About Survival Life

Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just beginning to learn about survival and preparedness, it’s very likely that you’ve come across Survival Life. As the self-proclaimed “nation’s #1 group of preparedness-minded individuals,” the company claims to provide access to logical, no-nonsense original content, product reviews, survival tips, and curated articles from around the web.

But is this really the case? Let’s “prepare” to find out.

Quick Facts About Survival Life

As one of the top destinations for knowledge, skills, and tactics related to survival and preparedness, the Survival Life website is divided into five main sections:

  1. Do it Yourself – Subsections include food production and preservation, alternative energy, homesteading, medical care, and more.
  2. Survival Skills – Includes sections about emergency communications, fishing, hunting, & trapping, water purification, and more.
  3. Survival Gear Reviews – Professional, in-depth reviews about products ranging from weaponry to food dehydration, and everything in between.
  4. Members’ Area – After paying for a membership to the Lamplighter society (more about this below), you’ll gain access to all current reports, the full archive, the entire survival guide library, in addition to exclusive interviews.
  5. Experts – Here, you’ll find detailed information about some of the Survival Life contributors.

According to the Survival Life website, membership to the Lamplighter society provides an easy, practical way of obtaining information related to survival preparedness, without having to spend years of trial and error. With this in mind, membership is claimed to provide the following benefits:

  • 3-5 new how-to articles each month
  • At least one special report each month
  • Monthly cutting-edge newsletters
  • New books, videos, and websites that you’ll find pertinent
  • “Private Intel” reports on situations occurring around the world
  • Real-life case studies
  • In-depth analysis of common prepping mistakes
  • Seasonal tips and tricks

The Survival Life Credit Card Knife

The Credit Card Knife is perhaps Survival Life’s biggest namesake. This small knife starts out about the same size and weight as a traditional credit card, but unfolds in seconds into a fully functional knife. It features a surgical steel blade, protective hand guard, and even a built-in safety sheath to keep it from becoming dull, and from accidentally opening in your pocket or pack.

Survival Life Pricing & Refund Policy

Lamplighter membership is currently priced at $19.95 per month. Enrollment is on a recurring basis, which means you’ll continue to be charged each month until you cancel your membership.

All Survival Life products and services come with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. As a result, Lamplighter memberships come with a 30-day refund policy, while all other products come with a 45-day refund policy. However, keep in mind that physical products will be assessed a 10% restocking fee upon return. To request a refund, contact customer service at 512-366-3332.

What Do Other Consumers Have to Say About Survival Life?

Survival Life is based out of Austin, TX, and is not listed with the Better Business Bureau. Outside of the BBB, we were only able to find one online review regarding Survival Life or the Lamplighter society, which referenced difficulty ordering online.

Regarding the Credit Card Knife, online reviews appear to be mixed, with the most common complaints citing that it was difficult to hold on to, and that it was constructed of flimsy plastic.

What’s the Bottom Line About Survival Life?

When it comes to Survival Life, it may be the case that “no news is good news,” but we can’t be sure. While we weren’t able to locate many online customer reviews during our research, here are some of the positives we encountered:

  • The company appears to have been in business for quite some time (at least as far back as 2010)
  • Their website is professional and easy to navigate
  • They appear to offer a wide variety of products
  • Some of their contributors are prominently in the public eye
  • Only one negative online customer review

With this in mind, if you’re even remotely interested in survival-related topics, it’s highly likely you’ll find something useful over at Survival Life.

Do you have experience with Survival Life? If so, cut to the chase and share your opinion with the world by writing a review!

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43 Consumer Reviews for Survival Life

Average Consumer Rating: 2.5
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 8 4 star: 6 3 star: 5 2 star: 3 1 star:  21
Bottom Line: 40% would recommend it to a friend
Showing 1-11 of 43
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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Shipping is terrible

    I've been waiting almost 30 days now on 4 different orders, about 10 days on another order, and have only recieved 2 orders out of the orders I have placed. They say the items are on back order, but they still send emails every day trying to sell the same items they say are on backorder. I'm completely disappointed in Survival Life; their shipping is downright awful and just a slap to the face. Do they not want your repeated business?

    I recieved the very first order I placed there, which was a less than $3 transaction for the Hybeam Micro and I had it within 2 weeks. I've also ordered the Hybeam Mini, Hybeam Poplamp, Hoffman Richter Reaper, and ordered them all within 3 days of September the 25th, 26th, and 27th. Well now it's October 22nd, and I haven't received any of those items. I ordered the Hoffman Richter EDC tool and received it within 2 weeks also, but this was also about a $5-$6 purchase.

