Start Here: What Survival Prepping Supplies Do You Need?

What are the basic survival prepping supplies everyone should have on hand?

When you’re just getting started, you should focus first on the most important survival prepping supplies. You’ll find many lists on the internet telling you what you absolutely must have immediately. The thing is, a lot of those lists are just set up to encourage you to part with your hard-earned cash.

The most important survival prepping supplies focus on meeting your most urgent survival needs. In this article, we’ll talk about the survival prepping supplies everyone needs to start with.

The Most Important Survival Prepping Supplies

This list may not be what you think when you consider survival prepping supplies. We’re not talking about giant stockpiles of emergency food or hundreds of gallons of water. The most essential survival prepping supplies are tools. With the right tools, you can provide yourself with the things that you need.

Water Purification

Without pure water to drink, you’re not going to last long, regardless of how many other survival prepping supplies you have. One of the first things you should get is a way to purify water. A small portable filter like the Sawyer Mini or the Lifestraw doesn’t cost much money and is small enough to pack anywhere. Read this article for more water purification options.

Fixed Blade Knife

A fixed blade knife has many uses. The obvious one is cutting things. A fixed blade knife is generally sturdier than a folding knife, so it will be up to handling tougher jobs. It can also do double-duty as a self-defense tool. Here’s an article about choosing the right knife for your needs.

A Bag with Supplies

Whether it’s a bug-out bag, a get-home bag, or you call it something else, advice abounds on choosing a bag and what you should put in it. You’ll want a sturdy bag that you can carry comfortably for long distances. Don’t overload it with gadgets. Start with the items on this list. Here’s an article about bug-out bag contents and one about your get-home bag.

Fire Starters

There are many different ways to start a fire, and I recommended having more than one method, just in case the first one doesn’t work. Don’t overlook the simple Bic lighter or book of matches in your efforts to be more tactical. Things like a magnesium fire starter or a fat rope stick should be secondary.

Medical supplies are a must have for any preparedness kit.

Medical Supplies

Like just about anything related to prepping, medical supplies will vary by family. You may need certain medications for a pre-existing condition on hand, and you may need emergency first aid supplies for different types of traumatic injuries that are more common in your environment. Here’s an article about creating a specific type of medical kit that you can use as a jumping-off point.

Self-Defense Tools

Your chosen self-defense tools have many variables, beginning with what is legal in your area. So while some people may choose firearms, others may have to consider other types of tools like knives or impact weapons. Secondly, you have to choose something that you are comfortable using, and finally, you need to practice, practice, practice with your weapon. Self-defense is a perishable skill.


There are many uses for cordage, such as securing items, building a shelter, snares, fishing lines, tripwires, and more. For this list, we’re considering the following as cordage: paracord, rope, wire, and duct tape.

Good Footwear

One of your most crucial survival prepping supplies to invest in is good footwear.  You want comfortable, sturdy shoes with good support that will help you keep moving longer without your feet hurting. (Bonus points if your shoes are waterproof!) Include in this category good socks – and not just one pair. You’ll want to have backup socks in case your first pair gets wet. Finally, think about adding some moleskins or bandaids for blisters that may occur on a longer than usual hike.

Survival Guide

There are tons of good survival guides out there, but one that covers nearly any situation you can imagine is the SAS Survival Handbook by John “Lofty” Wiseman. It doesn’t go into lengthy detail but provides quick and simple-to-enact advice for a multitude of emergencies and environments.


You’ve heard the saying, “Cash is King.” That’s especially true during an emergency that takes down the grid. While other people are dependent on their ATM cards, you’ll be able to make purchases still. Be sure to have an assortment of small bills. First, you don’t want to be flashing around a wad of hundreds during an emergency, and secondly, people may not have change, so you could end up paying a lot more for that bottle of water if all you have is twenty-dollar bills.

A Survival Mindset

Last but definitely not least is your Mind4Survival. Your survival mindset is your greatest asset in any emergency, so be sure to work on that every chance you get.

What Gear Do You Think Is Most Important?

Are there any survival prepping supplies we missed that you consider vital? Do you think any of these suggestions are incorrect? Let us know in the comments.


Start Here: What Survival Prepping Supplies Do You Need?

Ash Duncan

Ash Duncan and family live on the edge of the Blue Ridge Mountains, where they enjoy hiking with their dogs, spending time outdoors, and watching apocalyptic movies.

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1 Comment

  1. B on March 17, 2022 at 5:24 pm

    Great article!

    I’ve read several of your articles, and they are all very helpful, direct and to the point (who wants or has time for fluff?).

    Glad that I found your site. Thanks for your efforts and information.

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