Best Coolers Similar to Yeti but Cheaper

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Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler - 45

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler – 45

The most successful replica of the Yeti brand is the Pelican Pro Gear Elite. Since the emergence of Yeti coolers in the market, many companies have attempted to knock off its design. A lot of brands have successfully followed the concept of Yeti but have added more features to make it more unique.

Looking for a cooler for your annual family trip? There are a lot of coolers in the market ranging from high-end products to low-quality cheap brands. So which one exactly should you go for?

Coolers are built to store your cold cuts and keep your drinks cold and refreshing. However, the type of cooler you need actually depends on what type of activity you intend on using it. The average cooler may be enough if you are just going to use it to cool your drinks during the hot summer days.

On the other hand, if you plan to use it for more extensive periods of time, you should consider investing in a high-quality cooler. A heavy-duty cooler will be able to provide you with longer insulation and is best for camping trips, fishing expeditions, and family outings.

In this article, we’ll give you a roundup of the best coolers similar to Yeti but cheaper. Yeti coolers may be expensive but if you are looking for similar style and function minus the cost, we can help you. Hopefully, this write-up will give you an idea of the different types of coolers to suit your preference, need, and budget.

I. Where are Yeti Coolers Made?

Over the years, Yeti has built a name for itself, especially when it comes to coolers. The brand has significantly gained a growing number of consumers and therefore has increased its supply to accommodate the rising demand for more coolers. However, there have been many questions from customers where Yeti coolers are actually made from.

Yeti’s craftsmanship remains a cut above the rest of its competitors. Their Tundra coolers are made from premium and high-quality parts and are manufactured in the USA, Philippines, and China. A lot of companies are manufacturing their products both home and overseas to save on costs and meet the consumer demands.

Yeti has also partnered with other US manufacturers in Iowa and Wisconsin to maintain the high-quality standard of building their products. They are working closely with their manufacturers to ensure that all products are built in the same quality and process to ensure customer satisfaction. Tundra coolers are manufactured in the US and Philippines while the Hopper coolers are produced in China.

Yeti Tundra and Roadie coolers are roto-molded and designed to insulate twice as much as the ordinary ice chest. This makes it more durable and reliable, especially for high-performance conditions. It’s tough enough to be used in commercial facilities.

II. Yeti Coolers Cheap?

Yeti coolers may be originally expensive but there are some instances when they go on sale. However, this may not be as often as you’d like and you just have to know when and where to look for a good buy.

Most often, you’ll find discounted prices of other coolers once the summer season is over. You can check online for marked down products. However, don’t get your hopes too high because it will be a challenge to look for a Yeti cooler on sale.

When you’re shopping for a cooler, keep a list of reasons why you need to buy a cooler. This will help you determine the type of cooler you need and whether or not you need to splurge or hold back on your purchase.

There are some Yeti coolers that are sold at a lower price online. However, you should factor in the shipping cost and taxes which are usually not included in the actual price posted on their website. Calculate it first and compare it with the regular priced Yeti cooler to determine if it is actually a good buy before you start swiping your card.

Cheapest Yeti Products

One of the cheapest Yeti products you can find online is the Yeti Roadie 20 Quart Cooler at Amazon.com. It can hold up to 14 cans of your favorite beverage making it suitable for camping trips or weekend adventures.

Yeti Roadie 20 Quart Cooler - Ice Blue

Yeti Roadie 20 Quart Cooler – Ice Blue

You can fit it comfortably in your vehicle without eating up too much space. Plus, you can even bring it along during your fishing expedition or when you go canoeing with your buddies.

III. Why You Should Consider Coolers That Compare To Yeti?

The Yeti brand has been around for years and has made a dent in the industry with their high-end coolers. Yeti has pioneered the way coolers are made with the entry of their roto-molded coolers in 2006. Their strategy was to distribute their products and position it on a premium scale.

This means you won’t see Yeti products on discount shops like Walmart. On the other hand, there are now a lot of coolers available in the market that are priced cheaper than Yeti but still comparable in terms of form and function.