    It's bad for the customer to order things and still not get them a month later. It's just bad business and not how you want to treat a repeated customer. I mean, what do they do, wait until the end of the month and send an employee across the country to deliver packages to try and save money? Heck, I thought I was the one paying shipping, or at least that's what my receipt says, so why take so damn long?

    They don't even send an email to apologize or anything to tell you what's going on unless you contact them 1st. Maybe they hope you forget about ordering anything after so long? I have noticed in the other reviews they all had the same complaints about slow shipping, like they only ship out on Christmas day or something. My wife has already chewed me out for buying the items, so I would much rather have had the items than the money back since I've already paid for them (twice).

    They need to figure out a better plan to get things out and to their customers. This is going to cost them their business if they don't do something different than their current shipping. Or maybe it's in their warehouse and the workers just don't work but are packaging one shipment a day. Goodluck if you make a purchase from them, I hope you get your item in a reasonable amount of time.

    They obviously sell things they don't even have in stock, or maybe that how they buy their stock; you buy from them and then they order from someone else? That would explain a lot of this crap, but someone needs to be held accountable for this. It shouldn't be a hit or miss on getting an item you have already paid for in a reasonable amount of time. Three weeks should be the latest you get anything through the mail, and that's if it is shipped from China, not 3 states over. It's a 12-hour drive from my home in Alabama to Austin, Texas. I know for a fact because I used to make that drive when I was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas and had to drive through Austin, which was about 45 minutes away to get there.

    I just want the items I ordered before I die. If you can have something here within 2 weeks on other orders it shouldn't ever be a month on any others. If something is on backorder then don't sell it, or at least tell the customer it's on backorder and it might be a while before you get it before the customer spends their hard earned money on something they could get somewhere else within days. That's how you earn respect and trust, that's how you build a business; on the trust and respect of your customers. Make sure you save and keep up with your emailed receipts and order numbers; if you don't get one then email them ASAP and ask for it.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Beware!

    • Texas,
    • Sep 20, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    I ordered the Hoffman Richter Talon knife for $24.95 with a promised delivery date of 7-12 business days. I called for status at the 18 business day mark and was told the order was "misplaced." They said my money will be refunded, but we'll see. Although they list an Austin, Texas physical address and a phone number with the correct Austin, Texas exchange (512), the number connects to a "customer service" contractor company in the Philippines.

    I would steer clear. I don't know if they're actually running a scam but seems quite suspicious. They are not very upfront with who they are or where they are. Do honest/ethical companies hide?

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Your money would be best spent elsewhere

    • Atlanta, GA,
    • Feb 22, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    I joined Survival Life and was a member for over two years.

    In that time, I ordered some of the items they had to offer. I was disappointed that their stated 15 to 21 business days to deliver a purchased item was standard for them. It got a little better over time, but never got below 15 days.

    I've called their customer service, and it's hit-or-miss on being helpful. I canceled my membership when they persisted that I was not a member, despite regular monthly billing. They were finally able to find it, but I thought I could do better with my money elsewhere. The things they sell are not cheaper than the same items elsewhere online when you add in the $19.95 a month charge.

    The quality of their items is certainly not better than what you can find on your own. Most of the videos that are hosted are easily available on YouTube, and for free.

    The bottom line is, for preparation for when "things hit the fan," you can do just as well to research it on your own.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • Survival Life credit card knife scam?

    • New Mexico,
    • Jan 22, 2017
    • Verified Reviewer

    I ordered the free knife knowing going in that is was just a lure to get you to buy something else. When I saw the offer for a second free knife, I knew that is was a catch. If you bother to read anything else, it tells you that you are also going to be in their club and there was a monthly fee. I clicked on "no thanks" and got my free knife with no problems, and it is good for what it is.

