Pre-Packaged Go Bags – FAQs

"What am I going to do?" GIF
Nah, just scroll down and all will be made clear.

1. How much should the ideal Go Bag weigh?

If you’re not accustomed to carrying weight, it shouldn’t weigh more than 10% of your body weight. So if you’re weighing in at 150lb, you should be aiming for 15lb.

If you’re fairly athletic, you could use backpacker rules and bump that up to 20%, or 30lb if you’re 150lb. Remember that a gallon of water weighs about eight pounds. If you carry one gallon of water in your bag, you can carry just over 20lb of other items.

2. Will I be able to survive a zombie apocalypse with my Go Bag?

Your running ability is probably a much better predictor of your odds of surviving a zombie apocalypse, regardless of the survival gear you have on your back.

If you’re worried about having your brain eaten by the undead, you should add a helmet to your Go Bag. In a non-zombie emergency, the pre-packaged options should have everything you need for a few days: food, water, shelter, warmth, lights, and a way to get info from the outside world.

Rule of Thumb

Humans might be scarier than zombies during a genuine apocalypse scenario, so remember to proceed with caution even if the person you’re approaching isn’t trying to bite your skull.

3. Do I need a weapon in my go-bag ?

Many experts do suggest having a weapon in your Go Bag to help you defend yourself, but your comfort level should dictate which weapon you choose, if any. For example, a knife is an important survival tool with lots of non-combative uses, and most Go Bags contain one. A slingshot might be a good option if you want a non-deadly weapon with range.

If you choose to include a weapon in your Go Bag, make sure you know how to use it. If you haven’t practiced, the weapon might be counterproductive. Also remember that your Go Bag will be sitting in your house until it’s time to evacuate. Only consider weapons and items you’re comfortable having in your house.

4. Do I need to revisit my go-bag often?

If you’re buying a pre-packaged option, most items in an emergency Go Bag will have a shelf life of 5 years or more. That includes the food and water. However, it is recommended that you check your bag annually. Schedule a yearly reminder on your calendar and get in the habit of adding new gear to your kit and replacing expired items.

We hope these pre-packaged go-bag FAQs have answered your questions and make you feel more confident about your odds of surviving dire circumstances. If you’re still dragging your feet, there’s no time like the present: check out our top picks and grab your go-bag today.

Man drinking a cup of coffee
According to this photo from the future, there’s still coffee during the apocalypse. But maybe you should add some to your Go Bag, just in case.

About the Authors

It takes a village! We are researching, writing and fact checking as a family. Collaboration is the name of the game, whether we’re running from a zombie horde or finding the best way to turn a complex concept into a deliciously digestible set of bullet points.

Katherine Esperanza is a Los Angeles based writer. When she's not conjuring new queer slice-of-life short stories, she's busy watching the newest films, out at queer shows, supporting queer artists, or just checking out the queer community as a whole.

A former international non-profiteer, small business owner, and co-op'er, Katherine is delighted to help introduce more leftist politics into the disaster preparedness/prepper sphere, which is currently far too right-wing.