One of the most popular Yeti coolers in the market is the Roadie Cooler. It’s a small personal cooler that is built with the same tough material as the larger Tundra models.

YETI Roadie 20 Limited Edition Seafoam Green Cooler

YETI Roadie 20 Limited Edition Seafoam Green Cooler

Here are six of the best coolers on the market that can rival the Yeti brand.

1. Rtic vs. Yeti

rtic vs. yeti

Rtic is retailed half the price of Yeti coolers making it a popular alternative to Yeti. Here’s a comparative look at both products including the pros and cons of each.

Rtic Coolers

Rtic coolers have become more aggressive when it comes to marketing their products. The brand confidently announced that their products can match and even perform better than the Yeti cooler. In terms of experience, the Rtic cooler is a bit new to the industry, having been established in 2014.

Their design and structure are actually based on the form of Yeti’s cooler. Their market strategy is to directly compete against Yeti by selling their cooler at a lower price point using the same top quality materials.

Rtic states that they are able to sell cheaper because they do not go through the distribution channel. They don’t have any middlemen involved which significantly lowers their cost per production. With their unique and direct approach to marketing and promotion, Rtic is quickly gaining visibility in the cooler business.

To give you a better understanding, here’s a comparative breakdown of the Rtic and Yeti coolers based on different categories.

A. Ice Life

Yeti Roadie 20 vs. Rtic 20


When it comes to ice retention, there are several factors that can affect how long your ice will last. The results may vary based on the condition on how you use your cooler.

If you’re taking it on an outdoor trip, chances are, your cooler will most likely be under the heat of the sun most of the time. This can affect the ice retention of your cooler.

The same situation applies on how often you open and close the cooler. The more often you open the lid to grab a drink, the quicker your ice may melt. You can prolong your ice if you just open it once a day.

Yeti Roadie 20

Yeti Roadie 20 Cooler, White

Yeti Roadie 20 Cooler, White

This personal cooler is small and portable. With its miniature size, it certainly has a shorter ice life compared to the bigger coolers like Tundra. However, it has the same quality, built and materials like the rest of Yeti’s premium coolers.

The Yeti Roadie 20 is built with a solid construction and is designed with a thick insulation system. Your ice will last you for at least four days.

Rtic 20

RTIC Cooler (RTIC 20 Tan)

RTIC Cooler (RTIC 20 Tan)

The Rtic 20, on the other hand, is a little bit bigger than the Yeti Roadie 20. It can accommodate around 25 pounds of ice which is more than enough to keep your beverage cool. It is designed as a personal cooler to rival the Yeti Roadie 20.

You can store your drinks for a quick weekend trip and can hold up to at least 24 cans. It’s enough to last you over the weekend.

Compared to the Yeti Roadie 20, the Rtic appears to have a similar maximum ice retention of four days. Most would expect for it to have a longer ice life, especially with its larger size.

Yeti Tundra 45 vs. Rtic 45


When it comes to bigger versions, such as the Yeti Tundra 45 vs. Rtic 45, you’ll start to notice the difference in ice retention.

Yeti Tundra 45

YETI Tundra 45 Cooler

YETI Tundra 45 Cooler

The Tundra 45 is a larger version of the Roadie which means it has more capacity for ice. This practically means that a bigger space can increase the lifespan of your ice. The ice in your Tundra 45 can last up to five days.

Rtic 45

RTIC Cooler (RTIC 45 White)

RTIC Cooler (RTIC 45 White)

The Rtic 45 is also slightly bigger than the Yeti Tundra 45. This cooler allows you an extra five pounds of ice. Therefore, unlike the smaller versions, the Rtic 45 can retain ice up to a maximum of 6 days making it a bit longer than the Yeti.

Yeti Tundra 65 vs. Rtic 65


Similarly, it has the same principle for the Rtic 65 vs. the Yeti Tundra 65. The Rtic 65 is also built a bit larger than the Tundra 65 which means it can accommodate more ice. The Rtic 65 can prolong the ice life up to 8 days while the Yeti Tundra 65 can store up to 7 days.

Winner: The clear winner of this feature is the Rtic 45 and Rtic 65.

