Today I’ve got an important EDC upgrade to share..
A Complete Guide To Finding (& Using) A Tactical Wallet For Survival
Because been carrying a tactical wallet for years now…
And I will NEVER return to a traditional billfold.
But the number of tactical models on the market is overwhelming!
I spent hours researching features and reviews before I bought mine.
Weeding out the great from the mediocre.
TOPICS IN THIS GUIDE… ↓(click to jump)
- Best Tactical Wallets Today
- What Makes A Wallet “Tactical”?
- Evolution: Boring To Tactical
- How To Slim Down Your Wallet
- The Best Tactical Wallet Features
Remember the Seinfeld episode about “George’s enormous wallet”?
One with every card, receipt, and paper scrap, turning it into a think lump:
↓ George’s Exploding Wallet
THAT’s what we’re trying to avoid with the following wallets:
The SecureTech Carbon Wallet from American Gunner isn't just a great-looking tactical wallet...
It's also equipped with RFID-blocking tech to keep your card data safe and secure from digital thieves!
What is RFID Blocking Tech? Criminals are using new technology to scan the data on your credit cards and other cards that have a "smart chip".
It means your card number and expiry date can be stolen in seconds without you even knowing it.
But when you use this carbon wallet, your data is 100% protected as it blocks any scanners!
Plus here are some more of the key features:
- Stylish Slim Design - ditch the bulky bifold wallet
- Tough Carbon Fiber - won't break!
- Expandable Card Holder - up to 7 cards!
- Tough Grip Money Clip - secure your cash
- Stainless Steel Fittings - won't rust
And finally, American Gunner stands behind their products with a rock-solid 60-day money-back guarantee. No hassles, no questions asked!
NOTE: At the time this article was published, you could get 2 Bonus Tactical Flashlights if you buy 2 wallets.
Click here to see if this deal is still available.
If you’re embracing the tactical minimalist wallet, a tactical money clip is the smallest package you can find.
Gerber’s Money Clip features:
- A strong steel clip sized to hold 4 credit cards and about 4 folded bills (you can likely get a few more, but it’ll be tight).
- And a textured composite front plate for grip.
However, secreted in a locking sheath within the front plate is a 1.75” fixed blade knife.
It's easy to deploy due to its ring grip. And the knife is a great backup blade without adding another separate item to your pockets!
- Very minimalist design
- Hidden blade
- Solid, secure hold for ~4 cards and cash
- The knife grip is small, so not suitable for primary use
- Expensive for a money clip
↓ Gerber GDC Money Clip + Secret Blade
With a solid CNC aluminum frame and top grain leather, the Dango T01 is a stylish take on a tactical wallet. And it's capable of carrying up to 12 cards and folded cash.
But don’t let the fashionable cover fool you. The T01 has lots of technical features hidden below the surface, including:
- RFID blocking
- saw blade
- knife blade
- paracord tensioner
- 10/15mm hex keys
- smartphone stand
- nail puller
- and ruler
And the multitool card is removable to make the Dango T01 safe for TSA security checkpoints.
It truly is an upgrade to a tactical minimalist wallet!
- True multitool - in removable card form
- Solid build and materials
- RFID blocking
- A little bulky for some tastes
↓ Dango T01 Bi-Fold Spec-Ops Special Edition Wallet
The QUIQLITE TAQ wallet is another good example of adding extra features to a piece of EDC gear.
On top of its function as an RFID-blocking wallet, the TAQ adds a few handy tools and a LED tactical micro flashlight.
Extra light is always a great idea!
The solid construction and tough steel frame make for a durable addition to your gear.
- Integrated LED flashlight
- Secure snap closure
- Integrated toolset
↓ Quiqlite TAQ Wallet Review
The Extremus is a design that won’t weigh you down.
The sleek carbon fiber and stainless steel panels make for a snug fit but can hold up to 15 cards!
The heavy-duty money clip holds folded bills without interfering with card capacity. It even features RFID blocking!
