Survival kits are made to help you with everything you may need if SHTF. Buying a pre-made kit can make all the difference and take the stress out of building your own kit from scratch. Not to mention buying a kit is better value.
It is definitely a good idea to be prepared. You will never know when you will find yourself in a dangerous situation and so taking the step of purchasing your own survival kit can ensure you are prepared should you ever need it.
Not only can you buy all the gear all together in one kit, but you can find different survival kits made with certain scenarios in mind.
In our guide we will review the best survival kits for the money that you could buy. We will give you all the information you need in deciding which kit to buy for your needs and discuss all the different possibilities.
Best Survival Kits for the Money Reviews in 2021
This survival kit is one of the most comprehensive survival kits out there which will have you prepared for any situation you may face. The backpack is made up of 6 individual survival kits all packed into one backpack. You can choose from either black or brown backpack.
The individual kits are all different purpose survival kits and include the following
- First aid kit
- Emergency food and water drink
- Outdoor shelter and warmth kit
- Emergency light and communications kit
- Disaster survival essentials kit
- Mess kit
The Lifeshield Kit made by Survival Frog is made up of the highest quality gear. It covers all bases in providing you with tactical, self defense, food and water and shelter needs. All of the gear comes in at less than 15lbs and makes the ultimate kit for any survival situation.
Take the stress out of building your own kit, with this ultimate pre-made kit that has everything you could need.
Emergency Food and Water kit
- 2x 2400 calorie food kits
- Personal water filter
- 2x water pouches
- Emergency tactical sleeping bag that retains heat (waterproof and windproof) - with whistle and paratinder
- Outdoor warmth kit
- 2x 20 hour body warmers
- 1x two person tube tent
- Emergency poncho
- Mess Kit
- Can opener
- Waterproof matches
- Pocket stove and 6 fuel tablets
- Spork and Steel cup with foldable handle
Emergency light and communication kit
- LED mini tactical flashlight
- Emergency candle and Glowstick
- AM/FM emergency radio
- Set of waterproof matches
Disaster Essential Kit
- Survival neck knife
- Digger shovel
- 11-in-1 Wallet tool
- Paracord survival kit
- Flint and steel fire kit
- Wet fire tinder pack of 5
- First Aid Kit & Pack of 20 masks
- Generic first aid kit
- 14x radiation blockers
Prolonged exposure to cold climates and the elements in a huge threat to being out in the wilderness. The LifeShield Warmth and Outdoor kit will provide you with all your needs to keep warm and dry.
This kit includes an emergency sleeping bag that uses HeatEcho material technology to keep you warm but reflecting your body heat back to you.
A two person tent is also included and pops up in mere seconds to shelter you from the heat or freezing winds or rain.
Two 20 hour body warmers are also included, which pump out 20 hours of 155 degrees of heat. Lastly is the emergency poncho.
At less than $50 you can stay warm and dry (or shelter from the heat) with this small, budget friendly yet comprehensive outdoor kit.
The LifeShield Survival Grab Bag is the most affordable and easiest way to be prepared for anything. All the gear is packed into this compact survival bag that is a simple ‘grab’ and go kit.
This survival grab bag has an easy set up and fold away 2 person emergency tube tent and space blanket. The blanket keeps you warm in any situation but reflecting all your body heat back to you.
Start fires in any weather with the waterproof matches and the 10-in-1 paracord grenade has a fire starter.
Other handy gear include a fishing line, hooks, weights and a miniature knife that gives you all the gear for fishing out in the wilderness.
The 11-in-1 tool set includes tools like a can opener, knife edge, ruler, bottle opener, wrench, saw blade, and slotted/flathead screwdriver among others.
One of the other items is survival cards. These 52 cards detail how to survive any survival situation.
All the gear is packed into an orange tote bag that weighs just over 1 pound.
Get this small survival fundamental kit bag now, and be ready for any disaster at just over $50.
The Lansky Sharpeners TASK Survival Kit is enough to get outdoor enthusiasts excited. This is a solely survival tools kit and contains high quality survival tools and gadgets to assist you in any dangerous scenario or survival situation.
All of the gear is packed into a 20L black tactical backpack that has a padded back, adjustable shoulder and hip straps, compression straps to compress the load and water bottle holder. Not to mention it has MOLLE strapping and a whole variety of internal storage pockets and organizers to hold all your gear.
