Looking for a quality EDC bag to carry your survival gear? Want to know what to look for when buying an EDC bag? In this article, we’ll let you know what we look for and what the best EDC bag in the market today is.
What is An EDC Bag?
An “every day carry” bag is exactly what it sounds like – a bag you can use for your everyday needs. This means that your ideal EDC bag might be pretty different from someone else’s. So you always want to think about what your day to day life looks like, as well as think about what items you would need in an emergency situation.
EDC bags can fulfill a number of different needs or goals, including:
- carrying all of your work or personal items
- acting as a light survival kit for emergencies
- standing in as a light hiking bag for a day trip somewhere close by
In short, EDC bags can be whatever you need them to be. But in this case, we’ll focus on EDC bags for survival situations.
Why Do You Need One?
Why choose an EDC bag as opposed to a regular backpack? In reality, even a “normal” backpack can work as an survival bag. But dedicated EDC bags usually come with better construction and unique features that may make them better suited for holding survival gear.
For instance, most EDC bags are made with high-quality materials to keep them resistant to tearing or shredding over time. Furthermore, EDC bags are often designed with lots of pockets, departments and extra space.
So what would you carry in an EDC bag? Some of the items you can carry in your EDC bag include things like:
- water bottles
- tactical pen
- multipurpose tools
- phone chargers
- and more
In short, it’s a good idea to get an EDC bag if you:
- need to travel a lot and want to have all of your work stuff in a single, easy to grab backpack or bag. This way, you might head to work in a hurry, but you’ll always have your necessary supplies with you
- want to have a basic emergency kit with the bare essentials in case you need to hop in your car and get out of the city in a hurry
- want an emergency kit in your car in case your vehicle breaks down when you’re in the middle of nowhere
How to Choose an EDC Bag
Of course, no two EDC bags are exactly alike, and different EDC bags serve different purposes or will be better for one need or another. Some EDC bags are basically pouches, while others are full-blown tactical backpacks.
Again, your choice will depend on what your goals are.
Anyway, let’s break down how you should choose an EDC bag that’s perfect for your needs.
Number of Pockets
First, check out the number of pockets a given EDC bag has to offer. You’ll likely want to think about the various items you want to store in your future EDC bag before making a purchase.
Try to break down all of your items into a few basic categories. For instance, maybe you want:
- survival food
- multipurpose tools
- water bottles
- hand sanitizer
- and more
For this kind of kit, you’ll likely need at least a half-dozen pockets, if not more. Furthermore, those who appreciate being able to organize their equipment will naturally appreciate even more pockets, rather than having to throw all of their stuff into a single main compartment in their EDC bag.
Total bag volume also matters a lot. Again, if you need to put more equipment into your EDC bag, you’ll want a bag with more volume.
However, be careful to check out the number of pockets – some bags may have lots of combined pocket volume, but their largest pocket may not be spacious enough for your biggest item, like a laptop or a pair of boots.
Style – Over-the-Shoulder, Sling, Backpack
There are three main styles of EDC bags you’ll be able to find.
The first is over the shoulder bags. These are, of course, worn over the shoulder and usually only have a single strap. They can be good choices if you like having a large range of motion while carrying your bag, though they aren’t the best for carrying heavy items over great distances since they place all of their contained weight on one shoulder.
Sling backpacks or bags also use a single strap, but are worn with the strap diagonally across your chest. You can then alternate which shoulder bears the brunt of the burden. However, these bags aren’t as easy to take off or retrieve items from without taking the bag off entirely. They’re also typically a little smaller than the other two types.
Last are traditional backpack style EDC bags. These often offer the most space on the interior and split the weight between both shoulders, but you’ll usually need to take the backpack off entirely to retrieve items.
For a tactical or survival EDC bag, you should look into MOLLE integration. This feature allows you to add additional pockets or compartments to your bag, as well as aesthetic patches. Many military bags are MOLLE integrated for these reasons.
Does your EDC bag have a hydration system? When you’re putting together a survival bag, this is a critical feature. These will include a water pouch on the inside of the bag and a suction tube you can bring around to your mouth.
Adjustability and Comfort
You should also consider the adjustability and comfort of an EDC bag before purchasing. You’ll only be able to stand carrying EDC bags that fit you well and that are comfortable over the long-term. Look for bags that have padded straps, at least.
Lastly, investigate the material used to create a given EDC bag. Some bags are made with more durability in mind than others.
5 Best EDG Bags on the Market
Peak Design Everyday Zip 15L Backpack
- VERSATILE DESIGN: Customizable internal dividers make this bag ideal for...
