The Essential Hospital Bag Checklist

Getting ready for your big day can feel both exciting and overwhelming. We've put together a handy hospital bag checklist for everything you will need. Some moms find it easiest to have one bag for each person, some like one bag for everyone. Our advice is to just keep it organized and don't bring a lot of extra stuff. You will want your bag(s) packed by 35 weeks. Keep them in the car if you can, or in an easy-to-grab spot in your home.

For labor

Photo ID (driver's license or passport), insurance card, and any hospital forms. Birth Plan: 2 copies - one for your partner and the other for hospital staff. AlphaCord Cord Blood & Cord Tissue Collection Kit Room & Hallway Attire: bathrobe, night gown, cozy socks, and comfortable slippers (good for walking the halls before and after labor). Comfortable Bra: nursing and/or maternity bra and nursing pads (even if you don't plan on breastfeeding, your breasts may be tender when your milk comes in and you'll appreciate the leak protection). Toiletries: hairbrush, hair bands/headband, toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, deodorant, face wash/wipes, makeup, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and lip balm. Eyeglasses and contact lenses with extra solution and case (if applicable). Extra Comforts: mp3 player with all your favorite tunes loaded on it, pictures of loved ones - especially pictures of your other children (if you have any), things you like to watch or read, journal/paper and pen, your own pillow. Electronics: cell phone and charger and a pre-paid calling card in case your hospital doesn't allow cell phones or has bad cell reception, phone numbers of who you want to call after the birth. Laptop/tablet and charger, if you are more inclined to email than call people.

For your partner or labor coach

Cameras: video camera and/or regular camera with extra batteries or battery charger. A change of clothes and basic hygiene products. Snacks & Money: small bills and change for the vending machines and non-perishable snacks for when the hospital cafeteria is closed. Bathing Suit: if your hospital has a soaking tub and you want company.

For baby

Already installed infant car seat. Going Home Outfit: seasonally appropriate clothing, socks/booties, hat, and diapers (if you have a long ride). Cute Blanket: you’ll be taking a lot of pictures and those hospital blankets may not be your favorite look.

For you after labor

Snacks and the phone number of who you can call to bring you your favorite food after all your hard work. Going home outfit. Gifts for your older children (if applicable).