If you can count the weeks until your due date on one hand, it’s time to get your hospital bags packed with all the essentials. Think about what you, your partner, and your new baby will need on delivery day and on the trip home from the hospital.
But don’t stop there. You might want to throw in a few luxury items like your favorite pillow, some facial wipes, a good-luck charm — anything to make you feel more comfortable. And don’t forget your birth playlist. You’ll be happy for the distraction in the delivery room.
Here’s a breakdown of what to bring. Download and print a copy so you can check off items as you pack.
What to bring to the hospital
Pack your hospital bag a few weeks before your due date so you’ll be ready for any surprises. Use this checklist while you pack to be sure you don’t forget anything!
Your labor kit
- Your Kaiser Permanente identification card
- A copy of your birth plan
- Something to hold your hair back
- Lotion for massage
- Cotton socks
- A yoga or exercise ball if you plan to use one
- A hand fan and spray mist bottle
- Music and something to play it on
- A robe or front-opening shirt for nursing and skin-to-skin contact after delivery
- A fresh nightgown, pajamas, or comfy sweats to wear when you have visitors
- A nursing bra with no underwire
- Maternity underpants
- Personal items, like a hairbrush, cosmetics, toothbrush, and toothpaste
- A going-home outfit (pack loose-fitting clothes — you’ll be around the size you were when you were 6 months pregnant)
- Snacks for mom
- Tennis ball for massage
For your baby
- A going-home outfit (multiple layers)
- 1 or 2 blankets, depending on the weather
- Baby socks
- Your baby book
- Rear-facing car seat
- Outfit for baby pictures
You’ll need your baby’s car seat to be properly installed in the back seat. Take care of this a few weeks before your due date — it’s not something you want to be doing on delivery day. Your baby won’t be able to ride home with you unless it’s done!
For your partner or support person
- Camera (check the battery!)
- Phone charger
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Light snacks and water
- A front-opening shirt for holding your baby skin-to-skin
- A bathing suit, in case your partner needs to help you in the shower
- Layers for partner to add/remove due to air conditioner
TIP: Try to get in the habit of keeping your phones fully charged ahead of time so they’re ready to go when you leave for the hospital. You’ll have enough on your mind without having to sweat small details as you rush out the door.