It’s dark and suddenly the walls in your kitchen start swaying back and forth. It’s an earthquake and you need to leave your home as quickly as possible. For this blog, I’m going to take a closer look at the best bug out bags on the market and what makes them so great. I hope you find this information valuable.
When you don’t want to hassle with finding all your emergency supplies, a pre-made bug out bag is a great choice. The top 10 pre-made bug out bags on the market right now include water, food, shelter and a way to start a fire. Some pre-made kits are more comprehensive than others. In general, you want a bag that is convenient, easy to use and well organized.
Below is the table of contents for this article. I have links to each of the sections of this article. When you click on of the links, if you wish to get back to this table of contents, all you have to do is to hit your browser back button. Okay here we go! Let’s get started!
Table Of Contents:
- Elements of a Bug Out Bag
- Seventy2 Bug Out Bag
- Echo-Sigma Bug Out Bag
- Echo-Sigma Special Edition Bug Out Bag
- Wise Food 5-Day Survival Backpack
- Sustain Supply Company Survival Bag
- Ready to Go Survival Backpack
- The Emergency Zone Bug Out Bag
- Ready America Outdoor Survival Kit
- Ultimate Arms Gear Bug Out
- ReadyWiseEmergency Kit
- Final Thoughts
Elements of a Bug Out Bag
Before I get into the best bug out bags, also known as BOBs, let’s take a look at what makes an emergency kit shine. In an emergency, you need everything to survive 72 hours or longer. In general, most emergencies are resolved in that time frame or the dust has at least settled enough for you to reach medical help and additional supplies. You need food, water and shelter to survive. That’s the basics, bare bones. So, you are going to need freeze dried food, water pouches, water filtration system, emergency blankets and emergency tent/rope.
A bug out bag is intended to be taken with you when it is no longer safe to stay inside your home. This means the bag should be durable, comfortable and water resistant. Depending on the emergency, you may be carrying your pack for hours on end. Padded shoulders and an adjustable waistband make carrying a pack easier, especially if you have a heavy load.
A bug out bag should also contain a first aid kit, hygiene supplies, fire starting supplies, a survival knife and a radio. While pre-made bug out bags are a great option for those who don’t want to DIY, you may need to add a couple extra tools, food or other supplies to make it fit your specific needs. Okay. Let’s take a look at the top 10 pre-made bug out bags on the market. Prices range from $100 to $600.
1. Seventy2 Bug Out Bag
This is the pack recommended by military trained survival experts. This is the pack also endorsed by the elite few who’ve summit the tallest peaks around the world. This pack can do it all. It can be a flotation device if you suddenly find yourself knee deep in flood waters. This pack is waterproof, so no need to worry about your gear getting wet. This bug out bag is also very well organized. You don’t have time to sifting through a bag to find matches and other survival tools. The labeled insert not only clearly identifies what’s inside each compartment, it also has instructions! Check out the price here on Amazon: The Seventy2 Survival System
Unlike most bug out bags, this pack is a neutral gray color. The designers of the BOB intentionally made the pack with a neutral tone so you don’t stand out in a crowd or in the woods. The pack also features padded shoulders and a waistband for added comfort. This bag has been praised for its intuitive design and essential gear in TIME magazine, Outside magazine, Huffington Post and Field and Stream. This is the real deal, folks. This BOB is designed for one person and rings in at $350.
What’s inside: Nalgene water bottle, goggles, food bars, first aid kit, paracord, shovel/pickaxe, water syringe, collapsible water tank, mylar emergency blanket, anti-bacterial wipes, filtration mask, survival knife, mag alloy fire starter, waterproof match case, sunscreen, radio/flashlight/cell charger, beanie, mylar survival tent, gloves, duct tape, body warmers. The pack itself is a survival tool: a flotation device. You never know when you are going to need to jump into a river or lake to get to safety.
Pros: I love everything about the pack. The well-organized insert makes this pack easy to use, even for someone who has no idea what they are doing. During an emergency, you aren’t going to have time to dump out the contents of your pack to search for a radio or cell phone charger. This pack forces you to stay organized even when there is chaos all around you. I also like the added details such as a stocking cap, sunscreen, and a shovel. The shovel can be used to dig a latrine, cut firewood and for self-defense is needed. It’s clear survival experts helped design and hand pick everything inside the BOB>
Cons: The pack comes with food bars. While the bars supply the right number of calories needed to survive and they are lightweight, they don’t taste very good. If I purchased this pack, I’d swap out the food bars for freeze-dried too, but that’s just me.
