In the hustle and bustle of city life, one might not immediately consider the importance of urban prepping essentials. However, in a world filled with uncertainties, it’s crucial to be prepared, especially in an urban environment. It’s not just about having a go-bag—it’s about understanding the unique challenges of city survival. This guide provides an in-depth exploration of the top 25 must-have items that every urban prepper needs. From essential first aid kits to non-perishable protein bars, we cover everything you need to thrive during a crisis in the city.
1. Water Purification Supplies (Cost: $20, Weight: 1 lb): Water is a fundamental need for survival. Being in an urban environment doesn’t guarantee access to clean drinking water during emergencies. Items like a LifeStraw personal water filter or water purification tablets ensure you can convert available water sources into safe drinking water.
2. First Aid Kit (Cost: $25, Weight: 1 lb): Every prepper knows the importance of a comprehensive first aid kit. For minor injuries to potential health threats, a well-stocked kit is essential. In addition it should contain bandages, antiseptic wipes, tweezers, medical tape, painkillers, gloves, and a first-aid manual. A ready-to-go store-bought kit or a customized one could literally be a lifesaver in an urban survival scenario.
3. Multi-tool (Cost: $30, Weight: 0.5 lb): A multi-tool is a compact and versatile device. Often integrating tools like a knife, pliers, screwdriver, bottle opener, and wire cutter, it is an essential part of an urban survival kit. Whether it’s food preparation, first aid, or minor repairs, a multi-tool has you covered.
4. Flashlight and Extra Batteries (Cost: $20, Weight: 1 lb): Light is crucial in many situations, from finding your way in the dark to signaling for help. Therefore choose a flashlight that’s durable, waterproof, and bright. Remember to pack extra batteries too. A hand-crank flashlight is also a good option since it doesn’t rely on batteries.
5. Portable Charger and Power Bank (Cost: $25, Weight: 0.5 lb): Maintaining communication with the outside world can be a game-changer during emergencies. A portable charger ensures that your smartphone and other essential electronics won’t run out of juice. Some models even have solar charging capabilities, providing a sustainable power source when outlets are unavailable.
6. Emergency Blanket (Cost: $3, Weight: 0.3 lb): These compact, lightweight blankets are designed to retain up to 90% of your body heat. They can also serve as a ground cover, a shelter, a signaling device, and even a water collector. It’s a low-cost, multi-use item that’s critical for urban survival scenarios.
7. Portable Stove and Fuel (Cost: $20, Weight: 1 lb): Cooking meals or boiling water might become a challenge in a power outage. However a portable stove allows you to cook food and purify water without electricity. Be sure to include enough fuel for your stove. Compact options like a folding stove are perfect for an urban survival kit.
8. Non-perishable Food (Cost: Varies, Weight: Varies): A three-day supply of non-perishable, easy-to-prepare food items is recommended. These could include canned goods, ready-to-eat meals, energy bars, and dried fruits. Keep dietary needs and preferences in mind when assembling your food supply.
9. Local Maps (Cost: $10, Weight: 0.2 lb): Don’t rely solely on GPS. Physical maps of your local area, including evacuation routes, can be indispensable in an urban survival situation, especially if digital communication and navigation systems are down.
10. Paracord (Cost: $10, Weight: 0.5 lb): Paracord is a lightweight, durable, and incredibly versatile tool. Moreover it can be used for securing shelters, repairing equipment, first aid, and countless other survival applications.
11. Portable Water Bottle (Cost: $20, Weight: 0.5 lb): In an urban disaster scenario, access to clean water might be disrupted. Portable water filters like LifeStraw allow you to make almost any water source safe for drinking. It’s a must-have tool for staying hydrated in survival situations.
12. Compact Binoculars (Cost: $25, Weight: 0.5 lb): These help you observe your surroundings without exposing yourself to potential danger. Whether you’re scouting for resources or trying to avoid threats, compact binoculars can give you a crucial advantage.
13. Fire Starter (Cost: $10, Weight: 0.3 lb): Urban survival situations may require you to start a fire for warmth, signaling, or cooking. Consider carrying a fire starter kit consisting of waterproof matches, a lighter, and a fire striker. Pro tip: In addition to your fire kit dryer lint and pine shavings make great fire starters.
14. Hygiene Items (Cost: Varies, Weight: Varies): Travel-sized hygiene items like toothpaste, soap, and sanitary wipes can help prevent infections and maintain morale. While not as immediately critical as food or water, hygiene should not be overlooked in your survival kit.
15. Cash and Copies of Important Documents (Cost: Varies, Weight: Negligible): Cash can be vital for purchasing last-minute supplies when electronic payment systems are down. Copies of identification, medical records, and other crucial documents are also important to include in your survival kit.
16. Extra Socks (Cost: $10, Weight: 0.2 lb): Keeping your feet dry is not only crucial for comfort and morale but also for your long-term health. A pair of extra socks can make a big difference in your comfort level and prevent blisters and other foot problems.
17. Solar Charger (Cost: $25, Weight: 0.5 lb): A solar charger can keep your electronic devices powered when there’s no access to the power grid. You might need your phone for communication or your flashlight for visibility, so this is an essential item in your kit.
18. Sunglasses(Cost: $40, Weight: 0.2 lb): A good pair of sunglasses can be an invaluble tool. Not only can they protect your eyes from UV rays, but can act as safety lenses too.
19. Personal Protection Equipment (Cost: Varies, Weight: Varies): Depending on the situation, you might need personal protective equipment (PPE). This could range from a face mask in a dusty environment to a hard hat in an area with falling debris.
20. Emergency Bivvy (Approx. Cost: $20, Weight: 0.5 lb): In a survival situation, you must maintain body heat, especially in adverse weather conditions. An emergency bivvy, or survival sleeping bag, provides this crucial help. Made from a special material, it reflects up to 90% of body heat back to you, establishing itself as an effective tool for warmth and survival. Lightweight, compact, and waterproof, an emergency bivvy fits easily into your backpack without adding significant weight. When catastrophe strands you in the city, the emergency bivvy provides essential warmth and shelter, securing its place in your urban prepping gear.
Bonus Items From The Dollar Store
1. Plastic Tarps (Cost: $1, Weight: 1 lb): You can find plastic tarps at most dollar stores, and they’re worth their weight in gold in an urban survival situation. In addition use them for shelter, ground cover, or even water collection.
2. Bandanas (Cost: $1, Weight: 0.1 lb): A bandana is a multi-use item. It can serve as a head cover, a dust mask, a water filter, or even a tourniquet if needed.
3. Disposable Lighters (Cost: $1, Weight: 0.2 lb): Lighters are a reliable fire-starting tool. Having several lighters on hand ensures that you can easily start a fire for cooking, warmth, or signaling.
4. Trash Bags (Cost: $1, Weight: 1 lb): Trash bags have countless survival uses. For instance they can serve as rain ponchos, ground tarps, water containers, and even makeshift toilets.
5. Candles (Cost: $1, Weight: 0.5 lb): Candles provide light and warmth. And it can also be used to help start fires.
In conclusion your urban survival kit is not something to be thrown together in a hurried panic. Therefore item you include should be carefully thought out in terms of utility, weight, and necessity. But remember, these are just material things. The most important part of survival is knowledge – knowing how to use what you have to its fullest extent. Like a first aid kit is useless without the knowledge of how to use it. Stay safe and prepared!