The elastic is strong, so a few users have reported it's difficult to select and remove an individual card once they near the 15-card limit.
- Minimalist design
- Credit card holder - 15 cards, plus cash
- Very lightweight thanks to carbon fiber
- Hard to remove a single card
↓ Extremus Tactical RFID Ultra-Thin Carbon Fiber Wallet
If you’re looking for a minimalist wallet that still sports individual card slots and bill compartments, the Maxpedition Spartan is a good option.
It features a huge array of pockets for such a small wallet. And it has at least 6 card slots and several other compartments.
It’s also a larger shape than other men's tactical wallets. This may make it easier to find in a pocket or use if you’re wearing gloves.
I’m not a huge fan of Velcro closures. But they ARE more secure.
And the outside-facing ID sleeve allows you to show your driver's license without opening it.
- Lots of pockets make an easy transition from traditional billfold
- Large size can be used with gloves
- ID sleeve on the outside
- It might be difficult to fit in small pockets
- Thicker than other minimalist wallets
- Some have reported colors not as advertised
↓ Maxpedition Spartan Wallet Review
Spec Ops has developed a unique take on the tactical wallet with their T.H.E (“Tactical Holds Everything”) wallet.
It features a multi-fold design that rolls up when stowed.
It’s large enough to carry a passport. But it still feels more compact than other equivalents (in the travel wallet lineup).
You can even thread it with paracord for a neck carry but it is also made for both pocket and belt carry.
It’s well-built and carries a lifetime warranty, so you know it’s built to last!
- Can carry three ways (pocket, neck, belt)
- Very durable construction
- Two ID sleeves
- Quiet “SharkBite” closure system
- Large for a pocket carry
↓ Spec Ops T.H.E. Wallet Jr: Tactical Cash Keeper
↓ Trayvax OG 2.0: An Almost Perfect Tactical Minimalist Wallet
Pelican has branched out from secure cases to include cell phone cases and wallets.
They have a long experience making excellent waterproof, shockproof, and dustproof cases for electronics and firearms.
I have several of both.
Pelican’s waterproof wallet is a compact clamshell design. And it comes with a hard case featuring internal pockets for cards, cash, ID, keys, and other small items.
Like most Pelican cases, it floats and is completely leakproof.
Due to the rigid design, it has a fixed volume. This means it’s hard to stuff a couple of extra things inside. AND it’s always a little bulky in your pocket compared to other wallets of the same capacity.
But it’s some of the best protection from the elements you can find in a wallet!
- Waterproof, dustproof, shockproof, crushproof
- Bulky in pocket
↓ Pelican Sport Wallet 9055 Review
This wallet is the perfect balance between style and function.
Made from high-quality leather, it's built to last and withstand the rigors of daily use.
The compact size is perfect for slipping into your front or back pocket or even your EDC bag without taking up too much space.
But don't let the small size fool you. This wallet can hold up to 10 cards and has a handy slot for your ID.
It also has a center pocket for cash, receipts, or other small items you want to keep secure.
One of the best features of the 5.11 Tactical Standby Leather Card Wallet is the RFID-blocking technology, which helps protect your personal and financial information from electronic skimming devices.
So you can have peace of mind knowing that your cards and ID are safe and secure.
↓ 5.11 Tactical’s Status Bifold Leather Wallet – Tough And Durable
Like all pieces of EDC gear, it pays to look for a high-quality wallet with only the features you need.
This is one of those places where a few extra features turn an item from a single-use to a multitool.
But only if it holds up to daily abuse!
Moving to a cardholder-style wallet will be a big change if you’ve been carrying a trifold with photo slots for years.
There are several types of men’s tactical wallets.
Some do better at holding a minimal load, while others easily manage cash and other bulky paper items.
Consider what you need to carry and pick a wallet that accommodates THAT.
A wallet is a place you can add a few features you don’t normally associate with it, such as:
- Extra paracord?
- A range of wrench sizes?
- An emergency saw blade?