The items included in this survival kit are:
- 15 ¼ inch Firefighters battle axe made of steels with a non slip handle;
- Hose wrench and Gas valve wrench
- Impact tool
- Pry bar
- Leather belt sheath
- Multi-tool with 20 functions
- Easy grip lockback
- Puck (pocket sized tool sharpener for sharpening machetes, hatchets, axes,
- Water purification filter - allowing you to drink safely from lakes, rivers
- Tactical flashlight
- Fire steel/compass (creates sparks to produce fire)
- Paracord bracelet
The Lanksy Task Survival Kit is a great core kit that you can build your bug-out bag around. The contents of this kit has every high quality tool and item that you would need in a survival situation and comes in at less than $200.
This survival kit is a multi-purpose versatile kit available for 2 or 4 people to protect you and your family for 72 hours.
The kit contains a range of gear from survival tools, food and water and water purification, light and weather protection and hygiene, sanitation and first aid needs.
Everything in the kit is packed into a plain heavy duty discrete looking backpack. Whatever you require for an emergency or disaster be it a natural disaster, civil unrest, fires, storms or evacuation.
The kit is packed to be lightweight and compact so to fit the survival kit and any other gear you may need including clothes and shoes.
The contents of this bag include a first aid kit (118 piece) and 4x light sticks, an AM/FM radio and a flashlight with batteries
For food, the kit has 4x 3600 calorie bars and water pouches. It also contains purification powder to purify your own water. The food bars are calorie dense and require no reheating and non thirst inducing!
The food and water in this kit has a 5 year shelf life.
Protect yourself from the elements and cold with reflective sleeping bags, emergency ponchos, tube tents and hand warmers.
The survival tools include rope, whistle, duct tape, gloves and an emergency handbook.
Lastly it has comprehensive hygiene and sanitation goods.
Purchase this 72 hour, multi-purpose, multi-person kit and rest assured that your family is protected and ready for anything should disaster ensue.
Life Shield Self Defense Kit
This LifeShield kit is a great but compact self defense kit to give you all the tools for self protection without using a gun.
The small kit comes with a stun gun, pepper spray and personal alarm for all your protective needs. All these gear is great for protection, as they are all non lethal, but allow you to temporarily disable the perpetrator to give you time to get away.
The stun gun has a voltage strength of 2.2 million volts and is legal in all states except Hawaii and Rhode Island. If you live in IL, IN, MI, WI you will require a stun gun permit.
The pepper spray has enough for up to 25 bursts and is also legal in all states.
Another benefit of these self defense gear is that they are all straightforward to use and don't require training so can be used by anyone.
The gear is all organized in a carry case that is compact and can fit inside a small bag. Get this must-have self defense kit for under $70 now!
The Lifeshield Disaster Essentials Kit has everything you need to survive out in the wilderness. It is perfect for any outdoor enthusiast who is often camping, hiking, trekking or fishing. It is also a must-have item for preppers.
The kit contains numerous tools that come in handy. Contents of this kit include:
A digging foldable shovel with a pick
Stainless steel 11-in-1 purpose survival tool
Paracord grenade survival kit (9 feet of 550lb paracord and survival tools)
A magnesium fire starter - useful for starting hundreds of fires
Survival Neck knife and sheath
5 pack of Wetfire tender
So much of the contents of this disaster essential pack have incredible versatility. The paracord grenade, shovel and wallet tool all are multi-purpose tools that can be adapted to multiple situations.
One of our favorite items in this set is the tactical knife. The quality is very high and it easily cuts through ropes and paracords. Its mylon fiber knife sheath also has a compass and signal mirror.
This kit is a fundamental outdoors survival kit that has every essential item in an emergency. All of these goods come in at less than $100, and is a worthwhile and popular purchase.
The LifeShield Mini Tact Kit is a comprehensive, versatile and portable survival kit that has a wide variety of gear for disaster preparedness.
This handy gear kit includes a spork survival tool (7 tools in 1), an emergency whistle, a pocket stove with hexamine fuel tablets (smokeless too as to not draw attention), stainless steel cup and can opener. It also has an emergency sleeping bag, a survival flashlight and a set of waterproof matches.
