Birthing - What to Bring

What to bring when you come to hospital to give birth

We recommend you leave your valuables at home for the duration of your hospital stay.

You can download this list here.

For you

For labour

  • Your support person/whānau
  • Your birth plan, if you have one
  • Any medications you have been taking, to show our staff
  • Comfortable, loose fitting clothes to wear in the ward
  • Socks – although the hospital might be warm it’s best to ensure against cold feet
  • Slippers or comfy shoes
  • Something to wear (two piece) in the birthing pool, if you choose to use it
  • Mobile phone and charger with a long cord – it can be a stretch from the wall to the bed
  • Comfy pillow, if you prefer your particular one
  • Lip balm - lips can become dry during labour and this may offer some relief
  • Massage/aromatherapy oils for during labour
  • Wheat pack in case you want it during labour
  • Pen & notepad – for notes, baby name lists, memories etc.
  • A good book or magazine
  • Travel rug or blanket if you prefer
  • Storage containers for glasses, contact lenses, hearing aids, or dentures
  • Water bottle with a sipper top or straw
  • Meals will be provided but you may wish to bring snacks
  • Food and drink – Have a supply of snacks and drinks for during and after labour.
  • Your favourite mug or cup - tea, coffee and milo are provided
  • Muka (Flax) Ties for the pito (Umbilical Cord)
  • Container for placenta: some people choose to take their placenta (whenua) home. You may wish to bring a special container, such as an ipu whenua with you. We encourage you to send the placenta home with family members as soon as possible as there is limited storage available at the hospital

For your support person

  • Swimming togs – for assisting you in the birthing pool/shower.
  • Change of clothes – labour may take a while
  • Toothpaste/toothbrush
  • Copy of your birth plan
  • Mobile phone and charger
  • Change/bank card for food/drink vending machine
  • Books, newspapers etc. for reading during a long labour
  • Healthy snacks for both of you
  • List of people you want to keep updated – maybe make a special group in a direct messaging app

For your stay in hospital

  • Casual, comfortable, loose fitting day clothes for in the hospital but also to wear home – enough for 2-3 days stay.
  • Your maternity clothes are probably best as your tummy won’t have returned to its pre-pregnancy size. If you had a caesarean you will definitely need a comfy waistband.
  • Disposable or loose comfortable underwear with enough material to stick the maternity sized sanitary pads to. A high waist that will sit above any potential caesarean scar is more comfortable.
  • Maternity sanitary pads (the hospital does supply these but pack some so you always have them at hand)
  • Jandals for the shower
  • Nighties or pyjamas that can unbutton for breastfeeding (or lift up easily)
  • A light robe – it’s pretty warm in hospital so your big fleecy robe will likely be too hot
  • Breastfeeding bras and tops
  • Breast pads - in case your milk comes in while still in hospital
  • Reusable bag to take gifts and things home

* Clothes that open down the front or separate at the waist are recommended to make it easier to breastfeed



  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Hairbrush and spare hair ties
  • Deodorant
  • Body wash - (ideally something without too much scent so baby can recognise your natural odour)
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Face cloth

For baby 

Please bring the following items for baby during your stay:

  • 3 Onesies/Stretch & Grows/Bodysuits or three tops and pants that cover arms and legs
  • 3 singlets
  • 3 hoodless long sleeve cardigans/tops
  • Woollen hat
  • Woollen booties/socks
  • Bassinet blanket - made of breathable material such as cotton or wool. Avoid polar fleece (blankets and clothes) as this can cause baby to overheat.
  • Muslin wraps and muslin wipes
  • Barrier cream, olive, apricot, almond oil for coating baby’s bottom before the first nappy goes to make cleaning easy
  • Baby wipes/cloth wipes – (the hospital provides wet wipes but cloth wipes can be softer and nicer on the skin, plus great for spills and things too)
  • Nappies - (the hospital does supply disposable ones but pack enough for 3-4 days so you always have some at hand)
  • Wet bags - 3 x large wet bags – to put dirty laundry in so people can take it home and wash it for you

For baby going home

  • Going-home clothes such as a woollen hat, all-in-one, woollen booties and jacket/cardigan. It is a good idea to make sure the clothes have legs if the car seat requires the strap to go between the legs. 
  • A car seat appropriate for your new baby. This is always required. Staff will check baby in this before you leave the hospital. Have it installed and ready to go and practice getting in and out of the car a few times before you bring it to hospital.