7 Tips to save money with your newborn in 2023| Updated: |
(Disclosure: Some of the links below may be affiliate links)
We recently became the parents of a cute son. Before he was born and in the first few months of his life, we had to purchase and prepare many things. We tried to avoid spending too much while still buying everything we needed for him.
Overall, we did a good job at keeping these expenses reasonable. And we also learned some things later on.
Overall, there are many things you can do to spend less for your newborn while not changing anything to his quality of life. In this article, I share our tips on how to save money with your newborn.
1. Do not buy (too many) tiny clothes
When a baby is born, he generally wears size 50 clothes. However, these clothes are pretty much useless. At most, they will last one month, usually much less than that.
We bought some size 50 clothes, but we would recommend not to buy any. Buy some size 56 or 62 clothes, and you will be good for at least an entire month, not only a few weeks.
And if the baby is premature or tiny, you can buy some clothes while the baby is at the hospital, since he will be fully dressed for free as long as he is there.
2. Buy second-hand clothes
Considering their tiny sizes, newborn clothes are costly. A shirt for a baby is the same price as the shirts I wear myself. But mines are several times the size.
Also, babies grow incredibly fast in the early months (I still cannot believe how quickly our son grows). So, clothes will not last long until your newborn cannot wear them, and you have to repeat the cycles.
So, I recommend buying most of the clothes second-hand. You can find very cheap clothes on Facebook Marketplace, for instance. We have bought many there and also gotten some for free. And most of them are in excellent condition since most of them have almost not been worn!
And on top of that, you will likely receive many clothes from your family and friends that will complete your collection.
3. Consider off-brand diapers
Most people will buy Pampers diapers, and this brand is so famous that for many people, pampers means diapers. However, it is also expensive.
Now, if Pampers diapers are the best for your baby, go ahead. But if other brands are comfortable for him, you should consider the costs.
We have tried many brands (Pampers, Milette (Migros), My Baby (Coop), and Lupilu (Lidl)) and have found them to be extremely similar. The Migros, Coop, and Lidl brands are pretty cheap. In the end, we bought most of the time Lupilu diapers. They are working well and only cost about 14 cents per diaper.
If you compare that to Pampers, which at best cost 25 to 30 cents a diaper, this is almost twice more expensive. When you consider that you will need up to 10 diapers a day, you can make some significant savings in the first months by not using Pampers (or other expensive brands).
Talking about Pampers, you could also consider cloth diapers. Cloth diapers are much cheaper, but then you will have to wash them regularly. We thought about that, but we decided it was just too much trouble for us.
4. Buy second-hand gear
A great way to save money for your newborn is to buy second-hand gear. For a newborn, you will need many baby gear:
- A baby seat for the car
- A stroller
- Maybe a baby carrier
In our case, we even bought some things for later:
- A baby chair for eating with us
- A baby carrier for going on walks
- Car seats for later
When you look at the price of these items, it is pretty incredible. A good stroller can go as high as 1500 CHF (and even more for luxury items). And you will only use most of these things for a few months or at most two years for some.
For us, the solution was to buy them all second-hand. However, we took high-quality items in good shape. With that, we have great things at an excellent price.
Unless you plan to have several children and reuse them, I recommend buying them second-hand.
If you do not know where to buy, I have an article about the best places to buy second-hand items.
5. Do not buy too many toys
In the first few months of his life, your newborn will not need many toys. In fact, at this age, he cannot play with toys. His parents are his best toys.
Of course, this will vary from child to child. I am sure some children enjoy toys earlier. In our case, only two toys were really useful:
- A baby mat with an arch. Our son likes looking at the hanging plushes and trying to touch them.
- A baby book with high contrast. They mostly do not see colors at this age, so high-contrast drawings (black and white) are good.
Other than that, all the other small toys we have tried had no success. Fortunately, we did not buy many. But we should have bought even fewer.