All this gear is packed into a small durable green bag to be easily packed into a backpack or carried separately. This is a super versatile kit that can be used in a whole variety of circumstances and taken with whatever you are doing. It can come in handy for survivalists as well as hikers, campers or bikers and is great for long stints out in the wilderness.
All of this gear is incredibly lightweight weighing a mere 1.26lbs.
Overall this is a practical and useful kit packed with essentials to offer you extensive disaster preparedness at under $50.
This 72 hour 2 person bag is a complete survival kit designed by US veterans to have everything you need for any survival or disaster situation. Be prepared for anything with comprehensive first aid, food and water, tools and protection equipment.
The food and water supplies include
- 24x125mL drinking water - US Coast Guard Approved with a 5 year shelf life
- 2X3600 calorie food rations with a 5 year shelf life
- 50 Drinking Water tables to disinfect water to drink
The kit also has an array of survival tools for your tactical needs. These include:
- Tactical knife
- Multi-functional pliers
- Fire starter
- Emergency whistle
- Wire saw
- 100 foot paracord
Extra gadgets include a crank radio, flashlight, charger (requires no power source) and glow sticks. An emergency shelter is also included.
No kit would be complete without necessary safety and first aid equipment. This kit includes a 200 piece first aid kit and a combat tourniquet. All of the first aid is packed into a MOLLE pouch that can be attached to any tactical backpack.
The EVERLIT Survival Kit has been created by military veterans with a wealth of experience with tactical practise. This kit has everything and more you can need for 72 hour survival for 2 people. All the products come with a 60 day return scheme and a 1 year warranty.
Don’t wait to get your hands on this now!
This kit is a 72 hour 4 person kit that has premium quality supplies of everything you need should you find yourself in a survival situation.
The Sustain Supply Co. is made up of comprehensive food and water supplies, safety equipment and a multitude of tools and miscellaneous survival gear. Everything is packed into a durable backpack for easy transportation.
In terms of food, the kit contains 24 food servings, 48 packets of water and 4 water straws. The water total is equal to 6L and the water filtration system included permits easy filtration for clean drinking water.
Other general items include a portable stove, bowls and utensils for 4. Start a fire with the 4 Instafire tinders. In terms of illumination there is an LED lantern and 8 SnapLights.
Safety supplies include a first aid kit and emergency blankets that keep you warm and dry in any conditions by keeping heat in.
Everything you need is in this kit and saves you the time in sourcing each individual piece. In an emergency you only want the best gear.
Rest assured that you are purchasing the highest quality with Sustain Supply Co.
The Light and Communications Survival Kit by Lifeshields has everything anyone would need to satisfy your illumination and communication needs in an emergency.
It is the perfect complement to your pre-existing kit and it is compact and portable to fit easily into any bag.
The communication devices included are a mini sized pocket radio where you can tune to the emergency frequencies for important information. It also contains a scream whistle for attracting help or scaring away danger.
Illumination devices include an ultra-bright tactical flashlight that illuminates even the darkest of settings, an emergency candle for heat and light, and a 12 hour glow stick.
Lastly the pack is complete with 20 waterproof matches.
At less than $40, this communications and light gear kit make the perfect addition to your survival gear. Get everything you need in this top quality kit now.
Best Survival Kit Buying Guide
Whilst the guide will include the best types of survival kits around, your purchase should be based on your intentions for use. These factors may include activity - such as hiking, trekking or prepping and potentially even the number of people you may have with you. Then take into account the number of days you might need gear for.
It is possible to buy survival kits made specifically for earthquakes, tactical needs or just general survival kits that have everything you could need in an emergency. Certain kits will include survival foods whilst others will include functional gear like knives, ropes and other similar items.
It is quite common that most survival kits can last up to 72 hours.
All of these will play a large role in helping you decide the best survival kit for you.
Most Common Items in a Survival Kit
A common kit should include the following items:
- Tools: multi-tools, knife, pliers
- Illumination: flashlights, flares, candles
- Fire Starting Kit: magnifying glass, emergency tinder, magnesium or flint firestarter, matches
- Tape and Cordage: paracord, duct tape,
- First aid kit: bandages, bandaids, antiseptic, scissors, gauze
- Food and water: long-life survival foods and emergency ready made meals, water as well as water filters and purifying devices
- Emergency Blankets: great for warmth and sheltering
- Compass or GPS: for keeping on track and help if you are lost
- Survival Knife: a durable, robust knife that is able to cut through materials
- Rescue Signal: whistle
- Dust Masks or N95 face masks: protection against contaminated air
Benefits of Owning a Survival Kit
Prepared for Every Situation
An extensively prepared survival kit will ensure that you are ready to handle anything that is thrown at you. Your kit will contain versatile items that will help you regardless if caught up in a catastrophic event such as natural disaster or survival situation or simply a vehicle breakdown, getting lost in rugged terrain or an injury whilst out.
