What is a bug out bag?
With a bug out bag, the focus is more on evacuation rather than outright survival. If disaster strikes and you have absolutely no time to lose, you just pick up your ALREADY PACKED bug out bag and make it to safety as fast as possible.
Keep in mind that A bug out bag (BOB) is NOT a full-fledged survival kit. To Clarify WHAT is is, I’ve decided to put together this Bug Out Bag List and show you the top 15+ THINGS you should be including in YOUR Bug out Bag.
|What’s Covered In This Article?||15+ Items to Create The Ultimate Bug Out Bag|
|What Will It Cost You?||A Good Bug Out Bag can be put together for under $100 in many cases|
|Where Can I Buy This Stuff?||Easy! You can get it online on Amazon.com, or even your local sporting goods or surplus store!|
A bug out bag should be light and must contain supplies that will enable you to get through 96 hours (4 days).
Why just 96 hours? – Because this bug out bag contains only the bare essentials that are needed for evacuation.
If your house catches fire or if there is an earthquake (or worse) – you won’t have time to think and pack; you have to respond immediately – within seconds.
Many people become confused when faced with the prospect of preparing a Bug Out Bag – your home contains hundreds of items that you use on a daily basis.
Of course, it’s difficult to pick a handful and leave back the rest! However, in times of survival and when the SHTF – you have to make many difficult choices and sacrifices!
Important: A Bug Out Bag NEEDS to be made according to climate and region. If you’re in a northern or snowy climate, it’s best to take that into consideration as well.
My list below is what I use – living in a warmer region down South. I’ll probably make a “Winter Bug Out Bag” list one of these days – if you’d like to see that PLEASE like this post, and leave a comment down below letting me know!
Table of Contents
- 1 Check out this Ultimate 15 Item Bug Out Bag Checklist
- 1.1 Some sort of identification:
- 1.2 Money:
- 1.3 Means to purify water:
- 1.4 Means to generate fire:
- 1.5 Mirror:
- 1.6 Signalling equipment:
- 1.7 Food:
- 1.8 First Aid Kit:
- 1.9 Sanitation supplies:
- 1.10 Clothes:
- 1.11 A good, lightweight backpack.
- 1.12 A container to boil water or to cook stuff in:
- 1.13 Swiss army knife, Paracord, and a big ass knife!:
- 1.14 Phone:
- 1.15 A GPS device or a map and compass:
Check out this Ultimate 15 Item Bug Out Bag Checklist
Some sort of identification:
Surprised? Well, during evacuation, the government authorities need to keep records of the people that have been moved or rescued.
In essence, your ID could be the only link between you and the life you lived before.
ID is also essential for accessing bank accounts and for claiming other assets that you hold. Also, ID helps to track down friends and families. Make sure you have copies in your Bug Out Bag, or in your wallet, purse or EDC that you carry at all times
OK, you have money in your bank account but still, you have to take into consideration that banks will be closed in the event of a natural or man-made disaster.
Also, you may not be able to withdraw or transfer money electronically because it is highly likely that there will be no electricity.
You will need money for food, transportation, fuel and other supplies. So it is a good idea to keep at least a few hundred dollars in cash in your Bug Out Bag. Don’t carry just plain 100 dollar bills.
Keep some coins and smaller notes too. Place all the money and your ID in a water-proof pouch or some sort of compact, air tight box.
Means to purify water:
The American government has officially prescribed that in times of an emergency, a person requires at least 1 gallon of water per day for drinking and sanitation purposes.
You should have a full water bottle in your bug out bag. However, this water will last for half a day or one day at most.
After that, you need to find ways of purifying water – pack some water purification tablets and a compact purification tube. Such tubes are capable of filtering up to 1000 litres of water and they remove 99.9999% of bacteria.
Editors Recommendation: I HIGHLY recommend the Life Straw – one of my TOP 3 Survival tools hands down. You can pick one up on Amazon.com for a few bucks. The Life Straw Go Water Bottle is ANOTHER invaluable tool – also on on Amazon.
They are a life-saver in a SHTF scenario and will not weigh you down as they are very light (less than a pound depending on the type you choose).
Means to generate fire:
Fire provides warmth and comfort. It also helps in signalling for rescue. Plus, you will need fire for boiling water and cooking. If you live in a cold region, fire will be your only saviour against freezing temperatures.
Fire provides a means of lighting up an area in the event of power failure. Sure, there are gas powered generators – but chances are that you won’t be able to fit a generator in your backpack.
