Wednesday, April 22, 2020

A flaw in bug-out plans

As you've probably noticed, there's a lot more chatter out there about bugging out to rural areas to escape crowded cities ravaged by the coronavirus.

Most people bug out to modest set-ups. People are staying with distant family members, or renting cabins, or finding Air BnB's, or otherwise doing what they can to keep their distance.

But one group of people who went through the time, effort, and expense of pre-establishing a rural bug-out are having a difficult time. I refer to the Super Rich.

As many know, the Super Rich are known for paying fabulous sums of money for extravagant bunkers in perceived safe locations (such as New Zealand). But for all their elaborate planning, it seems many of the Super Rich didn't factor in one obvious flaw: an inability to get to their bug-outs in the first place due to border closures or pilot shortages.

In one article entitled "Super rich stranded as private jet operators say no to travel," the article notes:
"Private jet operators are turning away wealthy clients as coronavirus-related travel bans restrict their ability to operate, despite a surge in requests from people willing to shell out as much as US$150,000 to secure a spot on their planes. Inquiries for international flights on private jets have shot up ninefold, said Kanika Tekriwal, founder of New Delhi-based JetSetGo, as individuals with vast financial means try to escape virus hot spots.

One of her clients, an Indian tycoon, tried to book a jet to fly with his family to New Delhi from London last weekend, but he remains stranded in the U.K. after a sudden travel suspension in a stopover country came in just half an hour before they were due to depart."
In another article titled "Rich Americans Activate Pandemic Escape Plans," the focus is also on New Zealand:
"Some Silicon Valley denizens have already made the move to New Zealand as the pandemic has escalated. On March 12, Mihai Dinulescu decided to pull the plug on the cryptocurrency startup he was launching to flee to the remote country. "My fear was it was now or never as I thought they might start closing borders," said Dinulescu, 34. "I had this very gripping feeling that we needed to go."

Dinulescu packed his bags and left his furniture, television, paintings and other belongings with friends. He bought the earliest plane ticket available and within 12 hours the Harvard University alum and his wife were on a 7 a.m. flight bound for Auckland. In San Francisco, "the entire international section of the airport was empty—except for one flight to New Zealand," Dinulescu said. "In a time when pretty much all planes were running on a third occupancy, this thing was booked solid. ... Four days later, New Zealand closed its borders to foreign travelers, which could thwart some refugee travel plans. ... After the shutdown was announced, however, local press reported a slight increase in private plane landings in the country."
I dunno, it just strikes me as odd that this most obvious weak spot was overlooked by people who presumably were smart enough to get rich in the first place. For a bug-out to be effective, you have to be able to get there. Go figure.

Personally I think it's a lot wiser to be among like-minded neighbors who are enthusiastic gardeners.

On the other hand, I've always wanted to visit New Zealand. I hear it's beautiful.


  1. New Zealand looks beautiful. Also very far away.

    I think that those people that got stranded thought they would have a long runway to escape (no pun intended). Also, I think none of them imagined countries completely shutting their borders (Which, to be fair, has not happened at this scale for a very long time).

  2. Did you hear about the guy who could not remember how to get into his bunker in NZ?

  3. People are rarely “smart enough to get rich.” They get a leg up from their wealthy parents, they inherit, they experience a string of lucky breaks, they engage in extreme corruption. There is no such thing as “smart enough to get rich.”

    1. Don't believe everything you think.

    2. one of my favorite sayings "The harder I work, the luckier I get". I don't fault ANYONE for working hard and getting ahead.

      kathy in MS

  4. May be a lot of yacht buying if this thing gets over!

  5. The super rich idiots think that money buys them anything and everything that they want or desire. The New Zealand folks are just about fed up with strangers barging their way in. They have to compete for housing, land, and resources. The incoming carpetbaggers have no interest in becoming part of the community, or contributing to any shortage of supplies. It's Kim and Kanya in Wyoming, it's Hollywood taking over Jackson Hole, it's wealthy New Yorkers upsurping The Hamptons. Te best bug out location is the one you live at full time. And yes.....I'm working on it!
    -Stealth Spaniel

  6. Imagine you are a tourist and you get stranded in NZ? Not a bad place to get stuck in.

    Rita Miller

  7. A there now going to be a huge uptick in the virus in New Zealand? Interesting article, maybe the wealthy will get a chance to read it and rethink their plans in the future.

  8. When our NZ borders open again we would be pleased to host you and your family should you visit NZ. We are a retired couple ( with two university age daughters ) who have been set up and practicing " self sufficiency, country living and preparation " for quite a while now. Our
    rural location can be viewed at " Golden Bay, South Island NZ " on
    Google sites. If interested we would follow up with our email address ,if you could suggest how, without it being on line here. We have enjoyed following your blog site for its down to earth, low key and no pressure content for several years now. Best regards.