My $7 Ghetto RoadID

I’ve been meaning to order a RoadID for myself for a while now since I started to take some of my runs back outside, but the $19.99 price tag for what amounts to an engraved stainless steel plate on a velcro wrist strap just made me balk. I know it’s important to have some sort of identification with emergency numbers and basic medical information on it when exercising outdoors some distance away from home in case something happens and one becomes incapacitated or unresponsive, but sigh…I am a tightwad.

I am, however, planning on going on longer inline skating forays in the near future, and my chances of randomly falling down and stunning myself into unconsciousness are a lot greater now than they were when I was just trotting around in running shoes, so I decided to look into the ID tag thing again.

Then I thought…”I wonder if I can get some cheap dog tags made up with the same information?”

Out of nostalgia, I checked on military ID tags first, but those are limited to 15 characters per line, including spaces, which was just a little bit too short for my needs. Then I took a look at pet tags. Bingo!

Behold, the 1″ slide-on aluminum pet collar tag in your choice of seven sweet colors! These can fit 18 characters in each of the five available lines, and they are significantly cheaper than a RoadID at $7 with free shipping. Add your own velcro strap or slide it onto your shoelaces or watchband and you are all set!


If you prefer brass ($7.50) or stainless steel ($7.25), you can check out the same company’s shoe tags for just a bit more. These styles also accommodate 18 characters per line and five lines per tag.


If you decide to order your own ghetto roadID tag, the recommended info to include is:


So a typical tag might be:

DAVE 123-456-7890
MOM 123-456-7899
NO PCN/ O+ / DOB 76

(See other sample text examples)

Me? I went for the pink aluminum pet model, just because.

Of course, there is always the option to make a TRULY ghetto roadID like so:

1) Print out a label with all of the desired information on regular paper, self-stick address label paper, or a sturdier cardstock

2) Cut out a rectangle the same size as your label from the throwaway plastic lid of something like a butter tub, canister of raisins or oats, etc. and glue or stick your printed label to the plastic tag

3) Seal it with clear packing tape, laminating sheets, or other sealant.

4) Trim around the tag if necessary, making sure that you leave enough of a border on your laminating medium to form a full seal around the tag and keep any moisture out. You’ll be sweating and/or otherwise getting water on this doohickey, so make sure it’s waterproof.

5) Punch a couple of holes on each end, tie some string through them, and tie around your wrist or thread through your shoelaces. If you want to get fancy, you can attempt to cut longer slits on each end of the label like the collar and shoe tags above.


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