It’s easy to see why outdoor enthusiasts love Yeti coolers. They are durable, functional, and versatile. Despite Yeti’s large price tags, they can be worth every penny. Still, some simply don’t want to shell out hundreds of dollars on a new Yeti cooler. If you fall into this category, don’t worry, there are plenty of options! You don’t have to sacrifice features to get a yeti like cooler cheaper. These coolers will give you long-lasting, superior cooling while saving you at least $50 or more. In this article, we’ll focus on Hard and Soft Coolers like Yeti. This article will not discuss fake Yeti coolers on the market.
Orca Coolers aren’t technically cheap, but for the same size as a Yeti cooler, you can expect to save at least $50. All Orca Coolers come in several colors and sizes. They start at a size of 20 quarts and go all the way up to 150 quarts. The range of colors start with your basic blue and white. Orca then includes more lively colors like red, pink and green. They also have a variety of features to suit the needs of just about any buyer. Integrated insulation and a tight-sealing lid can keep your items cold and fresh for up to 10 days. The coolers also have a drain spout for easy pouring after it’s emptied. The Orca 40 Quart white cooler is a good deal for those not on a budget.
- Roto-molded construction for superior durability
- Wide variety of colors, designs, and sizes
- Cargo net can attach to the back for additional storage
- Keeps items cold and fresh for days
- 2″ superior insulation around the sides, top, and bottom
- Priced between $50-$100 lower than Yeti for similar sizes
- Additional accessories, like ice packs and cooler baskets, are available
- Still at the top of the price range of similar coolers; expect to pay over $200 for the smallest
- Not very portable; does not have wheels and you may need a 2nd person to help lift and move the cooler
Pelican ProGear Elite Cooler
Pelican ProGear is another good option when looking for yeti alternatives. The Pelican ProGear Elite Cooler is found at a lower budget with comparable durability. Heavy duty polypropylene makes up the molded shell and handles. This will withstand long-term outdoor use during camping, fishing, hunting, and other activities. The cooler has 2″-thick insulation all around keeping internal contents cold for days. Pelican creates this line of coolers both with and without wheels, so they can be as portable as you need them to be. The Elite coolers start at a size of 20 quarts and go up to 150. They offer a few more color options than the Orca Cooler. these include orange and more shades of green. This is a great option for a hard cooler like Yeti.
- Fish measuring ruler on the lid helps you measure your latest catch with no additional tools needed
- Stainless steel screws and hinges for long-lasting durability
- Latches open using a press and pull method for convenience
- Gasket is freezer grade for an extra tight seal
- Some coolers in the line have built-in bottle openers
- Drain spout for convenience when emptying cooler
- These coolers are also fairly high in price, and may still be out of the budget for some buyers
- You’ll pay extra for a cooler with wheels for easy portability
- Doesn’t tend to keep contents as cold as advertised; averages about 2-3 days before ice melts
Knox Electric Cooler/Warmer
This one isn’t just a cooler, but a warmer as well. This makes it even more convenient for those who camp or do other outdoor activities throughout the year. And, it’s significantly cheaper than a Yeti of its size. This 48-quart cooler and warmer can chill contents to 40 degrees Fahrenheit and heat contents up to 130 degrees Fahrenheit. The cooler is taller than others, allowing 2-liter containers to stand up comfortably. This is another great yeti alternative. We have a more in depth review of the Knox Cooler.
- Comes with an A/C adaptor plug and DC car plug so you can power the cooler/warmer indoors or in your car
- Wheels and handle allow for ultimate portability
- One of the most versatile storage options for outdoor enthusiasts
- No need to open the lid to power; its design allows you to power the cooler while closed
- Locking mechanism keeps the cooler tightly sealed to keep contents at the perfect temperature
- Requires a power source for heating and cooling, which can sometimes pose an issue at campsites
- The fans and cooling/heating system can be loud as they run
- Shouldn’t run for long periods of time to keep motor running optimally
Siberian Coolers Alpha Series
Siberian offers great options when looking for coolers like Yeti. Siberian Coolers Alpha Series are brand new to the Siberian Coolers line. They have a chance to destroy their competition. Siberian Coolers are priced well below Yeti coolers but have similar size options. These ultra durable coolers have almost three inches of insulation, keeping contents colder for longer. The sizes for these coolers are roughly the same as the previous ones. This is a great hard cooler at a much more affordable price. Check out our full review the the Siberian Coolers to learn more.
- Latch system withstands extreme temperatures and elements, like saltwater corrosion
- Polyethylene outer shell
- Stainless steel hinges to prevent rust and wear
- Reversible sliding/sticky rubber feet, so the cooler moves and stays in place when you need it to
- Variety of compatible accessories available
- Can be bulky and heavy for one person to carry
- Higher end of the price range for coolers of similar sizes
Grizzly Coolers are some of the most well-known to outdoor enthusiasts as Yeti coolers. Grizzly cooler are a great option for a yeti like cooler at a much cheaper price. The brand has been around since 1983 and has pushed the boundaries of innovation to create some of the best coolers. You can find Grizzly coolers for sale on Amazon.
- Embossed 15″ ruler on the lid, perfect for fisherman
- Lifetime warranty included
- Under normal conditions, can retain ice for four days or more
- Virtually indestructible construction
- Rubber BearClaw latch system for extra tight seal
- Doesn’t retain ice for longer than two days in extreme heat conditions
- Straps sold separately for some coolers; side handles alone can be inconvenient for carrying
- Heavier than some other coolers when empty
Ozark Trail Premium Jumbo Cooler
The Ozark Trail Premium Jumbo Cooler will easily save you about $200 compared to a similar Yeti cooler. This huge soft-sided cooler can hold up to 36 cans or up to 30 lbs. of ice, so it will likely have plenty of space to hold your contents for a long weekend or short trip. Your contents won’t stay as cold as long as a Yeti, but the Ozark Trail cooler will do the trick for a couple of days. When looking at coolers like Yeti, this is a great option if you are willing to give up some performance.
