Updated: November 2019


There is no doubt;

Yeti has taken center stage as far as coolers are concerned. Founded by two brothers Roy and Ryan Seiders in 2006, the company has swooped the outdoor recreational world by storm.

More like a cult following, Yeti is coveted by many, however, the hefty price is a turnoff for some.

The price is so high that it has caused a debate whether or not Yeti coolers are worth the price?

As you may know, there’s no perfect product. For this reason, the quest to find best cooler alternatives comes to play.

Fortunately for you, we’ll be looking at the top affordable Yeti competitors that are giving Yeti a run for its money.

Coolers Like Yeti But Cheaper – Top options

Preview
RTIC 20, White
ORCA BW058ORCORCA Cooler, White, 58-Quart
Pelican ProGear Cooler 45QT Tan Cooler
Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler (White, 50-Quart)
ENGEL ENG65 High Performance Cooler - Haze Gray
Grizzly 60 quart Rotomolded Cooler, Sandstone
Title
RTIC 20, White
ORCA BW058ORCORCA Cooler, White, 58-Quart
Pelican ProGear Cooler 45QT Tan Cooler
Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler (White, 50-Quart)
ENGEL ENG65 High Performance Cooler - Haze Gray
Grizzly 60 quart Rotomolded Cooler, Sandstone
User Rating
Preview
RTIC 20, White
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RTIC 20, White
User Rating
Preview
ORCA BW058ORCORCA Cooler, White, 58-Quart
Title
ORCA BW058ORCORCA Cooler, White, 58-Quart
User Rating
Preview
Pelican ProGear Cooler 45QT Tan Cooler
Title
Pelican ProGear Cooler 45QT Tan Cooler
User Rating
Preview
Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler (White, 50-Quart)
Title
Igloo Yukon Cold Locker Cooler (White, 50-Quart)
User Rating
Preview
ENGEL ENG65 High Performance Cooler - Haze Gray
Title
ENGEL ENG65 High Performance Cooler - Haze Gray
User Rating
Preview
Grizzly 60 quart Rotomolded Cooler, Sandstone
Title
Grizzly 60 quart Rotomolded Cooler, Sandstone
User Rating

ORCA, RTIC, igloo, coolers are traditionally viewed as Yeti’s rivals. As forward-thinking manufacturers of high-end coolers, it’s easy to make comparisons between these companies.

Yeti is getting increased competition from its rivals, however, the edge their competition hold is the affordable price tag.

Without wasting much of your time let’s have a quick rundown of Yeti Alternatives.


RTIC Coolers

In a sentence where Yeti is mentioned, the next thing you should expect is RTIC – vice versa.

Rtic boasts of its coolers going half the price and retains more ice than its competition, YETI. Although the claim might seem a bit outrageous, there’s no doubt, Rtic produces top-tier coolers that’s half the price Yeti cost.

When yeti prices soared high, Rtic, came to the rescue with affordable Yeti knockoffs. The strategy made RTIC gain about a million followers on Facebook in less than a year.

The company lost a lawsuit to yeti, forced to discontinue the Yeti look-alike products. Despite the set-back, RTIC have started the production of new products.

RTIC produces a fantastic line of coolers: Roto-molded coolers & Soft-sided coolers as well. The coolers feature sleek designs. If you’ve used an RTIC product, you’ll agree that they have a stylish look which is aesthetically pleasing.

In addition, their roto-molded coolers are incredibly strong and certified grizzly resistant. Also, the company put a lot of attention to detail when designing the soft coolers, as they retain ice longer than most hard-sided ice chests.

VERDICT

In short, RTIC is perfect for users that want a cheaper yeti model with great ice retention and overall strength. The phrase “you get what you pay for” fits RTIC ice chest best.

Also read: Rtic Cooler Vs Yeti Comparison

ORCA Coolers

I would suggest that after RTIC, the next competitor to Yeti is – ORCA.

The fact that they are produced in America gives ORCA an edge over its competition. When it comes to ice retention, most users and tests have proven Orca to be superior to Yeti.

With almost identical design as Yeti, ORCA too, has a rugged build which can withstand abuse.

People of style will love this; it also comes in different colors, choose the type that suits you best.

For diverse needs and functions, it comes in different sizes and builds. Some of our best selections are; 20, 40, 58, 75 and 140 Quarts. ORCA also produces a line of hard-sided (Hard Coolers) and soft-sided coolers.