6. Compare health insurance
Everybody needs health insurance, even for newborns. It is recommended to get health insurance for your baby three months before its due date. The reason is that if you do it early, they will not make issues if the baby is born in poor health (stupid, I know).
Since you have time, you should compare several health insurance providers. Health insurance for newborns is relatively cheap (we pay about 90 CHF per month with complementaries). But you still do not want to pay more than you should!
So, look around and compare the prices. If you need help, I have a guide on health insurance.
7. Do to buy too many care products (in advance)
Before the baby’s birth, we bought many care items in advance, like nipple cream, skin cream, and such.
However, we received more than enough of these products from the hospital and samples that we have way too many of them. And some of them we bought and never needed them. We were sure that all of them were necessary by looking at “must-have lists” on the internet, but it turned out that all we needed we got samples in the hospital or from the midwife. And then we completed it when we needed.
So, be careful about not buying too many care products in advance. You may not need them as much as you think.
The most important point from this article is that babies grow so fast! Clothes will rarely last more than a month, so you have to change size. And sizes come in different sizes as well based on brands. Some of the clothes we had we were not even able to use once. So, does it make sense to buy a costly cute cloth for your newborn to wear once or twice? Probably not.
As you can see, there are many ways you can use to save money for your newborn. Overall, we thought we would have to spend significantly more than that. By being careful, we could spend reasonably, even if we made mistakes along the way.
Remember that I am not telling you to be cheap with your children. You should buy what they need (we sure did). But at this age, they do not need as many things as people think, and most things do not last.
One thing I did not mention directly is that you could save a lot of money with breastfeeding. But that is more of a personal decision with different factors.
If you want more tips, you can read the interview I did with MBF, another Swiss blogger. She is very careful about her expenses with her baby.
What about you? Do you have any tips to save money with your newborn?
Download this e-book and optimize your finances and save money by using the best financial services available in Switzerland!Download The FREE e-book
22 thoughts on “7 Tips to save money with your newborn in 2023”
Hi, have you considered trying it “without diapers”?
We have very good success so far (8 months) :)
The hard stuff goes 99% into the asia pot which is still the very first one – now gets smaller and smaller relative to the baby’s size but still does what it’s thought to perfectly.
The “liquid stuff” is ways more difficult… So 80% of time we are not using anything and when “it counts” we use a diaper, in winter more often than in summer because there is much more stuff that becomes wet when an “accident” happens.
For signs: Hard stuff is clearly signalled (and comes mostly first in the morning), but liquid is just timing until now, but there are just about 3 incidents per day, and by night almost none.
Up to now we’ve used cotton diapers in the first few months and one pack of size 1, 2 and 3 throw-away diapers. We also most of the time put cotton inserts into diapers to make them reusable.
The greatest return on doing it “without” is not saving on diapers, however, but the closer connection to the baby’s needs and connection and communication. Pot sessions often are quite funny, and she likes it most of the time. And at this stage I’d say we have no more work than with diapers, as the “business” is very quick. The baby is freer in her movements. And she and we almost never get bad mess. AND we will not have to teach her later to be clean.
It’s worth considering. If you don’t want to go fully into it, just offer the pot after getting up from sleep in the morning.
Enjoy this beautiful time
We have considered it indeed and decided against it. It was just too much trouble. When we consider already all the work and the strain on our energy, I am glad we did not do it.
I was not really disgusted by it, you see the stuff anyway :) But it was about saving time.
But it seems like you have a good experience with them. I did not think they could be using the pot so early on with cloth diapers. I was thinking this would be like diapers but just have to wash them.
Thanks a lot for sharing your experience :)
We also got our little one 2 months ago so we can feel what you are talking about !
Some comments from my experience:
1. Pampers in Switzerland cost literally 3 times more than in neighboring countries. As we live in basel we bought from both Germany and France at a 0.16€ per piece. Living far from the border ? Check out Amazon for the same rate, as they ship in Switzerland as well. Same goes for baby wipes!
2. About the clothes totally agree! We got most of the clothes used, either for free or for a small price. That really helped keep the budget down. And as you said family and friends also gifted us many of them.
