Have you ever wondered what you would need to survive in a bustling city? Whether it’s a power outage, a natural disaster, or even a terrorist attack, being prepared for urban survival is crucial. In this article, we will delve into the essential items you should have on hand to increase your chances of surviving in an urban environment. From emergency kits to self-defense tools, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s dive in and learn more about what it takes to be prepared for the unexpected in a city.

When it comes to urban survival, there are a few key items that you should always have at your disposal. First and foremost, an emergency kit is a must-have. This should include items such as non-perishable food, water, a flashlight, a first aid kit, and a radio. These basic necessities will ensure that you have the essentials covered in case of an emergency. Additionally, it’s important to have a method of communication, such as a fully charged cell phone or a two-way radio, to stay connected with loved ones and emergency services. In the face of urban survival, being able to communicate effectively can be a lifeline. Stay tuned to learn more about the other essential items you should have for urban survival in our upcoming article. When it comes to urban survival situations, being prepared with the right essential items can mean the difference between safety and danger. Whether you find yourself in a natural disaster, a power outage, or any other emergency situation, having the necessary supplies can greatly enhance your chances of survival and ensure your basic needs are met. In this article, we will discuss the essential items you should have on hand for urban survival.

Shelter and Shelter Essentials

Weather-resistant tent

A weather-resistant tent is a crucial item to have in your urban survival kit. It provides protection from the elements and can serve as a temporary shelter in case you are unable to find a safe place indoors.

Sleeping bag

A reliable sleeping bag is essential for getting a good night’s rest in emergency situations. Look for a sleeping bag that is lightweight, compact, and provides insulation to keep you warm in cold weather.

Emergency blankets

Emergency blankets, also known as space blankets, are lightweight and compact thermal blankets that reflect body heat and help to regulate body temperature. They are an excellent addition to your urban survival kit as they can provide extra warmth in emergency situations.

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Waterproof tarp

A waterproof tarp is an essential item for creating a temporary shelter or protecting your belongings from rain or snow. Look for a tarp that is durable and large enough to cover your needs.

Portable stove

A portable stove is a handy tool for cooking food and boiling water in urban survival situations. Look for a stove that is compact, lightweight, and easy to use. It is also important to have extra fuel canisters on hand.

Water and Water Filtration

Portable water filter

A portable water filter is a must-have item for urban survival. It helps to remove impurities and bacteria from natural water sources, making it safe to drink. Look for a water filter that is easy to use, compact, and has a high filtration capacity.

Water purification tablets

Water purification tablets are an alternative to portable water filters. They are convenient and easy to use, as they require no additional equipment. Simply drop a tablet into a container of water and wait for it to dissolve. These tablets help to kill bacteria and make the water safe for consumption.

Collapsible water containers

Collapsible water containers are lightweight and easy to store when not in use. They allow you to carry and store water for emergencies. Look for containers that are durable, leak-proof, and have a large capacity.

Metal water bottle

A metal water bottle is a durable and reusable option for carrying water in urban survival situations. Look for a bottle that is BPA-free, has a wide mouth for easy filling and cleaning, and is insulated to keep your water cool.

Food and Food Preparation

Non-perishable food items

non-perishable food items are a crucial part of your urban survival kit. Stock up on foods that have a long shelf life and require little to no preparation. Examples include canned goods, dried fruits, nuts, and granola bars.

Canned goods

Canned goods are a convenient option for emergency food. They have a long shelf life and provide essential nutrients. Look for canned goods that are easy to open and do not require cooking.

Energy bars

Energy bars are a compact and portable source of nutrition. They provide a quick boost of energy and are easy to carry with you. Look for energy bars that are high in protein and have a good balance of carbohydrates and fats.

Freeze-dried meals

Freeze-dried meals are lightweight, easy to prepare, and have a long shelf life. They are an excellent option for emergency situations where you may not have access to traditional cooking methods.

Portable cooking utensils

Having portable cooking utensils, such as a lightweight camping stove, pots and pans, and utensils, can greatly enhance your ability to prepare hot food and beverages. Look for utensils that are made from durable materials and are compact for easy storage.

First Aid and Medical Supplies

First aid kit

A comprehensive first aid kit is essential in any urban survival situation. It should include bandages, gauze, adhesive tape, antiseptic wipes, an instant cold pack, scissors, tweezers, and a CPR mask.

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Prescription medications

If you have any prescription medications, it is important to keep an ample supply in your urban survival kit. Make sure to regularly check the expiration dates and rotate medications as needed.

Bandages and dressings

Bandages and dressings are essential for treating wounds and preventing infection. Make sure to have a variety of sizes and types to address different injuries.

Antiseptic wipes

Antiseptic wipes are an important item for cleaning wounds and preventing infection. Look for wipes that contain a disinfectant solution such as alcohol or benzalkonium chloride.

Pain relievers

Having pain relievers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, can provide relief for minor aches and pains in emergency situations. Make sure to follow the dosage instructions and consult a healthcare professional if needed.

