It's a common question I'm asked...
What are the must have everyday carry items I need?
When deciding what you’d like to put at the top of your EDC list, consider the likelihood of you needing each item, though bearing in mind that the intention is to be ready for any potential circumstances.
We’ve highlighted tools that we think are most useful in general, though depending on your profession or lifestyle you might want to be more niche and specific about what you have on your person.
Here's 6 of the must have every day carry items...
6 Must Have Everyday Carry Items
1) Phone And Charger
No, we don’t mean so you can get your fix of Facebook and Twitter.
Having your phone is the easiest way to contact friends and family, seek help from authorities when you need them or even be rescued in an emergency.
Of course, with a smart device, you also gain access to a wealth of information (provided there’s an internet connection available) via your phone’s web browse.
So if you need an immediate answer to a question, all you need to do is hit a button.
Also working in lieu of a paper and pen, the majority of phones available to purchase right now will have a ‘notes’ feature where you can write down important phone numbers, information or errant thoughts, to be stored permanently if you desire.
Alongside your phone, you’re going to want to pack a charging cable and an outlet plug, so you can refuel your phone’s power at the next given opportunity.
If you have room, a portable battery pack is great when you don’t have access to electricity.
2) Slim Wallet/Money Clip
Keeping loose dollars and cards in your pocket or bag is a one way ticket to losing everything important to you, or damaging it unnecessarily.
So a slim wallet with room for everything you need on a daily basis is recommended.
A minimalist aluminum metal money clip wallet like this one here could be perfect.
Identification such as your driver’s license and credit or debit card should also be kept on you in case you need to prove who you are or spend some money, but this one is probably quite obvious to you.
Cash might be slowly becoming obsolete as more and more purchase points become contactless, but we’d recommend keeping at least a little on your person - you never know when you might need it.
Yes, most phones will have a built-in flashlight function that suffices for looking under the seats in your car.
But they’re absolutely no use at night time, and will very quickly run down the battery of your cell, which you’re likely to need more.
Perhaps you’re thinking of those large, bulky flashlights that cavers carry and wondering how on earth you’ll fit one of those in your day bag.
But don’t worry - these days even the most powerful products fit int he palm of your hand.
Useful for a myriad of reasons, including to startle an assailant - though we hope you never have to even consider this - it’s an inexpensive purchase that will more than prove its worth in your EDC kit over time.
This is a must have every day carry item for all of the reasons listed above.
4) Stainless Steel Water Bottle
A sturdy, well made water bottle is an essential carry for many, and it should be one of yours if it isn’t already.
Staying hydrated is imperative to a healthy lifestyle for one, and it’s way cheaper to drink your own water than buy it.
Furthermore, contributing to the worldwide efforts to save the planet by no longer buying plastic bottled water from the store is a great way to reduce your individual carbon footprint whilst you save yourself some cash.
You can get hold of double-walled steel bottles that are not only incredibly rigorous and able to withstand any weather conditions but can retain hot temperatures for up to twelve hours and cold ones for up to 24.
If you’re a regular at coffee shops, you can start making your own at home to reduce your outgoings and, again, minimize waste by avoiding the single-use coffee cups from Starbucks or other chain stores.
Having access to constantly cold water is also going to increase the likelihood that you’ll successfully drink your eight glasses a day, as it’s much more refreshing than a tepid bottle that’s been in your bag all day.
See this Stainless Steel water-bottle for an example of a good choice.
With the most popular version of this product probably being the Swiss Army Knife, a good multitool is part of any preparation-conscious person’s EDC kit, as it’s a survivalist’s dream as well as having everyday uses.
Most feature a bottle opener, screwdrivers, a file, pliers and a small serrated knife, but others are equipped with even fancier features like spirit levels, so it really depends on your budget and what tasks you’re likely to encounter.
The smaller and sleeker your multitool is, the better, as the aim of EDC is to carry as little as possible whilst still having everything you need to get through the average day on your person.
Traditionally these tools are quite big and bulky, but it’s possible to get incredibly slim, credit-card style tools that slide right into your wallet and still have a myriad of uses despite their small stature, so make sure to get the size that suits you.
Even if you don’t smoke - which, of course, we aren’t promoting - a lighter is always a handy tool to have on you, being as it also doubles as an instant firestarter as well as a small, discrete light source if necessary.
If you aren’t planning on using it very often, that’s fine - the fuel will last forever, and in the event that it does come in handy.
You’ll be so glad you had one on you that it will be worth having kept it, no matter if it’s only once.
This waterproof and wind-proof lighter is built precisely for Survival situations.
Are you carrying all these must have EDC items?
Which of these 6 must have every day carry items are you not currently carrying?
Remember, you never know when you might need them and it's too late once it happens so be sure to get your EDC sorted ASAP.
I am an independent safety and survival expert and consultant. I have over 15+ years of experience working with corporations and individuals to help identify, remediate and prepare for threats and and disasters. I help clients understand risks and blog about my thoughts and techniques at DisasterShelters.net