B. Size Range

YETI Tundra 65 Cooler

YETI Tundra 65 Cooler

Yeti  vs. Rtic 


Yeti

Yeti has a wide range of cooler sizes to choose from, especially the hard-sided coolers. There’s a size available for each category.

Rtic

The Rtic, on the other hand, has focused their design size based on Yeti’s range of products. However, in terms of dimensions, the Rtic cooler is slightly larger than Yeti’s design. This gives you additional space to fit more ice and beverage cans.

Here’s a quick look at the specifications of each.

Yeti Roadie 20 vs. Rtic 20


Specs Yeti Roadie 20 Rtic 20
Weight 15 lbs. 17.5 lbs.
Dimensions 14 3/8 x 19 x 13 ¾ in. 15 x 20 x 13 ¾ in.
No. of cans 14 24
Ice capacity 20 lbs. 25 lbs.

Yeti Tundra 45 vs. Rtic 45


Specs Yeti Roadie 45 Rtic 45
Weight 23 lbs. 25 lbs.
Dimensions 15 ½ x 25 ½ x 16 in. 15 7/8 x 26 ½ x 16 ½ in.
No. of cans 26 36
Ice capacity 35 lbs. 40 lbs.

Yeti Tundra 65 vs. Rtic 65


Specs Yeti Roadie 65 Rtic 65
Weight 15 lbs. 17.5 lbs.
Dimensions 16 x 30 ½ x 17 ½ in. 17 1/8 x 32 ¼ x 18 ½ in.
No. of cans 39 64
Ice capacity 56 lbs. 70 lbs.

Winner: Although Rtic has a bigger and more spacious design, Yeti has a wider range of sizes to accommodate your specific need and preference.

A. Toughness

Yeti  vs. Rtic 


Yeti

When it comes to toughness, Yeti is in a league of its own. This brand is known to produce the best quality coolers in the market. Their coolers are built with high-grade materials and undergo a meticulous construction process to produce a strong and durable cooler that can withstand the toughest conditions and environment.

Rtic

Rtic coolers are built to copy and match Yeti’s design. They carefully followed the same procedure as their competitor to be able to replicate the same quality and toughness of the Yeti cooler.

Winner: They are extremely close but Yeti still remains on top of their game.

Overall Winner

Based on the three categories above, the Yeti triumphs over the Rtic, winning in terms of toughness and size range. It was quite a close comparison between the two brands. If Rtic continues their aggressive and strategic approach, Yeti may be faced with a challenge, especially when it comes to cost.

2. Kysek vs. Yeti

Kysek vs. Yeti

Kysek vs. Yeti

Kysek or Keep Your Stuff Extremely Kold, entered the cooler industry last 2014. Kysek coolers are also roto-molded similar to Yeti. It offers the same features as the Yeti cooler but with additional features that Yeti doesn’t have.

Kysek has added a bottle opener and inbuilt wheels to complete their design package. The extra features are an added bonus for customers. For this comparison, I’d like to focus more on the features Yeti lacks.

Inbuilt Wheels

Kysek’s inbuilt wheels make it stand out from the rest of the coolers. The 35L model is equipped with inline wheels and can hold up to 500 lbs. This provides convenience for most users, especially since you won’t have to worry about hurting your back from carrying your cooler.

Kysek The Ultimate Ice Chest with Wheels 35 Liter Marine White Cooler

Kysek The Ultimate Ice Chest with Wheels 35 Liter Marine White Cooler

Bottle Opener

If you’re planning to use your cooler for parties, a bottle opener is a great addition to coolers. This feature is quite useful, especially when you realize your bottle opener is missing again.

Having a built-in bottle opener solves that problem. There are two built-in bottle openers at the edge of the Kysek cooler.

Cost

Ultimately, when you talk about the price range, Kysek is sold cheaper than the Yeti but barely. Kysek coolers are at least $10 cheaper compared to its Yeti counterpart. That’s not much savings at all.

However, with its additional features, it seems that Kysek may be a better choice if you want value for your money.

Winner: Kysek wins thanks to its extra features.

