So you’ve just committed a murder. Or a crime of passion. Or have defaulted on your mob debts. Or have just become a government whistleblower. Whatever the cause, you’ve got to get out of town, undetected, and fast. But how does one go about this now that we carry virtual tracking devices with us and all our purchases are reported instantly to our banks? You have a Go Bag, that’s how.
A Go Bag, as in “I gotta go, grab the bag!” is your emergency kit that will allow you to quickly disappear whenever the need should arise. No judging here – sometimes you’ve got to leave town without anyone noticing… The purpose of the bag’s contents are to allow you to slip into hiding with nary a trace. Hiding from all of today’s different methods of tracking is no simple task, and one slip up will spell the end to your life on the run. With these Go Bag essentials and some wits, you should just make it to your hideout.
Essentials first. You need water to survive, and although free and clean water is generally plentiful in developed countries it never hurts to be versatile and have your bases covered. LifeStraw is a really handy device that can turn any water source into a potential life-saving drink. Whether you’re hiding out in the woods or the Detroit slums, almost any water source is now safe for you.
Sticking with pure survival, dehydrated or freezedried food will last just about forever and keep you going as you trek for the border. You’ll need to keep your strength up to evade your pursuers, and MREs are designed for just such situations. We even hear the Gumbo is pretty tasty…
Of course, you’ll need some flow to keep you alive beyond just the basics. But you can forget your Apple Pay and Paypal. Use anything digital and you’ll be found within the hour. Same thing with traditional magnetic cards – the bank can immediately see the store location and relay that info on to the Feds. No, you’re sticking with cold hard cash. Cash is king, and it will grease the wheels of your exodus. Prepaid cards are also an option here, and a few for backup can’t hurt.
When you bolt, you’ll have the clothes on your back. Generally these will be enough for most situations, but you’ll want a backup pair that is highly versatile. Items that work well in urban and outdoor settings. Think zip-off or cargo pants, decent boots, and a warm shirt. Your striking a balance here between clothes that can help you survive in the wilderness and items you could wear downtown and not stand out. You might not know where you’ll run to when you do take off, so keep things versatile.
You’ll want to know where you are going, and without Google in your back pocket you’ll need to rely on good old-fashioned maps. We recommend a decently thorough, but still pocket-sized, almanac of your entire country of residence. It’ll get you around and you’ll be able to see major landmarks coming. For finer detail, local gas stations and friendly locals are your best bet.
No one has time to stop off at the library on their way out of town, and even if you did the police would quickly see that you checked out books on eating native plants and great escapes in history. It won’t take them long to determine what you’re up to. BUT, if you toss an old eReader (sans internet connection of course) into your Go Bag that you loaded up with the same books months or years prior, no one will be the wiser. eReaders have so much information density compared to lugging around paperbacks that packing one is a no brainer. Also you’ll likely have lots of time on your hands, so maybe now you can finally finish off Moby Dick…
Hey, you’re already on the run. What are they going to do, throw you in extra-prison? Your life is now in your hands, and if you really want to get to that rendeavous point it might mean stealing a few cars or grabbing a few cash registers to keep you on the road. Even if you’re more Robin Hood than John Dillinger, you’ll likely want a piston for self protection. Fugitives rarely get to mingle in social polite circles.
We highly recommend against any contact with your now-former life, but if you absolutely MUST call someone you’ll need a burner phone to keep you safe. These drug dealer specials will allow you to reach out and touch something without the handcuffs immediately touching you, but for our money it is best to leave behind any device that connects to any network. Better safe than sorry.
Finally, you haven’t successfully run away just to get a new mortgage and cell phone under your same name. No, you’ll need a new identity and that all starts with a fake ID. China (because OF COURSE) is putting out some spot-on replicas these days to go for a few hundred dollars. These baby will pass any scan or swipe test and are basically the real deal. Just please choose a believable birthdate, no extra points for giving yourself another swing at your twenties.
A good Go Bag can be the difference between a life on the run and a life behind bars. While looking over your shoulder for the rest of your life doesn’t exactly sound like fun, neither do prison showers or a mob bosses trunk. Just having the bag will put your mind at ease as you know that at any given moment you’d be ready for a break to the border. Just don’t confuse it with your gym bag in the heat of the moment…