3. We were thinking of different options for the stroller a) going for a used high end brand b) going for a cheap new or c) going for a middle price new . We ended up going for option c after looking for a few weeks on offers of various shops. Especially for the car seat, as another reader mentioned it’s tricky to know that it’s not damaged and safe to use.
Option a was tricky. Most of the used stuff we found was either in bad condition and low price or great condition and as expensive as the price of the stroller when on offer
All in all we spent about 1500 for all the non-disposable baby items so far incl crib, 3-in-1 stroller, car seat for later, changing table, ergo baby, bottles/ sterilizer / warmer, milk pump and more!
Thanks for sharing!
I didn’t know they were so much cheaper in other countries. We don’t use that brand, but may the Lidl brand is also cheaper in Germany.
Looking for offers online is a great idea! If you start early, you can probably check many deals and try to get a good sale!
In our case, the stroller and car seat came from a good friend that we trust. But it’s true that it’s important to be careful with them, especially the car seat.
1500 for the set is a great deal!
Hello Poor Swiss,
Congrats on your first born !
My advice to your family: I gather your wife speaks fluent Chinese – if so, don’t let her speak any other language to your son. As you might recall, in my family my wife always spoke Tagalog only with our children, and I only spoke English, with the result that they grew up trilingual (playing/going to school with the francophone children).
In our experience, doing so resulted that our children spoke later than monolingual children, but that is offset by the benefits of having a 2nd (or 3rd) language.
Hi Teacher :)
That’s excellent advice! We have also decided to raise bilingual, French, and Chinese. I think it’s going to be an important asset for him. We have thought about me talking English to him but decided against it, two languages should be enough.
Three languages is pretty impressive! Do your children still speak all three?
Yes, they speak all three.
Amusing anecdote: in grade school, I was supposed to enter the children’s “mother tongue”. So, I wrote in “English, French, Tagalog”. The teacher was not happy, stating “A child can have only *1* mother ‘tongue'”, and demanded that I *only* put in 1 language.
So I asked her “What do *you* mean by “mother tongue” ? If you mean “the language spoken by/to the *mother*, then it’s Tagalog, which happens to be the language they are the least comfortable with. If you mean the language they are the *most comfortable* with, then it’s English because of books and videos we share as a family. If you mean the language they speak *most often*, then I suppose it’s French, because of the time they spend in school.”
End result: I got all 3 languages listed on the form :-)
That’s great! Speaking three languages is a great gift!
That’s a good point. I never thought of that. I will have to think about it when I come to this point!
Hi, great blog -love to read your inputs.
As a mother of 3, I feel this is a topic I understand 😉 and have a few remarks.
1. Diapers – as one already wrote it’s important to know about the chemicals that are in different diaperd brands. Also, from an environmental point of view, regular diapers take hundert of years to decompose, while organic, bio degradable diapers take about a year.
2. Baby gear – you can include in this section every this, including beds, cribs and so on. However – strollers and car seats are an exception that may be affected by family planning and the he of the gear.
Strollers- If this is your first child, and you plan on a large family, it might be wise to invest in a good, comfortable stroller, one that has 2-3 modes (0-6, 6-24 and a car seat up to 1 yo). At least the first 2.
Car seats have an exparation date of about 10 years. You should know that and be aware of it when you buy it second hand.
I do have a question about savings for a new born. I have saving accounts for my 2 older kids but in our home country. What are the options here in Switzerland?
1) That’s something we were not aware of until recently and that’s an excellent point!
2) I didn’t know about the expiration date. That’s very important indeed! And indeed, a stroller should be planned to last for a while. Ours can last until 2 years easily.
The options are pretty bad. There are some free accounts for children in most banks. However, the interest rate will likely be 0%. So, just get a free account at your current bank and you should be good.
