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What Is EDC: A Beginners Guide



What Is EDC

What is EDC? What does it stand for? EDC is short for everyday carry. It’s a collection of useful items and tools a person can use daily. Check out more information about it below.

What Is EDC and Why Is It Important?

EDC took the world by storm. The tactical world was just enamored with this concept of the items we carry everyday and how they translate to readiness. The EDC now has become an industry of its own the pushes everyone from knife makers to pen makers to create new and exciting products each year for this crowd.

It’s also a heck of a lot of fun! I know people who have literal toolboxes of knives, flashlights, and other EDC items that they choose from each day. There is a geeky level to all this gear, and it can be quite fun to amass a collection of EDC items that meet the needs of your particular day.

The Basic Concept

For the readiness community, there are several things that we like to carry on ourselves each day. Our trek to work might span 5 miles or 50 and either way we want to be ready. We might also be traveling to school with children. The full scope of our responsibilities and our daily goals will greatly affect our EDC.

For a long time, the average American male left the home with keys, wallet, and maybe, a pocketknife. We added the cellphone to that, which has become like a child that we must take everywhere now. Women have always been better at EDC than men because of their purses and the contents.

Over the last decade, the concept of the EDC has increased how people look at the world and what they carry out into that world.

A modern EDC loadout might look something like this:

  • Phone
  • Keys
  • Minimalist Wallet
  • Knife
  • Flashlight
  • Firearm
  • Holster
  • Maybe even a tourniquet

The Three Tiers of EDC

EDC goes beyond what a person carries. It can also be part of a three-tier plan to get you back to home base, safely, in a disaster. This is the true expression of the EDC. While it is fun to have some cool gear to pull out and take pictures of, the practicality of this three-tiered approach is highly effective.

Let us look at the three tiers of EDC and how you can utilize them.



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Your EDC is designed to keep you safe when you are away from home. It’s also part of a process that makes life easier. Carrying things like power banks and chargers can add convenience to your day. However, we are all limited by what we can carry at work.

Most of us are not able to carry firearms at work so that is a hole in our EDC we must account for. If we find ourselves facing overwhelming force or facing a situation that our EDC cannot handle, well, then it’s time to step our game up.

This could be from an immediate threat like an active shooter situation or it might be from an impending storm. When your EDC is outclassed, you must turn to your get home bag.

TIER 2: Get Home Bag


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The get home bag is designed to fill the gaps in your EDC. In short, your get home bag is designed to get you back home, to home base, no matter the situation. This could be with or without a vehicle, a bus, or any other means of transportation. Your get home bag should contain everything you need to get from work and back home

There are some minimal requirements for a get home bag, but you can truly customize this any way you see fit. Here are some of the most common contents of a get home bag:

  • Comfortable Shoes and Clothes
  • Snacks
  • Water
  • Self Defense
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug Spray
  • Face Covering
  • Gloves
  • Map

At the very least you should have these items packed so you can get home on foot if need be. If your commute is hours long by highway you might consider some quick up shelter, too!

TIER 3: Home Base

Once you get home you can deal with the disaster or emergency how you see fit. I’m assuming you have a robust level of preparedness. I’m also assuming you have many more options at home than you do at in your pockets and in your trunk.

This three-tiered approach to using EDC and the get home bag means that you are never stranded without options. In most cases, you are going to be able to use some form of transportation to get home quickly but if you don’t, this system will give you options.

Shop Around

CQR Men's Flex Stretch Tactical Pants, Water Resistant Ripstop Cargo Pants, Lightweight...
  • CQR Flex Operator PantsSeries designed for law enforcement, military, and outdoor activities.
  • [Materials] Mix of Polyester & Cotton fabric is for maximum mechanical flexibility and stretch.
  • [Tac-Stretch Fabric] Tac-Stretch Fabric improved range of movement and apt for tough conditions.

If you find yourself getting deep into the world of EDC, you should invest in some quality tactical pants. The more you start sliding into your pockets the more complicated things can get. You should try to keep your flashlight in the same pocket, your knife in the same pocket and so on and so forth.

One word of warning: If you take to EDC, you might find that it’s a bit addictive! There are just so many great companies out there who are making great gear. Some of my favorite brands are Django, Olight and Kershaw for EDC gear.

What are the best things you have in your EDC so far? We’d love to hear from you in the comments section!

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Last update on 2024-04-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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  12. Anthony

    July 5, 2023 at 6:52 AM

    Awesome article. You’re right that EDC can get addictive too. So much to explore once you delve in.

    Didn’t know if you fancied watching a video I created about making EDC use more effective, but either way I really enjoyed your content.

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