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The EDC Tactical Guide

13 Everyday Carry Tactical items you should have


I always have an EDC with me wherever I go, it is always better to be overprepared than underprepared in my opinion.

Even if you just keep one in your car, it is better to have something you never use than have something you need and don’t have.


What does EDC stand for


EDC stands for Everyday carry… it is something or a group of things you carry around with you daily. Which can include a range of items that are used regularly, to things that are there for emergency situations.

They can be carried around with you separately, in your pockets for instance. Or you can keep them all in a backpack, as a mini version of a bug out bag.


What does Tactical mean


For the purposes of the article… tactical means gear that is used by the military or is inspired by the military but is used by civilians.

Just have a walk or browse around an army Surplus Store, to get an idea of the stuff I am talking about.


EDC Tactical definition


EDC Tactical items are military items or military inspired items that form your EDC kit.

Where you may be less interested in how they look, and function is the ultimate goal.

Therefore, you are looking for the strongest, most durable, and most hardwearing EDC items you want to carry.

Of course, Military goods is a fashion niche nowadays, so how they look can still be important for some people and the tactical style might be what you are aiming for.


How to go tactical


The obvious way to do this is to buy actual items that militaries across the world use themselves.

That is surely the most authentic way to become tactical, and you will become best friends with the local Military Supply store owner in the area where you live.

However, authentic doesn’t always mean the best. Remember military gear is made for people in the military, doing the things they do in the military, so the items suit military situations.

This doesn’t necessarily mean an authentic military item, will be perfect for your EDC.

You are a civilian after all.

Sometimes an EDC item inspired by the military or is designed for people looking for tactical items, could be better than the “real” thing. As a civilian with naturally require different things, than military personnel that are in the field.


The EDC Tactical Guide


An EDC of any kind is very personal, it is about finding a range of items that you use daily but also prepare yourself for any potential emergency survival situation you may envision yourself in.

But there are items that are more common than others.

I think the best way for me to provide you a useful EDC Tactical Guide, is to tell you what is in mine.


  • Backpack
  • Credit card multi-tool
  • Flashlight
  • Knife
  • Lethal weapon (depending on the laws of where you live obviously)
  • Minimalist wallet
  • Non-lethal weapon
  • Pen and notebook
  • Powerbank
  • Smartphone
  • Survival poncho
  • Tactical gloves
  • Traditional multi-tool


You can use this as a starting point to build your own EDC tactical collection from, or just take inspiration from it.


The EDC Tactical Guide – essential items


The above is what I like to carry as my Tactical EDC. I will tell you what brands I use below. I am not saying these are the only ones you should buy; they are just the ones I currently have and like.

You should find ones that match what you think best suits you.


Mystery Ranch ASAP Tactical Backpack


I have been using these for years, they are awesome. It is a tactical backpack but can easily pass as a normal backpack meaning people you are walking past in the street or trail will have no idea what you are carrying and why.

It is 20L and light at 1.4kg but it is very well made and long lasting.

There are many self-contained compartments, meaning you can store things in specific places, so you always know where they are just in case you need to get to them quickly.

It has a unique 3-zip design which means I can get to anything within seconds. Which is important if you find yourself in a stressful situation or emergency.


Wallet Ninja Tactical Credit-Card Multitool


I am a big fan of credit card multi-tools and this one is the best in my opinion. It slots right into your wallet where you would keep your bank cards. It is totally flat, so it doesn’t bulk out your wallet. And it has 18 different tools… yes 18!!!

It contains a great range of tools such as bottle opener, can opener, letter opener, screwdrivers, hex head bolts, and a ruler.

Tools on credit card multi-tools can be awkward and flimsy at times, but I have found the Ninja to be the most functional and hardwearing.


Peli 7600 Tactical Flashlight


Peli have a great range of tactical equipment for everyday carry, multiday adventure trips, and for long-term survival prepping. It has a rechargeable USB flashlight which is the type I prefer.

It is almost too bright for most situations and packs an impressive 900 lumens. Plus, there is a red mode, which I like when wild camping in the woods so that I limit the disruption to the local wildlife.

I would also recommend getting a fully waterproof flashlight, which this is.




CQC stands for Close Quarters Combat, and this is how I choose a tactical knife for my EDC.

I want it to be designed as a self-defence close combat knife primarily, but then I want to use it for more mundane tasks such as opening boxes or butchering some meat for the fire pit.

This knife is very quick and very smooth at getting from the closed position, to the open and locked position. I would have full confidence in this knife in a wide range of situations, which makes it a perfect EDC.


