I'm taking a trip to the dollar store this evening and I was wondering if you guys have seen any cheap stuff there that would be good for survival kits? I like to pick up little things for my kit when I'm out and about.
For the most part, dollar store stuff is junk. But you can find some good stuff there. As has already been mentioned, cheap cord and soap. I've also found lots of small candles. Take a look around and see what they have.
I've also found those cheap ponchos. Not great rain gear, but if you are putting together small kits for the whole family, can afford them now. Then at a later time, replace them with something more durable.
Their stuff is junk, no doubt about it. However, I've found a plethora of medical supplies at the 99 Cents Only store and built a pretty decent first aid kit. I had to supplement it with items from other stores, but it's a good backbone of gauze, sports tape, cold compresses, cotton balls, etc. Quality notwithstanding, I think it'll stop bleeding. =)
I agree with it being junk, but some stuff there is the same as anywhere else for a cheap price. It just takes time to look around and figure it out. I think can openers and such is a good thing to get from there. You have to watch out sometimes though, because sometimes with Dollar Stores you can find the same exact thing at Wal-Mart for a cheaper price!
Watch for things like Canned foods, potted meats, ect.
They are usually cheaper at the 'Dollar' stores than at the grocery stores.
Also, watch for 'Closeouts',
Butane lighters, scissors, pots & pans, stuff like that.
Most of it is junk, but every once in a while you will run into a close out of good stuff, like the 'EMT' scissors that will cut a penny in two for cheap.
Really handy to have, and when they are 59¢ a pair or 99¢ a pair you can sprinkle your gear with a set in several places... And they are handy enough to have several!
I ran into a three piece serving set, large spoon, spatula, meat fork made of husky stainless steel (no plastic handle to melt off!) for about a buck a while back.
Good score for the camping gear!
No such thing as too many stick matches, especially if you find the 'Strike Anywhere' kind!
I either use small zip lock bags and separate them,
or I vacuum pack them into small 'Serving' sizes to keep them dry when I'm out and about!...
I wouldn't put my life on the line with any "Dollar Store" tools or some other stuff they have but other items like soap, simple first aid items etc........work just as good as anything else from more expensive stores.
yeah emergency stuff, bandages, antibiotics, liquid skin (or whatever they call it) all that stuff would be good. you could get a few simple things like flashlights and stuff too if you need them.
I tell you what i have been buying. During halloween they sold those glow sticks for 99cents. ya know those things that you snap and the glow like 8 hours. Would come in handy in an emergency situation. you could even tie a string and whirl them if you had to alert someone of where you were or something too. (if they have the hook end)
The "Dollar and More" store nearby had a nice collection of Cast Iron cook-wear. I took the time to make sure that it was cleaned and seasoned properly prior to cooking with. It was fairly inexpensive, and, it gets daily usage. Other things that I buy at dollar stores would be packs of pencils, notebooks, wash-cloths / towels, cleaning supplies ... call it comfort survival gear.
In my wilderness first-aid training, we were taught how to use "dollar store" stuff to perform first-aid when required.
I will buy stuff from the dollar store with plans that the products will have a use today - not just stored "just-in-case". Being prepared means using the stuff - and - if it comes to a SHTF situation, then you know if the stuff will or will not work.
My bug-out gear changes from year to year - it gets used and replaced regularly.
As said before if you are careful with what you buy from there the dollar store can be a good place to help fill your kit.
I don't buy tools there but there are many small items that can be used, from medical supplies to food, we have one here that is was added on to our hardware store, they have some pretty nice things in there.
When I was going through the Outdoor training with my Webelo Cub Scout den I wanted to give the boys one of those combo whistle, match holder, signal mirror kits. Our local Gandar Mountain had them for $5.00 each. Our dollar store had a larger kit in a yellow bag, grabbed 8 of them for the kids and when I got home and opened it up each bag had the same $5.00 one Gandar Mountain was selling plus some other items for them to carry.
We have "Dollar Stores" where everything costs $1 and then we have a chain of discount stores called "Dollar General", both can be good places to shop for preps if you are careful. The regular Dollar Store sometimes has deals on canned foods and once in a while they have a serious specialon gallons of water at 2 for $1, they do have candles cheap but their tools and knives and such generally are to be avoided.
I went to Dollar General ( Its like Family Dollar) on Sat and dropped about $10 and got some good prep items. I always look for specials on large sized canned goods like Dinty Moore etc and they had some good sales going as well as close out dehydrated mashed potatos that were cheap. Dollar General is a GREAT place to buy stuff like medicine, first aid stuff and cleaning supplies as they sell name brand stuff like Advil and Mucinex at a way better cost then the grocery stores!
I try to spend about $20 weekly on preps and I make a game out of stretching that cash, both the dollar type stores have a place for smart shopping!
I used to deliver to family dollar. They have in the back two dumpsters. One for cardboard one for trash. Store policy is anything damaged has to be coded then thrown out. Store employees can't take the stuff home and the drivers can't have, or buy cheap, the stuff. it all goes into the dumpster. Check often during the week and see when the trash gets picked up. The Warehouse just throws the stuff into the trailers. Then stuff falls all over while driving no matter how carefully.
Don't tell anyone but I "found" lot's of broken candles. Leaking detergent gets thrown out, Usually there are two jugs per box and most likely one isn't leaking.
I'm not cheap, I just like to rescue good stuff from the landfill. Makes good donations too.