Many people don’t stop to think about the various survival uses for grocery bags that exist. After all, most people are content using these bags to transport their groceries, pick up dog poop, and line a trash can before disposing of them.
However, the good news is there are LOTS of ways to use these handy plastic bags in an emergency! And once you realize what these are, you’ll want to save every last one between now and an emergency!
12 Astounding Survival Uses For Grocery Bags
NOTE: Keep in mind these aren’t ALL the survival uses for grocery bags. However, it’s a good starting point. If you think of something we missed, be sure to add it in the Comments section at the bottom.
1 – DIY Pillow
Need a place to rest your head? Grab a plastic grocery bag and fill it with soft materials, like leaves or soft tree needles (Douglas Fir and Eastern White Pine work best). Close the bag and you’ve got a pillow for the night.
Pro Tip: Want a King size pillow? Stuff multiple bags, and then tape them together.
2 – Keep Your Food Safe
Once you go to bed, animals like bears, raccoons and more may come sniffing around for a snack. Protect your food by placing your survival food in a plastic bag and tying it up high in a tree.
This makes the animals less likely to get it. Not to mention, it’ll prevent them from tearing your camp apart looking for it.
3 – Track Your Path
Want to get found by rescue teams? Or want to remember where you came from in a confusing forest? You can mark your path with the help of plastic grocery bags. Cut them into strips and tie brightly colored bags around tree trunks or branches as you walk (you can tie them together to make them longer).
4 – Get Some Grub
Use brightly colored plastic grocery bags to attract fish. You can do this by adding a piece of the bag to your lure/bait. You can also poke holes into the bag, tie the bag to a stick, and placing the bag in the water to use as a DIY fishing net.
5 – Hold Your Gear
Got too many bug out supplies? You can hold them in grocery bags as you travel. Remember – lining multiple bags together makes these much more durable.
6 – Protect Precious Objects
Many preppers carry valuables (whether emotionally valuable or monetarily valuable) while bugging out. And, if they’re breakable, they can easily shatter while jostling around in a bug-out bag.
Help protect them by wrapping them in plastic grocery bags. Then pack softer materials (like clothing) around them to help keep them safe.
7 – Separate What’s Drenched
Oftentimes you’ll find you need to keep wet clothes, jackets, etc. apart from the rest of your dry gear/clothing. You can do this with the help of a plastic grocery bag. Place all the wet things in the bag until you find a safe place to dry them out.
8 – Gather Edibles
Foraging for edible plants and berries? A plastic grocery bag can really help you out. Store these in the bag as you forage and you’ll be able to carry lots at once without having to make extra trips.
9 – Secure Your Shelter
If you’re using a tarp with eyelets, you can use plastic grocery bags to help secure your shelter. Simply cut the bag into strips and use these strips to go through the eyelet, and then tie around a nearby tree.
Pro Tip: Bag strips are stronger when they’re twisted together. Twisting a single strip, or multiple strips together, can help make these even stronger.
10 – See In The Snow/Ice
If you know a snowstorm is about to hit, you can make sure your car is ready to go. Tie plastic grocery bags around your side mirrors and windshield wipers. (Make sure to also stand up your wipers, so they don’t get stuck to the windshield).
Doing this can help protect your car from snow/ice buildup, and makes the de-icing process a whole lot easier.
11 – Insulate Your Shelter
Want to make your shelter warmer? Insulate it with plastic grocery bags. You can line the windows, walls and roof with them to help keep the heat in and the drafts/moisture out.
12 – DIY Waterproofing
Need to keep your shoes dry from the snow and rain? Tie plastic bags around them before walking (or before storing your shoes for the night). This will help ensure that moisture wicks off, and keeps your footwear dry.
BONUS: Even More Survival Uses For Grocery Bags
Like was said at the beginning, this article doesn’t include nearly all of the various survival uses for grocery bags. However, here are some more you’ll enjoy…