Communication and Navigation

Portable radio

A portable radio is a key item for staying informed about emergency updates, weather conditions, and other important information. Look for a radio that has both AM and FM frequencies, as well as a built-in flashlight and a hand-crank for recharging.

Emergency whistle

An emergency whistle is a simple but effective tool for attracting attention in emergency situations. It can be used to signal for help and alert others to your location.


A compass is a valuable tool for navigation in urban survival situations. It can help you determine your direction and find your way to safety. Make sure to learn how to use a compass properly before relying on it in an emergency.

Map of the area

Having a map of the area can help you navigate and find essential resources, such as water sources, shelter, and medical facilities. Make sure to keep your map updated and familiarize yourself with important landmarks and routes.

Signal mirror

A signal mirror is a compact and lightweight tool that can help you signal for help over long distances. It reflects sunlight and can be used to catch the attention of search and rescue teams or other individuals.

Lighting and Power


A headlamp is a hands-free lighting option that is essential for urban survival. It allows you to navigate in the dark and perform tasks that require both hands. Look for a headlamp that is lightweight, has a long battery life, and offers different lighting modes.


A flashlight is another essential item for urban survival. It provides a portable source of light and can help you navigate in low-light situations. Look for a flashlight that is compact, waterproof, and has a long battery life.

Extra batteries

Having extra batteries on hand is important for powering your electronic devices and keeping your lighting sources functional. Make sure to select batteries that are compatible with your equipment and store them in a cool, dry place.

Solar charger

A solar charger is a sustainable and renewable power source. It allows you to charge your electronic devices using solar energy. Look for a solar charger that is portable, durable, and has multiple USB ports.

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Portable power bank

A portable power bank is a convenient way to charge your electronic devices on the go. Look for a power bank with a high battery capacity and multiple USB ports. Make sure to keep it charged and ready for use.

Personal Protection

Self-defense items

Personal safety is a priority in urban survival situations. Consider carrying self-defense items such as a personal alarm, a stun gun, or a whistle to deter potential threats.

Pepper spray

Pepper spray is a non-lethal self-defense tool that can temporarily incapacitate an attacker. Make sure to familiarize yourself with its proper use and keep it easily accessible in case of an emergency.

Emergency whistle

An emergency whistle is not only useful for attracting attention but also for deterring potential threats. Its loud sound can startle or distract an assailant and give you time to escape.

Protective gloves

Protective gloves are essential for protecting your hands during emergency situations. They can help prevent injury and provide a barrier against potential contaminants.

Respirator mask

In situations where air quality may be compromised, a respirator mask can help filter out harmful particles and pollutants. Make sure to select a mask that offers a high level of filtration and provides a secure and comfortable fit.

Tools and Equipment


A multi-tool is a versatile tool that combines various functions into one compact device. It can include pliers, a knife, screwdrivers, bottle openers, and more. A multi-tool is an essential item for urban survival as it can help you tackle a variety of tasks.

Duct tape

Duct tape is a versatile and durable adhesive tape that can be used for a variety of purposes, such as repairing gear, sealing leaks, or securing items together. Make sure to have a roll of duct tape in your urban survival kit.

Fire starter

Having a reliable fire starter, such as waterproof matches or a fire starter rod, is essential for urban survival. It allows you to start a fire for warmth, cooking, or signaling for help. Make sure to practice fire-starting techniques before relying on them in an emergency.


A strong and durable rope is a versatile item that can be used for a variety of purposes, such as setting up shelters, securing gear, or creating a makeshift clothesline. Look for a rope that is lightweight, easy to handle, and has a high weight capacity.

Foldable shovel

A foldable shovel is a compact and versatile tool that can be used for digging, clearing debris, or creating makeshift shelters. Look for a shovel that is lightweight, durable, and easy to pack.

Hygiene and Sanitation

Toilet paper

Toilet paper is an essential item for maintaining hygiene and comfort in emergency situations. Make sure to include a sufficient amount in your urban survival kit.

Hand sanitizer

Hand sanitizer is crucial for maintaining proper hygiene in situations where soap and water are not readily available. Look for a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol and is portable.

Wet wipes

Wet wipes are a convenient and versatile item for cleaning your hands and body when water is limited. They can also be used for cleaning surfaces or as makeshift toilet paper.

Feminine hygiene products

If you require feminine hygiene products, make sure to include an ample supply in your urban survival kit. Look for products that are compact, lightweight, and have a long shelf life.

Trash bags

Having a supply of trash bags is important for waste disposal and keeping your environment clean. Look for heavy-duty bags that are tear-resistant and have a large capacity.


In urban survival situations, having the right essential items is crucial for your safety and well-being. From shelter and water to first aid and personal protection, being prepared with the necessary supplies can make all the difference. By considering these recommended items, you can enhance your chances of urban survival and ensure your basic needs are met. Stay safe and be prepared!

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By Chris Wright

My goals with PreppingSurvival.com are to help you prepare your family for every day life as well as the things that pop up like job loss, storm damage, store shortages, etc. The better prepared you are for life, the easier survival becomes. Learn to thrive, not just survive!