After you have received your Minnesota Permit to Carry license, you’re going to want to carry your firearm. Doing so will require some type of carry equipment – usually a holster. Generally, we recommend the holsters from Galco because of their high quality and your ability to find a holster for nearly any carry scenario. There are several types of holsters with which you can carry your firearm (all pictures are taken from Galco’s web site):
|Inside the Waistband Holsters|
|Belly Band Holsters|
Each holster type has its’ own positives and negatives. When choosing a holster, bear in mind the following principles to ensure that you don’t purchase the wrong holster:
- Fit: Be sure your holster is the right one for your firearm. Happily, Galco has a “Browse by Gun” feature in which you input the make and type of your firearm you want to carry and Galco will give you all of their products that work/fit your firearm. This is a nifty tool if you’re unsure about which holster to purchase for your gun.
- Imprint: Consider the scenarios in which you’ll be carrying and the type of clothing normally worn. You want as small an imprint as possible – even eliminated if possible – and so your choice in holsters will make a huge difference. Things to look out for include where on the body you plan to carry, whether or not the holster will hold the firearm close to your body without causing discomfort, speed at which you can access the firearm and whether or not it will last over time through different climates and weather changes.
- Cost: while cost will be a factor in the short run, purchasing a good quality holster will cost you less in the long run. Learn from our mistakes: purchasing those cheap canvas holsters is a waste of money. Stick with leather and make sure take care of the leather. Doing so will ensure a long holster life
- Tradeoff: there will always be tradeoffs between conceal-ability, comfort, retention and access. Be sure you understand the tradeoffs in your holster decision and then ensure that you select a holster that fits your tradeoff decisions
- Attachments: you may want to add a light or laser to your firearm at some point in the future. If you know this when you purchase your holster, you can purchase for the inclusion of attachments as well
- Retention: Retention is always a consideration if you find yourself in close personal combat. Some holsters allow for easier theft of your firearm than others, so take this into consideration when choosing a holster. Bear in mind, generally speaking, the greater the retention, the more difficult it will be to re-holster your firearm with one hand, which might be needed if you’re trying to pull someone to safety or administer first-aid to yourself
- Covered Trigger Guard and Safety: Do not purchase a holster that doesn’t fully cover the trigger and the trigger guard. A fully covered trigger guard will help ensure you don’t have an accidental shooting while carrying your firearm
- Portablility/Removability: During the course of a day – especially at work – you may find yourself taking off a coat or changing shirts or doing something else with clothing. Be sure that your holster allows you to maintain conceal-ability of your firearm during these clothing changes. For example, it is not uncommon for those who wear a sport coat to work to take that coat off during the day. Hence, the ability to quickly take a firearm and place it a desk drawer is important to maintain conceal-ability. Belt holsters are more cumbersome in this type of situation where as paddle holsters are easier to take on and off during the course of a day. Consider how you work and how much conceal-ability you want. This will influence your selection of holsters.
When it comes to choosing a holster, take your time and fully understand the tradeoff decisions in your purchase. Doing so will help you not make a mistake in selecting a holster and will help you enjoy legally carrying your firearm.