Hospital Bag Checklist for Moms and Dads

Must-know Hospital Bag Checklist for Moms and Dads

Imagine this: You’re at home, sitting with your partner at the kitchen table. You're drinking tea and talking about your baby, who's coming soon. The day your baby will be born is getting closer, and you realize there’s something important you need to do: pack your bags for the hospital. 

Since you’re going to be parents for the first time, you’re not sure where to start, but you want to make sure you have everything you need. That’s where our "Hospital Bag Checklist for Moms and Dads" comes in. 

It’s a list to help you get all the things you’ll need when you’re at the hospital so you’re ready for the big day. So, get a pen and paper because we’re going to make packing for the hospital super easy!

A Hospital Bag Checklist for Mom and Dad's Big Day!

A Hospital Bag Checklist for Mom and Dad's Big Day!

The last thing you want to do when it's time to go to the hospital is rush to pack a bag. It's important to pack your bag early and make a list of what you need for the hospital. 

Planning ahead helps you be ready when your partner says it's time to leave. Being prepared early means your hospital bag has everything you need—you won't forget any important things.

To make sure you're ready when the time comes, here's the ultimate hospital bag checklist for moms and dads. 

Hospital Bag Checklist for Moms

Hospital Bag Checklist for Moms

Essentials in the Delivery Room

  • Photo ID, Insurance Information, Hospital Forms & Birth Plan: Get your ID, insurance info, hospital forms, and birth plan ready. This will speed up check-in and let the hospital staff know your birth preferences.
  • Comfy, Loose-Fitting Clothing: Take comfy, loose clothes like pajamas or maxi dresses. They’re easy to move in, which is helpful during labor.
  • Warm Robe & Socks: Hospitals can be cold, so pack a warm robe and cozy socks to stay comfortable, especially after giving birth.

Comfort for Labor and Beyond

  • Nursing Bras/Tanks (if breastfeeding): Nursing bras or tanks are handy if you plan to breastfeed. They make feeding and skin-to-skin contact with your baby easier.
  • Going-Home Outfit (for you & baby): Pack comfy and cute outfits for both you and your baby to wear when you leave the hospital.
  • Disposable Postpartum Underwear: This is a big help during the initial postpartum period. Look for ones that are breathable and absorbent.
  • Maternity Pads (with Extras): While hospitals usually provide maternity pads, bring extras just in case. Postpartum bleeding after birth is normal, so it's good to be prepared. 
  • Peri Bottle: This helps with post-delivery cleansing and promotes hygiene and comfort. (Ask your doctor if the hospital provides them.) 
  • Nipple Cream: Breastfeeding can be uncomfortable at first, so use nipple cream to soothe and protect your nipples. Ask your doctor for suggestions on which cream to buy.

  • Prenatal Vitamins / Medications with Container: Pack a daily pill container with your prenatal vitamins and medications to keep track during the chaos of childbirth easily. Also, bring a stool softener if you plan on getting an epidural, as it can cause constipation.

  • Boosting Your Well-Being

    • Travel-Sized Toiletries: Pack the essentials you use regularly (toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, etc.) to maintain your hygiene routine.
    • Lip Balm & Lotion: Take the lip balm and lotion to avoid dryness, which is suitable for the hospital environment.
    • Hair Ties & Headbands: These are a must to keep your hair back with hair ties or headbands during labor.

  • (Dry) Shampoo / Conditioner: Most women want to shower during their hospital stay, but some may not want to or find it hard to wash their hair. For that, bring travel-size shampoo and conditioner. If washing your hair is too difficult, pack dry shampoo in your toiletries bag, too.

    • Favorite Pillow & Blanket: Bring your favorite pillow and blanket for comfort cause familiar comforts from home can provide a sense of security and relaxation during a stressful time.

  • Glasses / Contacts / Solution: If you wear glasses or contacts, you’ll want them during labor. You’ll need them to see your new baby clearly.

    • Entertainment Options: Pack books, magazines, a downloaded playlist, or a portable speaker to keep yourself occupied during downtime.
    • Snacks & Reusable Water Bottle: Childbirth is very intense, so you'll need healthy snacks like energy bites, trail mix, dried fruit, or yogurt. Although eating during labor is often discouraged due to outdated safety concerns, it's usually safe and helpful for most women. Read this blog to learn.
    • Sugary Treats: Hard candy or mints can provide a quick energy boost during labor contractions.

    Optional Pampering

    • Breast Pump (if you plan to pump): Discuss pumping needs with your doctor beforehand and pack your pump if necessary.
    • Nursing Pads: Your milk might come in quickly (it usually takes 2-5 days, but can come in very quickly for some women.), so use nursing pads to prevent leaks. Bring 6-10 disposable nursing pads to the hospital for convenience.
    • Makeup (if it makes you feel good!): Feeling good about yourself can boost your confidence during this special time.
    • Essential Oils & Diffuser: You can take lavender or chamomile oil if the hospital smell bothers you a lot.
    • Gift for Hospital Staff: You can pack some gifts for the hospital staff to show gratitude for their care.
    • Comfortable Chair (if allowed): Some hospitals give extra furniture. If you can arrange a comfy chair, it’ll create a big difference during your stay.

