For Adoptive Parents: The Packing List for Your Adoption Trip

Suitcase Adoption Trip Packing ListThe adoption trip is a defining moment in the adoption process that brings parents and their baby together at last. Even when adopting domestically, this event usually takes place in unfamiliar surroundings, which can be stressful. Not only that, but sometimes the call that says you are going to become a parent comes with just a few hours’ notice. That’s why it’s best to be prepared ahead of time by having your packing list ready. Here are some key essentials to include on your newborn adoption trip packing list.
Car Seat
If you don’t have a car seat, the medical staff won’t allow you to leave the hospital with your newborn, so this is a crucial item. A car seat purchase usually requires a lot of research and there’s a lot to learn about proper car seat installation, so make sure to take care of this step well in advance. Just be sure the car seat you select is designed to accommodate newborns.
Clothing
For you, pack an assortment of comfortable clothing and shoes. For your baby, bring at least two seasonal outfits and pajamas for each day you expect to be away. It’s a good idea to have clothes on hand ranging in size from newborn to 3 months (you can always return any clothing that turned out to be too small). Don’t forget to pack burp cloths and bibs to keep those clothes cleaner longer.
Bottles & Formula
Be sure to pack bottles and plenty of formula. Your pediatrician can recommend a good infant formula to start with, plus they often have free samples, which are perfect for traveling!
Portable Crib or Pack and Play
Ask the hotel you’ll be staying at if they have cribs available to rent. If they don’t or if you’re unsure where you’ll be staying, a portable play yard, crib, or bassinet, is a great investment. Whatever you choose, don’t forget to pack at least two sheets for it when traveling.
Diapers & Wipes
Many hospitals will give you diaper samples, but you should still pack plenty more just in case. Don’t forget to include wipes and a diaper rash cream. Reusable or disposable changing pads to place under your baby for diaper changes are excellent for traveling since you may find yourself needing to change a diaper in an unexpected place.
Medicine
This trip can certainly be a joyful one, but it can also be stressful. Be sure to pack some medicine for headaches, upset stomach, and other common ailments. If you take any prescription medications, don’t forget to include those on your packing list as well.
Snacks
This is a must-have on your packing list. Your trip can be long and exhausting, and the hospital stay can be as well. Not to mention your choices for healthy meals are often limited during travel. It’s important to pack some high-protein food and snacks to survive your trip. Don’t forget to pack plenty of water as well.
Folders & Important Paperwork
You’ll more than likely need to bring with you lots of important adoption paperwork. You’ll have even more to take home with you too! If you have an adoption binder or accordion folder, be sure to bring that; otherwise, pack a few folders to keep everything organized in one place and to avoid losing anything important.
Entertainment
Your baby will certainly be a fantastic source of entertainment, but before he or she arrives and even after, there might be periods of waiting. Pack something to help pass the time, like a laptop, tablet, magazines, books, etc. Don’t forget to pack chargers for your devices as well.
Camera
Bring a camera so you can capture your very first moments and days with your child. Ask your baby’s birthparents whether they’re okay with you taking photos of them. Use those photos for your adoption story book.

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Angel Adoption, Inc. provides marketing and advertising services that assist biological parents considering adoption and prospective adoptive parents to connect with each other, and provides support and referral services throughout the process. Angel Adoption, Inc. is an independent contractor and provides services under the supervision of Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois, License #012998, One Oakbrook Terrace, #501, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181; 708-771-7180.