VERDICT

Finally, I’d like to reiterate that ORCA coolers are near perfect alternatives to Yeti, considering they cost less too. Customers to their product line would tell you amazing it is – we can see why.

Pelican ProGear Elite Coolers

The next up on our list is one of the best ice chest company. For those who don’t know, Pelican has a history of providing some of the best heavy-duty Rotomolded coolers. Although a bit expensive, pelican are build to match Yeti cooler performance in both ice retention and durability.

Pelican high-end coolers, notably the Elite ice chests have an overall rugged build. The cooler effortlessly manages to stand out. if you want a beastly engineered design that’s constructed to last, then this is for you.

Testing revealed, in terms of ice retention and performance on all fronts, pelican Elite is not far from RTIC & ORCA.

Impressively, it comes with two carrying option: molded in handles if you are carrying alone, and thick foldout handles are suitable for carrying with someone.

Another great thing about Pelican ProGear is the impressive press and pull latches. Considering their hardware and built-in UV resistance, this will make the perfect boat cooler.

Do keep in mind that top tier rotationally made pelican coolers have a record of holding ice for a minimum of 5-7 days! For regular cooler users, this one will be an overkill for you.

VERDICT

If you are looking for coolers like yeti but cheaper, you can’t go wrong about a product that has it all; ice retention, and rugged build.

Igloo Yukon Cold Locker

Yet another cooler from one of the oldest ice chest manufacturers. For those who don’t know, Igloo has been in existence for over 60 years. Rest assured, their pedigree for top notch coolers speaks for itself. And the Yukon cold locker is not an exception.

Let’s take a closer look:

The Yukon cold locker comes with dual lid locks, meaning you don’t have to worry about grizzly animals breaking in. Made from premium Hard-molded polyethylene, you should expect high insulation performance. The drain plugs here are oversized, however, the drain is enough to drain water is without making a mess.

Available in numerous sizes of 45, 50 and 70 quarts, user’s are given many options to choose the best fit, also on the lid is a measuring tool to measure your catch, good for fishing & Kayak trips.

You’ll love this: the cooler has a textured flat top for relaxing. When tired, you can quickly grab a drink, and sit on the lid while you enjoy the moment. Of course, it’s strong enough to any weight.

VERDICT

Simply put, the Yukon cold locker is one of the best coolers like Yeti and affordable that’s available on the market.

Engel Deep Blue Cooler

Engel deep blue ice chest has received a lot of hype from hardcore cooler enthusiast. Praised for its high-quality build, long ice retention and affordable price, you’d be forced to think if this is a better alternative to Yeti.

Well, let’s take a proper look at it:

This cooler is strongly reinforced with the high insulation materials to retain ice. Thanks to the silicone air gasket between the lid and base, all the cold stays inside. In addition, the rotomolded body helps in extra insulation, but gives overall strength to the exterior. In regards to insulation, the Engel and Yeti are on the same level.

Tested to be bear resistant, the deep blue is something you’d like to carry on your next camping trip.

Further praise goes to the lightweight nature of the cooler, you’d guess the Engel deep to be heavy as a result of its rotomolded build, but no, it’s lighter than the ProGear. The latches are locks the lid tight which seals completely.

You can’t help but gush about the design of the Engel; we love how nicely it’s constructed. Yes, unlike some other rotomolded coolers, its design is incredibly impressive.

VERDICT

While this may not be the number one pick for some hardcore cooler enthusiasts, this chest has enough strength to last for a long time, while the ice retention is something you can brag to your Yeti friends.

Grizzly Cooler

Grizzly is yet another name to reckon with in the ice chest world. They have a large fan base, an indication that the products they offer are top notch.

Grizzly coolers have a hard cut design users like, it’s rotationally made and utilizes a double-walled polyethylene to keep your foods and drinks cold for days. As the name implies Grizzly, it’s engineered to be resistant to Grizzly bears. If you have a thing for ice chest produced in America, the Grizzly too, is manufactured in the states.

The rubber Bearclaw latching mechanism keeps it perfectly sealed. In terms of insulation, the Grizzly cooler doesn’t hold ice for long as much as YETI does. But you’ll find some sort of solace because it’s cheaper.

Molded-in handles provide ease and comfort especially when you are carrying alone.

