11 Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

Feature | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

There are so many must-haves when it comes to your EDC kit (Every Day Carry) items. Similar to your everyday carry bag, for example, the contents of a much smaller pack can and will change due to new items that become available over time.

There is always something brand new that catches our attention. For a smaller pack (one I carry everywhere I go), I try to keep the contents to a minimum.

Each item serves a very important purpose—to aid in a survival situation should you face one. Here is a list of my everyday carry essentials, all of which I carry every single day.

EDC Kit | Essential Items I Need Every Single Day

EDC Kit | Essential Items I Need Every Single Day | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit


The Pack – Maxpedition Mini Pocket Organizer

This is the pack I use. It’s extremely durable, and it accommodates all of my EDC items quite well—with a little extra room to spare.

The Pack - Maxpedition Mini Pocket Organizer | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

The Pack – Maxpedition Mini Pocket Organizer Photo by Amazon

The Maxpedition Mini Pocket Organizer is a great organizer for your EDC valuables and can be purchased here on Amazon.


A multi-tool is my number one item. No person should be without one in their survival EDC kit. I carry the Leatherman Juice XE6, and as of late it is my favorite multi-tool to carry.

Survival Life also makes its own awesome multitool, the Hoffman Richter HR100, which you can buy.

Multi-Tool | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

Multi-Tool Photo by Survival Life

The HR100 includes:

  • Needle nose pliers
  • Wire cutters
  • Saw
  • Mini slotted screwdriver
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Large straight edge blade
  • Large slotted screwdriver
  • Metal file
  • Small straight edge blade
  • Medium slotted screwdriver
  • Bottle opener
  • Can opener
  • Ultrasafe locking mechanism
  • All 440 stainless steel construction with an ultra-tough titanium coating to ensure it lasts a lifetime of use and abuse
  • 1000D nylon case with belt clip included


Another necessary item is a flashlight, such as the Hybeam micro flashlight. I carry a Hybeam micro flashlight. It’s small but good enough to be your go-to flashlight too.

Flashlight | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

Flashlight Photo by Survival Life

It's super bright, shock-resistant, waterproof, and made from high-grade aircraft aluminum.


A whistle can be used for a couple of survival situations. One is for personal protection in the event of a possible attack. If you suspect an oncoming attack, blow the whistle.

The last thing an attacker wants to do is draw attention. Wearing a whistle around your neck when you know you are going to be alone in public is a good defensive idea.

Whistle | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

A whistle can also be used as a device to signal for help or to ward off predators in a wilderness survival situation.

This particular whistle is the one I carry and can be purchased here on eBay.


My pack is never without paracord. I buy paracord in bulk and I divide it throughout all my packs.

Paracord | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

I also have quite a few paracord bracelets which, if you are tight on extra room in your pack, allow you to wear your paracord in the form of a bracelet. A bundle of paracord can be purchased here at the Survival Life Store.

Notepad with a Pen

You know you can't rely too much on your gadgets for note-taking when there's no power source. This particular notepad is a perfect choice in size and durability as it has waterproof paper.

Notepad with a Pen | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

Notepad with a Pen Photo by Amazon

It also fits well in the Maxpedition Mini Pocket Organizer. This set can be purchased here on Amazon.

Alcohol Prep Pads and Adhesive Bandages





Alcohol Prep Pads and Adhesive Bandages | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

Alcohol Prep Pads and Adhesive Bandages Photo by Amazon

These two items are great for “on-the-go” first aid for minor cuts and scrapes. In my pack, I include 10 alcohol prep pads and 2 of each sized adhesive bandage.

Alcohol Prep Pads and Adhesive Bandages | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

Alcohol Prep Pads and Adhesive Bandages Photo by Amazon

You never know when it's necessary to treat an open wound. These items will be the first line of defense.

Fire Starting Materials: A Bic Lighter and Cotton Balls

In my pack, I carry fire-starting materials. The first of which is a Bic lighter. I buy them in bulk and place one in every emergency pack I own. My second item is cotton balls—my Tinder of choice. I usually carry 4-5 in my small pack.

A List of Important Contacts and Other Information

Cell phones can die on you, which also means that you lose all the important information you have stored.

