Part of the reason why some folks advocate the creation of bug–out bags from scratch is the steep learning curve provided by the process. This does not mean that a pre–purchased bug-out bag is inferior, (in fact, they are usually better equipped) it simply means that putting together your own bug-out bag will help you think about issues which may not be spelled-out in an “how to” guide or disaster prep manual. The aforementioned issue of differentiation certainly comes into play when utilizing the “by-the-minute” bug–out bag construction approach.
If you are familiar with bug-out bags you may have heard terms such as “the 5–minute bug–out bag” or the “30–minute bug–out bag” and wondered what they mean. Essentially, a number defined bug–out bag refers to the amount of time it takes to compile and pack the contents of said bag. A preparation exercise can help even the unprepared novice feel confident and ready to bug–out.
The rules of the exercise are simple: Lock your front door. Grab a stopwatch or an alarm clock and set it for a pre–determined amount of time. Let the clock run and start moving. Do not stop moving until the clock or alarm goes off. In the meantime, take your list of desired items and scour your home for them. See how many different items you can compile in the allotted time. If you chose 30 minutes as your allotted time, at the end of it you will have your “30–minute bug–out bag.” It really is that simple.