    In addition, if you’re interested in learning how to pack a diaper bag, please read our insightful blog.

    Hospital Bag Checklist for Dads

    Hospital Bag Checklist for Dads


    When we get ready to pack for the hospital, we usually focus on what mom and baby need, but we shouldn't forget about dads and partners! 

    Along with the basics, we have an easy checklist for you, Dad.

    Essentials for Long Hours

    • Change of Clothes: Do you know that labor can be long and unpredictable? For that, pack comfortable clothes (sweatpants, t-shirts) that you can easily move around in. Take some extras in case of spills or unexpected situations.
    • Travel-Sized Toiletries: Take essentials like a toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, etc. to maintain your hygiene routine. 
    • Healthy Snacks & Reusable Water Bottle: Hospitals can be marathon events. Pack some healthy snacks and a water bottle to cope with that upcoming situation.
    • Comfy Shoes: You'll be walking the halls, fetching things for Mom, and maybe even pacing during labor. For that, take comfy shoes that provide good support.
    • Sleep Accessories: Bring your own pillow and blankets from home for extra comfort during rest time.
    • Eyewear: If you wear glasses or contacts, bring them along with a contact solution if needed.

    Entertainment for Downtime

    • Books, Magazines, Downloaded Movies, or a Portable Speaker: Labor can have downtime. Pack books, magazines, downloaded movies, or a portable speaker to keep yourself occupied.

    Staying Connected and Capturing Memories

    • Cell Phone & Charger: Don't forget your cell phone and charger to document this special time and stay in touch with loved ones.
    • Camera with Extra Batteries & Memory Card: Don't rely solely on your phone! Bring a camera with extra batteries and a memory card to capture all the precious moments in high quality. 

    Extras for Dad:

    • Cash or Credit Card: For dads, it's handy to have cash, coins, or a credit card for vending machines, parking, or unexpected expenses.
    • Massage Oil: You can help keep mom relaxed by bringing massage oil for a soothing massage during labor.
    • Birth Plan: Write down your birthing preferences to communicate with the medical staff easily.
    • Insurance Card: Bring your insurance information and other relevant paperwork for smooth check-in.
    • Car Seat: Remember to bring the car seat when it's time to take your new bundle of joy home safely.
    • Push Present: If you plan to gift something to your wife, have it ready to celebrate the special moment together.

    Remember: Check with your hospital about any items they provide. Pack light but cover the essentials. Label your bag clearly. Most importantly, pack a positive attitude and a heart full of love – you're about to meet your little one!

    Besides, visit our insightful blog to learn, “What should you pack in your diaper bag?


    5 Tips for Packing a Hospital Bag

    5 Tips for Packing a Hospital Bag

    As you’ve got Mom and Dad’s hospital bag checklist, below are suggestions for packing your hospital bag.

    Choose the Right Bag:

    Pick a big bag with many sections.

    Think about using a suitcase with wheels.

    Don't bring many small bags.

    Ask the Mom-to-Be:

    Talk to the mom-to-be about what she needs.

    Pack her favorite snacks and comfy clothes.

    Make sure to include all the important things.

    Pack Early:

    Start packing long before the due date.

    Begin with things you won't use, like diapers and baby clothes, until the hospital.

    Add more items as the due date gets closer.

    Keep the Bag Accessible:

    Keep the bag somewhere easy to grab, like in the closet.

    It helps save time when going to the hospital.

    Use Bag Dividers:

    Use packing cubes or containers to organize your stuff.

    Put labels on each cube to easily find your stuff.

    You can check out this awesome video guide on Mom vs Dad Hospital Bag.


    Choose Swaddle Tote for Some Amazing Diaper Bag Collection

    So, why choose Swaddle Tote for your diaper bag needs? We have stylish options that fit any parent's needs. We offer two bags in one: a tote for quick trips and a backpack for longer outings. Tired of bulky bags? Ours are stylish and functional, with plenty of compartments to keep you organized. Plus, we use high-quality materials, and our bags convert to suit your needs as your baby grows.

    Besides, visit our insightful blog to get a hospital bag checklist for Twins.


    Wrapping Up

    To wrap it up, preparing your hospital bag is really important as you wait for your baby. Follow the complete "Hospital Bag Checklist for Moms and Dads" to make sure you have everything you need. Pack carefully, talk with your partner, and be ready for anything unexpected. Once your bags are packed and good to go, you can start this amazing journey feeling confident and calm.