Bugout News

Bugging out basics: A realistic look at picking the right bug-out vehicle

Monday, February 03, 2020 by

When planning to bug out, you may already have an idea of where you want to go. However, how you’re going to get there might not be so clear. That’s why, if your finances permit it, you should invest in a bug-out vehicle as early as possible. In fact, a bug-out vehicle should be one of the first things you think about when planning to bug out, because where you can run off to depends on how handy your transportation plan is. (h/t to SurvivalistPrepper.net)

Before you choose your bug-out vehicle, remember that it doesn’t have to be a military-grade piece of transportation. Just remember that, above all, your means of transportation needs to be:

  • Capable. Consider how many people you’re bringing with you when making your purchase. A bug-out vehicle needs enough space for you, your passengers and all your supplies.
  • Affordable. Your bug-out vehicle shouldn’t drain your budget for other essential items such as food and water.
  • Reliable. Your vehicle doesn’t have to be the greatest car in the world, it just has to be reliable enough to, at the very least, take you to your bug-out location without breaking down.
  • EMP-proof. While there is some debate about whether an electromagnetic pulse will affect your car, consider erring on the side of caution. A strong EMP could disable all electronics, which means a lot of the newer automobiles will be greatly affected.

Keep these in mind before making your decision. Here are some bug-out vehicle options you should consider.


A beater car is an older automobile with high mileage. They won’t look pretty, but aesthetics should be the last thing on your mind. When buying a beater, reliability should be your main concern, but with enough time spent on your beater car, this may not be a big issue. Beaters can cost, on average, between $500 and $2,000. (Related: Do you have a way to bug out from your vehicle and escape the freeway?)


A camper, motorhome or RV (recreational vehicle) may be a good idea if you don’t have to worry about rough driving and if you’re bringing several people with you. It has sleeping quarters so someone else can keep driving while you get some shut eye, and it has extra storage space so you can bring more supplies with you.

ATV’s, motorbikes, mountain bikes

If you plan on bugging out on your own or with just one other person, an ATV, motorbike or a couple of mountain bikes may be a good option. They’re reliable and easy to fix, they’re affordable and capable of navigating through rougher terrain.


Depending on where you live, your best option might be not taking the road, but packing up and sailing off into the middle of a lake or out to a safe island near the shore. If your bug-out location requires a boat to get to, it provides you with extra security as well.


The last option you should consider is simply bugging out on foot. If your bug-out location is near your home or up a mountain, the best thing you can invest in is a good pair of hiking boots. Your two feet are reliable, they don’t require much upkeep and they can’t break down during an EMP attack. A good pair of boots in this instance will ensure you get to safety without damaging your feet.

Depending on your personal situation, your perfect bug-out vehicle may vary with another person. Perhaps you live in a rural area where your vehicle needs to navigate through rough terrain or perhaps you’re bugging out in the middle of winter where you need to drive through harsh weather conditions. Make an assessment of your personal situation and of the environment you’re leaving and going to before making your final decision.

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