Disaster Planning

What’s in Your Wallet? Here’s 14 Items in Mine and What Probably Should be in Yours

Everyday Carry (EDC) is an important part of any prepping strategy. After all, you’re only really as prepared as what you have on your person at the time of an emergency. Today I’m not talking about my entire EDC but, rather, just what’s in my wallet. So, I figured the best way to do this was to show you.

First, however, I should note that the contents are what I find necessary and useful for my situation, you should tailor your wallet EDC to your own needs. Second, I use a typical tri-fold wallet that has plenty of pockets and sleeves and I certainly make use of every nook and cranny. As such, my wallet is rather bulky and in order to be more comfortable I always keep my wallet in my front pockets which I prefer for anti-theft reasons as well.

Here’s what I include, you can follow along in number order and click on the picture to enlarge if you like:


Let me also note that I also have my driver’s license in my wallet but I didn’t include it in the above photo:

  1. Fresnel Lens – I originally put this in my wallet because they can be used to start a fire but I actually find it quite useful for seeing very small things these days (like splinters and stuff I can’t read)… who knew!? Guess I must be getting old. 🙁
  2. Spare Car Key – Though just a car door key, I keep it in my wallet just in case my wife locks her car keys in the car again. Of course, you could choose to keep a starter key instead. I would NOT advice including a home key as this allows easy access to your property if your wallet is ever lost or stolen… better to keep a spare key with a trusted neighbor, friend, or nearby relative.
  3. Duct Tape – Don’t laugh, I’ve used this stuff more than once and am very glad I have some on me at all times. Oh, and be sure to get the quality duct tape because if you’re scrounging for duct tape in your wallet then odds are pretty good you NEED duct tape.
  4. Assorted OTC Medications – I actually have quite a few OTC meds with me, including Ibuprofen, Tylenol, allergy pills, digestive pills, and a few other things in a small plastic bag I think I got at Hobby Lobby a long time ago. Note that if you put your wallet in your back pocket then this probably isn’t a good idea as you’ll likely crush these pills rather quickly. And, if you take prescription pills then I would include these pills in addition or in place of any OTC medications.
  5. Extra Cash – I ALWAYS keep $40 hidden away (from me, not others) so that I have cash in my wallet should I need to buy a tank of gas or whatever. I’ve thought about including more–maybe up to $80–but just have yet to do so. Regardless, I think this is an important prep because you never know when you may need a small bit of cash.
  6. Alcohol Prep Pad – Used to clean a wound site, I guess they could become makeshift wet-naps if you wanted. I actually need to replace this pad and should likely include another one or two in my wallet since they don’t take up much space at all.
  7. “ICE” Card – Perhaps the most important prep, this one’s for emergency responders or perhaps a good Samaritan to identify critical things about me should I have a medical emergency, such as my name, emergency contacts, blood type, doctor, and more. I recognize this may not be something those who take their OPSEC very seriously would want to do but I feel it’s important.
  8. Cash – I actually only had about $25 here in the picture (besides the $40 emergency cash stash from above) but I had just got back from taking the kids to the movies and a haircut so I needed to replenish. Typically, I keep at least $60 and prefer about $100 if I can con my wife into forking over that much. 😉
  9. Library Card – Can’t say I use this everyday but it makes me feel special.
  10. Triple Antibiotic Ointment – Also need to replace this but I’m sure you know why I include it here. And, yes, I have actually used this in the past.
  11. Credit / Debit Card in RFID Sleeve – I actually keep a debit card, credit card, and my Sam’s Club card together in an anti-RFID sleeve which is meant to protect my cards from being magically swiped out of thin air. Does it work or is an RFID sleeve even necessary? I haven’t a clue. Regardless, while I prefer to use cash to pay for things I also recognize that a credit card has it’s place as it’s just one more form of payment that might be accepted, or perhaps I just don’t have enough cash on me.
  12. Child Info Cards – Pertinent info about my children should I ever need to relay that to the authorities.
  13. Calling Card – Who knows if your cell phone won’t work, be low on battery, or even get lost. And you can’t guarantee that anyone will be nice enough to let you borrow their phone so I’ve always kept a pre-paid calling card in my wallet just in case.
  14. Bandages – Though only a few typical bandages, I have had occasion to use them in the past and should probably figure out how to add a few other sizes, like knuckle bandages.

Well, that’s all of it! I should say that once upon a time I used to keep a few matches, a compass, and I once even tried to fit a bandana in there (that didn’t work at all) but I stopped because I usually keep a firesteel on me in my Leatherman Wave multi-tool case (as well as another small flashlight).

