How New Parents Can Save Money

Becoming a new parent is an exciting but expensive time. This article provides helpful tips on saving money.

A pregnant woman sitting next to a man on a sofa
(Image credit: getty)

You’ve found out that you’re about to become a new parent, congratulations! Right now it probably feels like there is so much to think about, and it’s easy to get carried away with the shopping.

As a mum of three, I understand that the price tag can be daunting, but I assure you it doesn’t need to be as daunting or expensive as you might think. Read on for my top tips for saving money as a new parent. 

Freebies and Discounts

When you welcome your new bundle of joy there are tons of freebies on offer. Retailers really want new parents to splash the cash with them in the future. Here are a few examples to take advantage of, without any obligation to commit to anything. 

Emma’s Diary

Sign up for Emma’s Diary for a heap of money off vouchers, including access to £200 Argos vouchers. You can also claim plenty of free samples too, which are handy for the nappy bag on future day’s out. 

Ella’s Friends

When you sign up for Ella’s Friends from Ella’s Kitchen you will receive a free wallchart, weaning guide, and superhero mask. In addition to this, you can expect coupons for free products from the Ella’s Kitchen range. 

Cow & Gate Baby Club

Join the Cow & Gate baby club to receive money-off vouchers and special offers. You can also enter prize draws to win hampers full of top-branded baby goodies. 

Boots Parenting Club

When you sign up for the Boots parenting Club you will get 8 points per £1 spent on baby products, free gifts and key stages of your baby’s development, and club offers via the Boots app. There’s a free Aveeno Baby Daily Care 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioner 250ml available for new members at the moment too.  

Amazon Bundle

You can get a free £25 Amazon bundle when you create a baby wishlist and purchase over £20 of baby items. You must sign up to get this offer to receive a unique code which can then be used at checkout 

Buying preloved

A pregnant woman folding baby clothes

(Image credit: getty)

Babies grow fast! Especially newborns, they never wear their clothes out. With this in mind buying preloved clothes is a great option. Apps like Vinted or eBay are great places to look. If you would like to explore this option, we have more information on sustainable clothing apps. 

Local NCT Groups

In addition to this consider heading to your local NCT group, where parents swap clothing as their kids grow. There are many ways you can buy kids' clothes on a budget. 

Charity Shops

It’s worth checking your local charity shops. Sometimes you can leave your number with the staff and they will let you know when an item you would like comes in, such as a pram or stroller. 

Check Re-Selling Sites

Take a look at local selling sites such as Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree or Freecycle. I’d recommend paying cash on delivery when using these sites as people are all too easily scammed out of money. Take some time to check the condition of the items to ensure they are as described. 

 eBay is a haven for preloved baby items, from cots to feeding apparatuses. I’ve found new end-of-line items with up to 80% off the RRP in the past. When my son was younger I purchased a brand new baby monitor that was £40 less as it didn’t have its original packaging. 

Ask Your Friends and Family

Check with friends and family that have children if they have bundles of clothes that are no longer needed in storage. Children grow so quickly that clothes often get worn just a few times or not all before they end up in the attic! It might even be worth working out a clothes swapping system with a friend if you have children of different ages. 

Saving on Breastfeeding Essentials

A woman is sat on a bed breastfeeding her baby

(Image credit: getty)

It will come as no surprise that breastfeeding is the cheapest option! Readily available, on-demand and at the right temperature. But there are essentials to purchase that can help you on your breastfeeding journey. 

Nursing bras and clothing are helpful, especially when out and about. The problem is that nursing and maternity clothes are a niche market, so they charge more. However, there are ways you can save money. 

Just in the same way I suggested purchasing preloved baby clothes, the same applies to maternity clothes. Those preloved clothing apps can save you hundreds of pounds on maternity essentials. Most clothes are in great condition too as they are only worn for a few months. 

Nursing bras need to be fitted, head to a store that provides free fitting like Marks and Spencer, Bravissimo, Boux Avenue or Next. Even if you don’t buy from them, you can still find out what size to shop for. Try and go for your fitting a few weeks before your baby is born for the best fit. Don’t forget you will need breast pads too! 

Just in the same way you can sign up for newsletters for baby essentials, you can with shops that sell maternity clothes and nursing bras. For example, Beaux Avenue offer 20% off your first order when you sign up!

If you decide to breastfeed, you might want to invest in a breast pump. Hundreds are available, many of which can be controlled with an app on your phone! Some of the high-end models are over £300, and not exactly budget-friendly. 

But you can pick up manual breast pumps for under £35. They do the job, but there's no getting away from the fact that it’s labour-intensive and takes longer. 

