I received an email from a friend asking about travel preparedness. Here is her letter and my take on it.
I started an email to you from Texas over a week ago. I received an urgent call from my niece saying my brother, her Dad, was not doing well. He had been fighting cancer since October and was losing the battle. I knew I had to fly down if I was going to see him alive. I also knew I couldn’t take my EDC and other stuff with me on a plane! So I left most of my stuff behind and headed to Texas. And since I was a bit distraught over my brother’s condition, I forgot some things like snacks/food. Hey! At least I remembered my meds! LOL!
When I arrived, I felt totally naked and vulnerable! I stated an email to you asking what you thought I could get while I was down there that I could take back home with me in my suitcase/carry-on. Well, my email messed up and it never sent. So I went to Target, Walmart, and Dollar Tree for some “supplies”. Here are some of the items I came up with…
FIRE: I got a magnesium stick with a ferro rod and striker. I left it in my purse and they let me on the plane with it coming home!
WATER: 12 pack of 16.9 oz water from Target
SHELTER: Small tarp
FOOD: Trail mix, beef jerky, Lance crackers
FIRST AID: I carry bandaids, BZK wipes, and such in a small container in my purse so that went with me, but I also got a bigger one at a store down there for travel. DO YOU KNOW HOW BIG TEXAS IS??!!! I was on the road A LOT so just in case…. Also bought nitrile gloves and sanitary napkins.
TRAVEL: Compass. Not the best but I sure didn’t want TSA confiscating my good one!
CORDAGE: Paracord bracelet. Only 7 feet but every little bit helps!
I left the left over water, tarp, FAK, nitrile gloves, and sanitary napkins with my niece before I left. Since her Dad is no longer around to come to her rescue if something happens on her way back & forth to work, AND she didn’t have these things in her car, (not prepared!) I thought they would be useful! I had nothing for defense but looked for things in my hotel I could use if I needed to defend myself. Iron, ironing board, chairs, chair legs…. I was mentally prepared; had a plan! That was comforting.
My brother lost his battle with cancer, but I know he is in Heaven with God now; not suffering. We who are left are the ones suffering now, but life goes on and we will miss him TERRIBLY. But we have blessed assurance we will see him again!
Maybe you can share this with your followers, and make additional suggestions, for when we have situations in our lives that require us following certain rules and regulations, and we can’t be as prepared as we would like!
Have a great weekend!
••• Whether it be on business or vacation, almost everyone has to travel, at some time. Most people let their “preparedness guard” down during travel. Preppers usually have a great setup at home. Some have an excellent Car Kit.
Most, hardly consider what to bring on a plane. With all of the rules and restrictions it can be overwhelming to know what you can and can’t bring or HOW to bring it. Heck, you can’t even get a bottle of water through the security checkpoint? Compounding the issue is space to pack all that you need for the trip plus the gear you want for safety in a disaster. I suggest looking at the “Rule of 3s”. You can survive 3 minutes without air, 3 hours without shelter (in horrible conditions), 3 days without water, and 3 weeks without food. So, what do that you need to survive? Air, shelter, water, food… Start there. Choose the things you pack for vacation or business travel to coordinate with those categories. Don’t pack jeans, cotton is a killer in bad weather. Pack cargo pants and shorts or outdoor clothing. Make sure to pack good rain gear (or a poncho) to wear while you travel. I travel with a pretty large suitcase but the following items do not take up much space and should provide a decent measure of safety during your trip. I’ve taken care to scrutinize this list for weight concerns, as well.
Get a good one! There are a lot of cheap options here. Don’t skimp on BREATHING. Pack a couple of these whenever you travel. If some sort of disaster hits while you are on the road you won’t be inhaling any of the dust, , debris, or other contaminants.
– Emergency tube tent/tarp You never know if you’ll make it to your hotel before a disaster hits or if something happens to drive you out. With my luck it will be 20 degrees and snowing when it happens.
– Emergency Bivvy Bag
or Sleeping Bag
If you bring a tent, you might as well bring a bag. If you choose a sleeping bag, use a compression sack
and you can make it a lot smaller. Just remember not to store it in the sack. Choose a lightweight sleeping bag. Anything else will be too bulky. You can always use the Mylar blanket to help retain heat or as a ground cover.