- Molded base to help the cooler retain shape
- Easy to clean 600D coated material
- Front accessory pocket and two spots for accessory attachments
- Two handles and removable, padded shoulder strap so you can carry however it’s comfortable for you
- Dual bottle openers right on the cooler
- Does not prevent leaks as well as others
- Zippers and hardware are less durable than other coolers
- Retains ice for only a day or two
- Zipper seal isn’t airtight or leakproof
RTIC 30 Soft Pack
This cooler is about $100 cheaper than Yeti and similar in size. Reviewers rave about its durability and ability to retain ice. With several attachment points, you can clip your gear to this cooler to keep everything conveniently in one place. The RTIC 30 Soft Pack holds up to 30 cans plus ice. Its 2” foam insulation will also keep everything cool for up to five days. This is a great yeti alternative!
- Sweat-resistant exterior
- Tightly-sealing zipper helps prevent leaks and loss of air
- Exterior pocket for dry items
- Antimicrobial liner to prevent mold and mildew
- Two handles and a padded shoulder strap for portability
- Large flip-top for easy access to contents
- Does not withstand extreme heat conditions for retaining ice and internal temperature
- Strong odor when new; customers have had to clean with baking soda solution to remove
- One of the more expensive soft-sided coolers
Polar Bear Coolers Nylon Series
Polar Bear Coolers Nylon Series comes in 12-pack, 24-pack, 48-pack, or backpack sizes. They also come in a variety of color options to suit your tastes. The 1000D nylon exterior can withstand just about any journey. You won’t have to worry about punctures or tears. Heavy-duty zippers and hardware help ensure longevity with this soft-sided cooler.
- Folds down for convenient storage when not in use
- FDA-Approved double nylon-coated interior liner
- Double handles that you can strap together; removable padded shoulder strap (except on some smaller coolers)
- Customizable embroidery for adding brand logo or name
- Rugged materials help hold shape
- Holds several pounds of ice in addition to the can capacity
- Stiff, especially when new
- Plastic snaps are prone to breakage
- May leak water if tipped over
- Foam lining may bunch, causing some bumps on the interior and exterior
- Nylon may fade and warp if left in extremely sunny conditions
AO Coolers Vinyl Soft Cooler
For its price, AO Coolers Vinyl Soft Cooler is just about the best your money can buy. This cooler is best for extreme weather conditions, like rain, snow, or intense sunshine and heat. The vinyl exterior is waterproof. This means you don’t need to worry about rain seeping in or sweat from the heat ruining your cooler. Plus, the durable vinyl is resistant to intense sun and won’t crack or fade from UV rays. This cooler from AO Coolers has twice the insulation of similar coolers, keeping your contents colder for longer.
- Thick insulation comprised of high-density, closed-cell foam for intense cooling powers
- TPU liners are the same material as waterbeds and pool liners. These are great to resist tears from your cooler’s contents, and prevent mildew.
- Holds ice for up to 24 hours, even in intense heat
- Tear resistant up to 375 pounds
- Holds several pounds of ice in addition to can capacity. 24-can size, for example, can hold an additional 14 pounds of ice.
- Zipper and hardware a bit flimsier than higher-priced coolers
- While water runs off the vinyl exterior, cooler may still soak up water on the ground. This may creates water pockets between the liner and insulation.
- Not as rugged as some other coolers; may not retain shape after consistent use
ENGEL USA Cooler Bag Backpack
If you’re looking for a small and portable cooler, few compare to the ENGEL USA Cooler Bag Backpack. The ENGEL USA Cooler Bag Backpack is much larger, yet lighter weight, and more convenient to carry in its backpack form. All this and it’s $150 less than even the smallest Yeti soft-sided cooler. This backpack has a 23-quart capacity. There’s plenty of room for your food and drinks. Adjustable, vented, padded straps make it a breeze to carry on your back, even with significant content weight. The Engel backpack is one of the best options for a soft cooler like Yeti.
- Polyethylene foam insulation to keep contents cold
- Two interior pockets to keep contents from moving and six exterior pockets for dry items
- Large, heavy-duty carry handles in addition to backpack straps
- Non-skid foot pads to keep the backpack cooler in place when on the ground
- Large rear pocket is perfect for small laptops or tablets
- Easy access to internal contents with wide top opening
- Removable liner bag for easy cleaning
- Plastic zippers and hardware can pose a problem for consistent users
- External material is prone to staining
- When cooler is new, the opening can be difficult to flex to fill up or remove contents
- May need to purchase additional sealed ice packs to keep contents cold for as long as possible
There are certainly pros and cons to every cooler, even the Yeti. As much as customers love Yetis, others believe that there are coolers like yeti but cheaper that are just as good. These coolers stand up just as well, if not better. If you’re looking for a cooler on a budget, there’s no reason to pay hundreds for a brand name. Also don’t forget to check out our Cooler Buying Guide if you’re in the market.
The coolers in this guide prove that coolers with similar features to a Yeti cooler are out there at lower prices. The key is to find a cooler that will meet your needs for longevity, durability, and convenience. Not everyone will need the most heavy-duty cooler. This is true especially if you plan on using one mostly for short beach trips or quick weekends away. For these outdoor adventures, a soft-shell cooler usually does the trick.
A hard cooler is usually more expensive than a soft cooler, but it’s usually more durable as well. If you use your cooler often and load it with heavy items, one of the hard coolers in this guide will work as well as a Yeti. We hope you enjoyed our review for coolers like Yeti makes and found a good fit for you!