Everyday Carry – What a Person Should Have at a Minimum

man using smartphone

Everyday carry is different from your average survival equipment list.

It is stuff you need or likely will need during survival and non-survival times.

A good knife

One of the most useful items you can carry is a good knife. You may not ever find yourself in an actual survival situation but if you had a knife with you that could work for that in a pinch, that’s one less worry you’ll carry around in your pretty little head.

I carry the drop point blade version, but only because this knife was issued to me on my last Afghanistan deployment. I’ve shown you the tanto version in the link and the pic because I personally like it better.

A lighter

My go-to way to start a campfire is just a cheap-ass Bic lighter. It works in most situations and will fit in your pocket quite easily. The mini version is my favorite. I don’t smoke or date girls who smoke so I don’t need a big lighter and because the fuel stays in these things for a LONG time.

A flashlight

If you’ve read my blog for any length of time, you know I’m big on AA flashlights because those batteries are everywhere and having all my stuff with the same type of battery cuts down on how many spares I have to carry in my bug out bag. It also allows you to carry something like this in your pack to make sure you never run out of power. What you carry in your EDC kit should blend in with your emergency and camping gear as much as possible.

A pen

In everyday situations, a pen comes in handy for updating a to-do list, making notes of things to remember, or getting the phone number of girls in coffee shops.

In a survival situation, they can be used to leave notes for rescuers or to write notes to yourself about the locations of water sources or other things you may want to come back to later while you’re stuck out either waiting for rescue or trying to get out.

A notepad

It doesn’t do much good to have a pen with nothing to write on. I got one of these Rite-in-the-Rain waterproof tactical notebooks at the PX in Iraq several years ago and have been carrying one ever since. The 3.5″x5″ model I linked to fits in my back pocket pretty easily but you can get larger ones if you have a man-purse or something.

A cell phone

I personally carry an iPhone 6 plus because I work online and it really comes in handy to have that much real estate in my hands and tech capability. A smart phone is REALLY handy to have everyday because you can get all sorts of useful apps to keep your life in order, or in a camping/survival situation, to do things like tell you your grid coordinates, show you where you are on a map, or be used as a compass. They can even store survival books on it for medical or plant references, etc. If you can afford one, I suggest going that route.

Cell phones won’t always work, especially in a disaster scenario, but they’re the best option when they do, so you should carry one.

A real weapon

You may not have realized it but there are actually bad people in the world. Also, you may not know it but many of those people don’t follow the law and will carry a gun even when they’re not allowed to do so.  Seriously.

I know, I know. I can hear you saying, “I can take care of myself.” No. No you can’t. Nothing can help in all situations but having at least the opportunity to defend yourself against an armed person or someone much bigger than you could extend your life. Just make sure you’re trained in how to properly handle the weapon of your choice AND how to handle yourself in a situation where you might have to use it. Go get professional training.

A multitool

A knife is definitely the primary tool you should carry but knives have limitations. If you have the room, get a good multitool what will give you a second blade, pliers, and several other useful items.

Each time you leave your house, you should have a minimum amount of equipment that will help you throughout your day and help you if you encounter a survival incident or scenario.

Each item is versatile and compact, which makes it easy to assemble an everyday carry kit and fit it in a small bag.

To learn other everyday carry items, please visit Graywolf Survival.