2. Echo-Sigma Bug Out Bag
Echo-Sigma specializes in making tactical bug out bags for the everyday person. Every emergency kit the company produces is made for both the expert survivalist and the not so experienced folks. The company was founded in 2010 when a couple in California couldn’t find a single high-quality BOB on the market. The owners did their research and hand-picked tools, supplies, and food all needed to survive an emergency situation. With this company, you can custom build your BOB right at checkout online. Pick and choose what is important to you right there from the website. Check out the price here on Amazon: Echo-Sigma Bug Out Bag
What’s inside: Seven days of food and water, multi-tool, Fenix LD22 Lumen Tactical flashlight, compact first aid kit, emergency tent, full sleeping bag, radio, matches, lightsticks, fire starters, lighter, mag flint, pens, paper, compass and a waste bag. You can also add shovel, hydration bladder, survival knife and hatchet for extra. The company also throws in a LifeStraw water filtration system with every purchase.
Pros: The food is real food. It’s freeze dried food, not the food bars the other guys throw in their BOBs. You can also add more food to your pack if you need more than a seven-day supply. The free LifeStraw is also a bonus. The LifeStraw makes filtering water from a pond easy to do. You can literally drink water directly from a puddle with this water filtration system. This is great to have when you are on the go and need water ASAP. The straw makes questionable sources of water safe and free of any harmful bacteria and viruses.
I also love this BOB includes a real sleeping bag. Most BOB’s include a mylar emergency sleeping bag. While they keep you warm, they are thin and uncomfortable. A real sleeping bag means you will be getting a real night sleep no matter where you need to rest your head during an emergency.
Cons: It’s expensive and you pay more to add extra essentials, which should really be included in the pack. The pack rings in at $599.
3. Echo-Sigma Special Edition Bug Out Bag
This BOB takes the standard Echo-Sigma pack to the next level. This is packed with everything you could ever imagine: mummy sleeping bag, survival blade knife, and a folding knife. The bag weighs about 39 pounds. That’s amazing considering all the gear packed inside this BOB. This is made for someone who needs evacuate their home with no time-frame for returning. It’s easy to use and doesn’t require any training or assembly for it to be effective. There’s no doubt you will be able to make it through just about any emergency with this special edition BOB. Check out the price here on Amazon: Echo-Sigma Special Edition Bug Out Bag
What’s inside: multi-tool, fixed blade knife, folding knife with glass breaker and belt cutter, survival hawk with integral fire starter, flashlight, seven days of water and food, first aid kit, emergency tent, rope, radio, built in hydration system, compass, whistle, emergency blanket, lighter, waterproof matches, mag flint striker, duct tape, water purification tablets, light sticks, pends, paper, earplugs, zip ties, camp trowel, para-cord, emergency poncho, mirror, batteries, respirator mask, goggles, hand warmers. All the tools and supplies included are name brand items.
Pros: With this pack, you can face anything. Earthquakes, tornadoes and major power outages have nothing on you when you have this BOB by your side. Everything in this pack is high quality, name brand items. The mummy sleeping bag is rated for negative temperatures, so you know you aren’t going to be cold anytime soon. Duct tape, mirror to signal for help and high-quality food all make this a top pre-made BOB.
Cons: This is perhaps the priciest BOB on the market right now. At almost $800, you will be making an investment. It’s not for those who are on a budget. Given all the brand name supplies and extent of tools included, you will not have to worry about anything. So, what’s that worth to you? If you have the extra cash, this is worth the buy. However, there are other quality BOBs just right for your budget if you just can’t justify the price.
4. Wise Food 5-Day Survival Backpack
Now, this is a budget-friendly BOB that is packed with excellent food, a high-quality backpack, and everything to get you through an emergency situation. This BOB is made by Wise Company. The company specializes in making excellent freeze-dried food. Yep, you guessed it. This kit is packed with yummy, hearty and nutrient dense food. In fact, every kit includes 32 servings of breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Here’s a sampling of the menu: creamy pasta with vegetables, hearty tortilla soup and southwest rice and beans. This pack rings in for under $100. Check out the price here on Amazon: Wise Food 5-Day Survival Backpack
What’s inside: 32 servings of food including meals like apple cinnamon cereal, brown sugar cereal, creamy pasta, southwest beans and rice, hearty tortilla soup and whey milk, 5 water pouches, 37-piece first aid kit, N95 Dust Mask, pocket tissues, 3 wet naps, waster bag, portable stove, stainless steel cup, squeeze flashlight, survival whistle, waterproof matches, mylar blanket, playing cards. The kit is stored in a heavy-duty nylon camo bag. The backpack has lots of pockets to make it easy to find all your supplies.
