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You can use it as a storage container for your cold beer, a makeshift table when you’re camping, and even an extra seat at an outdoor concert. No matter where you’re going, today’s best coolers won’t let you down when it comes to keeping your drinks cold. But with so many options on the market, how do you pick the right one? Enter YETI, the cult-favorite premium outdoor product company that’s nearly replaced the word “cooler” with its own name since it hit the scene in 2006.
And now, nearly 16 years later, the company has expanded its gear, making everything from drinkware for coffee to indestructible dog dishes. And don’t worry, YETI’s still making plenty of new badass coolers for live music fans and campers alike. All of the best new YETIs are built for extreme conditions, but best of all, consider your days of grabbing a warm beer over.
Here are our favorite YETI coolers to stock up on right now, and how to choose the right model for you.
YETI Cooler Buying Guide
How long are you carrying your cooler? Is there enough space for your crew’s food? Here are a few things to check off your list when buying your next YETI.
Portability: All of the best YETI coolers are portable, but not all of them are designed the same way. The brand offers everything from standard cooler models to backpack coolers, making it easy to haul your gear on your shoulders and keep your booze cold all at the same time. On the other hand, if you’re in the market for a larger size, a wheeled YETI cooler might be the way to go.
Soft vs. Hard: YETI has a mix of both soft-sided and hard-sided coolers. In our testing, both options feature tough, durable shells that can withstand some serious wear and tear over the years. Both are easy to clean, though we recommend hard-sided coolers for beach excursions and camping. Bonus: It’s easier to use them as an extra seat or surface for prepping your meals.
Carrying Capacity: If you’re like us, you’ve stocked up on a couple sizes of coolers because not every picnic calls for a massive amount of cargo space. We’ve even stacked a couple of the soft-sided YETI coolers inside each other to save space in our house. But if you’re just searching for a single cooler, we picked a variety of size ranges to suit your needs. Each YETI can hold a different amount of food or drinks, in addition to ice or cooler packs. The Tundra 45, for instance, can store up to 28 cans, while the Hopper Flip 18, meanwhile, can fit up to 20.
Zip vs. Magnetic vs. Latch Closure: This is a simple, but important, feature to consider when you’re trying to choose your next YETI. The brand’s Hopper Flip soft coolers, for example, come with a zipper that lets you close your soft cooler with just a pull, while the hard coolers come with a couple latches to keep the lid sealed shut. Going for a hike where you need to quickly access your gear? YETI’s Hopper M20 might be for you, since it comes with a magnetic closure. All of the options get the job done in our experience, but it all depends on what you’re going to use your YETI for the most.
The Best YETI Coolers to Buy Right Now
From heavy-duty wheeled versions to portable carriers with shoulder straps, here are the top YETI coolers to pack up for your next getaway.
YETI Roadie 48 Wheeled Cooler
Your tailgating essential just got a brand-new set of puncture-proof wheels. We love the Roadie 24 for its travel-friendly size, but the addition of two new larger sizes makes it a no-brainer for tailgates, golden hour picnics far from home, and even festivals. In fact, there’s enough space to fit a couple bottles of natural wine upright in the cooler, plus a few containers of food and a small bottle of water. We like the retractable handle for easier rolling. It comes in three versions, including the 24, 48, and 60 models.
YETI Tundra Haul Wheeled Cooler
Sometimes a backpack cooler just won’t work. But if you still want a super-portable unit, go with this wheeled pick from YETI. Available in five colors, including navy and tan, it’s a good fit for big group outings and tailgates that call for hauling a lot of stuff (without pulling a muscle in the process). YETI calls it “the toughest cooler on two wheels,” and according to the brand, it’s made with materials that are used to build whitewater kayaks. You could literally launch it, slingshot-style, at an old, parked minivan, and the Tundra would still look normal. Seriously, YETI proved it.
YETI Hopper Flip 18 Cooler
We’re fans of YETI’s Hopper Flip coolers for everything from park picnics to beach days (and unfortunately that time our fridge died). It’s a wildly versatile cooler that keeps drinks cold for hours, but it’s also one of the best coolers for travel thanks to its shoulder strap, plus multiple carrying handles. The secure-and-sturdy zipper keeps all the cold air inside, and even blocks out sand and dirt. You can pack up to 20 cold ones in the 18. Bonus: The front HitchPoint Grid system lets you attach accessories like a water bottle. It comes with a three-year warranty, too.
YETI Tundra 45 Cooler
When you think of a YETI cooler, you probably picture one of its most popular models, the Tundra 45. And who could blame you? It’s one of the most versatile coolers out there that’ll be the envy of every camper, with enough storage room for a weekend’s worth of drinks and food for you and a few of your friends. YETI packed about three inches of insulation into this beast, ensuring your cans will always be ready to drink even in the heat. Unlike those IPAs, however, this thing’s built to last you for years, thanks to a bear-proof construction that’s tough, but still easy to clean with a hose and some soap.
YETI Hopper M20 Backpack Soft Cooler
Backpack coolers have come a long way in recent years, and YETI’s Hopper M20 is proof that your go-to cooler doesn’t have to be a pain to carry. With comfortable shoulder straps and a sturdy construction that can stand upright when on the ground, the Hopper M20 is the most portable YETI of the bunch. You’ll like the easy-to-open MagShield Access top, which quickly shuts thanks to built-in magnets instead of a zipper or latches. You can carry up to 18 cans in the Hopper, plus an ice pack, whether you’re heading to the water or just to the parking lot.