taking even in not the king of going in the birthing pool but you have it in case.
  • Lightweight dressing gown. It does get very hot in hospitals and in Labour so take something cool but also that you don’t mind getting ruined
  • Bed shirt x2. It is nice to have buttoned shirts to wear afterwards they are comfy and practical if breastfeeding.
  • Cheap large dark pants x5 It is also handy to take disposable knickers as the first few pairs you wear
  • could get very messy it saves having to wash them
  • Nursing bras x2 your breast will increase in size so buy a size larger than you are now.
  • Socks x2
  • Slippers
  • Going home outfits. Make sure it is comfy and not tight fitting easy to put on.
  • Dark large towel & flannel


  • Breast pads & Large maternity pads
  • Toothbrush & toothpaste
  • Hairbrush, hair bobbles & clips
  • Body wash & mini shampoo/conditioner
  • un-scented deodorant
  • Face wipes & face moisturiser
  • Hand cream
  • Lip Balm
  • Cooling water spray This is great when in labour
  • Small mirror
  • Makeup

The Extras

  • Hospital notes
  • Camera & charger
  • Notepad
  • Snacks, food and drink this is mainly for birthing partner as once mum is in labour food and drink is the last thing on her mind
  • Cash for parking
  • Car seat to bring baby home in

All you need now is for baby or babies to arrive

I hope this guide has been helpful.

All photos in this article are taken by Tracy Main Photography

Have you thought about having a maternity photoshoot it is a stage in your life that is so beautiful and might only ever happen once in your life why not have these memories to keep forever.

Having a newborn photo shoot is the most amazing way to capture you newborn in the first few weeks of life . They are just so sleepy perfect and it is great to record this fleeting moment and have it for a lifetime.

Please contact Tracy via website www.tracymainphotography.co.uk for more information

If you are looking to find eco friendly products and organic products for your babies soft perfect skin this company does all this in one box and then the box doubles up as a keepsake memory box for all your newborn’s first memories.Baby shower gift box / babies memory box

Check out their page at Little Lyons Shop

Other Blogs

By Tracy Main Photography

Meet my clients – Michaela

Meet my clients – Michaela

I’d like to introduce Michaela. She has been one of my most valued clients and she shares her experiences here at Tracy Main Photography. Michaela here writes to share her experiences with me. She’s brought her lovely little ones in for new-born photoshoots, sitter...

read more
Bottle feeding and Photoshoots

Bottle feeding and Photoshoots

I am Tracy, owner of Tracy Main Photography, and I have been wanting to try and help some of you new-mums or mums-to-be-deal with the issue and dilemma of Breast or Bottle. You may have seen my other blog post giving 6 reasons why bottle feeding isn’t bad. I just...

read more
6 Reasons Why Bottle Feeding Isn’t Bad

6 Reasons Why Bottle Feeding Isn’t Bad

As an expectant, new or recent mother will be more than aware that the NHS is on the campaign trail for breastfeeding. The age-old line of ‘Breast is Best’ is the mantra of the midwives, neonatal and antenatal nurses alike. However, I'm going to give you 6 reasons why...

read more