Best Survival Kits
These 5 kits represent the best survival kits on the market. Each one is prefabricated, so you don’t have to worry about putting together they emergency kit yourself, has most (if not all) of the things you’ll need to survive for a couple of days, and has quality supplies.
The Premium Family Emergency Survival Bag/Kit, Wise Company 5 Day Emergency Bug Out Bag, GetReadyNow 2+ Person Deluxe Car Emergency Kit, Mayday Earthquake Survival Kit Deluxe, and Limitless Equipment MARK 1 Survival Kit are the best survival kits you can get for the money.
If you’re interested in putting together your own survival kit, you can check out our bug out bag guide for ideas on how to build the best kit you can.
One thing that you’ll notice here is that there’s no half-baked gear in this line-up.
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What is an Emergency Survival Kit
Emergency survival kits are a collection of items that help keep you alive during emergencies. This doesn’t mean that you’re going to be comfortable or happy during that time, but when the emergency or disaster is over, you’ll still be alive!
What do you need for survival?
We need certain things in order to survive. You’ve probably heard of the so-called “rule of threes“. We can live for 3 hours without shelter, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food. This isn’t completely cut and dry, but it’s close enough and it’s easy to remember.
Let’s break down the rule of threes a little.
Three hours without shelter refers to having to protect your body from extreme temperatures, both hot and cold. Exposure to extreme temperatures is the thing that kills most people in survival situations. Shelter allows us to protect ourselves from these extremes.
Three days without water is pretty close to h long it takes for the average person to die if they don’t have access to water. In hot temperatures, this time can be much lower.
If you’re interested in what happens to us when we don’t have water, make sure you read this article.
Three weeks without food is the time that it takes for someone to starve to death. Weakness and illness related to a lack of calories happen much sooner, but the body completely stops working around three weeks after you stop eating.
What should you have in an emergency kit?
Every emergency kit should at least be able to provide you with shelter, water (or some way to get water), food (or a way to get food), and some medical gear so you can stop bleeding and treat wounds.
How much cash should I have in my emergency kit?
None of these kits are going to have things like cash in them. You’re going to have to add that after you get them.
I like having about $100 in smaller bills so I don’t have to rely on someone else having change. If I need to buy a gallon of clean water from someone, I want to be able to just hand them a few dollars or a $5 bill and not have to give them $20 because they have no change and that’s the smallest bill that I have.
Where should you keep an emergency kit?
An emergency kit needs to be where you’ll have easy access to it and in an area where you’ll most likely use it. Survival kits do you no good if they’re nowhere near you.
Make sure that you have an appropriate survival kit where you will likely need it the most. It doesn’t do you much good to have a survival kit designed for bugging in if you’re going to have to bug out.
Best Backpack Survival Kits
Backpack survival kits are great because they let you simply grab one bag and leave without having to grab other items before you can leave. This can be important in the case of fires, flooding, earthquakes, and other natural disasters that can force you out of our home in a matter of minutes with almost no time to prepare.
Why do I need a 72-hour kit?
A 72-hour kit usually refers to a bug out bag. These are kits that are designed to help you when you have to leave your house because you can no longer safely stay there.
They also tend to be the most versatile survival kits. You can use them even if you’re bugging in, but they also are designed to be light enough to carry on your back if you have to leave quickly.
I consider a bug out bag or a 72-hour bag to be the basic level of a survival kit for home use. Once you have your bug out bag, then you can build on it by adding more water and food, an emergency toilet, etc, that make bugging in much more effective.
What is the best survival backpack?
The best survival backpacks are the Premium Family Emergency Survival Kit and the Wise Company 5 Day Emergency Bug Out Bag.
They aren’t perfect, but they have most of what you need and they’re more complete than just about any other premade kits out there. The only way to get a premade kit that you aren’t going to have to add anything to is to spend 2 or 3 times what you would on these kits.
