Why to Carry a Pocket Knife – You Use It More Than You Think

Most people can get through their daily lives without hauling a knife around. Perhaps you don’t have a need for a sharp edge or you always have the right tool sitting around when you need it and don’t want to bother sticking a blade in your pocket. But I’m here to tell you that a knife is an essential part of any everyday carry.

It’s like it’s said that you can’t tell how dim a lamp is until you replace the light bulb—it’s hard to know how a knife will help until you put it to the test. Not to say that a knife is for everyone. I mean, you can always just open those packages with your fingernail, right?

Knives Aren't Just Weapons

Despite what stereotypes might seem to suggest, a metal blade attached to a handle is not just for fighting. Sure, it might garner some unwanted attention when used in the wrong places, but don’t let a misconception keep you from wielding a knife. It may be tougher than human skin, but really, so is a car key.

Legal Stuff (and stuff)

Whether carrying a knife is legal depends on where you are in the world. You’ll need to do your research on laws for specific states and countries because they change wherever you go. 

For example, in Oregon, you can legally conceal carry a pocket knife and open carry any other type of knife. Oregon is actually one of the most lax states in terms of knife laws, which is why you can find many big knife companies there, such as Benchmade.

Why Carrying a Knife is a Good Idea

Now with all that stuff out of the way, let’s get into why exactly having a blade in your pocket is a good idea. Of course, this isn’t an exhaustive list (because such a list would be near impossible), but it’ll at least give you some ideas on how your life could be missing a useful tool.

General Utility

You probably use a blade for many things throughout the day whether it’s with an X-acto knife, a pair of scissors, or a saw. You might even have all the tools you need sitting around when you need them. 

However, you can probably recall a few times where you open the drawer with the scissors only to find that there aren’t any scissors. I’ve often had to walk from one side of the house to the other just to locate a functioning set of snippers.

That said, having a blade with you at all times is a good way to ensure you won’t want for the misplacement of an essential tool. The thing you’ll need will always be right in your pocket.

Here’s a list of some specific tasks that would benefit from carrying a knife.

-removing staples
-sharpening pencils
-opening packaging
-cutting loose threads
-opening bottles
-scraping glue
-cutting rope
-opening letters
-deflating air-filled packaging

Here are a few things that can be done with the knife when it’s still folded:

-hammering a nail
-stopping a door
-carrying a bag (some Swiss Army Knives have a hook for grabbing thin handles)

Eating

It might sound strange to cut your steak with a pocket knife (and your blade could be too contaminated to do it safely), but don’t throw this idea out quite yet. 

If you’ve been to any considerable number of dinner parties, you might know the frustration of trying to chop your chicken with a flimsy plastic knife. Even restaurants will sometimes serve you a less-than-satisfactory cutting utensil and leave you sawing your food to smithereens. A sharp pocket knife will almost always be better than a typical steak knife.

Also, some things can be better enjoyed when cut with a knife than with your teeth. For example, instead of just biting into an apple, imagine being able to take slices out of it with your knife and eat them straight off the blade. Not to mention things with peels are easier to peel when you don’t just use your fingernails.

Here are some specific examples of things you could use a pocket knife for when you’re feeling hungry.

-cutting fruit
-peeling potatoes
-slicing bread
-spreading butter
-using as a fork (just don’t cut yourself)

Survival

When you’re stranded in the wild, a knife can make something out of nothing. The things you wouldn’t normally be able to access are suddenly at your fingertips when you’re in the possession of a blade. Call it the master of resourcefulness.

Of course, the odds of getting stranded in the middle of the Canadian wilderness aren’t very high, but many survival techniques can come in handy even when you’re camping. That said, here are a some uses for a knife if you happen to be in the woods.

-digging a hole
-starting a fire
-severing branches
-cleaning game
-hacking your way through a thicket

Emergencies

You never know when a knife could save yourself or someone else from a sticky situation. Perhaps you need to cut a seat belt to get someone out of a burning car or a dog leash gets stuck in an elevator door. Or maybe you wake up and find yourself strapped to a chair Indiana Jones style and realize the building you’re in is on fire (it could happen!).

Those are just some extreme examples and there could be any number of scenarios where the immediate deployment of a knife makes all the difference. You never know what could happen and it’s better to be safe than compunctious.

As for self-defense, a knife isn’t really going to help unless you know exactly what you’re doing. If you’ve never fought with a knife before, you’ll probably get your blade slapped from your hand assuming you’re even fast enough to deploy it in the first place. Also, a knife could turn an otherwise harmless mugging into a deadly free-for-all and your safety is more important than your wallet.

Some Knives to Consider

As a bit of inspiration, here are a few knives that are hard to go wrong with. They aren’t necessarily the best choices out there, but they are relatively cheap.

Victorinox Swiss Army Classic SD

If you’re hesitant to invest in a dedicated knife, a multi-tool is a good way to go. This specific model is one of the simplest and cheapest Swiss Army knives.

Spyderco Delica 4

This one is a lot steeper in price, but it will last you a very long time. It’s composed of premium materials (VG-10 steel blade with fiberglass handle) and is super lightweight. 

Old Timer 1OT

Here’s one that’s simple, rustic, and inexpensive. It’s made of decent materials that complement the price very well. It’s also very non-threatening.

If you’re not convinced to start carrying a knife yet, I’m not sure what to say. Granted, some people wouldn’t have much to gain much by sticking one in their pockets and there are places you shouldn’t even carry a knife (like airports or federal buildings), but again, it’s better safe than sorry.

