How to Build a Bug Out Bag

Building your bug out bag, or 72 hour bag can seem really overwhelming if you’re new to preparing for an emergency. Don’t get caught up in the thought that you need to have some tricked out, blingy bag. In reality, all you really need is a sturdy bag and a few supplies.

How to Build a Bug out Bag

To start, you obviously need a bag. Choose a canvas bag over a plastic or vinyl one so that it will last longer. For size, go with a bag that you can comfortably carry on your back when it’s full. For kids, a regular backpack in a character that they like is best. In an emergency, kids need normalcy and a character they like is normal for them.

Build a Bug Out Bag

To start building your bug out bag, you’ll need to gather your supplies. Be sure that you have:

  • 3 days clothing including socks
  • Water bottles for 3 days
  • Food for 3 days
  • Cash
  • Copies of your identification (both parents should also carry kids identification too)
  • Spare keys to your home and car
  • Medications if you take them
  • Lighter and stormproof matches
  • Sunblock and a hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Pocket knife
  • Prepaid Cell phone
  • Solar Phone Charger
  • Chapstick
  • Any other items you might need on a daily basis

Once you’ve got your items gathered, pack your bag. Try to keep the clothing that you include rolled up since it takes up less space in your bag that way. Pack everything so that it is secure and not going to roll around in your bag if you have to grab it quickly to get out of dodge.

Kid’s Bug Out Bags

For your kids, you’ll want to create a scaled-down version of your own bag. A child’s bag doesn’t need to be fully packed as yours does. Instead, you’ll want to give them only the basics they will need such as:

  • 3 days clothing including socks
  • Snacks
  • Water (or juice – make sure if you do juice to include water as well and only pack 100% juice for less sugar content)
  • Sunscreen and Hat
  • Chapstick
  • Boredom Busters (crayons & coloring books, books to read, etc)
  • Copies of their birth certificate and social security card
  • Copies of important phone numbers

If you have an infant or toddler, be sure to add things like diapers, wipes, and creams to the bags you pack for them. Keep it light though since with a child that small, you would likely be grabbing it as well.

Building your bag out bags should only take you a few minutes. As you start to pack it, you’ll think of any other items that you might have missed that are not on this list.

Be sure to rotate the food and any medications that are in the bag so that they don’t get expired. This all might seem a bit much for some, but during a fire, flood, or other situation where you have to run, it could save your life.