Bug out Bag Basics: What you NEED to know.

Bug out Bag Basics: What you NEED to know.

Ahh, the Bug Out Bag (or BOB) is a term you’ve likely heard floating around the preparedness world by now. Many people swear this is the first thing you should have started with and others simply don’t see a need for them. So where do I stand? We will get to that after we’ve gone over the basics of what it actually is..

What is it?

A Bug Out Bag is a bag of items that will aid you on your journey to your bug out location or point B when evacuating your home due to a disaster of some kind. It contains survival goods that will help you get safely from your home to an alternate location in the worst case scenario. If there’s a sudden warning for evacuation then every second counts and it literally saves lives. All you need to do is grab your bag, alert your family and then get in the car. Without this, you could be an extra 30 minutes and still have forgotten half of your priority items that are needed! These bags however can also be used to stay at home, for example if you get snowed in and are running low on food you know that you will always all have some in your Bug out Bags.

It’s essential to have a comfortable and easily portable bag as your top priority. Keep in mind that during any kind of emergency or disaster, there might be a need to travel long distances on foot. If your bag is overloaded with heavy items, making it difficult for you to carry, your ability to cover significant ground will be severely hampered. Additionally, I strongly advise choosing a bug-out bag (BOB) that is inconspicuous and doesn’t attract attention. The objective is to blend in rather than stand out. If there’s unrest or looting in the vicinity, it’s important to avoid drawing attention to the fact that you possess a bag filled with valuable items that others might desire.


So what is typically included in such a bag?

The essentials are some form of shelter, warmth, food & water, light, first aid supplies, cash, clothes, important documents and personal protection items. For a full rundown of things I recommend keeping in your BOB, check out the resource Bug Out Bag Essentials: What to include.

Who should carry one?

Each family member, including all adults and any children capable of carrying, should have their own bug-out bag, personally designed, that they are familiar with. Babies of course would have their items in mum or dads bags. You will want to ensure that you are not the only one with a bag, as in an emergency situation you cannot carry enough for a family of 6 for example. By ensuring everyone has there own items, you’ll make sure that you are all well looked after with extra supplies to keep you going.

Do they need updated?

Like everything else, these bags needed combed through on a regular basis to ensure everything is working well and suitable for your needs. I encourage you to test your gear, to know that it’s still in working order but also to know how to actually set up & use your equipment. We try to change ours out seasonally, adding whatever clothing items are needed for that time and also rotating any food and water that need refreshed. It’s nice adding some items you come across in your day to day life that are compact and make a useful addition here too.

Do I have a BOB?

Kind of. Do I think everyone needs one? No. I always encourage you to do what works best for you and your family. Different people, places, situations require different things. If you’re in the middle of the city you’re going to prepare differently (and likely have a Bug out Bag) than if you were on 100 acres in the middle of nowhere.

I reside in what can be considered a typical “Bug out Location.” By this, I mean that I live rurally in the countryside in a “safe” place of the world where there is no immediate threat of natural disasters, riots, or looting. However, I maintain my own version of a Bug out Bag, which I primarily use as a “Get Home Bag.” It is a bag that I carry in my car, prepared for emergencies in case I find myself stranded and need to make my way home over a span of several days. The advantage of having this bag ready is that with a few additional items, it can easily transform into a fully equipped BOB suitable for extended use, should circumstances arise that require us to leave our home.


In conclusion, I believe Bug Out Bags have their purpose, but it’s not necessary for everyone to follow the same path just because it’s popular among the prepper community. Bugging out should be considered a last resort for most individuals, and it’s crucial to avoid idealising the concept. While many may envision escaping to the forest and living happily ever after, the truth is that the general population wouldn’t survive long without a specific destination.

Instead, it’s important to assess your own situation and realistically consider where you would go if a serious event occurred. Create a well-thought-out plan of action and prepare accordingly. Taking into account your unique circumstances and having a clear strategy will better equip you for any potential SHTF (Sh*t Hits The Fan) scenario.

What do you think? Do you and your family keep Bug Out Bags? Let me know in the comments below.

Leave a Reply

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Suni

    Do you have a bug out bag recommendation?