Cookies at Which? We use cookies to help improve our sites. If you continue, we'll assume that you're happy to accept our cookies. Find out more about cookies

What to pack for your baby's birth

Hospital bag checklist

Article 1 of 3

Put us to the test

Our Test Labs compare features and prices on a range of products. Try Which? to unlock our reviews. You'll instantly be able to compare our test scores, so you can make sure you don't get stuck with a Don't Buy.

Hospital bag checklist

The NHS advises getting your hospital bag packed by the time you are 37 weeks along. Wondering what to put in it? Our checklist can help.


We surveyed 2,002 parents to find out what was in their hospital bag - from baby sleepsuits to maternity pads. We also asked them to share what they wish they'd taken with them, but didn't. Read their tips, and then you can download and print our checklist so you don't forget a thing.

What to pack in your hospital bag

Hospital bag essentials according to parents

Comfort is key - for both you and your baby. Parents said the number one thing to pack was sleepsuits, hats and nappies for your baby. Coming in at a close second was maternity sanitary pads, and toiletries were third. Have a look at the list to make sure you're not missing anything important.

What did you pack in your hospital bag?

  1. Sleepsuits, hats, nappies for baby 71%
  2. Maternity sanitary pads 63%
  3. Toiletries 58%
  4. Blanket for baby 52%
  5. Going-home clothes for you 50%
  6. Mobile phone and charger 48%
  7. Nightgown 44%
  8. Old/disposable knickers 44%
  9. Birth plan and medical notes 42%
  10. Cotton wool or baby wipes 39%
  11. Dressing gown 38%
  12. Slippers 35%
  13. Nursing bras 29%
  14. Breastfeeding pads 27%

Don't forget, you will also need a child car seat ready to take your new baby home from the hospital in. Browse Best Buy car seats for babies in our top 10 baby car seats

Not a member? Simply sign up for a £1 trial to get access to this and thousands of reviews.

What people forgot to pack

We asked parents what they wished they had packed in their hospital bag to make giving birth easier. Here's what they said:

Chocolate, food and snacks: giving birth is hungry work

  • 'A massive Galaxy bar'
  • 'CRISPS!'
  • 'It would have been nice to have some easy snacks - they gave us dinner at 5pm and I was starving by the evening!'
  • 'Snacks for my husband (he ate them the day before).'
  • We also had a fair few mentions of gin, wine, and vodka... but maybe stick to the chocolate for now

The digital lifelines

  • 'iPad - although they hadn't been invented!'
  • 'iPod to listen to music'

If you're still considering your options and deciding where to give birth, visit Which? Birth Choice to understand and compare your choices. Here you can also check exactly what facilities are available in the birth centre or labour ward you've chosen.

Download and print our Which? hospital bag checklist

Download our hospital bag checklist in an easy-to-print format.