3. Grizzly vs. Yeti

Grizzly vs. Yeti

In terms of performance, the Grizzly and Yeti coolers are quite similar. Grizzly coolers are designed to improve the construction, capacity, and coolness. It is built with a roto-tough plastic material making it strong and sturdy.

With its tough exterior, it can take on rough handling and other harsh conditions. It’s reliable and functional. You can expect your ice to last up to six days.

Grizzly and Yeti are toe-to-toe when it comes to form and function. One minor difference between the two coolers is the rope handle. Grizzly is constructed with a canvas to cover the nylon rope handle and is contoured to fit your hands comfortably unlike Yeti’s plastic cylinder design.

Grizzly 40 quart Tan/Cooler

Grizzly 40 quart Tan/Cooler

Price Range

They may have similar traits but there is a variance on the cost. When it comes to the price point, Grizzly is less inexpensive than Yeti. You can save up to $100 on your purchase.

Buying a cooler depends on your budget. If you are willing to pay more for a cooler, then the Yeti brand may be a suitable choice. However, if you prefer a less expensive product but is also packed with good features, you may want to consider the Grizzly cooler.

Winner: The Grizzly cooler may be a better choice in terms of price point.

4. Igloo vs. Yeti

Igloo vs. Yeti

Both brands have similar design and specs. However, once you break down the features, you’ll notice the difference between the two.

One of the more prominent difference between the two brands is the pricing. Igloo Sportsman is much affordable than the Yeti cooler. You can save an average of $80 for the smaller cooler while at least $150 for the larger ones.

A Sportsman 55-Quart has the same price range as the Yeti Roadie 22-Quart but you get a much larger size with the Sportsman. This reason alone makes the Igloo seem more reasonable to buy.

Igloo Products 00044921 Sportsman Cooler, White, 55 quart

Igloo Products 00044921 Sportsman Cooler, White, 55 quart

Built

They appear similar in form but when it comes to quality and construction, the Igloo seems to be a bit underwhelming compared to Yeti. Based on online customer reviews, the Igloo cooler tends to have quality issues like bubbling and insulation gaps. This makes it less popular and has lower ratings.

However, some cases may just be isolated. At the end of the day, it depends whether you’re willing to shell out extra money for a more reliable cooler such as Yeti. On the other hand, if you have a tight budget, you may probably go for the Igloo.

Winner: Personally, I prefer the Yeti cooler because it’s much more reliable and because I do not want to have any issues with my cooler in the long run.

5. K2 vs. Yeti

K2 vs. Yeti

K2 vs. Yeti

The K2 and Yeti roto-molded coolers are both built with strong materials making it resistant to tough environment and harsh conditions. They also appear similar in terms of form and structure. Nonetheless, Yeti still has a more premium feel and design.

The material, quality, and design of Yeti coolers look much more sophisticated than other brands. It looks and feels high-end. This puts Yeti in a different category by itself.

K2 Coolers Summit 30 Cooler

K2 Coolers Summit 30 Cooler

With the popularity of high-end coolers, K2 coolers entered the competition with their own version of lightweight heavy-duty coolers. The quality and construction design of K2 coolers are up to par with Yeti’s product. K2 also offers a wider range of color choices so you have more options to choose from.

When it comes to the cost, K2 coolers are much more affordable which makes it a great alternative to the expensive Yeti cooler. This is what makes it a popular choice among customers.

Ice Retention

Both coolers have great ice retention. You can expect your ice to last you for at least six days. In some cases, the ice in your K2 cooler may last a half day more than the Yeti depending on the condition.

Built

The weight of both coolers vary. Some K2 coolers weight more than their Yeti counterpart while other K2 products weigh less than Yeti.

The latches are also slightly different. Yeti is built with ball and socket latches that hold the lid in position when pulled down. On the other hand, K2’s latches are pulled up when hooked over the lid.

The latches are also slightly different.

The latches are also slightly different.

Winner: If you want to maximize the lifespan of your ice to keep your drinks cold, the K2 may be a good solution.