A List of Important Contacts and Other Information | Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

This mini address book is perfect for recording all of your important contacts and other viable information, such as allergies, medical conditions, medications, your doctor’s name and phone number, etc.

This particular address book is the perfect size for the pack I carry. It can be purchased here on Amazon.

Watch this video by SurviveN2 for a review of the HR-100 multitool:


Any of these items can be very useful in a certain situation. There's no telling when you will need a flashlight, a whistle, a lighter, or any of the things mentioned in this list.

The best thing to do is to be prepared at all times which is the very reason these items are considered everyday carry items. They're very important whether you need a little assistance or when you're stuck in an unexpected survival situation.

Are any of these items also part of your EDC? Tell us in the comments section below!

Up Next: 83 Uses for Paracord That Will Surprise You

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Editor’s Note – This post was originally published on July 8, 2016, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.

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9 Responses to :
11 Must Haves For Your EDC Kit

  1. Raymond Griffin says:

    Great list. Easy to make an EDC bag a go bag and overfill it. I may add a tourniquet and I also add my conceal carry pistol with an extra magazine and a small back up phone charger. All the other more serious stuff I keep in my go bag in my car.

    1. Karen says:

      With paracord you dont need another tourniquet.

  2. Paul Smith says:

    Yes, I’ve expanded a bit beyond EDC but I still would not leave home without them given a possible 20 mile hike home. . .

    — Emergency Poncho
    — Mylar Blanket
    — 1 liter sealable, plastic bag w/6 water purification tabs.
    — N-95 mask
    — Pistol w/two mags, one in weapon (Don’t leave home without it!)
    — Large square of heavy duty aluminum foil
    — Small signaling mirror
    — Medic Alert Bracelet if necessary

    — Wallet
    — $60 to $100 cash
    — Fresnel lens fire starter
    — Lock pick set
    — Carry Permit
    — Keys
    — Micro flashlight
    — Thumb Drive w/critical documents
    — P-51 can opener

    In car:
    — Pair hiking boots w/ 2 pair socks
    — NON-camo cargo pants/LS shirt
    — fixed blade knife

    — 9 meal replacement bars
    — Spare glasses
    — Shemagh
    — Sawyer Mini Water Filter

    — NON-camo Boonie or baseball cap w/mosquito netting
    — 200 feet paracord

    1. irish7_1sg says:

      Excellent suggestions with the Mylar blanket, water purification tablets, plastic bag, cash and medications! Although I keep several Get Home Bags in my SUV, I carry multiple survival items on my person everywhere I go. I admit that I go a little too far with duplicate items. I am NOT advocating or recommending carrying all this stuff, just sharing some ideas. I am not uncomfortable, nor do these items restrict my movement. I wear tactical pants or cargo shorts for the extra pockets. My EDC: Handgun (Ruger P345 or S&W 457) + 3 magazines, 2 pill bottles, 2 bandannas, Huntsman Swiss Army Knife, 2, key sets, 2 lighters, 2 packs of smokes, small tube of hand cream, notepad/pen, Cree flashlight (1xAA) and wallet. All these items go in my pockets. On my belt I have a cell phone, Schrade Tough Tool and Nebo Redline flashlight (3xAAA).

      1. irish7_1sg says:

        I forgot to mention wearing a paracord bracelet, Seiko or Luminox diver’s watch and fixed blade knife on a cord around my neck.

  3. Mildred Stephens says:

    I carry my solar charger and cord, my diabetic test kit (type 2) and meds (Epi-Pen, diabetic). Other items are in my GHB (work) and BOB (home). Excellent list.

  4. Andy says:

    I consider EDC to be strictly the everyday gear that you carry on your person at all times and everything else to be gear for your GHB or 72-hour “go bag.” As such, my EDC is: a rescue knife, a tactical pen, a pack of gum, tissues, phone, watch, paracord bracelet with multipurpose buckle (ferro rod, scrapper/striker, safety whistle, compass, and reflector strip all integrated into the buckle), 9-in-1 bit screwdriver pocket tool, pocket flashlight, multitool, pen and notepad, camp folding scissors, Chap-Stick, glasses cleaning spray and microfiber cloth, Vaseline round tin, pocket survival guide, lock pick kit, bandana, and a hidden pocket belt with various pieces of survival gear in it.

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