What Makes A Good Urban Survival Guide?

by Jack Keaton

What is an Urban Survival Guide?


Many people don’t understand the difference between an urban survival guide, and other types of survival guides (i.e. wilderness survival guides, outdoor survival guides, etc), and they also don’t know what they should look for in an urban survival course – what makes one good, or worth investing in?

An urban survival guide focuses specifically on survival tips and techniques for use in a densely populated area – either urban or suburban – and focuses on survival in a disaster scenario.  These survival scenarios can be related to a number of situations, such as natural disasters (earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, blizzards, etc), terrorist attacks, government and economic collapse, nuclear war, or hostile invasion.

A good urban survival guide will focus on a few key topics:

Urban Survival Guide Topic #1 – Preparation

Many urban survival guides don’t place proper emphasis on the topic of preparation in advance , before a disaster happens.  And some of the poorer quality guides outright ignore this topic.

The fact is that 90% of your ability to survive in the aftermath of a disaster lies in how prepared you are. You never know when a disaster will strike – so its important to be prepared ahead of time.

Of course, you can waste a lot of time and resources is don’t understand exactly what you need to have and do to prepare. This is why the very best urban survival guides spend a great deal of time focusing on the preparation phase – and specifically on what you survival gear and supplies you really need to have on hand, and what you can ignore and avoid.

For more information on the best urban survival guides, read our Urban Survival Guide Reviews.

Urban Survival Guide Topic #2 – Escape

In the immediate aftermath of a disaster, your #1 focus should be on escaping the affected urban area. A good urban survival guide will teach you how to find the best escape route out, how to identify major chokepoints and bottlenecks, where to go, and, perhaps most importantly, when you should leave. The very best urban survival courses actually teach you how to anticipate disasters ahead of time – virtually a “sixth sense” tuned in to disaster.

Of course, the majority of people living in urban settings simply can’t escape in time – because the roads are clogged, transportation systems and infrastructure (i.e. trains, bridges) are destroyed or are not operational, or because there is simply no other place to go. When “bugging out” is not an option, a good urban survival guide will teach you how to…

Urban Survival Guide Topic #3 – Navigating an Urban Landscape

The fact is you may not be able to escape the city after a major disaster or attack. Your survival guide should teach you how to successfully and safely navigate an urban landscape during and in the aftermath of a major disaster or catastrophe.

Think back to the videos and pictures of people mindlessly wandering around downtown Manhattan after the 9/11 terrorist attacks – people covered in ash, wandering aimlessly in shock with no direction, no idea of what to do or where to go.

If someone had told those people to go jump in the Hudson river, they would have done it, because they simply didn’t know how to react to a disaster like that, and they didn’t know how to navigate an urban landscape after a disaster. They didn’t know what to do or where to go or how to get there.

And keep this in mind – that was just TWO BUILDINGS – imagine if that had been multiple buildings destroyed as part of a larger attack, or even the entire city?  Your urban survival guide MUST teach you how to successfully and safely navigate an urban landscape after a disaster, or no amount of preparation and stockpiling will keep you alive.

Urban Survival Guide Topic #4 – Protection and Safety

A sad reality of any survival situation in any town or city in the world is this: most people will not be prepared.  In fact, its estimated that 91% of the U.S. population is not prepared to survive any kind of a disaster. And those who don’t “have” will try to take from those who “do”.

Like it or not, if you are well prepared for a disaster, and you have stockpiles of the necessary supplies to stay alive, you can easily become a target of rioting mobs of starving people.

A good urban survival guide will teach you two key things in relationship to protection and safety:  First, how to become “invisible” – to avoid the notice of the mobs, to not be seen as someone who is prepared, who has stockpiles of food, water, and medical supplies. If you aren’t noticed, you are less likely to be attacked.

Second, your survival course should teach you how to fortify your home, and how to defend it and your family against attack.

Urban Survival Guides – Final Thoughts

No one likes to contemplate disaster. It’s something we’d rather not think about. But ignoring the potential for natural disaster, terrorist attack, societal collapse into anarchy, economic collapse, or outright nuclear war doesn’t change the fact that these events can and DO happen – and at an increasing rate.

Educating yourself on survival is a must. Every living, breathing person should pick up a copy of at least ONE urban survival guide or urban survival course.  The more prepared you are, the better chance you have of not ending up “pushing daisies” when disaster strikes.

Prepare yourself to survive, and more importantly, to keep you family safe.  Disaster is coming – no one knows from what, where, or when – but its coming. The time is now to prepare.

Click on the links below read reviews of the best urban survival guides.

Survive In Place Review

40 Days and 40 Nights Review

Survive Anything Review


Jack Keaton – Your Apocalypse Survival Guide Advocate!

Enter your email address below to watch a FREE Urban Survival Video

 We respect your email privacy, and will keep your information safe!

Incoming search terms:

  • urban survival guide
  • urban survival checklist
  • urban survival tips