Pros: Excellent food. This is one of the best food selections for a BOB. Apple cinnamon cereal sounds amazing. No food bars here- thank goodness. The bag contains a total of 5,160 calories. I also love the first aid kit, mylar blanket, and portable stove. These are all key survival tools to have in your BOB. For the money, this is an excellent bag. One of the best BOB bags under $100.
Cons: I’d like to see an emergency tent in the kit and perhaps some rope. A tent will keep you warm and dry until you can reach an emergency shelter or it’s safe to go back to your home. Also, if I were to purchase this BOB, I’d add some fire starters and another pack of wet wipes. I don’t think three wet naps are going to cut it for a few days in the woods or a shelter.
5. Sustain Supply Company Survival Bag
Sustain Supply Company is a leader in the BOB and 72-hour kit market. The company only packs its pre-made bags with the best products available. No off-brand stuff here. Just high quality, durable survival tools to make the next emergency situation as comfortable as possible. This pack is designed for four people for 72 hours. So, it’s a big pack, but not so heavy you can’t be agile and quick on your feet. The pack rings in at $300 for four people. That equals out to be $75/per person. If you wish to purchase this here is a link to where you can get it on Amazon. Premium Family Emergency Survival Bag.
What’s Inside: 24 Mountain House food servings, 48 packets of Datrex water, 1 sawyer squeeze, 8 light snaps, 1 companion knife, (2) LED lanterns, (2) flashlights, 1 first aid kit, (4) emergency blankets, (2) bath wipes, (1) portable stove, (4) bowls and utensils, 1 ferrocerium rod, 4 instafire tinder and 4 whistles. All these supplies packed nicely inside a heavy-duty military style backpack.
Pros: The backpack is high quality. With padded straps and a waistband, you can easily carry this load for miles at a time without needing a break. The Mountain House food selection is another reason why this BOB made my top 10 list. Mountain House is a leader in the freeze-dried food business. The company makes gourmet, nutrient-dense meals for you to enjoy at home, camping or in an emergency situation. Just add fresh, clean water and you can have a hot meal in a matter of minutes.
Cons: Where’s the tent? This kit is missing a source of shelter. Yes, there are mylar emergency blankets, but you are going to need something to keep the weather away. I’d like to see a tarp, rope and duct tape added to the supplies. Also, let’s add some weatherproof matches too. The ferrocerium rod makes fire, but if you’re a survival novice, it may take you awhile to start a flame. Add matches to cover your bases!
6. Ready to Go Survival Backpack
This is a high-end BOB with a high-end price tag. This Ready to Go Survival Advanced Operative BOB rings in a $689. Yep, that’s a lot of money. However, this bag is packed with the best survival tools in the world. The bag is designed to help you survive hostile civil unrest, natural disasters, and other emergencies.
It may be a slightly advanced for the common homeowner, but if you practice using this kit before an actual emergency you should be just fine. The bag comes standard with a Camelbak hydration bladder, so you can stay hydrated while you are on the go. The bag also boasts several servings of incredible freeze-dried food by Wise Company.
What’s Inside: Let’s start with the backpack: it’s heavy-duty 1050D nylon, with heavy zippers, lots of storage and designed specifically as a BOB. There are several food options in this BOB.: (6) Wise Company Meals, MRES and (2) 18 emergency food bars for a total of 18,690 calories. As I mentioned earlier, the pack has a built-in 70-ounce Camelbak. It also has a Sawyer mini water filtration system, 24 water pouches, stainless steel water bottle and a water purification tablets.
Fire supplies include Bear Grylls survival fire starter and whistle, floating lighter, stormproof matches, all-weather tinder. The BOB also includes an emergency blanket, sleeping bivy, tube tent, poncho, 299-piece first aid kit, iodine tablets, ammonia inhalants, bit and sting kit, multi-function tool, camping utensil, fishing kit, folding spade and serrated blade, survival chainsaw, flashlight, glow sticks, crank radio, signal mirror, survival knife, safety goggles, N95 mask, ear plug, compass, duct tape, paracord, zip ties, extra batteries, heat packs, utility straps, sewing and repair kit.