– Mylar Blanket
Don’t buy the cheapest one you can find. As it it, even the good ones are cheap enough. Spend $4-$8 on this. Look for ones marketed as “thicker” than normal. If you need it in an emergency, you’ll thank me for this one. This can be used as shelter, a blanket, or as ground cover to protect your sleeping bag. If used as ground cover, it will still help keep you warm.
– Plastic Sheeting
You keep this stuff in every kit, right? It has so many uses. Its main use is emergency rain gear or shelter but it can be used to collect water, protect a bag or backpack from the rain, and a million other uses. Even a 9×12 of the thin stuff from the dollar store would work.
– Large Heavy Duty Trash Bag
This has a million uses as well. It’s primary function here is to protect your suitcase from the weather. It can also cover a backpack, act as shelter or ground cover, carry additional items, or to collect/store water.
– Portable Water Filter
for this task. The Sawyer will filter more gallons but the Survivor Filter has a carbon element. Both are compact, lightweight, and very effective. I keep a Survivor Filter in my EDC pack.
These are lightweight, air and water tight, and although not compact, you can pack things IN them. I keep my Sawyer Mini, a firestarter kit, and a Mylar blanket in mine. This will allow you to carry water with you or, if you have other bottles handy, keep electronics like your phone dry…even in a flood.
– Meal Replacement Bars
Your body can survive for about three weeks or more without food and you can only carry so much weight. So, food is where I make the most concessions. I take about a dozen “Millennium Energy Bars” with me in a ziplock bag. We recently tested many of these and they taste the best, have a 5 year shelf life, and have enough calories to keep you going. With 400 calories per bar, and more importantly, carbs and protein, you’ll be able to keep trudging along should you need to get away from a dangerous area.
A pack of trail mix in your carry on might me a nice addition, as well.
– Small Back Pack
If you have to bug out while you’re traveling, you might to have to ditch your big suitcase. Pack your emergency supplies in the bag and attach the sleeping bag and tent to the outside of the pack. I like to take a small “packable” backpack with me anyway. Most people pack their suitcase full. How do you bring purchases home from vacation? Well, you toss them in this pack!
– Pocket knife
This better be a part of your EDC (Every Day Carry). Here’s the hard part:
Those silly people in the blue uniforms at the security gates frown on you bringing that Cold Steel Espada XL
on the plane. The only time I don’t have a knife in my pocket is when I’m flying or sleeping. Between self defense and every day cutting tasks, you’ll want one when you get back on the ground. Toss a decent knife in your suitcase. Just remember, the TSA likes to hire thieves… don’t pack your best blade and try to stash it somewhere out of sight in the bag. I keep an Ontario Rat 1 in my travel stuff. It’s good enough for any task I might ask of it without breaking the bank
I don’t leave home without one of these, either. Worth it’s weight in gold in an emergency and very handy for every day tasks. Be sure to spend good money on a decent multitool. $30 is the bare minimum for a Gerber or Leatherman. I take either a Gerber 600 or a Leatherman OHT
– Fire Starter Kit
For most this will be a lighter or matches. Consider adding some Wetfire
or other tinder items as well as emergency waterproof matches.
– Small First Aid Kit
A pocket sized first aid kit with one Israeli bandage and a tourniquet added. Just in case. Basic OTC meds are nice too. Imodium, Aspirin, Antacid…all might come in handy. Don’t forget any prescription meds. It’s best to keep those in your carry-on. You wouldn’t want those to get lose with your luggage.
Get a long runtime LED AAA or AA sized light. Like a Thrunite Ti3 or Olight S15r. One of these these tiny flashlights are also on me at all times, even on an airplane. It is tiny enough to be unnoticeable in your pocket yet bright enough for just about any task. Most are barely larger than the battery that powers it. I learned my lesson…don’t put a good flashlight in your checked luggage. Someone else might find it too nice to resist.
– Pocket Compass and Map
Having a small compass and a basic map of your destination can help you get around and find water. Nothing too elaborate. It’ll just be nice to know where you are and where you’re headed.
As with any kit, you should have some cordage with you. Shelter, snares, security, etc… you’ll find a use for a 50ft hank of cord.
Once you complete this kit, you’ll have it for anytime you travel. You could pack all of it into the backpack and just leave it ready to go. It would also make a handy bug out bag for a house guest in an emergency.
Good luck and safe travels!