Clarity and Peace of Mind
Having a kit all together puts your mind to ease. You won’t have to worry about ‘what if’s’ knowing that you have everything all together should SHTF.
Buys You Time
Time in a crisis is everything. Imagine you must make an immediate exit. Having a survival kit allows you to grab the kit and leave imminently.
What You Should Expect in a Kit
Portable and Easy to Carry
Your survival kit bag should be big enough to fit everything you need without obstructing your movement. It also shouldnt’ be too heavy that it is uncomfortable to carry for long periods of time. The more lightweight your kit the better especially if you are trekking, hiking or camping.
Buying an overly cheap kit will guarantee poor quality. Your survival kit should be made from top of the range materials that will not break or malfunction as there is a good chance they will be exposed to harsh conditions.
Any reinforced materials like Oxford fabric or metals like aluminium are viable options.
A bag made out of waterproof material or with lining will ensure all your gear remains dry.
Good quality kit is also found in choosing a reputable brand. Do you research and only use a brand that is established in the survival market. A brand that produces highly rated survival gear is guaranteed to be durable, as opposed to a site like AliExpress which produces questionable quality items. These reliable survival brands will generally offer you a product warranty to protect you against product defects and damages.
All Bases Covered
The survival kit should be comprehensive, or enough so that all your equipment requirements are ticked off. These wide variety of equipment includes tool like knives, multi-tools as well as flashlights, flares, medical and first aid supplies
Survival items are no doubt made with all conditions in mind. All the items in most packs are made to float in bodies of water and work effectively in wet environments. This includes but not exclusive to items like radios, flashlights, flares and matches.
Who Should Own a Survival Kit?
Personally we believe everyone should own their own kit in the event of an emergency, natural disaster or other event such as civil unrest. There is never harm in being equipped for anything. In a time of political and civil unrest, you never know when items in your survival kit will come in handy.
In a disaster situation such as an earthquake or tornado, the first responders will not be able to help instantly. Owning a survival kit will ensure you have the tools to help yourself and loved ones while you wait for assistance to arrive.
If you have a family, it is necessary for everyone to have their own bag at the ready.
What Should Be Accounted for When Deciding On Survival Kits
A whole array of survival kits are available for different lengths of time and different sized groups.
Individual 72 hour survival kits, and larger multiple people kits are among those most commonly purchased. These larger multiple people kits can service over 4 people and all the gear is stored in large duffle bags or wheelable bags. They are not ideal if you have to make a swift exit on foot and be able to move with agility. They work well for quickly throwing in the trunk of the car but that is about it.
Avoid purchasing this if you need to navigate terrains as it is awkward and hard to transport.
Individual packs are the most recommended choice. A backpack sized kit where everyone can carry their own supplies is the best way.
Experience and Expertise
If you are experienced in the outdoors you will have necessary skills that the average person does not. For example you will be easily able to start fires and won’t require a comprehensive beginners fire starting kit. Experience will therefore dictate how large your kit is, as highly experienced wilderness won’t need as much.
Climate - What Region You Will Mostly be In
Climate will also play a large part in gear needed. Location as well as seasonality presents different challenges regarding weather. Winter or northern hemisphere locations will require items like emergency blankets, emergency hand warmers and base layer clothing.
What Type of Survival Kits Are Available?
Tool Survival Kit
These kits are composed of only tools and are great for the outdoor types. Hobbies like camping, hiking, boating and fishing are all past times where a survival tool kit can come in handy. Tools include utility and tactical knives, compass, GPS, ropes, flashlights, multitools and fire starter kit. All items are packed into a small kit bag that fits easily into a backpack.
Pet Survival Kits
Pets are an important part of the family unit too, and so these kits are a must to cater for your pets needs. The pet survival kits should contact food and water, a fold-away or collapsible food and water bowl, an animal first aid kit, collars, leash, poop bags, ropes and toys. Just as you would prepare everything for your family, ensure your pets have their needs covered too.
