Long-Term Preparation: Moving


Flight is an option as long as you can stay anonymous and undetected.

Prepare beforehand if you want to do it.

When you run, you’re sacrificing absolutely every part of your past life.

While governments are strong, they’re not as invincible as they appear.

If you’ve run, you’ll likely never be fully safe for the rest of your life.

How should I flee?

If you’re prepared to flee somewhere safer, stay anonymous and undetected:
  • Usually, you’re leaving the region because you can’t maintain your needs or it’s too dangerous to keep living there.
  • Have a clear idea ahead of time where you’re going and what you expect to do once you get there.

More than anything else, your largest possible threat is a government that wants you apprehended or dead, though natural disasters can often make somewhere completely uninhabitable.

However, governments don’t always want you specifically:
  • Governments often want more power and control, and you happen to be the means to it.
  • Most preppers get obsessive about protecting against their government, but tend to overstate their self-importance.
  • If you’re behaving like everyone else (and not speaking out publicly against the government), it’s highly unlikely they will pick you out as a target.

Before it happens

Since you’ll leave clues with everyone you’ve talked with as well as all your digital activity, the absolute worst way to leave is throwing everything in a suitcase and running.

Following you in real life takes more work than following you via computer systems, so you’re safest if you minimize your digital trail first:
  • Get rid of bank cards, credit cards, membership cards or anything else with your name on it.
  • Get rid of all your social networks on the pretense that you’re spending too much time online.
  • Use every conceivable cybersecurity trick to stay anonymous.
  • Habitually use the Deep Web with Tor Browser and an alternate form of currency (e.g., crypto) instead of your personally identifiable information.
  • However, make sure you leave some digital information, since a completely void identity is highly suspicious.
    • To throw them off your trail, mislead with false or incomplete information.

Connect with the black market before you need it:
  • Only work with connections you know, since “illegal items for sale” is often a conspicuous government trick.
  • You’re trying to keep your options open, but should only use it against evil.
  • Mind how you access the black market, since even using Tor Browser could be a red flag in some regions of the world.

Understand your rights as a citizen:
  • Each country has its own set of rights, which don’t always honor basic human rights.
  • The purpose of knowing and enforcing your rights is only to prevent getting arrested.
    • In a court of law, don’t expect a speedy trial, fair representation, or an unbiased judge.
  • Avoid discussion with officials as much as possible, since one off-hand remark on your end can justify just about anything they want to do to you.

Consider how you’ll leave:
  • Have a baseline expectation of human behavior, and an escape plan in mind that takes the most advantage of your body type and natural skills.
    • If you’re a large person, you can barricade doors.
    • If you’re smaller, you can fit through tiny passageways.
    • If you’re athletic, you can navigate unconventional routes.
  • Less weight means more mobility and a smaller profile.
  • You can travel in an RV, but you’re driving a resource-hogging conspicuous terrain-limited vehicle.
  • Living in a car/truck is much easier to sleep in and move with, but you’ll need to meet your needs from your environment.
  • Going on foot or via bicycle will mean every ounce will matter, but you can stay well-hidden if you stay away from most densely populated areas.

If you have a gun and are trying to stay inconspicuous across national borders, you’ll typically want to get rid of it, but keep it if you’ll need to negotiate or fight.

Make sure you and everyone going with you has their passports before you plan to leave:
  • Passports last for 10 years, and are relatively easy to renew.
  • Don’t get false documents or identification, since your contact may alert the authorities.
  • More people means it’s harder to travel together, so plan to split up.

Talk to an attorney about making a corporation in another country:
  • That corporation will serve as the means to validating your new identity.
  • Of course, you’ll need to find a way to get a new identity to make that corporation, which will likely be a complicated set of lies.
  • Have a plan ahead of time which country you want to go to.

Letting out your secret is the easiest way to get caught, so don’t tell anybody about your plans except when they absolutely need to know:
  • Every person you tell adds another possible lead for an investigator.
  • You’re trusting your secret to the weakest-willed, most oblivious, or least socially skilled person you’ve told.

Leaving the country becomes more difficult proportionally to how important a member of society you are.

Get a pay-as-you-go phone with cards to top it off.

Learn to pick locks and how to detect shoddy locks, but don’t buy a lockpick because it’ll look highly suspicious if you’re detained.

Deciding to run

Depending on the scope of the disaster, you’re not likely running from the crisis alone:
  • Very often, hordes of refugees will flee wars or natural disasters and overwhelm the nearby infrastructure.
  • If everyone is leaving, and you’re not certain where you’re going, it may be better to stick around, at least for a while.
    • The best way to fight against a government’s control is to grow your own food.

When you leave, you’re burning literally every social bridge you’ve built and may cause others to suffer:
  • Filling a new identity is the emotional equivalent of burning your house down with everyone you know inside, so make sure you and everyone with you are 100% ready for it.
  • Cut off absolutely every connection with your friends and family.
  • Expect that you’ll never talk with any of them ever again.
  • If you’re leaving an oppressive government, anyone you knew might be tortured to reveal where you went.

Destroy your phone before you go.

Wear bland colors to blend more easily into your environment.

If you must escape your home:
  1. Quietly get to a window and check for danger outside.
  2. Have one adult go out first, then pass any children through the window.
  3. Run away from any voices you hear.

Tiptoe effectively:
  1. Breathe slowly and quietly.
  2. Lower your body and extend your arms at waist level.
  3. Only move your legs.
  4. Make each step with your toes and ball of your foot first, then leaning onto your forward leg.
  5. Watch for loud surfaces.
    • Walk on the outside of staircases to avoid squeaking.
    • Lift a door a little when opening it to keep it from squeaking.

You can open most doors that aren’t on outside walls with a credit card.

You can scale a barbed wire fence if you throw a thick blanket or rubber mat over it.

There are several ways to get quickly through a crowd:
  • Use a “karate chop” motion ahead of you to squeeze through people.
  • Run with a fire extinguisher.
  • Shake pennies in a can while loudly asking for change.

If you don’t stay near civilization, you’ll have to face natural threats instead.

Human threats

Governments may feel like they have all-encompassing power, but they’re far less effective than they look:
  • The people who run countries are just like you, but with more power and (typically) less experiences than you that may give you an edge in certain situations.
  • Large organizations require bureaucracy to function correctly, especially after their purpose changes when a coup or invasion is over.

If you are being targeted, however, leave the country immediately unless you plan to start/join a coup and fight back, since that government has more manpower and guns than you.

Just because you’ve arrived and integrated doesn’t necessarily mean you’re safe:
  • For the rest of your life, you must act and behave as if your new life is the only life you’ve known.
  • Given how much people are connected, this can be absolutely nerve-wracking if you ever encounter someone from your old life.