Premium Family Emergency Survival Bag/Kit
Premium Family Emergency Survival Kit
The following is included in the kit: 1 backpack, 24 Mountain House servings, 48 Packets of Datrex water (6 liters), 1 Sawyer Squeeze, 8 Cyalume SnapLights, 2 LED lanterns, 2 flashlights, 1 First Aid Kit, 4 emergency blankets, 2 bath wipes, 1 portable stove, 4 bowls and utensils, 1 MoraKniv knife, 1 Ferrocerium rod, 4 InstaFire tinder and 4 whistles.
The Premium Family Emergency Survival Kit offers plenty of name brand items inside and actually can provide for four family members, unlike a lot of kits that claim they have enough food for a certain number of people but really don’t come close. As far as we’re concerned, this is the overall best survival kit on the market.
The first aid kit in the Premium Family Emergency Survival Kit suffers from a lack of a tourniquet and any serious bandages. Add a Combat Application Tourniquet and a couple Ever Ready Battle Dressings and you’ll be good to go for any emergency situation or temporary natural disaster.
Wise Company 5 Day Emergency Bug Out Bag
The following is included in the kit: 1 LifeStraw, 32 servings of gourmet entrees, 5 water pouches (about 22 ozs), portable stove, 24 fuel tablets, stainless steel cup, squeeze flashlight, 5 in 1 survival whistle, 42 piece first aid & hygiene kit that contains 37 piece bandage kit, n95 dust mask, pocket tissues, wet naps, and waste bag, waterproof matches, mylar blanket, emergency poncho, and playing cards. A 8.5” survival knife with nylon sheath, survival kit & compass, a keychain paracord kit (with 10 feet 550 cord, alcohol pad, fire starter, tinder, foil, knife blade, sewing needle, 32.8 ft fishing line, 2 floats, 2 swivels, 2 safety pins, 2 weights, 6.5 ft iron wire), 11 in 1 card size survival tool (can opener, knife edge, screwdriver, ruler, bottle opener, 4 position wrench, saw blade, wrench), a signal mirror, wire saw, 8″ full tang knife with belt sheath & magnesium fire starter, 10.5″ axe with paracord handle, emergency tent, ceramic knife sharpener, and e-tool.
The Wise Company 5 Day Emergency Bug Out Bag is a full-fledged bug out bag that goes a different route than the Premium Family Emergency Survival Kit. Rather than include a lot of food and water, it has a limited amount of food and water but provides a way to procure more during an emergency.
It’s the best value of the survival kits represented here. If you want to make sure you’re covered in an emergency, but don’t want to spend a ton on a survival kit, this is a great choice.
The first aid kit will need some love to be fully capable. Like most other pre-made survival kits, it needs to have a Combat Application Tourniquet and a couple of Ever Ready Battle Dressings added to it in order to meet our standards for survival kit first aid.
Best Survival Kit for the Car or Truck
Car survival kits need to have everything that a traditional survival kit has in it, but it also has to include ways to signal to other people and vehicles that your car or truck may be stuck or disabled on the side of the road.
Winter months require that you add a few things to a car or truck survival kit. Blankets, sand or salt to help you get traction on ice and a shovel should all be added to your vehicle during the winter.
What items should you keep in your car?
On top of your car survival kit, you should have the following items in your vehicle:
- Spare tire
- Water bottles
- Tool kit
- First aid kit
- Warm clothing
- Emergency flares
- Jumper cables
GetReadyNow 2+ Person Deluxe Car Emergency Kit
GetReadyNow 2+ Person Deluxe Car Emergency Kit
The following is included in the kit: 4-Mode LED Headlamp w/Batteries, 2 LED Glow Sticks, 1 Wristband w/LED Light & Whistle, LED Beacon w/Batteries, 4 Millennium Food Bars, 8 Water Pouches, Waste Disposal Bags, 2 Tissue Packs, 2 Mylar Blankets, 2 8-Hour Hand Warmers, 2 Body Warmers, 2 Ponchos, 2 Tubular Bandanas (warm up/cool down), 46-Piece First Aid Kit, 2 Pair Utility Gloves, Duct Tape, 2 Dust Masks, 4 Extra AAA Batteries, Waterproof Matches, Stainless Steel Multipurpose Tool, Windshield Breaker/Seatbelt Cutter.
Interested in a smaller kit? The GetReadyNow Personal Car Emergency Kit is the glove box sized version of this kit.
