Photo: Creating your kit

What’s In Your “Go” Kit?

What is a "Go" kit, what supplies should you include, and why do you need one? Learn the basics you need to know to be prepared for a natural disaster in your neighborhood.

What’s in your “Go” kit?

Emergency supply “Go” kits come in all shapes and sizes. If you are making your own, the first question you should ask yourself is where you will be storing it and what length of event you want to prepare for.

“Go” kits differ from large-scale supply stashes in that they are intended for emergencies that require you to evacuate your home, office or classroom in a hurry.

We recommend that you first concentrate on creating a “Go” kit (sometimes called a “bug out bag”) with the essentials you will need if you have to evacuate your home in a hurry. Typically, the supplies in a “Go” kit are just intended to get you by for a day or so, until you can find other shelter.

Each member of your household should have his/her own “Go” kit, stored in a closet or under their bed. Pack each kit in its own backpackduffle bag, or wheeled suitcase. You may need to transport it a significant distance, so you don’t want to pack more than you can carry (that’s why the wheeled suitcases are so nice. Look for them at thrift stores). This is especially important to consider for young children.

Once you’ve packed the 13 essential items — starting with water, food and first aid —  you can consider adding items that could be important for both your survival and your comfort if you aren’t able to find immediate alternative shelter.

We highly recommend storing an additional “Go” kit in the trunk of your car, since you may not be at home when the disaster happens.

If you are building a large, stationery stash of supplies to keep in the house, garage or storage shed for extended emergencies that don’t require you to evacuate, you can include some heavier “luxury” items, such as a camp stove. Clean, 30-gallon yard waste containers work well for this purpose.

Here are some products you might want to consider. We have provided links that will take you directly to these items on the Amazon website. To return to our website order page from the Amazon page, simple click on the “back” button.

Please note that we have NOT NECESSARILY used these particular items ourselves, but are recommending them based on what we perceive to be the best combination of quality, utility and price.

If you have experience with these, or any other products you think our readers would appreciate hearing about, we encourage you to share your stories/comments with us. (Please, no product promotions from vendors.)

First-Aid Kit

Solar charger for USB devices

Weather radio/radio/flashlight combination, hand-cranked

Mylar thermal blankets (aka Space blankets)

Rain ponchos

Water purification tablets

Can opener, manual

Hand sanitizer

Antiseptic towelettes

Propane camping stove

Furniture wall anchors

Survival whistle with lanyard and carabiner keychain

Roadside emergency beacons

Air filter (particulate) masks

Download our free checklists to see what else you might need.