11 Urban Survival Skills You Should Master Right Now

More than 50% of the world population lives in urban areas as per the data of The United Nations. While most of us get training to live in the wilderness, it is of equal importance learning about survival skills & techniques in urban areas.

The necessity is even more alarming than the past after the recent pandemic. The people of rural & remote areas should also get a few hints of survival skills in the urban areas in this age of urbanization. In this article, we will discuss such 11 urban survival skills one should master.

Finding food

Food is the prime thing for survival. And we get the taste of how difficult it becomes when the shortage of food occurs. We have witnessed a living hell when we saw every grocery stores running out of food during the recent pandemic.

In such circumstances, you have to find a natural water body where you can opt for fishing. You can even find a few ducks which you can kill & roast to meet your immediate hunger. Go to primitive time, and start hunting.

Finding fresh water

The most important thing is finding fresh water in case of any emergency. All you have to do is finding a water body from where you can hoard up water in bottles & buckets to quench your thirst and for your daily activities.

But you must purify the water before consuming it so that you don’t catch any water-borne disease. You can also collect rainwater & snow depending upon the climate around you. These two are a great source of fresh water.

Finding a shelter

Humans need three basic things to survive, food, shelter & cloth. Having a safe shelter is the second most important thing for survival. You have to place yourself in the position of a homeless person to find a home in an urban area.

In an emergency, look for public garages, empty bus stands with sheds, subways, empty trains, or buses to spend nights. You can also build your place with cardboards & huge polyester sheets to save you from environmental extremities like rain & snowfall.

Hoarding up warm & waterproof clothes

Clothes are the third most necessary things human need for survival. It not only protects your dignity but also saves you from many other extreme situations. Clothes protect you from heat & cold, waterproof garments protect you from rain & snowfall. So, you should pile up an amount of cloth beforehand to save you from natural extremities.

Possessing an emergency kit

Possession of an emergency kit under any unfortunate scenario is a must-have while trying to survive through any incident. Having emergency kits such as medical supplies and a first aid kit to address health issues or accidents is necessary. Suppose, you catch a cold or are down with a fever, having a few basic medicines will help you sail through the period smoothly.

Learning self-defense

Burglary, stealing & barging into someone’s space are pretty common when any national emergency occurs.

Apart from this, other anti-social activities also rise because police personnel remains busy in life-saving activities. And this causes criminals to increase their anti-social activities more than before. Hence, it is better to learn self-defense to stay away from the risk of getting robbed or raped.

Everyone must know the self-defense mechanism irrespective of gender to survive these situations. You also have to pay attention to little details like, if someone is following you or if you sense something unusual at your place.

Having fixing skills

You must learn a few basic skills like fixing roofs, vehicles, electricity, plumbing, cooking, washing, mopping, etc. It is unlikely to find a helper and it is even harder to hire somebody in an urban area to do all these chores.

Plus, you don’t know when any disaster occurs, it makes you prepare for any unforeseen situation to come. But you must possess a few fixing tools to help yourself in such situations.

Bartering supplies

Having supplies that you can barter a few things with is most important while any emergency like war, natural calamity, or economic downturn occurs.

You may have plenty of food but you need other supplies for daily purposes, you can easily exchange an amount of food with someone willing to trade-off the things you want. Things like feminine products, basic medicine, shampoo. Cigarettes, diapers, candles, matches, toothbrush & paste will be high in demand in such situations.

Negotiating Skill

Possessing the skill to negotiate is a blessing in disguise because you already have the skill to survive an emergency. Negotiation is the other part of the bartering system.

You must know what to barter how much to exchange with the excess amount of things you don’t need. You should also have emotional intelligence with good social skills so that nobody can take advantage of you.


This is the most important skill one should possess to survive urban emergencies. And adaptability doesn’t come by channelizing your thoughts only, it comes with practice. But how can you practice an unforeseen circumstance skill?

The answer is simple, put yourself in uncomfortable situations, and try coming out of your comfort zone. Apart from all these, having the right mindset will also help you to overcome any calamity.

Reading Maps

Reading maps especially topographic map is as important as possessing other abilities. You will not be able to access the internet or take the help of Google map if any natural disaster or war occurs in your country. If you already possess the quality of reading topographic maps, it will help you find the stores or places. It will even help you to run from the troubled area if you know the exit points.

Developing urban survival skills will help you to be in a better position than the people around you. The more you prepare yourself to fight any disaster, the more will be easier for you to come out of it. You can even pull out the people around you from the situation. 

Related Posts

Article by:

Eric Birch

Eric Birch is a survival specialist trained in the U.S. military's Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) program. When he’s not ferociously learning new survival tactics, he enjoys the great outdoors, and/or cheering on one of his favorite sports teams.

Email Author

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.