Hopefully you found this article helpful. If you have any questions or concerns (or just want to write something), then be sure to leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

18 thoughts on “Why to Carry a Pocket Knife – You Use It More Than You Think

  1. Gosh what a wonderful site, I read this post and many of your others by the way. This is a teenage boy or would be MacGyver paradise.  Even for those who own a knife already I have learned so many more things that my pocket knife could be good for that had just totally escaped me before. Particularly like the frustration with plastic picnic knife comment, I won’t be getting caught out with that again!

    Not only useful but written in a very entertaining way thanks great post

    Hamish 

    1. Hi Hamish,

      I’m glad you’ve enjoyed this website! It’s amazing how much stuff there is to learn about any one topic. In this case, uses for a knife.

      I remember one time I was using a plastic fork when the prongs broke off inside my food. I think I went through a few forks before finally making it to the end of the meal. If I had had a nice pocket knife, that would’ve made life a lot easier.

      Thanks for your comment; it made my day.

  2. Wow! These are really great and convincing reasons I had never taught of, giving it a try won’t be a bad idea. However, in this part of the world where I come from, you immediately become a suspect and detained by the police once they see you with such pocket knife. But I think I’ve figured out the exact place to fix it in, thanks for sharing this, I love it!

    1. Hi Chimmhogevagreenesnr,

      Carrying a knife can be problematic depending on where one lives, but if you know it won’t be a problem, then it definitely a worthy investment. It’s a good idea to double check your pockets before you go to anyplace such as a government building or the airport. You’d definitely get yourself into trouble. 

      Anyways, I’m glad you learned a thing or two from this article!

  3. Wow! I never would have given it a thought that carrying nice is actually legal to an extent and sometimes,it can be used for much better things than to get all attentions towards me. This is a great one here and though I never knew of the existence before but I’d make my research now. Thank you

    1. Hi Ella,

      It’s mostly a misconception that carrying a blade will make people think you’re trying to stab them unless you’re acting suspicious. And a small and simple pocket knife is definitely better at avoiding attention than some wicked-looking dagger. I’m glad you found this article insightful!

  4. Hey there,

    I have gone through the experience of needing a knife to cut a rope and not having one. I also do a lot of work out doors and more than once, a small knife would have helped me with my meal.

    Now that I’m staying at home, I’ve done a list of the things I need. And a pocket knife is definitely one of them. I’ve always wanted a Victorinox Swiss Army Classic SD. So, I’ll purchase this one. 

    1. Hi Abel,

      I’m glad you found this article helpful. It’s amazing how often those situations come up where we don’t have a certain tool and just so happen to need that certain tool. Also, you’ve inspired me to make my own list of things I need–I often think about things that I could use but never write them down.

  5. Thanks for such an awesome article. Carring a pocket knife is quite useful sometimes especially for self defence. During my college days, I was attack by some hoodlums,but thanks to mum, I have a pocket knife on me which I used in scaring them away. It’s  really cool using it. 

    thanks,best regards

    1. Yikes! That’s crazy! It’s a good thing you had that knife or else you’d definitely had been in for a swell battle. Anyways, good luck with future endeavors. Hopefully nothing crazy like that happens again.

  6. I have been so eager to really get to know some of the important reasons why people conceal knives in their pocket because I for myself haven’t found a reason to be hanging around with a pocket knife. Well., from the various reasons listed here, am a bit convinced that truly pocket knives can be useful as when you least expect them to be.I remembered a scene when I went walking and I got some fruits at a point I was really stranded looking for a knife to help me ease eating them. I had to go buy one close by, if I haven’t seen a shop around it would have been really tough on me…pocket knives could be really helpful

    1. Hi Evans,

      I can say for myself that I didn’t know how much a knife would come in handy until I started carrying one around. Even a simple Xacto knife from the dollar store makes a difference (which was the first dedicated knife of my EDC). I like your example of not having a utensil to eat food, which usually doesn’t happen, but when it does, you’ll regret not having a backup.

  7. Whether it is cutting a piece of paper or opening a package or even trimming clothes, or even just piecing up a fruit. our pocket knife is probably the most useful and easy thing to use. As long as you already have the ideal design, model, and sharpness, having one of these definitely is something that will help you in many ways.

    1. Hi Smoochi,

      I could hardly say it better. Even a small knife that you stick in your pocket will pay off dividends when you need it, from simple daily chores to emergencies.

  8. Wow! This article made me to realize how important a pocket knife his!

    Although in some area carrying a pocket knife can give the impression that you are a ganster but like you mentioned,just confirm if it is ok in your area to walk around with knife.

    Thamks for this information on pocket knife.

    1. Hi Lizzy,

      A pocket knife make your life way more convenient. The only hard part is remembering to put the thing in your pocket. And if somebody is concerned that they’ll seem like a gangster, then they should opt for a more friendly-looking knife and not act suspicious in public and they’ll be fine.

  9. Hello there thanks for this review. It was really helpful. Aside from the fact that people who Carry knife with them have this stigma of being dangerous, knives are really useful legally in most of our daily life . I think there are a great stuffs we can do with these portable knives.

    1. Hi Philebur,

      I’m glad you found this post helpful. It’s unfortunate that knives get such a bad rap since they can be very helpful tools and keeping one in your pocket can make daily tasks a lot more convenient.

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