Saving on Bottle-Feeding

A man is bottle feeding his baby

(Image credit: getty)

Breastfeeding isn’t for everyone and some breastfeeding mums like to bottle-feed feed too. As a mum who bottle-fed her 3 babies at various times, I have some great money-saving tips. 

Firstly, I would suggest that new parents don’t invest too much money into bottles and sterilisers before the baby is born. With so many different kinds of bottles on the market, parents may want to test various kinds. Not to mention, changing your mind about how you feed your baby altogether - it happens! 

When it comes to sterilizing bottles, there are hundreds of different gadgets on the market from microwave sterilizers to electric. However, the cheapest method is boiling or cold water sterilizing. 

Boiling is a perfectly good method for those who need to sterilize the occasional bottle. I wouldn’t recommend it if you are exclusively bottle feeding as you will be using a lot of gas or electricity every day. 

Cold water sterilising is a fantastic option. You won’t need any gas or electricity. You can pick up a cold water sterilizer for as little as £13. It will last years, so handy if you are planning more children in the future. You will need to purchase sterilizer tablets though, they are inexpensive, starting at approximately £2.50 for a box that will last a month. 

New parents considering bottle feeding will want to have formula milk on standby. The cost of formula milk firstly depends on if you buy it in premixed bottles or powdered form that you mix yourself. 

When Unicef looked into the cost of formula milk on family budgets they found that the average cost of powdered formula milk ‘was between £6.44 to £13.52 per week compared to £24.47 to £32.20’ for premixed formula. 

With so many brands on the market too, it can be easy to assume that the more expensive brands are better. Adam French, senior editor at NerdWallet UK says’ ‘In the UK, baby formula is regulated and each brand must follow strict guidelines on ingredients and amounts thanks to the Infant Formula and Follow-On Formula regulations’. Adam goes on to say ‘the basic nutritional profile of most infant milk is very similar’.  

Shop Smart

A man and a woman are shopping for a pram

(Image credit: Getty)

Remember there are other simple ways you can save money on baby essentials. From your local supermarket to being savvy online, here are a few ideas that will help.  

Shop at Supermarkets

Check out the kid's clothing ranges at Tesco, Sainsbury's, Morrisons or Asda. They have fabulous kid's clothes, including packs of babygrows. Alison Banfield, owner of proudhappymama.com says ‘Opt for comfortable, easy-to-clean clothes that accommodate your baby's growth. Focus on essentials like onesies, sleepers, and socks, rather than fancy outfits that might be impractical for daily wear”. 

Sign up for retailer newsletters

If you find a retailer that is selling your ideal pram or Moses basket, sign up for the newsletter. It takes seconds to do via email but often rewards you with between 5 and 20 per cent off your first order. 

Just bare in mind that you will remain on the mailing list, it might be a good idea to create a separate email address when looking for these introductory offers. 

Save Money with Discount Codes

The experts at MyVoucherCodes source the best discount codes and offers every day. You will regularly find savings on a ton of products, including prams, strollers, nursery goods and kid's clothes. From childrens retailers like JoJo Mama Bebe and Mamas and Papas and Smythes to department stores such as John Lewis and Marks and Spencer. There are even offers listed that you can use at your local supermarket. 

Know when not to cut costs

A baby is sleeping in a car seat

(Image credit: Getty)

You will need a car seat when you leave the hospital or on your first car trip. Which? offer some very useful information on what car seat will meet your needs.

When it comes to purchasing a car seat it's important that it meets safety standards and buying a second-hand one isn’t a good idea. It could potentially be an old design that no longer meets standards, it may have been in a previous accident or be damaged in some way.  Of all the items that you may want to save money on - this isn’t one of them. 

When shopping for a preloved cot or Moses basket it’s best to avoid purchasing the mattress preloved and invest in a new one. According to the Lullaby Trust, ‘there is some research that found there is an increased chance of SIDS when using a second-hand mattress brought from outside the family home, although the link is not yet proven’. 

Sarah-Jane Outten
Editor

Hi, I’m SJ. I’m an editor and content executive here at MyVoucherCodes. I started my journey here as a deals expert which gave me the skills to become a money-saving expert. You can find my tips and recommendations in various publications including The Sun, The Mirror, and The Telegraph.

I gained a degree in English Literature and Creative Writing in 2018, and I’ve put my writing skills into many projects since then. My portfolio at sarahjaneoutten.com includes my work with Cardiff Times, Buzz Magazine and more. 

I write poetry and short stories for pleasure and enjoy getting creative with watercolours and lino printing. I hope that I can merge my love of writing and art into a children's book in the future - watch this space!