Remember the “Nomad Theory”, that says you can deal with almost anything if you have a bottle of water, handgun and 1000 bucks? That’s pretty good.
Working with that minimum concept I have another one of my own for your consideration. The “FerFAL Principle” goes: With a gun, a couple passports, credit cards and 5000 bucks you can buy what you may need, relocate to several countries and eventually start over.
The Nomad Theory is correct in a strict term with the inclusion of water, but in 99.9% of the cases you can either find water or just buy it. True, it is essential for life right after oxygen, but how many people die of thirst? As clearly essential as it is it would take a very specific scenario and location for you to die of lack of water. Strictly speaking, the items I list are what you need to relocate, move to the next state or catch a flight and start over somewhere else.
You could even do without the firearm too, but lets suppose a worst case scenario where violence becomes rampant and you may need protection, either while getting to the airport in a last minute flight or buying your way across the border. It wouldn’t hurt to have a few gold coins for a collapsed dollar scenario. Up until now though, a bunch of $100 buys most of what you need. The credit cards become important for getting a hotel room across the globe, renting or buying a car, but in the affected area they may not be accepted so that’s why you have cash too.
Again, it’s a bare bone proposition. If I had to go through the door now never to come back only with what I have in my pockets those would be items I don’t want to be without, items I cant just buy off the shelf, and would need some time to get. Of course I’d like to add a bag, food, water, spare clothes, etc, the typical BOB, but with those I could travel, eventually buy what I need and start over. The passport and credit cards, those you need with some time in advance, you can’t buy them off the shel, neither can you improvise them.
A cell phone (wi fi capable, combined with Skype) along with a healthy contact list would be invaluable as well. Even better if those are contacts in the countries I could go to.
Mobility and the possibility to acquire resources is the key here. More food for thought.