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The EDC Bag – What You Carry Everyday

“Dada, what’s the name of my bag again?” “EDC bag.” “Why is it called EDC?” “It stands for everyday carry because it has in it all the stuff that you carry with you everyday.” Though she sometimes forgets the acronym, my daughter takes her EDC bag with her wherever she goes. She picked up the [...]

“Dada, what’s the name of my bag again?”

“EDC bag.”

“Why is it called EDC?”

“It stands for everyday carry because it has in it all the stuff that you carry with you everyday.”

Though she sometimes forgets the acronym, my daughter takes her EDC bag with her wherever she goes. She picked up the habit after asking me one day why I always carry the same bag with me everywhere. My explanation must have resonated because within a matter of moments she was back at my side with a little knit bag.

“Could this be my EDC bag?”

She then proceeded to fill with with many of the same items that she figured she would need to go exploring:

A map of the world
Her smartphone
A magnifying glass
A notebook with a pencil
A flashlight
A whistle
A pass to a museum
A plastic pirate coin

Petra and her everyday carry gear.

Petra and her everyday carry gear.

What I keep in my EDC bag:

My everyday travel gear.

My everyday travel gear. There is no knife because knives are hassles to travel with.

The idea behind the EDC bag is to always keep the tools that you regularly require in the same bag that you carry with you every time you leave the house so that you always have them with you in case they are needed. It is a system to cut out the continuous streams of decision making so that I can focus on more important things. I know all of the journalism gear that I need is in the same bag at all times. I know that my essential travel gear is in the same bag at all times. I know that the things that I reach for dozens, if not hundreds, of times per day, are always going to be within range.

I don’t need to think about this anymore — this stuff is always right at my side.

When I leave the hotel I don’t think to myself, “What am I going to need? Am I going to need a compass? Am I going to need my sunglasses? What did I do with my flashlight?” No, I don’t have to go through this checklist because I keep all of my essential daily-use gear in one singular, indivisible set. Keeping this set together prevents unexpectedly needed items from being left behind. Situations regularly come that you can’t plan for, circumstances often change without warning, and much of the gear in an EDC bag is there precisely for those “just in case” kinds of scenarios.

Basically, EDC bag is just a manly way of saying purse.

Filed under: Travel Gear

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3526 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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Wade Shepard is currently in: Prague, Czech Republic

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