6. Pelican vs. Yeti

Pelican vs. Yeti

The Pelican and Yeti are two of the most sought-after cooler brands. Both coolers are extremely strong and durable. You can use it in any type of outdoor activity without having to worry how long it will last.

Pelican

Pelican coolers are constructed with a tough look and feel, thanks to its large latches and handles. Its heavy-duty appearance looks quite intimidating at first sight.

Some models apparently weigh 10 lbs. more than a Yeti. Meanwhile, this cooler is more user-friendly.

Ice Retention and Performance

One of the best features of high-end coolers is its ice retention. This is what makes premium coolers expensive compared to the standard cooler. Both Pelican and Yeti coolers can retain ice between 5 to 10 days.

The ice in the Pelican cooler lasts longer than the Yeti cooler. We’re talking about a few hours to a couple of days.

The insulation of the Pelican cooler is built thicker than the Yeti. It has a 2.5-inch wall and 3-inch lid. This extends the lifespan of your ice.

Cost

Pelican coolers used to be more affordable but the brand hiked its price and now costs slightly cheaper than the Yeti cooler. The price difference amounts to just around $50.

Design

The Pelican cooler looks tough and bulky. On the other hand, the Yeti appears to be its exact opposite. With its chic and slim design, the Yeti looks more elegant than most coolers in the market.

The finish of the material has a nice gloss. This makes Yeti look more premium.

Pelican

Pelican

The great thing about the Pelican is that it isn’t just a replica of the Yeti. It has its own unique design and features.

Winner: I would have to choose the Pelican as the cooler with the upper hand due to cost and ice retention.

IV. Coolers Similar to Yeti but Better

Coolers Similar to Yeti but Better

We’ve gathered a list of 5 coolers that are quite comparable to Yeti but can outperform Yeti.

1. Siberian Cooler

Siberian Coolers 82qt Outback Series

Siberian Coolers 82qt Outback Series

The Siberian cooler was first sold in the market at a lower price. However, like other brands, they have also increased their prices but remain a little cheaper than Yeti. Therefore the price gap between Yeti and Siberian coolers are now relatively smaller.

This cooler is built with great features and even has a better ice retention than Yeti. It is also constructed with a comfortable grip handle to make it easier to carry. The lid is molded with four cup holders to hold and secure your drinks to avoid any spilling.

Overall, the Siberian cooler is a good and capable cooler that you can bring along during your fishing expeditions or boating trips.

2. Pelican Pro Gear Elite Cooler

Pelican Products

Pelican Products

best choose azbestguides

Best choose azbestguides

The Pelican Pro Gear Elite is a solid cooler. This heavy-duty cooler can withstand any kind of abuse and condition. It may be bulky and heavy but it is definitely dependable.

It also has a better insulation compared to Yeti and allows your ice to last a few more days. I used it during our family camping trip and I’m pleased with the results. When I came home, most of the ice were not melted.

Another plus feature is the handle design. The handle can hold for a few inches to let the air circulate before storing. Did I mention it is cheaper than Yeti too?

3. Engel Cooler

Engel Coolers High Performance ENG65 Roto-Molded Cooler

Engel Coolers High Performance ENG65 Roto-Molded Cooler

The Engel cooler is a reliable piece of equipment. It provides better ice retention and can perform well even under the sun. It’s great for outdoor activities like camping or beach trips even if the temperature is hot.

This cooler will keep your drinks ice cold for days. This makes it better than the Yeti.

The latches of this cooler are easy to handle. The lid is sealed well and is leak-proof. Even if the cooler is full of water and you turn it upside down, you won’t see any drop of water from it.

This may be suitable for traveling on rough terrains, especially since it is sturdy and tough.

4. Orca Cooler

ORCA Cooler

ORCA Cooler

The Orca cooler is significantly less expensive than Yeti. It is reasonably priced and you can even save up to $100. Not only is it more affordable but it is also built with good quality materials.

It performs better than the standard cooler. The size is just right and effectively keeps your food and beverage cool for days. Your ice can last up to five days.

This cooler may be heavier than other brands but is very durable. It is made from the US so you can expect a high-quality product.