Storing Your Survival Kit
The answer to this is where it is best to keep your survival kit will change from person-to-person. Handy places to keep your kit within reaching distance includes in the trunk of your car if you are frequently on the road, or in a closet or cupboard in your home.
Other places that would be good for storing your kit in would be at your place of work under your desk in a locker.
Quite simply you could even keep your survival kit on hand. If you take a backpack into work you could use the backpack that the kit comes in, or transfer some of the items into your regular bag.
Other Items That Should be Incorporated into Your Survival Kit
A survival kit will come with the basic and generic items that can be used by everyone. It is also important to devise a list of personal items that you may want to have in your kit.
Here are some of the necessary items that everyone should have in their survival kits:
Copies of Important Documents
This is vital and everyone should have paper copies of relevant documents in their kits.
Copies everyone should include are statements of your insurance policy, bank account information, personal identification and government identification.
Tip: These documents becoming damaged or unreadable if exposed to elements such as water is far from ideal. Taking precautions such as laminating your documents, putting them in clear plastic sleeves or a document holder is recommended.
Paper Documentation with Contact Information of Friends and Family
Chances are you keep all your personal contacts in your phone. In an emergency event, you may not have sustained access to power and your mobile devices will eventually run out of change.
Keep records of all the contact information of all your family and friends so you have a backup.
Both Prescription and Non-Prescription Medication
Besides your home supply of prescription and non-prescription medication, it is recommended to keep a spare supply in your survival kit. This will immediately take the stress away, if an emergency occurs and you don’t have to locate and compile all your medication.
Keep all your prescription medication in your kit plus non-prescription medication such as
This is necessary for both cleanliness and if your clothes get wet. It is ideal to have a pair of trousers and long sleeves that keeps your covered if in a situation full of debris, and then a set of more active clothes if you will be required to move hastily.
If you wear glasses or contact lenses make sure to include a spare set. Don’t forget the contact solution is you were contact lenses.
This is a must. Have anywhere from $20 to a few hundred dollars in bills depending on the number of people you might be with e.g. more for a family. In an emergency situation there is a good chance that ATM’s will be out if the power is cut. Having cash on hand will allow you to make small emergency purchases in this instance.
Long Life Survival Foods and Water
If your kit doesn’t come with it already, purchasing long life survival foods and storing it in your back is a necessity. Survival foods can be bought for affordable prices on Amazon in bulk, and make an important addition to your kit. These foods have a shelf life of up to 5 years.
Here are some of our favorite bulk survival food items:
Besides specifically survival foods you can keep a supply of non-perishable grocery store bought items at the ready. Simple but effective foods that are great for energy include oatmeal, canned goods like chilli or soup.
Good snack foods include dried or dehydrated fruits, popcorn, cookies and granola or energy bars. Make sure items such as cookies and popcorn are individually packaged to stop them from going stale.
If you have an infant or baby in your family ensure you carry baby food.
Obviously water is a must. The recommended amount of water to have in a survival situation per person should be 1 gallon each for 7 days (7 gallons per person). However you can never have too much and 7 gallons per person is just a minimum amount.
This water will eventually run out and then it is up to purifying water. The simplest ways to purify water include boiling - done in a metal container or pot, with a filtration system or with water purification tablets.
Here are some of our favorite picks below for the best water purification options:
These items will need to be purchased separately and often won’t come in survival kits. Communication devices that can come in handy in an emergency include satellite phones for making calls from anywhere at any time. A two-way or crank radio is also important. Take note of the frequency that the local authorities use, so you can tune to that station.
Self Defense Gear
Self defense gear can easily be forgotten about when preparing for a survival situation. Being equipped with necessary defense gear will keep you protected should you encounter hostile people or animals.
A good item to have in a time of increased gun violence is bulletproof vests. Check out our comprehensive buyer’s guide here to find the best ballistic vest for the money.
Now that you have the personal defense gear it is also important to have weapons should you need to attack. A survival knife and a gun are the most obvious choices in this instance. With guns ensure you follow all the rules and regulations in regards to owning, storing and using!
Less lethal weapons in the forms of stun guns and pepper spray should also be a mainstay in your kit.
