ccw mistakes to avoid

5 Concealed Carry Mistakes To Avoid

There are certainly a number of things you should do, but there are also a number of serious "dont's" when it comes to concealed carry. Some things are a mere faux pas, and others may be straight up illegal.

There are definitely a number of concealed carry best practices to be aware of, but you should be equally aware of things to not do. Here are 5 things you should never do whilst concealed carrying. Other people who do carry, members of law enforcement and the public at large will thank you for it.

Leave The Concealed Carry Permit At Home

misplaced ccw permit

One of the first things to never do while concealed carrying is to leave your concealed carry permit at home. You can say "the second is MY permit!" all you want, but try using that little bon mot with an officer - or later on, in front of a judge - things are NOT going to go your way and you probably won't do too well with the appeals process either.

Unless you live in a constitutional carry state, in which case go ahead.

In most states, a person that is toting a CCW is required to keep their license on them at all times, and are usually required to produce it if asked. Therefore, be in compliance with the law and make sure you keep your permit on you.

Ignore Wildly Obvious Printing

avoid printing

Funny thing about printing is that people pay less attention than you think. A little bit is no big deal, say if there's that little point of your rear sight or a slight bulge from the rear of the grip. That's no big deal.

However, if you head out of the house and the grip stipling shows through your shirt...then you need to reassess a few things. That makes it obvious that you're carrying a gun and the whole point of concealed carry is to conceal. Not only will this irritate other carriers that are effectively concealing, it may draw a rebuke from law enforcement. You may get asked to leave places. Some of your fellow citizens may take umbrage as well.

If you have issues in this department, try a smaller pistol or opt for some looser clothing. Nothing wrong with the Italian cut, until people can read "Sig Sauer" (or whatever it is) through it.

Drink And Carry

dont drink and carry

Don't drink and carry. Duh. If you're going to tipple, leave the gun elsewhere. If you're going to drink at home, put it in the gun safe. Controlled substances and firearms don't mix, ever.

Not only that, if you had to use one under the influence...the action is going to be suspect. It can will be used against you in a court of law. Even if you were totally justified under the letter and spirit of the laws of self-defense.

Escalate Conflicts

avoid escalating conflicts

Violent crime is a risk no matter where people congregate, but that risk can be mitigated. One good tip for risk management while carrying is not to escalate conflicts. People get into disagreements; this happens and is just part of life.

However, as a person licensed to carry a firearm, you carry a deadly weapon with you. The power to destroy life resides in your hands, so to speak. A conscientious person does whatever they can to avoid using it if at all possible.

Therefore, it is your responsibility not to get into fights over mere trifles. Traffic disputes, an errant clerk at a grocery store; these things are completely ephemeral and yet people degenerate into violence into them all the time.

You, however, shouldn't. No one should, really, but a person lawfully carrying a firearm? Double so.

Carry Without A Holster

holsterless carry

Lastly, carry without a holster or off-the-body presents risks that are greater than the convenience of doing so. Accidental and negligent discharges are a distinct possibility, and can - and have - resulted in injuries and worse. Guns have been accessed by children in purses and briefcases, resulting in injuries...and worse.

One of the primary reasons it's a concealed carry best practice to carry with one is not just for comfort, but also for safety. Unless you have no other choice, you always should.

Sam Hoober 

About The Author


Born in southeastern Washington State, Sam Hoober graduated in 2011 from Eastern Washington University. He resides in the great Inland Northwest, with his wife and child. His varied interests and hobbies include camping, fishing, hunting, and spending time at the gun range as often as possible.

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