cb radio off grid communication

7 Off the Grid Communication Options

In our day and age, we are so used to hyper-fast communication with just about anyone worldwide, that we have basically become dependent on this technology. Broadband Internet and smartphones have made it easier than ever to talk with who you want at the push of a button. Or better yet, a simple tap on your touchscreen.

But what would you do if the whole grid went down from one day to the other? What if the world went silent? Here are some off-grid communication options to help you survive and get in touch with other people, and maybe even help, in such a scenario.

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Last update on 2023-05-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

7 Off the Grid Communication Options

1. HAM Radio

Amatuer Ham Radio Operater

In case of a local crisis, or even a worldwide catastrophe, HAM radios would still work. And that is because they are not dependent on a cell tower, like smartphones are, or a satellite.

HAM radios require electricity as a power source, and that is all. If you can get your hands on a HAM radio, you are all set to send out those radio signals that can be picked up by anyone using the same type of receiver.

If you’re in an area with a repeater tower, you can even boost the signal to go out hundreds of miles.

The only downsides to this type of communication are natural landscapes, like hills and mountains, which can block your signal and limit your transmission range.

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Last update on 2023-05-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

2. Walkie-Talkie

Two-Way Portable Radio

A walkie-talkie, or otherwise known as a two-way radio, was first developed during World War II, as an efficient way of communication for troops.

It works completely off the grid as well and is based on radio signals.

The best thing about walkie-talkies is the fact that they are cheap, available almost anywhere, require only a couple of batteries to function, and are really easy to use and carry in your premade bug out bag. You push a button to talk and another one to receive.

As long as you have batteries, this device should last you a long time in a crisis situation.

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Last update on 2023-05-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

3. Mail

Off grid mail

It might sound pretty low tech nowadays, but snail mail is still a thing.

People actually still send letters through normal post services, and those services would probably still be up in case of a calamity.

This type of communication is very slow, and might even take days or weeks to reach your destination, but it is totally independent of anything like a power source or transmitter arrays. The only thing that is required is an organized postal office and network.

4. Sounds

Trumpet sound

Communicating through sounds has been practiced since the dawn of mankind.

It can be anything from simply shouting out for help, to using tools like horns or trumpets, to produce a certain sound.

A bell can also be used to produce a loud sound that can signal anyone in the vicinity that you’re there, and maybe requesting help.

Of course, you would need to have the tools at hand, and crafting them can be a hard process.

5. Trained Animals

Pigeon Mail

People have been communicating successfully through trained animals, like pigeons, for centuries.

In case of emergency, that could be a way of reaching other people.

It might be a complicated process though, since the animal has to be trained for a couple of months, and it’s also required for it to know the exact destination.

Still, a good way for transmitting messages between your location and somewhere farther away, completely off the grid.

6. Signs

Tree Signs

While this type of communication between people is mostly a thing of the past, it can still be a fallback method for anyone isolated and trying to get in touch with other people.

Some examples are something carved into the bark of a tree in a forest, smoke signs, stone formations, etc.

It heavily depends on the location and people actually picking up on the signs you make, but it’s still a possible way of communication.

7. Morse Code

SOS international Morse Code

Invented by Samuel Morse, this way of communication is basically sending a string of on-off signals that can be easily deciphered by anyone with the code knowledge.

It works completely through radio signals, which are unaffected by any type of grid-down scenario.

Just like HAM radio, communication through Morse Code should be a top fallback plan in case of emergency.

Three dots, three dashes, three dots means SOS – an internationally recognized pattern for someone in distress.


Whichever method you choose, you should at least be skilled in a couple of these in case of an emergency.

We cannot rely on modern communication methods all the time, seeing as how vulnerable they.

Picking up the basic survival skill of communicating off the grid should serve you well in any situation.

It can also be really fun to use a HAM radio, for example, as there is an entire community of people using them around the world.

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Last update on 2023-04-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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