Bug Out Bag vs. Get Home Bag

Bug Out Bag vs. Get Home Bag

A lot of people are talking about bug out bags these days. People want to be prepared for disaster when it strikes, and they want to be able to keep their family safe. All this chatter has got people talking about another kind of survival bag: get home bags. Less people know what a get home back is, and they usually confuse it with a bug out bag, so today I want to go over exactly what each bag is and what makes them different.

What is a Bug Out Bag?

A bug out bag is a portable kit that has all the necessary contents you will need to survive for 48-96 hours. They get their name “bug out bag” because you usually use a backpack or a duffle bag in which to place your items. This bag is what you then grab when you need to “bug out.” Hence the name “bug out bag.”

Bug out bags are generally meant for evacuation purposes, not long-term survival, although they do have many of the same items and could be arranged in a way for long-term survival bags. Since they are meant for evacuation and emergency situations, a bug out bag should be an all-in-one set. It shouldn’t be spread out all over your house, or hidden deep within your basement or garage shelving units. The point is, if you need to leave somewhere immediately, you will have everything you need to survive for a few days in just one bag.

Some standard bug out bag items are water, food, gloves, matches, and shelter, but the full contents of a bug out bag are much more intensive and largely depend on the environment in which you live.

What is a Get Home Bag?

Now a get home bag is different from a bug-out bag because it is not used in evacuation purposes. A get home bag is just like it sounds, a bag that is filled with the necessary supplies to get you home. This means that it is a bag that you usually carry with you, or have readily assessable. A lot of people have get home bags in their cars since just about everywhere they are traveling their car is right there with them.

Another difference between the two survival bags is that a get home bag is meant to have supplies for a shorter amount of time than a bug out bag. As we said above, a bug out bag usually has supplies for around 72 or so hours. A get home bag shouldn’t really have items that will last you any more than 24 hours because you generally don’t travel that far from home on any given day, and if you were taking a long-distance trip you would bring your survival bag with you anyway.

Some common things for a get home bag would be water, food, mechanical tools for cars, tire filler to fix a flat tire, shelter. You will usually be using a get home bag in urban areas, so you might want to bring protection of some short, perhaps a spray or gun if you are registered to carry one.

Those are the main differences between the two bags, and while it’s not a huge deal to confuse the two, you certainly wouldn’t want to grab your get home bag when you are bugging out of your house in an evacuation effort. So it is important to understand the difference.