Pros: This BOB covers your bases for a variety of situations. Iodine to help support your immune system in the event of a nuclear event. Fishing kit to catch your own food. Exceptionally large and comprehensive first aid kit. A bit and sting kit in case you encounter snakes, bears or a hive of bees. There isn’t a single scenario you couldn’t survive with the BOB. Let’s not forget the survival chainsaw, signal mirror, and the Camelbak. And what I love most- the food. This BOB doesn’t skimp on high-quality food. With freeze dried meals, food bars and MREs, you have lots of choices.
Cons: There’s no way around it. This BOB is expensive. It’s one of the priciest BOBs on the market today. However, take a look again at everything you get. And remember, you aren’t just getting generic plastic tools. This pack boosts name brand gear like Bear Grylls and Camelbak. If you can get past the price, this is an excellent BOB.
7. The Emergency Zone Bug Out Bag
Emergency Zone BOB is an excellent choice for a family or a couple who wants something practical, affordable and boosts all the essential survival tools needed to survive a crisis. While most two-person BOBs are in one pack, this BOB is separated into two packs to lighten the load a bit. How nice of them. The bag is black and gray to help you blend into a crowd if you need to bug out in the city or in suburbia. Check out the price on Amazon: The Emergency Zone Bug Out Bag
What’s Inside: 3600 calories of food bars, 24 water pouches, hygiene station, and sanitation including soap, shaving cream, and toothpaste. Sewing kit, flashlight/charger/radio combo, emergency preparedness guidebook, pencil, zip bag, 1L water container, water purification powder, purification instruction sheet, first aid kit, N95 Mask, glow sticks, whistle, rope, duct tape, work gloves, multi-tool, playing cards, can opener, (4) reflective sleeping bag, emergency poncho, (2) tube tent, (4) hand warmers.
Pros: I like how the supplies are divided between two durable backpacks. The extensive first aid kit, water purification system and how to survive an emergency guidebook are all great additions. This BOB even has a can opener. This is the first BOB with a can opener on this list. While a multi-function tool can also be used as a can opener, it’s not the same. Glad to see a can opener made the final cut with this BOB.
Cons: The food bars are not my favorite. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know how I feel about food bars. If you purchase this BOB, add some Mountain House freeze-dried food. You’ll thank me later.
8. Ready America Outdoor Survival Kit
If you are looking for a lightweight, bare essentials BOB this is the premade kit for you. This kit rings in at just $70. If you are on a budget, this has everything you need to survive for few days out in the woods. This particular kit is designed to keep one person alive for 72-hours. The kit is easy to store at home, in your car or at the office. The pack is designed by the experts at Ready America- a company dedicated to helping government agencies, homeowners, and schools be prepared for emergency situations. Check out the price here on Amazon: Ready America Outdoor Survival Kit
What’s Inside: Food Bar (2400 Calorie), (3) Water Pouches, (1) Pocket Knife, (3) Emergency Light sticks (12-hr), 5-in-1 Survival Whistle, 33-piece First-Aid Kit, Emergency Poncho, survival Blanket, pocket tissue pack, (1) Cord (25’), (1) Bio-Hazard Bag , (6) Pre-Moistened Towelette, waterproof matches, fire starter and fuel, purification tablets, stainless steel bottle, carabiner clip, emergency contact card, cord, bio-hazard bag and a camo backpack.
Pros: This BOB is approved by the U.S. Coast Guard so you know it’s a great buy. The kit is well organized, making it easy to find all your gear in the event of an emergency. Even with all this gear, it’s lightweight and easy to carry. The emergency blanket and whistle are also excellent choices in this BOB. The waterproof matches, water purification tablets, and stainless steel bottle give this BOB two thumbs up.
Cons: Food bars. Come on guys, when will we start to see more freeze-dried food in survival kits? Add a couple meals of your own to balance it out. It can be hard to stomach food bars after the second day. I’d like to see a tent added to the kit as well. An emergency blanket may not cut it when you are trying to stay warm outside under the night sky. Just a thought.
