There are two types of people in the world, those who see the need to prepare for future emergencies, and those who don’t.
If you’re part of the first category of people, I salute you! It’s great to be part of a community of like-minded people. The problem many preppers face, however, is when they attempt to share their preparedness enthusiasm (or passion) with the latter group of people—the ones who don’t care.
Whether you’re the enthusiast who wants to motivate your friends and family to become prepared, or you want to give a gift to a passionate prepper in your life, we have a bunch of amazing ideas for you!
I asked a few hundred people in the preparedness community to chime in on their favorite gifts and they helped me put together this list for you. (Crisis Equipped is not affiliated with any of the brands or products listed.)
These gift ideas are perfect for all types of occasions, including birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Christmas and other religious holidays, Valentine’s day, and just simple appreciation gifts! We’ve broken it down into four categories: the most unique, the most useful, the most convenient, and the best gifts overall.
The most unique survival and prepper gifts
1. Solar cooker — The GoSun brand seems to be popular but I have yet to test it out myself
2. Biolite Camp Stove 2+ — This gadget will cook your food and charge your electronic devices at the same time. It’s a little heavy but great technology nonetheless.
3. Military Survival Booklet — This could be great for anyone that likes history or was in the military.
4. Gun cleaning kit — Some kits include attachments for every type of gun imaginable.
5. Precious metals like silver and gold coins — These will retain their value forever, unlike paper money.
6. Arc lighter — This cool lighter charges via USB. It’s flameless, windproof, rechargeable, and ignites tinder even if it’s wet.
7. Solar power bank — These chargers generally come with a flashlight and compass and are waterproof. They’re great for hiking and camping because they’re small and lightweight.
8. Agriculture and farming equipment — This is cool if the person you’re giving it to is into homesteading and self-sufficiency. Wegners is a brand that is known for selling all types of farm tools, supplies, and equipment.
9. Barn lanterns — Get the complete set with extra wicks and smokeless fuel. Dietz is a popular brand.
10. Custom Benchmade knives — These make great gifts for groomsmen, your grown children, etc. There are many companies out there that will also engrave them for you, so you can have them personalized with names.
11. Custom Anza knife — These high-quality knives are handmade in the United States.
12. Collapsible water basin — This is kind of a random gift, but certainly would come in handy!
13. Bear horns — If you’re looking for a gift for someone who lives in bear country or is going on a wilderness backpacking trip, this might be perfect! A bear horn will deliver powerful horn blasts to prevent bear attacks. They’re small enough that they can be carried in a backpack.
14. Wallet multi-tool — These 11-in-1 credit card sized tool is a great stocking stuffer!
15. Tuned goat bells — Do you have a neighbor with a goat?
16. Homemade door — If you’re a craftsman, you can design a door for a loved one’s home or cabin.
17. Boston Whaler boat — This is certainly a high-budget item, but it’s good for getting seafood and going in shallow water.
18. Subscription to BattlBox — This company sends cool preps each month. Or you can DIY it and put together a variety bag with a bunch of cool preparedness items.
19. Complete set of McGyver DVDs
20. Manure — I’ve seen this one go two ways. It can be given as a gift to a loved one who is a passionate gardener, or it can be given as a “gag” gift (literally). If manure isn't your thing, compost works too!
21. A sewn fabric bag with rice — You can heat these in the oven or microwave for sore muscles and joints to relieve pain and they also work great to keep warm.
22. Night vision glasses
23. A bird feeder — You can buy one or make your own!
The most useful survival and prepper gifts
24. A gift card to a military surplus, camping or outdoor superstore — Who doesn’t love getting lost in those types of stores? I know I do! My favorites are Bass Pro Shops, Cabelas, and REI.
25. Good pair of footwear — So long that you get the shoe size correct, a good pair of shoes can be a great gift.
26. Good winter coat — Columbia is a durable brand.
27. Water purifier — There are many travel-sized water purifiers and straws that are not just great for preppers, but also for hikers and outdoorsy people. You can also opt for a water filter bottle. Some of the most well-known brands are LifeStraw, Sawyer, Berkey, Katadyn, and Seychelles.