VERDICT

So is this cooler perfect? Well, aside from the fact that it doesn’t retain ice better than Yeti, there aren’t many bad things to write about the product. If you have the budget, and you are looking for a cheap yeti options, this one’s your best bet.

K2 Coolers

K2 coolers in recent years have produced high-end rotomolded coolers that can face the top to Yeti. Designed with quality materials, there’s something attractive about K2 products. They are nicely engineered to be beautiful. Yes, take a look at one, and you’ll admit to it.

But are K2 coolers only beautiful?

No, K2 chest have received favorable reviews in all ramifications like; aesthetic construction, ice retention, & price.

On paper, the K2 can hold ice for up to 10 days. However, reviews have proven that it doesn’t hold ice to that time in real life situation, the K2 keeps ice for a minimum of 6-8 days! More to it, the gasket seal between the lid and base is tight, nothing goes in or out.

The robust rotomolded body makes the body indestructible. It features rope handles with a rubber molded grip for ease and comfort when lugging. The drain plug system is incredible, it purges out water entirely without tilting.

VERDICT

So I’ll ask again, are K2 coolers only beautiful?

Of course not. K2 coolers are not only affordable than Yeti but offer the same if not more ice retention periods.

Canyon Cooler – Best Budget Rotomolded Cooler

You wouldn’t see people talk much about canyon. However, the canyon is one of the best coolers on the list which retains ice for extended periods. This multi-purpose chest can is a master of different trades; tailgating, hunting, fishing, camping and much more.

For increased ice retention and strength, it utilizes a tough PE rotomolded shell. Also certified bear resistant by IGBC, you don’t have to fret animal impregnating the cooler. It includes slide skids, welded under the bottom; it’s easier to slide the cooler when it’s full.

VERDICT

We were surprised by the canyon’s ice retention. Overall, this is a good cooler like Yeti. One thing we loved about it was the lifetime guarantee. Broken? Take it to canyon for a quick fix!

Also Read: Canyon Coolers On Sale 

Siberian Cooler

Looking for best coolers like Yeti but cheaper? Don’t go past the Siberian coolers.

It combines a thick wall of up to 2.75 inches of insulation, plus heavy duty materials to keep the cold in. Ruggedly built to survive through conditions, it’s certified bear resistant. Non-slip rubber feet means the cooler wouldn’t slide off the position its kept even when the road gets rough.

The Siberian cooler use a military grade latch system keeping the lid sealed. More so, the hinges are properly reinforced, as the lid doesn’t slam shut when opened.

VERDICT

Although not as popular as the models here, the Siberian cooler manages to pull off a respectable performance in ice retention and strength. Topping it all off is the affordable tag. You’ll love the Siberian cooler!

Igloo Sportsman 55 Quart

The igloo sportsman is a large cooler that provides enough storage space to store your food and drinks in one piece. It has 2inch insulating foam in the lid which seals perfectly and 15-20 foam in body for maximum ice retention. Also, the igloo is rotationally built.
The cooler manages to hold ice for 3-5 days, that’s considerably low than what we expected.

Fold out handles with rubber grips makes it easy to lug the cooler around. It also features an oversized drain plug, enhances quick purging of water without tilting the cooler.

VERDICT

Some users have made complaints about the Igloo sportsman coming with deficiencies, to be specific, the handles. Aside from that, there’s nothing we think you should worry yourself about.

Finally, the igloo sportsman is durable and fits perfectly into the category of cheap coolers like yeti but affordable.

Icehole coolers

Here’s another great cooler like Yeti. If you have strong liking for products manufactured in USA, here’s one. In all fairness, the Icehole brand isn’t as popular compared to Yeti, but that doesn’t mean it’s not as good – or slightly close.

It comes in multiple sizes of 35, 60 and 100 Quarts. Users that want a unique cooler will be pleased to find eight (8) colors to choose from; Coyote Tan, Tactical Green, Volt, Glacier white, Moab, UT orange and safety orange.

In terms of design, its rotomolded constructed rugged exterior, plus 2” of polyurethane foam keeps your drinks cold and food fresh. With robust latches and leak-proof spout for quick and complete water purge, the cooler can hold ice for up to 4 days.

VERDICT

You won’t find lots of Icehole coolers on the beach, camping trips, or most outdoor activities. They are rare, due to their limited distribution-centers in Texas. But if you want something unique, you can directly order the cooler from their website.