9. Ultimate Arms Gear Bug Out
Ultimate Arms Gear Bug Out has just about everything you need in the event you need to get out of dodge quickly. This pack is red and gray with several compartments for easy organization and the ability to grab supplies right away! The best part about this BOB is the freeze-dried food. The BOB includes meals from Wise Company. No more food bars! Yippee! This company makes several variations of BOBs to match your needs. This bag is for one person to survive five days. Check out the price here on Amazon: Ultimate Arms Gear Bug Out Emergency Kit
What’s Inside: LifeStraw, 32 servings of Wise Company freeze-dried food, water pouches, portable stove, fuel tablets, stainless steel cups, flashlight, whistle, waste bag, waterproof matches, playing cards, survival knife, hygiene kit, wet wipes, paracord, magnifying glass, alcohol pad, safety pins, fire starter, mylar emergency blanket, iron wire, compass, nylon sheath, shovel, bottle opener, tube tent, pick and saw.
Pros: The gourmet meals make this one of the best-premade BOBs on the market today. As I’ve mentioned before, Wise Company makes really tasty freeze-dried meals. Each pouch of food gives you the needed nutrients to keep going in an emergency situation. The steel 4 in 1 tool is also a great addition to the kit. This tool is a pick, saw, shovel and bottle opener all in one. How about that? The 50 feet of paracord is also a great tool to have in an emergency. Paracord is incredibly strong, making it versatile when you are hiking and setting up camp.
Cons: The backpack isn’t the same quality of most BOBs. While it holds everything together, it’s not nearly a thick or durable as the other packs on this list. I’d like to see a more military style pack for this kit. That’s just me. Also, the first aid kit could be bigger- it’s only 42 pieces. That doesn’t seem like nearly enough first aid supplies for a few days out in the woods. What do you think? Add an extra first aid kit if you have room, you’ll be glad to have the extra bandages if you run into trouble.
10. ReadyWise Emergency Kit
The ReadyWise is a small, compact BOB made for someone with minimal survival experience. It’s easy to use, lightweight and will help you survive an emergency evacuation from your home. This pack is designed for one person to stay hydrated and comfortable for at least three days. The pack is affordable, with a price tag of $125. The extra thick wool blanket is a nice addition and change from the normal mylar emergency blankets we are used to seeing in BOBs. The bag is bright red, with just a few zipper pockets. Again, pretty simple design. If you are new to prepping or just want a basic BOB just in case, this is a great option for you. Check out the price here on Amazon: ReadyWise Emergency Kit
What’s Inside: 3600 calorie food bar, hard candy, (3) MRES, water pouches, water bottle, hand and body warmer. Emergency poncho, emergency sleeping bag, wool blanket, tube tent, strike-anywhere matches, fire starter, utensils, MRE heater, survival whistle, light stick, hand crank light and phone charger, 100-hour candle, radio with batteries, N95 respirator mask, sunscreen, toilet paper, 92-piece first aid kit, first aid guide, leather gloves, emergency tape, tissue, comb, razor, soap, safety pin, toothbrush and camping trowel
Pros: The wool blanket is awesome. Wool is one of the best materials in the world. Wool wicks away moisture and it traps body heat- this means you will stay nice and toasty even if you are forced to bug out in the middle of winter. The tent, fire starters, and 100-hour candle are also excellent additions to this BOB. The hard candy is another favorite and the MRE. While there are still food bars, you at least have a few MREs to mix up your meals. The emergency sleeping bag and water bottle will keep you warm and hydrated. At just 20 pounds, this bag is lightweight and easy to carry for just about anyone, even kids!
Cons: This premade kit skimps on the sunscreen. According to the manufacturer, the sunscreen is basically a pre-moistened towel. You are going to need more sunscreen than that. Also, I’d like to see a larger first aid kit included with this BOB. You can never have too many band-aids, gauze or materials to make a splint. You never know what will happen when you are bugging out in an emergency. Also, this kit doesn’t include any rope. You’ll need to add some paracord to your pack. Rope can be used to make shelter, keep your food off the ground and climb hazardous areas. It’s always a great idea to have a rope in your BOB. I’d also include a knife for self-defense. The kit comes with a trowel, but that can only do so much.
Well I hope that this article was helpful to all who read it. Out of all of the different types of emergency preparations that we can make, I cannot think of any that are more important than a 72 hour kit or bug out bag. In some types of emergencies where you either have to evacuate or make it to some place for safety, an emergency kit that fits all into one bag may be all that you are able to carry.
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