28. Books — If you know someone who loves to read, or likes to have resources on paper, consider getting them a preparedness book. Some of the highest-rated options among preparedness enthusiasts include:
- SAS Survival Guide handbook — You can get the original or pocket-size reference book, as well as the app.
- Survive by Les Stroud
- The Self-Sufficient Life and How to Live It by John Seymour
- Foxfire books
- The Lost Ways by Claude Davis
- The Survivalist Series by A. American
- My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George — This book will make you want to learn to live off of the land and learn bushcraft skills.
- Bushcraft 101: A Field Guide to the Art of Wilderness Survival by Dave Canterbury — This book will teach you all kinds of useful survival skills.
- A local edible plant book
29. Firestarter kit or equipment — You could put together a little kit for making fire with a flint striker, ferro rod, steel, charcloth, and a little tin to hold it. As a bonus, you could teach the person you give this to how to use it to make fire. In lieu of a kit, you can get the Lightning Strike Fire Starter by Holland, which is said to be a fire starter on steroids.
30. Guns — Some of the top choices based on prepper reviews were .300 Winchester Magnum, .30-06 Hunting Rifle Springfield, .454 Casull Rifle, AR-7, AR-10, AR-15, AK-47, Springfield XD Mod .2 40, Laster Bore Sight Rifle, 12 gauge, and Glock 29 Night Sights. Check your local gun laws first to make sure this is an appropriate gift.
32. Casio G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 — This watch has lots of important tools, such as altitude, biometric pressure, temperature, and direction readings.
33. A machete — Some popular choices include the Kukri and Tanto machete.
34. A tactical hatchet — Some preppers suggest the brand Colt.
35. An axe — One of the top choices was the medium-length Estwing Camper’s Axe.
36. A folding saw — The Silky and Bahco brands have amazing reviews.
37. A survival or tactical knife — Some options you could look into include:
- Cold Steel Bowie Blade Bushman Knife or Finwolf Knife
- Tops Knives Tom Brown Tracker
- KA-BAR US Marine Corps Knife
- Mora Light My Fire Knife — This knife doubles up as a fire starter.
- Morakniv Bushcraft Carbon Steel Survival Knife with Fire Starter and Sheath
- Vintage buck knife
- Small ninja knife
- Lockblade or All-in-one Swiss Army Knife
- Hunting, fishing, skinning, carving knife combo
- Eafengrow CH3504-G10 Flipper Folding Knife
39. Recurve crossbow — This would be an awesome gift for someone who likes to do archery.
40. Complete bug-out bag — If you can find one that comes with a medical kit, and not just a trauma kit, even better!
41. Field-tested tactical backpack — A few great options are the 5.11 Tactical Rush 24 Backpack, the Kelty Eagle rucksack, and the Eberlestock rucksack.
42. Fishing and Hunting B.O.S.S. Kit — Stanford Outdoor Supply makes a comprehensive 127-piece fishing and hunting kit.
43. Fishing gear — If you don’t want to get a traditional fishing kit, perhaps some fishing accessories would be a fun and useful gift.
44. Get home bag — If you want to make sure it’s ultra top-notch, include the 10 C’s of Dave Canterbury’s teachings, that is: a cutting tool, a combustion device, a cover (such as a mylar blanket, waterproof blanket, etc), a container, cordage, cotton bandanas, cargo tape, compass, cloth sail needle, and cradling device.
45. Vehicle recovery or emergency kit — This one is typically overlooked however it’s extremely useful and I’m sure it will be much appreciated in a moment of need.
46. Individual (or family) first aid kit
47. Medical bag with trauma and suture kit — If you want to go the extra mile, include fake wounds for practice.
48. Wool blanket or wool socks
49. Outdoor water-resistant blanket
50. Military emergency blankets
51. A quality tarp
52. 1200’ roll of 550 paracord
53. Seatbelt cutter and glass breaker
55. Radio — There are some that play FM, AM, and shortwave. Look for a radio that can be run by either a wall plug, rechargeable battery, or hand crank.