Ruger LCP 380


If the laws permit, and you are confident in using a gun… then in my opinion you should carry one.

You shouldn’t want to carry a lethal weapon, but you sure of hell will be annoyed if you find yourself in the need for one and you don’t have one at hand.

I like the Ruger because it is small, light and can fit into my pocket without any noticeable visual giveaway.

Although I do tend to keep it in my backpack for most of the time. The Ruger LCP 380 isn’t going to win you any prizes on the shooting range, but it will stop a hostile in their tracks at close range.


Dango T01 Tactical Wallet


This is a tremendous wallet. Which is great for just simply carrying your cash and bank card.

It also comes with a multi-tool which is a great multi-tool on its own but also compliments my Ninja credit card multitool very well. As the Dango multi-tool has more options for cutting, sawing, and defending.

I have found having both styles of wallet/credit card multi-tools give me a superior range of tools, for very little additional weight and space.

Oh, and it just looks damn cool in my opinion!


ASP Talon Infinity Baton


I carry the Ruger as a lethal weapon, but I also like to carry a non-lethal weapon and a baton is my first choice.

I have the 60cm version which is the largest. There is very little difference in the pack size and weight of the 3 available options, so I just went for the biggest haha.

These are widely used all around the world by a large range of military personnel and are the best you can buy in my opinion.

With the addition of the baton, I have 3 main ways to protect myself with the baton, gun, and knife.


Gerber Impromptu Tactical Pen


I like to carry a pen and paper just in case I need to jot anything down. However, as with any good tactical EDC item it should have multiple uses.

And that is true with this pen, as it doubles up as a glass breaker which is very handy. It is also fully waterproof and writes extremely well in the rain.

I couple this pen with a Rite in the Rain notebook.


Tactical Powergorilla


I carry this power bank in my Tactical EDC to make sure I can always keep my flashlight and smartphone fully charged.

This power bank is awesome, it has multi-voltage charging options, it has a large storage of power, it is sturdy, and is quick to charge up at home. I have never tested it, but they say you can get 10 full smartphone charges with it.

I have also used their solar panel to charge the power bank on multiday thru-hikes. Which worked really well.




I carry a smartphone and let’s be honest it is an essential piece of kit nowadays, and I think people can be a bit snobby about them.

But just think of how many survival uses they can have, the obvious being the communication, it’s a computer, and they also have torches, compasses, and GPS.

I am not suggesting you watch Netflix around the campfire when you are camping, but it should be in your backpack next to you in my opinion.

And this is why a power bank is also important, as if you are relying on the phone for location and tracking then you best be sure it is fully charged.


Arcturus Lightweight Waterproof Rain Poncho


These are great to have as they are barely noticeable in your backpack, but you will be thankful you have it if you get caught out in some unexpected weather.

I like the poncho’s over a traditional rain jacket because the poncho will fit over the top of your backpack too. Therefore, keeping you and your equipment dry.

If you are unsure about wearing a poncho, then I would recommend you carry a survival bivvy.


Mechanix Wear – M-Pact Multicam Gloves


Tactical gloves are a very important item to carry in my opinion and these are the ones I carry. I believe they are one of the best allrounder tactical gloves you can buy.

They perform well in a whole host of activities… they keep your hands warm, they don’t inhibit dexterity, they provide some protection against fire, and they can be useful in self defence situations due to the protected plastic backs.

If you have never owned a pair of tactical gloves before, then these are a great first buy and they are cheap but also good quality.


Leatherman MUT


And just because you can never have enough tools in your EDC, I also carry a more traditional multi-tool as well as the credit card and wallet multi-tools.

I got this multi-tool as it has a few things the other multi-tools do not have, like a hammer, pliers, wire cutters, and an electrical crimper.

Leatherman products are generally a bit pricey, but sometimes if you buy cheap you buy twice. And every Leatherman product I have bought has exceeded my expectations.




Hopefully by showing you what I have as my EDC Tactical collection, you can use that to build your own.

Your EDC Tactical kit should be suited to your lifestyle, it should benefit and enhance your daily life, but it should also include items that will help you in unusual or emergency survival situations.

But don’t go overboard with things, you could easily fill a 70L backpack with tactical EDC gear if you wanted.

That’s why I bought a 20L backpack as it limited what I could have and made me think about what I needed.

About Tom Bell

Hi - I'm Tom, the owner and founder of TheSurvivalSpirit.com! I'm a passionate outdoors enthusiast and am dedicated to bringing you the hottest online survival advice.  


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