Hope that helps you get one small part of your EDC in good order!

By Damian Brindle

How To Effortlessly Get Prepared For Emergencies Of All Kinds In Only 5 Minutes A Day... Fast, Easy, And Inexpensively... In Less Than ONE Single Month... By Following An Expert In The Field: Discover My 5 Minute Survival Blueprint And Get Prepared Today.

14 replies on “What’s in Your Wallet? Here’s 14 Items in Mine and What Probably Should be in Yours”

I almost forgot one important feature of the flash drive medic alert–hospital ERs do not have a procedure for accessing them. I checked a few ERs (while I was there for treatment) and they said that they would not even try to access them without a written procedure. However, the EMTs in all parts of the county (Burlington–the largest in New Jersey) have a different approach. They make up good rules when necessary–if they see a flash drive medic alert, they WILL access it on the scene. The EMTs are more responsive than the hospitals to change (and less afraid of lawsuits). If you save my life but leave scars, I will say Thank You and try to create a story to go with the scars.

Scars are like tattoos, but with better stories.

Wow, very cool device, Dr. Harris. Though I don’t feel like I need one I should do some more research into them. It is sad that hospitals aren’t quite on board yet but it sounds like you’re ahead of the curve. Regardless, maybe it can’t hurt to have a paper-copy of your medical info for times and places where they can’t access your medical drive.

I have a few medical problems, so I have a medic alert. Mine is from and is a flash drive. Just plug it in and you get access to six pages for information. I have uploaded my photo so the EMTs know that I am the one whose information they are reviewing; you can upload DNRs, living wills, etc. The first page has all my personal information and my ICE contacts (two or three). I think my insurance information is on the first page, but I do not remember precisely. I have a page for ALL my doctors (with specialty), dentists, and pharmacies with name, address, phone number, and fax number. I have pages for seasonal allergies, medical allergies, and food allergies (room for notes like “Cannot drink milk, but can eat foods made from milk.” The page for medicines has room for both prescription and OTC medications; it has a place for the name of the med, dosage, and how often/how many times per day. I did have to replace the band on the medic alert because human perspiration is a potent solvent.

The device I use costs $20 at, but $35 or $40 elsewhere. I can update the information anytime I need to. I forgot my list of meds when I changed dentists, so I asked them to access the page with meds and print it off for their records–they were pleased! I keep an updated copy in my ammunition case (the heavy military ones) with copies of all my other important information/documents.

Before I read any of the comments today, I did a Google search for phone cards (which I did not think existed anymore) and found a gazillion places and types of phone cards. While thinking of phone cards, I wondered where I could use them. I have not seen a public phone booth in years, and no one I know would ever let a stranger use his/her cell phone. If I borrowed your cell phone, I would call the White House to ask that the Lyin’ King resign–then I would wipe my fingerprints off the phone.

Well, there are still plenty of businesses that use hard-line phones and may actually be paying for long distance (well, maybe) and so I wonder if you find a stingy owner who won’t let you use their phone at least this way you can say “I’m paying for it” but who knows if a phone card is even worth it, like you say.

I can’t find phone cards anywhere! Then again, probably can’t find a pay phone either, since everyone carries cells. A card is still on my ‘want’ list for my BOB and my EDK.

RFID is to protect against RFID pulls not against “swiping”. In order to get your info from an RFID card, that card would first have to be an RFID enabled device. While some debi/creditt cards are these days along with passports and other things. Cards like your dams club card are certainly not. The rule of thumb is that if the only way to get it to do anything for you is to swipe it or scan it with a barcode reader then it is probably not RFID enabled. Therefore this is an unnecessary precaution.

I know the alcohol prep and trip antibiotic ointment wouldn’t last a week in my wallet. They would pop open in no time.

I know women who carry less in their big purses. How big is this wallet? lol

“ICE” information is very important. As a nurse I know if you become unconscious or confused and need emergency care,the ER will check your wallet for information. Often treatment must start right away. Take a dollar bill and cut a piece of paper that size, it fits right in the wallet along with your cash or wherever it will be seen. Might I suggest using colored paper so it stands out. You can put information on both sides. It should include, name, emergency numbers, list of all your medications, doctor’s name and phone number, blood type and the most important thing-list all allergies. Listing your religion would be important, if you don’t believe in certain treatments, such as blood transfusions. Oh, and add any major illnesses and surgeries.
This is a great post, makes all of us think.

In relation to a spare house key, my daughter used to have one a a close friend’s house three doors away, but the friend moved. Her solution was to put the house key in a real estate lock box–they have combinations, and keep the lock box fastened to the bottom of the iron railing on the front porch.

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