In the year of our Lord 2021, a little bit of paranoia is just good old-fashioned common sense. And after surviving the plague year of 2020, it feels like anything could happen at any moment. Between environmental crises, worldwide pandemics and the more recent talks of UFO activity, there are plenty of very good reasons to be prepared for the worst.
Look, we don’t want to be alarmist, and we like to maintain a positive attitude in general. However, that can be a hard thing to do when the news is full of breaking alerts about hurricanes, droughts, supply chain problems, forest fires, earthquakes, pandemics and political unrest. For all these reasons, we think it’s a good idea to plan for disaster. Most importantly, that means keeping a well-stocked emergency kit. But have you thought about what you would do if cell phone towers or the electrical grid suddenly went down?
Turns out, there’s one very old-fashioned device that could be a life-saver when it comes to worst-case scenarios — and we’re guessing most millennials don’t even have one in their house. That’s right, we’re talking about the humble AM/FM radio.
An emergency radio is sure to come in handy if you lose power in a natural disaster, civic emergency or find yourself amidst a zombie apocalypse. For less than $12, it certainly doesn’t hurt to keep an AM/FM radio in your emergency kit. Without access to your smartphone or computer, an old-fashioned radio might just be your only link to the outside world. Even when all else fails, evacuation information and other important emergency broadcasts will be available over the radio.
Smartphones have largely made radios irrelevant, and many of us never even think about the radio unless we’re in the car. But if cell phone towers and Wi-Fi go dark, you’re going to be completely disconnected from the world. And, hey, until disaster strikes, you can still use these radios to listen to local sports, news, weather and music.
Vondior AM/FM Battery Operated Portable Pocket Radio
This simple transistor radio takes things way back (but in a good way). With digital technology all but taking over the world, having a radio is an easy way to unplug and take in information in the event of a major emergency. Blackout? No problem. No cell reception? No problem. No WiFi? No problem. This AM/FM pocket radio runs on AA batteries for a completely wireless and off-the-grid experience. You can listen to your favorite music or news station without interruption no matter what life throws at you next.
It’s important to note that this device isn’t really designed for everyday use, and reviewers note that it’s not quite pocket-sized. However, it is an amazing item to keep stored in your emergency kit so it’s available when you need it most. Currently, the Vondior radio has earned more than 10,000 reviews on Amazon, where it’s currently marked down by $8.55 for a limited time.
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Vondior Store AM FM Battery Operated Portable Pocket Radio
Kaito Solar Powered Radio With Flashlight
If you’re looking for something a bit more durable, then this durable emergency radio has all the bells and whistles. You won’t even need a portable generator or batteries to use this device.
This AM/FM device can be powered five different ways in a disaster. It operates through solar energy, AA batteries, a hand crank, USB input or regular AC/DC outlets. It definitely pulls through in the event of a major emergency, featuring a reading lamp, LED flashlight and S.O.S. beacon light. There are seven pre-programmed NOAA weather channels, plus it comes equipped with PEAS (Public Emergency Alert System) to keep you and your family safe and informed through any emergency event. The built-in standard output port also charges other devices such as smartphones, cameras, and more.
Kaito KA500 5-way Powered Solar Radio
JUDY Emergency Kit
As far as emergency kits go, JUDY is one of our absolute favorites. While it’s a bit overpriced when you consider what’s inside, this brand has a lot to recommend it. These survival bags are filled with pre-packed boxes that contain all of the essentials you’ll need in a disaster: first aid equipment, warmth, food and water, safety tools and more. The supplies themselves come in a high-visibility waterproof bag, and there’s something to be said about an emergency kit that you don’t have to pack yourself. We’ve long been big fans of JUDY here at SPY, but you can check out our guide to the best emergency kits if you’re looking for something more affordable.