Start preparing your hospital bag in the run up to the big day - a good few weeks before your due date - so you're all set to go if your baby decides to arrive early. We've put together this handy checklist to save you some thinking, and to make sure you don't forget anything important! We know it's hard to resist going a bit mad and buying lots of things that seem like a good idea at the time, but the truth is, you probably won't need them. Stick to this list and your hospital bag will have just what you need.
Tips for packing your hospital bag
1. Consider packing separate hospital bags for you and your baby. In the midst of a tiring labour, it'll save you rooting around amongst a pile of sleepsuits and blankets for that hairband you're SURE you packed.
2. Pop your baby's first outfit in a clear bag and label it, making it really easy to find.
3. Take plenty of snacks - if you get admitted at night, you probably won't get fed until the next day.
4. Don't forget to pack some essentials for your partner - a change of clothes and a toothbrush will help them feel a bit fresher after a long night.
5. Bring a plastic bag to put your dirty clothes in.
6. Don't underestimate the amount of spare knickers to bring!
7. In COVID times, it might be tempting to pack some cleaning supplies, but the hospital will have plenty of these. Just make sure you bring your face masks and a bottle of hand sanitizer to keep close by.
To give you a helping hand, we've put together a checklist for your hospital bag - simply print it out and tick off the items as you pack your bag, helping to make sure you don't forget any essentials!