I must admit that the Icehole insulation comes short of the Yeti’s. However, it does manage to give a decent performance. Definitely a worthy Yeti cheap alternative.

Nash Sub Z Cooler

The Nash sub z cooler is not the most beautiful cooler you’ll see around, but its functions can’t be understated.

With a cut rectangular shape, it’s made from rotomolded materials, and sure, it can take a whole lot of abuse and stand firm. In addition, foam core insulation of 1.5 is utilized for maximum insulation. Th Nash Sub Z includes the Artic dome gasket which provides a tightly sealed lid.

Stainless steel handles make it easy to carry the cooler on/off a car, while the non-skid feet prevent the cooler from sliding.

VERDICT

At 35 Quart, this cooler limits the number of items you’d carry. Needless to say, this cooler is best for personal use.

Another great thing is the price, and you can get it for less than double of what you’d pay for to get a Yeti cooler of this size.
Considering the multiple features this cooler offers, I won’t be wrong to say: it’s a bang for your buck.

Kysek Coolers

This growing cooler company is making a mark in the ice chest world. Although it’s almost been two years since its inception, Kysek coolers have left a mark of good things to expect from their products.

Let’s take review one of Kysek’s best-rotomolded cooler thus far:

The Kysek 50L Marine is rotationally made from tough materials to stand strong impacts. Further reinforced with a sturdy gasket which provides a tight seal between the base and lid, the cooler is built to hold ice for days.

One of the cool things is the non-slip feet and lock point bottle openers. Also available is a massive hauler inset wheels, which means you can roll the cooler on leveled surface. Rope handles with rubber grips are included for comfort when lifting/carrying.

VERDICT

Kysek coolers are still trying to establish a name for itself. Should you buy?

If you are looking for coolers like Yeti but cheaper, then you don’t have to search further. The overall performance on all fronts is respectable to earn it’s spot on the list.

Coleman Steel Belted 54 Quart Cooler

When growing up, Coleman was ruling the ice chest space. Now, every time I see one, a strike of nostalgia hits me. Although not certified as bear-proof, it features tough stainless steel exterior that’s capable of withstanding harsh conditions.

The interior gasket is engineered to ensure a tight seal, keeping the cold in while heat stays out. Also, it comes with Solid steel latch designed to provide a more airtight seal.

Talking about space, it can fit up to 85 cans of drinks, and there’s enough room for ice too.

A rust-proof drain plug is used for convenient drainage without the need to tilt the cooler. Comfort grip steel handles ensure your hands does not get tired when carrying the Coleman around.
One cool thing is the Have-A-seat lid which lets you sit and relax. You’ll enjoy seating on the flat top, especially on a fishing trip.

VERDICT

The cooler’s three (3) days ice retention means it’s bested by Yeti which can hold ice up to five days. However, you’ll find respite that the chest is way affordable. Consumers have also reported extended ice times using cooler ice packs.

If you want a sleek looking cooler that’s cheaper than Yeti, there’s no way to go than pick up the Coleman steel belted cooler.

Read: Stainless Steel Coolers 

Are Yeti coolers the best?

Without a doubt, Yeti is the most popular cooler brand on the market.

However, being the best is entirely subjective. All we can say is it depends on what you want from the cooler. Some prefer Yeti cause it’s the trending cooler, although expensive, people still cough out crazy amounts to buy their products.

So if you think Yeti is the best cooler out there, fine, if you think it’s not, you are absolutely right too.

Coolers like Yeti But Cheaper – Conclusion

The thing is: there are a lot of cheap yeti alternatives on the market which can perform the same functions, if not better than Yeti itself.

Most fans have chosen RTIC coolers as the perfect substitute to Yeti. Most tests have proven the RTIC to retain ice longer.

Are These coolers better than Yeti?

Well, I’ll say it depends on what you like. Some people think they are, some don’t. After-all, what may suit you may not suit another. Right?

But If you don’t have the budget to spend Yeti coolers, our list will provide the perfect substitute for your needs. Contrary to the phrase “Yeti Knockoffs” All these coolers are produced by established top-tier cooler brands. Expect high insulation performance, sturdy build and affordability here.

Yes, compared to others, Yeti ice chests are expensive, but they are equally as strong, durable, holds ice, beautiful and people love their products.

For you to get a perfect cooler that can cater for your needs, read reviews and ask around from people that have used the product before you whip out your wallet to make a purchase.

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