Adoption is a beautiful process that comes with travel and excitement! In all that excitement it is easy to forget a few things. But worry not. Adoption Choices of Nevada has created a list of the items for packing for an interstate adoption. Though, remember some of these things can be bought at the destination. Depending on if you leave a few weeks before the due date or you get that call the baby is coming before the due date it is important to have everything ready.
Okay! Let’s get into the nitty-gritty, shall we?
1. Baby’s Car Seat
This is possibly one of the most important items on this list. Why? Well, for starters, the hospital will not let you leave with your baby if you don’t have one. This, no matter if you are driving or flying, is very important. Now, if you are flying, it might look a little strange walking onto a plane with no baby. You will probably get a ton of questions. It would be good to keep in mind that you can buy a car seat wherever your baby is located. Saves some time and nosey questions. If you are driving, you can practice getting it into the car correctly.
There are also a ton of options that are available for a car seat. It might be best to buy one at your destination if you are unsure of the right kind for your baby. The hospital staff and your adoption professional are there to help you figure out the best option. Every baby is different, and it is key to keep in mind that if you are unsure of what to do.
2. Adoption Documents
Adoption comes with many important documents. If you are adopting from another state, for example, there is the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC) that needs to happen. All associated paperwork needs to come with you. To make it easier, we suggest creating a binder of all your important adoption-related documents, so everything is in the same place and easy to find. That way nothing will get lost and you won’t have to worry or stress about leaving anything behind.
This may include a doctor’s note to fly! Some airlines will allow babies to fly at a week old, but some require a doctor’s note saying it is okay. Better safe than sorry on this one.
And not just for baby!
It is suggested to bring a few outfits from the premie to the 0-3 months section. Keep those receipts though! You can return what your baby doesn’t fit into after all. The reason for getting clothing in different sizes is a just in case your baby is on the small side. A small baby will be swimming in the 0-3 month clothing and that isn’t exactly the most comfortable or safe for them.
Bring onesies, sleepers, the outfit you want to take them home in, socks, booties, hats, etc. It’s never a bad idea to bring more than you think you’ll need, just in case.
As for you, the parents, bring more than you think you will need too! When packing for an interstate adoption bring shorts no matter the time of year because hotels, AirBNBs, and even hospitals can get stuffy. It is best to be comfortable where you are than miserable in pants. Pack a light jacket, clothes that are easy to wash (if you have access to a washing machine), and most importantly pack items that are comfortable. Leave the suit or fancy dress at home. Your baby does not care if you look out of a movie because the fact of the matter is babies are messy sometimes.
4. Diapers & Diaper Bag
The hospital will provide you with some diapers. However, you should for sure bring your own. No one wants to be stuck at the airport without fresh diapers! Make sure you pack plenty of these. Newborns go through 10-12 diapers a day.
The diaper bag should have items including, but not limited to: bottles, bibs, diapers, extra clothing, wipes, nipples, and anything else a baby might need while traveling.
Bottles and formula are key to traveling. The type of bottle is up to you but keep in mind weight if you are flying. Any bags over 50lbs will cost extra, and sometimes that fee is on the side of ridiculous. Glass bottles are heavier than plastic ones, they could break during travel, but you can fully sanitize them and they will not absorb odors or tastes like plastic ones can. It comes down to your babies preference in the long run. Glass isn’t readily available, which could mean if you do not order them ahead of time you will have to use plastic.
6. Portable Crib
This is something you can buy at your destination. Traveling with one could be bulky and cumbersome but it is important if you are staying outside the hospital for a few days after you get your baby. Make sure to get some sheets for it, the recommendation is at least two.
Travel is a lot of work! While you are traveling there is probably going to be a time you are hungry. Bring some snacks that aren’t perishable! Plus healthy options for food may be limited where you are going, so bring some snacks high in protein to keep up with it all.
8. Camera and Scrapbook
This is a must-have for your trip, and you probably already have it because of your phone. A suggestion is to bring a way to print them off. This could be a cord you can use to transfer them to your laptop or in some stores like Walmart you can print off digital pictures from your phone directly. Once they are printed add them to a scrapbook or a simple photo holder for the birth mother.
Be prepared for some waiting or downtime. Bring a laptop, a few books, or some form of other entertainment. Don’t go overboard, though. There will be plenty of time watching your baby too. Maybe even bring a portable gaming system to the hotel. You are on baby time. If the baby’s due date comes and passes with no baby, just remember you have plenty of things to do.
Packing for an Interstate Adoption
That covers the main list of items! Your baby may need different things for the unexpected happenings of life. Be it extra time in the hospital or just really fussy because of that pesky gas bubble. No matter what happens, you are going to be prepared for it. You now have a list of what to pack for an interstate adoption.
Adoption Choices of Nevada
If you are currently in the process of adopting a baby and have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact, Adoption Choices of Nevada. You may visit the website here or contact us by 775-825-4673 (Reno Office) or 702-474-4673 (Las Vegas Office). Our hours are Monday through Friday, 9am-5pm PST.
Support Adoption Choices
Adoption Choices, Inc. is partnering with Crowdrise, a fundraising website for nonprofits, to help our adoptive parents and birth parents with much needed financial assistance. We understand that expenses keep clients from fulfilling their dreams. Both with birth parents making a plan for adoption, and with adoptive parents growing their family. It is our mission to provide financial assistance through grants and scholarships, awarded annually in November, in honor of National Adoption Month. Funds assist adoptive parents with matching and placements, adoption finalization and helping birth mothers improve their lives through higher education — and much more.
However, we can’t do it alone. Please read up on our programs and donate money where you are able. Your donation will make a huge impact.
About the Author
Tia Kitchens is a college graduate with a B.S in Psychology from Capella University who has always had a passion for three things: animals, writing, and mac ‘n cheese. Two of these three are things she has based her work around. Animals are a big impact on her life due to her love for helping others through difficult situations. Through her studies, she has found the human-animal bond is strong enough to help others. This, paired with her writing, helps her record her findings and teach others through her words.
She is excited to join Adoption Choices as an Editorial Intern because she’s wanted to adopt since she was little, and is excited to learn about the industry and the adoption journey.
Her goal is to make a change in the world with her words and end up on someone’s inspiration pinterest board! Being a key quote on someone’s pinterest board it shows her words have a huge impact on people. They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but if that picture is just words it surely means more that way! To learn more about her, follow her on Twitter and Instagram!
Chittister, Robyn. “What to Pack When Traveling for a Domestic Infant Adoption.” Adoption.com, 3 Sept. 2015, https://adoption.com/what-to-pack-when-traveling-domestic-infant-adoption.
“For Adoptive Parents: Packing for Your Adoption Trip.” For Adoptive Parents: The Packing List for Your Adoption Trip, Angel Adoption, Inc., 21 Apr. 2016, https://www.angeladoptioninc.com/blog/for-adoptive-parents-your-packing-list-for-your-adoption-trip/.
Klepchukova, Anna. “How Many Diapers Does a Newborn Use in a Day?” Flo.health – #1 Mobile Product for Women’s Health, 31 Aug. 2019, https://flo.health/being-a-mom/your-baby/baby-care-and-feeding/how-many-diapers-does-a-newborn-use.
“Preparing to Travel for the Delivery and Hospital Stay.” American Adoptions Blog, 6 Mar. 2014, https://www.americanadoptions.com/blog/preparing-to-travel-for-the-delivery-and-hospital-stay/.
Robertson, Rachel. “Packing for Your Interstate Adoption.” Adoption Choices of Colorado, 9 Nov. 2019, https://www.adoptionchoices.org/packing-for-your-interstate-adoption/.