Is It Ever Too Late To Prep? (3 Warning Signs To Watch For!)

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Sometimes when you don’t hear from me for a while, it’s because I’m busy thinking. And lately, I’ve been thinking that, in spite of my overall optimism about life, there will be a time when it really is too late to prep.

That time could arrive at any time…

Everything’s the same until it isn’t.

Image: dozens of warning signs rimmed in red

The Unthinkable Has Already Happened During The COVID pandemic

Remember two years ago when entire countries began shutting down, one by one? You couldn’t get into Canada or Mexico or England.

That was unthinkable and yet it happened in a matter of days.

Then there was the toilet paper shortage, no Purell, and most everyone began hiding in their homes.

When I reflect on the past two years, I’ve come to the conclusion that yes, there may very well come a time when it’s too late to prep.

The Important Difference Between Survival and Prepping

Now, I’m not talking about “it’s too late to survive.” That’s a whole other animal.

Some of you, I know, could SURVIVE  because of your skills and location. Others have been prepping for so long that you could easily hunker down for months at a time.

SURVIVAL is really what happens in the aftermath of an event, and there are all sorts of creative ways to survive and get by, one day at a time.

Prepping is different. Prepping is taking action right now and being proactive so when a survival situation occurs, you’re ready. Your preps are in place to mitigate the effects of that event.

Here are the warning signs I’ve come up with to signal that it’s too late to prep.

Three Warning Signs It’s Too Late To Prep

Here are the indicators that it’s now time to hunker down with whatever you have and wherever you are, connect with close friends and relatives, and prepare to weather whatever comes.

Warning sign #1: You don’t have easy access to your money.

  • Long lines at the bank, people lining up early in the day to make transactions
  • Limited bank hours
  • ATMs run out of cash
  • Banks limiting withdrawal amounts
  • New government regulations that limit cash withdrawals or other types of transactions
  • You can no longer make the purchases you would like in order to prep

Warning sign #2: It’s more difficult or impossible to easily travel.

  • The government regulates gas purchases, set mileage allotments
  • Gas prices become so expensive as to effectively limit travel
  • Checkpoints between states or even counties to ensure regulations are enforced
  • “Movement is life,” Brad Pitt’s character says in World War Z. When freedom of movement becomes nearly impossible, so does survival.
  • Getting to a bug-out location is no longer possible due to these measures

Warning sign #3: Ordinary purchases are more difficult to make

  • Increased number of empty store shelves
  • More competition for goods and services
  • Prices skyrocket until even the basics are no longer affordable
  • Limits on purchases set by retailers or by government entities
  • A black market develops
  • You can no longer stock up on even the basics due to shortages and regulations

As you can see, these 3 warning signs signal an end to getting prepared easily or quickly.

“Everything’s the same until it isn’t.”

These 3 warning signs signal an end to getting prepared easily or quickly. Click To Tweet

I have no crystal ball to say whether any of these warning signs will happen or if they do when that might be.

But, all 3 signs are very easy to imagine. No longer are they in the realm of crazy conspiracy theories. We’ve all seen too many of those theories turn out to be 100% true.

What do other “experts” say about whether it can be too late to prep?

Nine years ago I posed this question to a number of friends and acquaintances in the prepping and survival field:

“How will you know when the balloon goes up?”

You’ll have to click here to figure out what that question even means and then, read the responses from a couple of dozen of different people from James Rawles to Fernando Aguirre and Selco.


I’ve given you my own three warning signs of when it’s become too late to prep, and you can compare them with assessments from a number of other authors, security experts, bloggers, and prepping authorities.

Again, here’s the link to Part 1 of that 4 part series.

(To read all 4 parts, be sure to scroll down below each article.)

I hope this gives you food for thought and helps you refine your own prepping plans.

I know my readers are quite opinionated, and I fully expect to hear your opinions. Let me know in the comments below what you think of my three warning signs that it’s too late to prep. I look forward to reading them!

8 thoughts on “Is It Ever Too Late To Prep? (3 Warning Signs To Watch For!)”

  1. Under #1 Access to safe deposit boxes is allowed only with a government, bank, or law enforcement official present who may seize some, or all, of the items in the box.

  2. Nancy in Alberta

    Good assessment, as far as I know.

    I think the important factor to keep in mind is our own disbelief that can skew how we view reality. The past two years have been unreal, from my perspective in Canada, where the vaccine free are still banned from leaving the country. I don’t know for a fact that there is no way around this, but that’s the general narrative.

    Don’t wait for the hammer to come down. I would never have imagined our Prime Minister would have enacted the things he’s doing, including the very recent, perhaps not even passed, bill on Internet censoring, but here we are. Our provincial premiers have largely lifted mandates, but still in place are federal mandates that essentially fire all federal employees, meaning any airline, rail, postal, and armed forces (including active service personnel who are vets of previous missions) employees who are vaccine free. This is why I appreciate the perspective of this article.

    We can’t become numb.

  3. Christine Dalziel

    All three of these signs have been in Canada for the last 6 months. We cannot leave our country and passport renewal requires you to prove that your travel is essential. Banks seized funds of people who donated to a charity, called mortgage loans, and cancelled credit cards. Even bit coin wallets were seized. Canadians responded by emptying their accounts to the tune of $10 million in 48 hours before the banks called off the freeze. People are still emptying their savings accounts.

    For a few months late in 2021, gas was being rationed. Gas prices are through the roof and home heating and food bills have increased more than 25% since October of 2021. If you haven’t started preparing, don’t wait till next month. Do it now while you can.

  4. Nancy in Alberta

    I think the temptation here is to believe that the things you and I have mentioned are transitory, that this can’t last, or only certain areas are doing it. Like you say, inflation is just crazy (doesn’t our PM know what happens when you print a lot of extra cash?), and I don’t think the general populace saw it coming – or believed it would be here for long.

  5. Kathy Hartman

    This Article has swung around again from March to May. And what difference two months make.
    Here in the United States, I believe that we have reached parts of #2 & #3.. #1 i being openly talked about but has not been implemented yet.
    For prices are going up and gas price are ridiculous @ $5 per gallon. I remember when it was $.25 cents a gallon when I first started driving!
    Food is becoming scarce on the shelves and now everyone is scrambling for baby formula.
    We’re going to sit down and see where we can cut our bills.which means stopping payments to good sites I’m on. Ôō

  6. Toss in there anywhere, “Mandatory gun registry”
    to be followed by gun confiscation.

    Yes, you have that in Canada right now with the mandatory buy back think on AR15’s and the like.

    How can it be a buy back when they never sold it to you yo begin with.

  7. Non compliance / like the 16 page discourse of Entiene De Laboatie withdraw your support/ How can they have so many arms to grab you or so many eyes to see you if they don’t use your own/ !!!! Gurealia tactics

  8. You’re very much more informative and helpful than most other “ prepper” authors so far. I like your style. Thanks, Semper Fi!

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