The GetReadyNow 2+ Person Deluxe Car Emergency Kit is one of the best car survival kits on the market. You’ll definitely appreciate the quality when you see it in person.
This kit is the most versatile of our line up. Packed in a heavy-duty dry bag, you can toss this kit just about anywhere and know that you’ll have an emergency kit available at a moment’s notice.
It would be perfect for a boat or to have on hand in a hunting cabin.
This would win our vote for the best survival kit on the market if we were looking for something to throw in a vehicle next to our road kit and first aid kit.
The lack of food and water makes this less of an all-arounder than our first two kits. The good thing is it’s easy to get more food and a LifeStraw to go with it.
Best Survival Kit for the Home
Home survival kits are unique in that they don’t have to fit a certain shape or size. They can have as much food and water in them as you want and can fill a whole room if you choose. That’s one of the best reasons to bug in during an emergency rather than bugging out.
What should you have in your house for emergencies?
On top of all of the items that are in your home survival kit, you should keep these items on hand as well:
- Additional water
- Additional food
- Extra batteries
- Additional hygiene items
- Copies of personal documents
- Family contact information
- Emergency contact information
- Extra cash
- Maps of the local area
- Extra pet food
- Fire extinguisher
- Fire escape ladder
- Extra clothes
Mayday Earthquake Survival Kit Deluxe
The following is included in the kit: Honey Bucket with lid, 4 2400 calorie food bars, 4 solar blankets, 24 pouches of water, 4 dust masks, 4 ponchos, 12 pack of liners, 6 wet naps, 12 hour light stick, T-5 chemical toilet disinfectant, 1 roll 10 yards of duct tape, gas/water shut off tool, 15″ pry bar, 54 piece first aid kit, dynamo flashlight/radio, 1 pair leather palm gloves, utility knife, emergency whistle, water purification tablets, waterproof matches.
The Mayday Earthquake Kit Deluxe is a great emergency kit to put in your basement or the bedroom closet. The whole kit comes packed in a 5-gallon bucket that doubles as a chemical toilet.
If you add some plastic sheeting this kit would make a great shelter in place kit during an emergency.
The only food and water contained in the kit are emergency rations and water pouches so you’ll want to add to it. They also don’t taste very good so adding more food and water to this survival kit will make it a better all-around survival kit on top of adding to the length of time that you can survive during an emergency.
Best Survival Kit for EDC
EDC survival kits are a little different than other types of survival kits. An EDC survival kit is meant to be as small as possible while keeping as many useful items in it as possible.
Size and weight are one of the most important things for an EDC survival kit. The smaller and lighter an EDC kit is, the more likely you are to have it with you when you need it most. It’s easy to pack so much into an EDC kit that it can cover a wide range of emergencies but it just gets too big to actually carry.
EDC survival kits only help you out if you actually carry them!
Limitless Equipment MARK 1 Survival Kit
The following is included in the kit: Metal container, 1 Emergency Whistle and fire striker, 1 Water resistant red LED, 2 Mini Lightsticks, 1 Liquid Filled compass, 2m reflective TACTI-GLOW Firecord, 1 Wire steel saw, 1 Sheet waterproof paper, 1 Pencil, 1m copper snare wire, 1 Sewing kit, 2 safety pins, 1 #10 Scalpel, 2 Ranger bands, 1 Water carrier, 1 Water filter kit, Tinder extender in vial, First Aid kit, Fishing Kit, 1 Tampon, 1 30 cm square tin foil.
The Limitless Equipment MARK 1 Survival Kit is the smallest kit in our lineup, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a full-fledged survival kit in its own right. Each piece of this survival kit is well thought out so it can fill multiple roles.
The least expensive kit by far.
This is a great option for anyone looking to add a survival kit to a backpack or briefcase.
Best Survival Kits Conclusion
These kits fill different roles but each is the best in its class. I’m sure you’ve noticed the two drawbacks of purchasing a pre-made emergency kit, the first aid kits are all underwhelming and you end up paying a small premium when you buy a complete kit.
As long as you’re willing to overlook those shortfalls, all of these survival kits will treat you well.