    I do get lots of emails, sometimes with an offer I'm interested in, or just useful info. I don't think that it is a scam.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Survival Life products

    • Tennessee,
    • Mar 14, 2016
    • Verified Reviewer

    Ordered six products online and had no problems throughout the process. Shipping was fast and products were great. Credit card knife has plastic but I've carried one for over a year with no problems.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Happy so far

    I've ordered several items from this company and have got exactly what I was promised. As some others have stated, the products were made in China but are what they promised. I feel I got a fair product for a fair price. I'll watch for unexpected charges but have not had any so far. I'm happy with this company. And yes I would recommend them to friends. Also, I've order the HR30, the spy pen, the fire starter and a flash light and all came in good time and were decent products for what I paid.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Survival Life

    • Robbins, NC,
    • Dec 22, 2015
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have ordered several items from Survival Life and have gotten them in a reasonable amount of time. I have never been charged for anything, but the items I have ordered and have not been charged a membership fee. I am very happy with all of the items I have ordered from them.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Tools and knives

    • greeley CO,
    • Nov 13, 2015

    I have purchased several knives from survival life. The first knife I got, someone liked it better than I did and I was not a happy camper. I have given the knives to coworkers and each person likes them as much as I do! They are very sturdy, and well made. The smaller multi-tool is a great little "get me out of trouble" helper. The fire starters are going to be some stocking stuffers. The fire and fishing grenades are also neat. I will continue to purchase them when offered, even when the wife says that I have too many knives and toys.

    The only drawback is the multi charges for the enrollment fees. Each one you buy in automatically opts you in for more. so having a program that checks on the multi enrollment fees would be nice. Thank you again and keep up the great offers!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 4 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Very pleased!

    I ordered the Richter 15 knife (paid shipping cost only) and surprisingly, it arrived in just a few days! I like that! When I opened it up, it was slower than I anticipated and it didn't fully open. To me, no big deal because of the price & it's a sharp, sturdy knife. Then I saw the Richter30 advertised with an additional 25% off! I clicked the button, then another & the back button & quickly made a huge mess of my bank account! I called the company and the gal was awesome.

    She immediately got the $260 put back into my account & when I mentioned the slow-opening knife I received, she said she'd send me out a new one right away and that I could keep the first one. Terrific service, great information & tips, neat items & fast shipping. Great company. I'm a happy & satisfied new member.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 6 out 7 people found this review helpful

    Multi-tool

    • Northbridge, MA,
    • Oct 20, 2015
    • Verified Reviewer

    I received my H.R. Richter multi tool today and was pretty disappointed with the size of the tool, it was no bigger than my index finger. Yhe saw on the end of one of the blades looked as if it was only good for cutting tooth picks, and the blade was only big enough to gut a chipmunk. Sorry but for twenty dollars and five dollars for shipping and handling, I'm pretty disappointed.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 6 out 8 people found this review helpful

    OK products, but use good judgment

    I've ordered a number of products from them -- the Hoffman Richter knife, credit card knives, flashlights -- and never had a problem. Shipping seemed pretty quick, actually.

    I suspect that some customers are either very young, or just don't know much about the products offered. The Everstryke lighter I never bothered with. The same thing has been offered cheaply since I was a kid in the 1950s; it was never as good as a real lighter & always gets thrown in a drawer & ignored. Now that Bic disposable lighters are only a buck & give you a couple of thousand lights -- who would bother with wick-type lighters? Bics have a shelf life of many YEARS. I was a heavy smoker for years & know from experience.

    The Hoffman Richter knife is WAY heavy, nothing I'd carry everyday, but seems sturdy & I keep it in one of my vehicles for emergencies. There are certainly better knives available (I have a number of them), but usually at much higher price. A $10 Chinese fixed-blade hunting knife from eBay is a better survivalist tool, if you can sharpen properly.

    The credit card knife is a neat little niche tool, and I carry one in my wallet. Obviously it is NOT a sturdy hunting knife, but definitely has its place. When I blew a radiator hose, it did a fine job of cutting through the old one. It's for EMERGENCY use when you have no "real" knife. I like mine & ordered more for friends, all of whom loved it. Get a grip, guys -- it isn't designed to skin out a deer.

    I've only used the flashlight a couple of times. It worked fine, is very bright, and seems sturdy, especially for the price.

    The spy pen is probably OK, but cheaper models can be found on Amazon & elsewhere. It's basically just a big pointed piece of metal, like a fat nail. Don't overpay. You could make one in your basement with a bench grinder.

    You can't just buy blind on Survival Life. Go look at reviews of the specific product (and prices on Amazon) if you are uncertain.

    I'd recommend them to friends, but some of the comments about monthly fees & bad service do make me a bit hesitant, even though my experiences have been all good so far.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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