There is no precise time that you should pack your hospital bag for, however, it is a good idea to have one packed by weeks 34/35. Some women decide to pack their hospital bags much earlier on, it is completely your choice. What exactly you pack inside of your hospital bag is also entirely up to you, but there are a few essentials items that you should include as you will need them for both you and your new-born baby. The London Mummy Blog has put together a hospital bag checklist to give you an idea of what to pack for the birth of your baby. Of course, all births are very different and you may decide to pack or leave out some of the items which we have listed below.
Although there are companies who provide pre-made up hospital bags, and brands who sell hospital bags targeted purely at pregnant women you do not have to buy any of these products. A normal holdall, cabin bag, or even a small suitcase will do just fine. There is no limit on the number of bags that you can take with you to the hospital, however, if you do decide to take several bags along with you it may become unnecessary hassle for you and your birthing partner.
Once you have packed your hospital bag you should keep it somewhere that is easy to remember such as in the hallway, the side of your bed or in the car ready for your trip to the hospital.
You might want to pack a few different sizes for your newborn baby such as size 0’s and 1’s in nappies, and newborn/tiny baby clothes along with some 0-3 months sizes. This is just to make sure that you are extra prepared as sizes may differ with different manufacturers. Unless you have a scan just before your baby is born, you won’t know how much your baby is going to weigh. The average birth weight of a newborn baby who reaches full term, which is between 37 and 40 weeks is 2.7–4.1kg (6 – 9 lbs), making the average birth weight 3.5kg (7.7 lbs). Therefore newborn baby and tiny baby sizes should fit a 6-7lb baby perfectly, and sizes 0-3 months should fit an 8-9lb baby just as good, however, a tiny baby size outfit would be less likely to fit a 9lb baby.