- WRAP-AROUND ZIPPER: Access top and both sides using a single durable...
- PROTECTED LAPTOP SLEEVE: Holds 13" laptops (see listing for exact...
- FLEXIBLE CARRY OPTIONS: 2 hidden straps for carrying items on bag exterior.
- LIFETIME GUARANTEE: Weatherproof, 100% recycled nylon canvas shell is DWR...
This first bag has an overall capacity of 15 L and is among the most durable on the market, featuring an outer material of 400D weatherproof and recycled nylon. Perhaps more importantly, the bag offers lots of organizational potential on the interior since the main compartment can be configured with special dividers.
Extra padding on the inside makes it a great bag for caring electronics and other more sensitive equipment – it also has a dedicated computer sleeve for this purpose.
- Capacity: 15 L
- Weight: 2.51 pounds
- Main Features: internal and configurable divider, weatherproof outer material
Bellroy Classic Backpack Plus
- Generous 22-liter capacity with separate laptop compartment
- Vertical front pocket for keeping small items handy; hidden stretch pocket...
- Comfortable harness and removable sternum strap for stability, plus...
- Made from water-resistant woven fabric. The fabric used for our Charcoal...
- Backed by our 3-year warranty. Measures 21 inches x 15 inches x 9 inches /...
Want something with a little more room? This classic backpack might be the perfect pick, as it offers a whopping 22 L of internal storage space, a dedicated laptop sleeve, and durable zippers, plus water-resistant polyester material for the exterior.
But it also features a hidden quick access pocket you can use to retrieve favorite items without having to dig deep into the bag. It’s a great EDC bag for commuters and preppers alike.
- Capacity: 22 L
- Weight: 2.2 pounds
- Main Features: Quick-access pocket, weatherproof materials
NutSac RuckSac Backpack
This EDC bag provides a classic aesthetic and plenty of interior space for storing your favorite or most important items. It’s made of thick canvas that both looks rustic and durable, and it’s perfectly capable of keeping water out from the inside thanks to its wax-infused exterior layer.
It comes with side zipper access for your convenience plus a lifetime durability guarantee – this is a nice bonus since the rucksack isn’t all that cheap.
- Capacity: 20 L
- Weight: 3.5 pounds
- Main Features: Lifetime warranty, side zipper access, rustic canvas/leather/wax material
Black Ember Citadel R2 Minimal Backpack
- The CITADEL R2 is a sleek, minimal, waterproof backpack designed for better...
- The Citadel is a clamshell style pack. That means it unzips 360 degrees, so...
- Dimensional : 19.5 x 12.5 x 6.5 inch | Dimensional: 495 x 320 x 165 mm |...
- Microhex 800 Denier, Three Layer, Waterproof Textile T6, Aircraft-Grade...
- Ykk Aquaguard Zippers Laser-Cut Hypalon Base-Weight : 3 Lbs, 1.35Kg
This minimalist backpack is a great choice for those who need a simple EDC bag to carry their bare essentials, and it still offers 25 L of storage capacity overall. It’s made with a waterproof outer material and is extremely configurable on the interior, which is boosted by extra padding and lots of interior pockets for organization fanatics.
- Capacity: 25 L
- Weight: 3 pounds
- Main Features: Waterproof textile material, interior pockets, configurable interior space
5.11 Tactical TAC Essential Pack 25L Backpack
- Built using rugged, all-weather Nylon, the TAC Essential Backpack (Style...
- FEATURES- The TAC Essential Backpack features self-healing YKK Zippers,...
- DIMENSIONS- Utilize every inch. One Size; Overall Dimensions: 18"H x 11"L x...
- SUPERIOR PERFORMANCE - Built for operational or recreational outdoor...
- THE MATERIAL- A stylish, durable Center Line design constructed using rip...
This last EDC bag comes with a low-profile aesthetic and features MOLLE wedding on either side, so you can always add additional pockets to the bag when necessary. It also provides 25 L of space and some of the most comfortable straps on the market thanks to special padding. A quick-release yoke shoulder strap will be of excellent use to hikers or climbers who may need to let go of their backpack in a hurry for safety reasons.
- Capacity: 25 L
- Weight: one point pounds
- Main Features: Quick release yoke shoulder strap, side MOLLE webbing
These are the best EDC bags we’ve found in the market to, and we believe they are all a great choice for people looking to keep all of their essentials in one place for getting out of dodge in a hurry.
Remember to prioritize picking a bag that’s perfect for your needs above all else and you’re sure to be satisfied. The goal is not to weigh yourself down, but to carry the minimum amount of gear that meets your everyday needs.