56. NOAA Weather radio — or any radio with disaster alert options.
57. Survival seeds — For gardeners, it’s best to get heirloom seeds.
58. Flashlight — Olight is a brand that many preppers recommend, otherwise look for a solar-powered light.
59. Zippo refillable lighter or Trench lighter — There are said to be no-fail lighters.
60. Lensatic compass — or any military compass.
61. Multitools — These will always come in handy because they generally have a saw, file, knife, flat edge, bottle opener, Phillips screwdriver, and much more. Some brands and styles to look at are Gerber, Caterpillar, Leatherman Signal, Leatherman Wave, Rebar, Roxon, and Victorinox. Gerber multitool
62. Toolbox — This is a great gift for someone who is handy around their home or is building a homestead.
63. Build a greenhouse for someone — If you like to build things, this would be one of the best gifts for someone who wants to start a garden.
64. A course on preparedness training — Knowledge is one of the best things you can give someone. There are plenty of in-person and virtual courses to take advantage of.
The best prepper gifts with convenience in mind
65. Butane stove — You could get someone the ultimate kit for preparing food, with a stove kit. Also, Coleman makes a propane camp stove that comes with an adapter to use a standard propane tank.
66. Foldable cooking station — This is actually a really cool gadget for someone who loves camping. A pricey alternative is what is known as a “camp kitchen” which folds itself into an aluminum box. They’re sold by Trail Kitchens and they’re really neat.
67. Camping cookware — Again, with the camping theme in mind, this would make a great gift for an outdoor enthusiast or family.
68. Bivy sack — This is ideal for someone who spends a lot of time outdoors and enjoys backpacking trips in the wilderness.
69. Compact emergency sleeping bag
70. Mosquito net — Get one that'll fit over a hammock.
71. Tent and a ground cover
72. Military poncho
73. Walkie-talkie — other options include a Midland two-way radio, satellite phone, or HAM radio
74. Stainless steel bottle — These will always come in handy.
75. A generator
76. MRE’s and/or long-term emergency food — You can purchase this in small or large quantities, as well as in pouches and #10 cans. My favorite brands are Legacy Premium, Nutrient Survival, and Mountain House.
77. Meat saw, meat slicer, a meat grinder — This is ideal for someone who raises their own cows or animals for food.
78. Hand crank wheat grinder — This is used to grind your own flour.
79. Freeze-drier — This is a pricey gift but it would be ideal for a spouse who is passionate about growing and storing their own food. Harvest Right is a popular brand.
80. Dehydrator — I received one as a birthday gift and I absolutely love it!
81. Mylar bags for food storage
82. A food saver machine
83. Two-ply toilet paper — This is the perfect gag gift to remember 2020, not to mention very useful! Or, if you want to be a little more practical, a bidet would be the next best thing.
The best gifts overall
84. A compact or portable Bible
85. Anything homemade, such as:
- Baked goods
86. Anything that comes from your homestead or farm, such as:
- Dried herbs
- Canned fruit jams, preserves, veggies, or sauce
- Elderberry syrup
- Liquor or alcohol
87. Education, knowledge, training, and experience — Most preppers ranked this among their favorite gifts that they’ve either given or received. Some ideas include:
- Learning how to hunt, fish, process, and cook domestic and wild meat
- Practice gardening and canning or preserving the food you’ve grown
- Learning how to survive without anything (or with basic things) — perhaps a course on increasing knowledge, wisdom, ingenuity, and working with what you have versus carrying a lot of equipment.
- Learning how to start from bare hands, making an axe, building a shelter, etc
- Skills in basic carpentry, electrical wiring, mechanical skills
- Digging for clams
- Developing a work ethic
- Education in shooting guns, firearm safety, possession, and acquisition of a license
- Knowledge of the indigenous people of North America
- Self-defense classes
88. Enrolling kids in Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, or Eagle Scouts
89. Taking a loved one (or family) on a camping or hiking trip — This is the ultimate gift. Not only would you be spending quality time together, but also you can get hands-on experience using your tools, equipment, and wilderness knowledge.
I hope you liked these gift ideas! Did I miss any of your favorites? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
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