Batteries like AA or AAA can come in handy if you have equipment like radios. Keeping a spare pack handy will allow you to easily replace the batteries should they go dead. It is also possible to purchase rechargeable batteries which are also a good inclusion.
Pricing of Survival Kits
Survival kits range in price anywhere from as little as $30-$40 for your basic small survival kit to over $500 for the most comprehensive kit. These are the high-end survival kits that
What Should You Put Your Survival Gear In
Backpacks are versatile as they can be both small or large depending on your preference. Typical backpacks will have the double shoulder straps but you are also able to find sling backpacks with a single cross body strap. They are ideal for grab and go, and comfortable for carrying for long periods of time. Their versatility is why they are the most popular bag choice for survival kits.
Waterproof Flotation Bag
This is a population bag for wet climates. If you must wade through water, this type of bag will float on the surface instead of sinking.
Soft Bag - Duffel Bags
Other types of bags available are duffle bags. Duffel bags are your ideal storing bag. They fit neatly into your car’s trunk or on a shelf at home. The downside is that they are not ideal for walking with and if they are heavy they can put unnecessary pressure on your shoulders.
Hard Case Bag
These are generally boxes and cases made from plastic and metals. They have the benefit of better protecting the gear inside. This is an option for an at home survival kit as it can be packed away into storage. The downside being it is not mobile nor comfortable to haul around.
Other Things You Can Do to Prepare For An Emergency
Devise a Plan
A plan is one of the most necessary preparations you can make for an emergency situation. In an emergency, tensions are high and panic often sets in. Clear decision making becomes difficult and it is easy to act impulsively, and bad decisions are inevitable.
Put a plan into place that everyone in the household is familiar with. Make sure everyone in the house knows where all the survival kits and other important survival items are located. Then familiarize and test every individual item in the kit so everything works properly. Once again make sure everyone knows how to use individual tools, gadgets etc. A consistent understanding between everyone in your household is imperative as this will ensure should someone become incapacitated, everyone else will be able to assist.
Take a First Aid Course
Having taken a first aid course can go a long way in being helpful in an emergency. From CPR to dealing with snake bites are all important practises that can be utilized should you be in an emergency. We always say that it is better to be over prepared than underprepared!
Making a ‘For Dummies’ Guide
An explanation guide to have on hand is a good inclusion in your kit. This guide will have everything from basic first aid techniques, to a map of your area, to how to start a fire.
This ensures that everyone has the knowledge necessary for any situation. A good way to display this information would be on small sized laminated cards.
Self Assembling a Survival Kit
If you want to purchase items for your own kit, there are categories that the items you need fit into. The first category is tools such as a tactical knife and a multi-tool.
Light sources are the next category and include flashlights, candles, lanterns. Include batteries to ensure you have a lasting supply of light. Then ensure you have the tools to start a fire including matches, magnifying glass and a tinder.
Pack your kit up with water, water purification means and non-perishable foods.
Other important items include a stocked first aid kit, clothes for warmth, an emergency blanket. Ideally keep everything in one place for easy accessibility.
Frequently Asked Questions about Survival Kits
What Should be in the first aid kit
A first aid kit should be complete with bandages, band-aids/plasters, gauze, antiseptic wipes or cream, tweezers, aspirins and antihistamines.
What Do People Mean when They Say SHTF
If you are new to the survival game, you have probably seen the phrase ‘SHTF’ everywhere. It means S*** hits the fan, referring to when/if everything goes awol and we are plunged into chaos where we must resort to survivalism. SHTF can refer to chaos after a disaster occurs like a civil war, natural disaster, nuclear attack or world war. Every prepper knows that it is vital to be fully equipped should SHTF.
Our Conclusion on The Best Survival Kits
Emergency preparedness is a must these days and the best way to start is with a comprehensive survival kit.
These survival kits are imperative for a sticky situation.
Whether you are looking for an extensive kit that has everything from food and water to tools to tents and sleeping bags or a smaller kit to complement your pre-existing gear, there is something for everyone.
Most kit gear bags last up to 72 hours of us and you can find a bag for multiple people or purchase a solo bag.
There are so many factors which can help you decide the best kit for you. Weather, group size, price range, length of time and activity are just a few of the factors. Stick to our buying guide and product reviews and you can rest assured that you and your loved ones are prepared for anything.