How to Survive an Airplane Crash

Your odds of being killed in a commercial airliner crash are ridiculously small (1 in 29.4 million as of Dec. 2013). But if your next flight should go down, you want to increase your chances of being one of the lucky 24-53% of the passengers on a downed flight that will escape with their life. What’s the simplest way to …

These Shoes Were Made for Walkin’

Toss a pair of comfy walking shoes into the trunk of your car. (If you’re feeling really ambitious, add a pair of socks, too.) That way, if a natural disaster prevents you from taking to the motorways, you have an alternative to your Jimmy Choos as you beat feet from the area.

Is that duct tape in your pocket?

Duct Tape: is there nothing it can’t do?? But who wants to carry around a big ol’ roll of it on their person, let alone in their already-bulky emergency kit? For a clever way to store this handy “tool,” just wrap a strip of it around something, then unspool as needed. That “something” can be as thin as an old …

Navigate without a GPS

How to find the North Star Knowing how to navigate without benefit of a GPS is one of those fundamental life skills that is slowly slip-sliding away. Arrest that slide! Tonight, head into your backyard and look up. Find the Big Dipper (Ursa Major for my astronomy friends). See the two stars that form the outer edge of the “ladle”? …

Buy Some Rot-Gut Vodka

Vodka is capable of so much more than just getting you sloshed. Vodka really is the Swiss Army knife of alcoholic beverages. Of course you can choose to drink it, but for emergency preparedness, it’s time to think outside the vodka martini (STIRRED–not shaken–you heathen, Mr. Bond!) Buy the cheap stuff by the gallon. Decant it into smaller bottles for use …

Make Like Granddad and Carry a Pocket Knife

Carry a pocket knife Our grandpa carried one. Our dad probably did, too. But for some reason, it’s now rare to find a city dweller with the most basic of tools on their person. What am I talking about? The humble pocket knife. Oh, you can get all fancy-schmancy with your Swiss Army package hooks and your Leatherman bolt cutter …

You’ve Gotta Have a Rally Point

Pick an Emergency Meet-Up Spot After a disaster, we all know that local communications will run the gamut from dicey to non-existent. When you arrive at a new destination, take a moment to find a location reasonably close (a full-day’s walk or less) to your hotel/Air BnB/hostel/other center of ops where you agree to meet your travel buddies if you get separated …

Physical Fitness: It’s About More Than Just Lookin’ Good

Get that hiney in gear! Drop and give me 20! Okay, how about 10? Maybe…5? It’s a sad commentary on our society that the mark of a successful human often involves having our butts glued to a seat in front of a glowing blue screen. While this posture can certainly make us successful fiscally, it wrecks havoc on us physically. …

Travel Hacking

First Aid Apps for Your Smartphone

This one is easy-peasy. So easy, in fact, that you have zero excuse for not doing it right this second. You ready? Here it is: Download a first aid app for your smartphone. My current faves… Red Cross’ First Aid app American Heart Association’s Pocket First Aid & CPR app …and as a special bonus, check out an interactive movie …

emergency kit list cash money

Stash Some Cash

Cash is king…and this is never more true than when the power is out. Credit card readers don’t work, ATMs won’t acknowledge you, and bank tellers are stricken helpless. So hedge against this by stashing some extra cash in your backpack, in your hotel, and even in your rental car. Small bills are best, since everyone and their brother will …