- RFID blocking panels?
- Bottle Opener?
If you’ve got a particular set of tools you’d like to carry as part of your EDC, this may be a good location to add them.
Since you carry a wallet daily, you must consider comfort, especially if you carry it in your back pocket!
A wallet with hard edges and sharp corners might dig into your pockets (or backside).
Over time, this can cause some real damage or discomfort.
Look for smooth designs that slip easily into your pocket without getting hung up.
Materials & Construction
Since your wallet will be used extensively, it’s worth looking for one made with top-quality, durable materials and clean, well-executed construction.
A wallet slowly coming apart at the seams isn’t secure enough to hold the vital items you carry daily.
You may also want one that’s more water resistant – like carbon fiber wallets instead of leather.
Of course, price is a motivating factor in any purchase.
The modern wallet market has a wide range of price points, and you can find one that fits your budget.
It wouldn’t be wise to spend all your money on a wallet with nothing left to store inside it!Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
Everyday Carry items are a list of things you can find in your pockets any day of the week.
- Going to the office
- A quick trip to the grocery store
- Heading out on vacation
EDC items are the items we won’t leave the house without. And for many, this list starts with a wallet.
Your wallet contains many of your life’s most critical pieces of information.
Sure, it’s quickly giving way to our smartphones.
But I’d challenge you to get through a week without relying on at least one item from your wallet.
Drivers license, insurance information, credit and debit cards, and cash.
My gym doesn’t have a smartphone app – so I’ve got a card to scan for the door there too!
So, is it any wonder that wallets have been an EDC mainstay for over 100 years?
In this time, they’ve gone from thick billfolds to slim money clips and back again.
As the world digitizes, many are choosing to slim down their wallets.
And carry only the most important items.
Leading the charge is a new class of wallets!
First off, they’re similar to a lot of other tactical gear, for example:
So let’s talk about what sets a tactical one apart from other billfolds.
It starts with the idea of only carrying mission-critical items.
No extra business cards or punch cards from the coffee shop that closed last year.
No store loyalty cards or stacks of receipts you’ll never need.
You can eliminate the bulging wallet by only carrying the absolute necessities.
Instead, swap for a trim, organized version that doesn’t take up as much space.
A new one that doesn’t take forever to sort through or weigh you down.Click here to instantly download this Complete Checklist PDF. No purchase necessary.
First, empty your wallet, assess everything inside, and put them into 3 piles.
Things you use daily (cash, primary credit card, keycards) go in one pile.
Things you might only need occasionally but are critical go in another pile.
Such as your driver’s license, insurance info, backup credit cards, etc.
Finally, things you only need a couple of times a year and aren’t a game-changer if you don’t carry, go in a third.
The rest (receipts, business cards, store loyalty cards, etc.) can be set aside.
You can store it at home, in the glove box, or in the trash.
Can You Digitize it?
Now, go through your piles one at a time. Can you find digital versions of any of the items?
My state allows me to display my vehicle insurance on a cell phone.
So I can remove the vehicle insurance from the pile.
Same for my health insurance and medical information.
But I choose to keep that card in case of an accident where I cannot open the digital version.
All my store loyalty cards also accept my phone number for access.
So those were all relegated to the desk drawer at home.
You may be able to store some information as digital pictures and keep them on your phone.
This is especially if you only use it infrequently.
Each item you can replace with a digital version reduces the bulk of your wallet.
It makes for a lighter EDC load, but it’s up to you which things you can part with.
No matter what I remove, there’s a photo of my wife and our first dog that, despite having the digital version on my phone, I can’t bring myself to remove.
One of the most commonly used pieces of your EDC kit, a wallet, is a key piece of equipment for nearly every situation.
If you take the time to strip down your wallet to the bare essentials, you’ll have a far more organized, easier-to-use, smaller, and lighter wallet in your pocket.
A tactical wallet can even supply you with some much-needed survival equipment.
These prove it’s not just a fashionable way to carry your cash around!
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