To many, the idea of a survival kit sounds like something only a “crazy person,” or “doomsday prepper” would ever think of. In reality, however, organizations like the Red Cross and other safety agencies highly encourage everyone to own a survival kit, regardless of whether you are in an area prone to disaster or not.
The simple fact is that a disaster, and specifically natural disasters, can and do happen without any notice. If you find yourself the victim of an earthquake, tornado or any other disaster, you will be happy to take advantage of your survival kit, and your friends will no longer think you were quite so crazy.
What’s in a Kit
Survival kits come in many different shapes and sizes, but they all tend to have the same basic elements. If you consider the primary needs for survival, you will be able to deduce what is most imperative for a complete survival kit. The first thing is food and water. Water is simple and usually comes in pouches that last around 5 years from the date of production. There are various sizes of water pouches, but 8 oz. are the most common for use in disaster kits.
The main facet of any survival kit is the food included. Without food, your chances of survival in any situation are dramatically reduced. There are a lot of different routes you can take to ensure you have your nutrition needs met. Food bars are very cheap and will last several years. They require no preparation and, while not “healthy,” do contain thousands of calories for just a few dollars. In terms of ease and convenience, food bars are the best. The other option is to have freeze dried food. Some of these items won’t require much or any preparation, but others will require a portable stove, matches, and water. Most higher end survival kits tend to include freeze dried food as they taste better and are more appealing to the average user. Yes, this sort of food will take a bit more effort to prepare, but it will also be much better for you and will taste better.
Outside of food and water, survival kits will have a number of different supplies. For a vehicle survival kit, you may have orange vests or signs to be placed on the road, while an earthquake kit may include goggles or a dust mask. Your kit should include items that are most likely to be used in common disaster scenarios where you live. Basics like flashlights, whistles, stoves, gloves, and panchos are items that every kit should include. Be prepared for every situation while also considering which specific items would be most useful for you.
Cost of Survival Kits
The cost of a survival kit is generally determined by how many people it is made for and how long it is built to last for. As a basic guideline, a quality kit will cost between $60 and $300. A $300 kit will last for a few weeks for a few people, while a $60 kit is made for one person for a few days.
If you do not want to buy a premade kit, you could also put one together yourself, but this will likely cost you even more. One common approach is to buy a premade kit and then customize it to your particular needs. This will give you a headstart on the necessities, and will allow you to add in your own touches at minimal added cost. All in all, even the best kit can be assembled for a few hundred dollars, especially if it is being made for one person.