5. Canyon Cooler

Canyon Cooler Outfitter Series 55qt- Sandstone

Canyon Cooler Outfitter Series 55qt- Sandstone

The Canyon cooler is a top-selling product that outperforms Yeti in several ways. It has the thickest insulation among all coolers. It has a wall thickness of 2.75 inches and lid thickness of 3 inches compared to the standard 2-inch wall and 3-inch lid thickness.

This means it has an excellent insulation system and better ice retention versus other brands. You can expect your ice to last up to a maximum of 12 days. That is certainly longer than the 7-day maximum ice retention of Yeti.

This makes Canyon a competitive brand and is relatively more affordable than Yeti.

V. Coolers Like Yeti But Cheaper

Coolers Like Yeti But Cheaper

1. K2 Summer 50 Cooler

The K2 Summer 50 cooler is a great quality product sold at a very reasonable price making it a good investment. It weighs lighter than other standard coolers. This makes it more convenient and easy to use.

K2 Coolers Summit 50 Team Color Edition Cooler

K2 Coolers Summit 50 Team Color Edition Cooler

I went for a week long camping retreat with my friends and I was surprised to see that the water left in the cooler is still ice cold even after 7 days. You don’t have to spend much on a cooler to get a great quality product.

2. Grizzly Cooler

If you like going on road trips and outdoor activities, the Grizzly cooler may be a suitable choice for travelers like you. It is made in the US, built with ergonomic handles and has a good grip to keep it secure in your trunk or boat. The size is just right so it won’t eat up too much space in your vehicle.

Grizzly Coolers Cooler

Grizzly Coolers Cooler

This cooler is priced a little cheaper than the Yeti and is designed with a number of features that makes it a good buy over the Yeti cooler.

VI. Best Yeti Knock off Cooler

Best Yeti Knock off Cooler

Pelican 65 Cooler Review

Since the emergence of Yeti coolers in the market, many companies have attempted to knock off its design. A lot of brands have successfully followed the concept of Yeti but have added more features to make it more unique. The best thing about these products is that consumers can now buy not just one but two coolers for the price of one Yeti.

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler, 65 quart

Pelican Products ProGear Elite Cooler, 65 quart

The most successful replica of the Yeti brand is the Pelican Pro Gear Elite. Here are some reasons why you may want to consider buying it over the Yeti cooler.

  1. Ice retention – This is the most important feature when buying a cooler. In fact, it is the reason why you’re investing in a high-end cooler and not an ice chest. When put to the test, the Yeti cooler can retain ice up to a maximum of 7 days. On the other hand, the Pelican Pro Gear Elite can last up to 10 days. With its thicker wall and lid, it provides better insulation making the ice last longer.
  2. Cost – The Pelican is sold at a retail price that is considerably less than the Yeti. Both Pelican and Yeti have similar features yet they differ in price point. You can save a minimum of $100 if you choose the Pelican over Yeti.
  3. Lid – The Pelican’s lid is lined with measurements. This may be insignificant to some users but it is quite important for fishermen. It helps them measure how big their catch is.

This is a bonus feature, especially because Yeti coolers don’t have one.

  • 4. Latches – The latch design in Pelican coolers are better than Yeti. It has a press and pull function that allows you to close the lid in just one click. All you need to do is push the button and lift the latch to open the cooler.

The latches are bear-resistant and doesn’t require locks unlike Yeti coolers which need a padlock to protect it from bears.

VII. Final Words

The reason behind this article is to lay down all the facts about high-end coolers and help even out the playing field. Yeti coolers have been on the market for quite some time and has dominated the sales in the high-end category. Yeti already has a strong following and a solid customer base.

However, we’d like to give you some options, particularly affordable ones that have similar features to Yeti. You may want to take a second look at our list before you decide to invest in a cooler.

Surprisingly there are a lot of brands that can almost rival Yeti. Remember, when choosing a cooler, you should always consider the price, ice retention, durability, and other important factors. At the end of the day, your own preference and need will determine the right kind of cooler for you.

So, ask yourself which is more important. Affordability or high-quality? You can still have both.


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James F. Core
 

I love fishing, that's all.

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