Always keep a lighter, weather-proof matches and a flint and stone in your Bug Out Bag.
Bonus: Get your FREE Waterproof Firestarter here! (just pay $4.95 for Shipping) – then add it to your bug out bag!
This too helps in signalling for help. Even a small mirror does the job pretty well. Mirrors work best during daytime – when the sky is clear and there is bright sunshine.
Nevertheless, mirrors can be used to reflect moonlight, flash lights and headlights too!
Ok, mirrors and fire are fine but it is always better to carry proper equipment in your Bug Out Bag that is specifically designed for the purpose of signalling for rescue.
Even a rescue whistle can help you to get your message across vast distances. And yes, pack a flare – It is hard to miss a flare! Add these to your bug out bag!
You need food supplies that will last for 4-5 days. To keep weight low, pack high calorie foods like chocolates and dried foods.
Ready to eat meals and a few cans of meat or fish are highly recommended to store in your Bug Out Bag as these do not need to be cooked. It’s also not a bad idea to have a few small packets of instant coffee in your Bug Out Bag.
You might have to stay awake for longer and the caffeine will definitely help in keeping you alert.
Remember that you’ll be working extra hard during an evacuation – you might have to walk for several miles and tackle various obstacles while carrying your Bug Out Bag and helping others do the same.
As a result of this, you’ll need to consume a lot of calories to stay nourished (At least 2000 calories per day. More if temperatures are low).
First Aid Kit:
Having a first-aid-kit in your Bug Out Bag is a no-brainer. A basic first aid kit includes pain killers (pills and sprays), bandages, gauze, tape, surgical spirit, hydrogen peroxide, a pair of scissor and also any medications that you need to take regularly.
(Read our article: 21 MUST Have Items for ANY First Aid Kit)
Hygiene is very important during a crisis. If you fail to maintain it, you become prone to infections and contamination.
Hence, your bug out bag should definitely include a toilet paper roll, hand sanitizer, soap and mouthwash. Women should pack tampons and/or sanitary napkins too.
Don’t pack too much clothes as the priority is to keep the weight down. Still, you will need change of underwear and at least a lightweight jacket to keep you warm.
It’s also a good idea to bring a plastic raincoat in your Bug Out Bag as well, to keep you dry should the need arise.
A good, lightweight backpack.
This is the bag in your bug out bag. It needs to be strong and its color should be highly visible like orange or yellow.
This makes it easier to locate you. Feel free to cover the back-pack in mud if you’re trying not to be found for some reason.
A container to boil water or to cook stuff in:
Even a small container that can hold a liter of water will do.
If it has a handle, it will be easier to carry and work with. Boiling water will be impossible without something to hold it in– so even though this one may seem insignificant, it is really not.
Some silverware also helps – a spoon and fork should do the trick. You’ll need silverware to deal with hot food and to eat out of cans.
Swiss army knife, Paracord, and a big ass knife!:
Has innumerable uses.
Pack some paracord too and make sure to your free paracord bracelet here.
You can also add a big ass knife as well – great for self defense as well as other things!
Naturally, you’ll need to play games on your smartphone or else go crazy! Just kidding – jokes aside, a phone is crucial for communication.
Even if the battery wears out, you might get lucky and find a charging point somewhere. (Always keep a spare battery in your Bug Out Bag if your phone has a removable battery, it’s also worth learning how to Recondition your own Batteries – EZ Battery Conditioning is a great guide)
You should also pick up a portable smartphone charger from Amazon for your Bug Out Bag . They’re cheap, and can charge your smart phone (or other device) up to 4x often.
A GPS device or a map and compass:
A GPS is better but it will not function without batteries. Maps and a compass are pretty useless if you don’t know how to use them – so pack one in your Bug Out Bag , and learn how to use it!
Check out some of our top pics from amazon here:
Don’t have the time to gather all these things yourself?
It’s got a FEW more items than the 15 I recommend above, BUT it’s a solid kit none-the-less and great for those who would rather have the work done for them & just toss it in their car trunk.
Bug Out Bag Bonus tip: Keep some sort of licensed firearm on you. It is useful for hunting, signaling and self-defense.
By the way – if you’re still sitting here scratching you head wondering what the next step is, check out The Lost Ways – it’s a survival guide written by an amazingly talented Prepper that will help teach you EVERYTHING you need to know when the Shit TRULY does hit the fan.
Now – Get packing and stay safe!
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P.P.S. Anything You’d Add or Remove? COMMENT BELOW and let me know!