Just beware of one thing about diapers: the chemicals in them. Do you really want to plant carcinogenic stuff on your son’s butt? My wife uses an app that tells if a product is good or not, it’s really not bad if you’re sensitive to that. For example, we know that Pampers is really bad, in addition to being very expensive.
If you want a good compromise between quality and price, Qoqa (Qids) regularly offers relatively natural diapers at Qoqa prices. You can order 600 at a time and you’ll have peace of mind for 3-4 months, as we know that a young baby needs to be changed often.
Same thing for the wipes, you don’t talk about them (you don’t use them?) but a baby “consumes” a lot of them… Qoqa also makes offers for this type of product.
Very interesting. I didn’t know some diapers brand were better than others. I will definitely take a look at this!
Yes, we use dry wipes, from Migros. We have ordered a big bunch of them on Galaxus. But compared to diapers, they are much cheaper.
I have only recently started looking at Qoqa Qids, but I will definitely be on the lookout for diapers and wipes!
Thanks for sharing!
another important advantage of second-hand cloths, is that they are washed already, so the colour and maybe left over from production is gone. which is less risk for baby skin as they are delicate and might develop an alergic reaction (also if you use too much / wrong washing powder).
That’s a good point, I never thought of that! We indeed take more care of washing intensively and let them air a while for new clothes.
Don’t stock up on diapers before they reach size 5. The grow so fast
We already went to size 3 in 3 months, so that’s an excellent point! But size 3 should already last a while until 9-10 kg depending on the brand. But yeah, we have to be careful about stocking!
We actually bought diapers from other people that had bought too much so we made a good deal!
The tip 5 is not only for babies, when they grow up it’s tempting to buy all these nice toys you would have dream to have as a kid but at the end they will play only with a fraction of them.
By having too many toys, it just makes easier to spill them all around their room and everywhere in the house and it makes the tidy up so long and complicated that they will never do it, no matter how long you ask to do it.
Also don’t hesitate to sell or give up toys they don’t use anymore. You can put them away in a box for a couple of weeks/months and if they don’t ask for them, no regret, sell them, give them away.
By the way they can have second hand toys as well, go to Brocki and let them choose a toy for 3-5frs, they will be as much happy as a new one that cost 15-20frs or more.
Sometimes they are just as happy if not more to play with cardboard and toilet paper rolls than actual toys.
Don’t make the same mistake as we did by buying Lego Duplo until the box overflow, let them keep all the plushies they receive until they take several large drawers, collect 50 paw patrol action figures, load of small cars and dozen of dolls and not counting all the cheap plastic crap toys you get everywhere at McDonals, Migros, Coop and in Kinder egg. It will just make your life a nightmare and your kids will get used to have more and more, to be surrounded by hundreds of toys they don’t care about so they can only ask for more as soon as a toys catalog arrive or you cross the toys department in supermarket.
This is the main advise I would have love to have someone insist on us as soon as we got kids.
Otherwise, has fun with your kids, spend time with them, that the best present you can make to them, no matter age they are, no matter rich or not you are.
Yes, that’s entirely true. Fewer toys are generally much better. And a few simple toys and going outside and playing with what we find is great as well.
We plan to try to avoid having too many toys, but of course, it’s easier said than done and often parents buy things for themselves rather than for the kids ;)
Excellent point about second-hand toys!
That’s excellent advice! we really want to avoid doing that. We will see how it goes :)
How about breast feeding – absolutely the best for the baby, no preparation needed (heating water, washing bottles) and available on tap 24 hours/day.
No expensive formula (BTW, was it offered (“free”) at the hospital?). Against the rules of a Baby Freindly Hospital.
Breastfeeding is great for money and fo the baby, I completely agree. I just did not want to talk too much about that because I consider it to be a choice of each mother, should not be made for money only.
But my wife is breastfeeding and the baby is doing great and I am glad to save the money ;)
Looking forward to the article how to save on a daycare :D with 2 parents working full time. Congrats on the new addition to the family!
I am not sure there is much we can do about daycare :)
But when we will get to that, I will be sure to write about it.