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Old 06-11-2019, 10:44 PM
Nars Glinley is offline
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Are any Yeti products worth the price?


We only have one Yeti stainless steel tumbler (it was a gift from the mortgage company for financing our house) and its nice and keeps drinks cold for a long time but I cant imagine that its 2 or 3 times better that an RTIC or a Walmart knockoff. The same goes for their coolers. They look like marvels of engineering but a decent sized one is $300 while a similar sized RTIC is over $100 less (which still seems crazy to me.)

Do you have any Yeti products that you think were a good value or all they just the Monster cables of the picnic world?
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Old 06-12-2019, 12:24 AM
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They're definitely overpriced, but then it's true that they are better at long term ice retention than a cheap cooler. Comparing them to Monster is then not fair as many of their digital products are not demonstrably better than a generic one.

I splurged on a RTIC but those are still expensive as you note, just less so.
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:41 AM
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I have an Igloo cooler with wheels that was very reasonably priced and has taken a beating for five years and is still in great condition. Twelve hours after loading there is still ice. What more could I want?
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Old 06-12-2019, 07:50 AM
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The only Yeti product I own is a Yeti travel mug that I got as swag from my company. I don't even like it; it keeps liquids TOO hot. When I get in the car with my travel mug of coffee, I want to drink it now, not in 4 hours when it's finally cool enough to drink.

So no, not worth the money, even though the damn thing was free.
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:10 AM
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The monoprice cooler is even cheaper than the RTIC. Mine will arrive Friday, and I'll test it out over the weekend and report back. While the weekend won't answer my "how long" question, I'll at least be able to compare it with my old, ancient Igloo or Coleman generic cooler.

Hoping I won't have to buy too much ice over the upcoming four week car camping road trip!
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:29 AM
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If you are a professional fishing/rafting guide, charter boat captain, or somehow otherwise earning a living whereby keeping a cooler full of ice for extended periods is a key part of your business, it is probably worth buying what your clients might perceive as the best equipment available. Plus you can write it off as a business expense, so there's that. But for private use, I prefer to use more cost-friendly options.
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:53 AM
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I have a twenty ounce Yeti travel mug that's amazing. If I fill it with hot coffee, it stays very hot for at least two hours, and drinkably hot for 4+ hours. The insulation is excellent - even full of hot coffee, the outside stays cool to the touch - only the lid warms up, so it's keeping a ton of the heat in. Much better than any other travel mug I've ever had.

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Originally Posted by Athena View Post
The only Yeti product I own is a Yeti travel mug that I got as swag from my company. I don't even like it; it keeps liquids TOO hot. When I get in the car with my travel mug of coffee, I want to drink it now, not in 4 hours when it's finally cool enough to drink.

So no, not worth the money, even though the damn thing was free.
You ma'am, have a very different expectation from a travel mug than I do.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:02 AM
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Yeah, I don't drink "very hot" coffee either. I generally make coffee in a cafetiere/French press or pourover/Chemex, so I like my coffee very warm or less, not hot.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:04 AM
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I have a Yeti tumbler. It is excellent. I can leave it overnight without the lid, and it still has ice in the morning.

I bought a knock off tumbler, also. I can't notice any difference. But, haven't done any scientific tests.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:16 AM
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Yeah, I don't drink "very hot" coffee either. I generally make coffee in a cafetiere/French press or pourover/Chemex, so I like my coffee very warm or less, not hot.
But if your coffee comes out of the French press at the temperature you like it, the Yeti will keep it at/near that temperature for longer than any other travel mug I've found. I just thought it odd that Athena apparently makes very hot coffee, but doesn't like to drink very hot coffee.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:23 AM
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I have an Igloo cooler with wheels that was very reasonably priced and has taken a beating for five years and is still in great condition. Twelve hours after loading there is still ice. What more could I want?
Then it's fine for a day at the lake, but for others 12 hours is a small fraction of their trip.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:27 AM
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I have a 32 oz Yeti tumbler (won in a contest), a 20 oz RTIC tumbler/coffee-mug, and an 32 oz Ozark Trail tumbler from Wal-Mart of the same size as the Yeti.

There's absolutely NO functional difference between them- they all keep cold stuff equally cold, and hot stuff equally hot. Or close enough to where it's not obvious anyway.

About the only thing I've noticed is that the Ozark Trail tumbler has acquired a couple of dents toward the bottom while the Yeti hasn't. I don't know if that's indicative of thinner metal, or just rougher handling.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:54 AM
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Not sure how long it takes most people to drink a hot coffee of cold soda but mine is usually gone in under 15 minutes. Is there that many people that take 4+ hours to drink 20 ounces of anything?
For me it's a solution to a problem I just don't have. There's nothing I need or want to keep that hot/cold for that long.
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Old 06-12-2019, 12:24 PM
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Here ya go, science!

General conclusion: If you need to keep things ice cold for 72 hours+, the expensive ones will do that for you. Ice in the inexpensive coolers melted between 48-52 hours.
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Old 06-12-2019, 12:41 PM
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We got a Yeti cooler as a gift. Loved it. Now it's our "go to" wedding present. People seem to like them. I'm sure there are cheaper products available that are as good or almost as good. But sometimes its okay to spend 50% more for a 10% better product.
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:42 PM
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Here ya go, science!

General conclusion: If you need to keep things ice cold for 72 hours+, the expensive ones will do that for you. Ice in the inexpensive coolers melted between 48-52 hours.
Is ice so expensive that the extra day of ice makes the Yeti that much of a deal? Buy the inexpensive Coleman and spend the savings on replacing the ice, IMO.
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Old 06-12-2019, 01:44 PM
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Is ice so expensive that the extra day of ice makes the Yeti that much of a deal? Buy the inexpensive Coleman and spend the savings on replacing the ice, IMO.
Time, effort, and opportunity might have relevant costs in this equation.
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Old 06-12-2019, 02:00 PM
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Is ice so expensive that the extra day of ice makes the Yeti that much of a deal? Buy the inexpensive Coleman and spend the savings on replacing the ice, IMO.
Make sure you don't skip that river-side ice machine on day 2 of your rafting trip.
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Old 06-12-2019, 02:43 PM
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Yeti coolers are really good at what they do, but how often do you need to keep things cold for multiple days? If you are just keeping some orange slices and juice cold for the kids’ soccer game, you probably don’t need a Yeti; if you’re guiding an overnight Alaskan fly fishing trip, you probably do.

ETA: I prefer Orion coolers on fly fishing boats because the Yeti latches stick out and tend to snag fly line.

Last edited by madmonk28; 06-12-2019 at 02:45 PM.
  #20  
Old 06-12-2019, 03:10 PM
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I have a Yeti travel mug my nephew gave me for Christmas. I have had the experience apparently common among owners of such things - filling it at 6:00am, and then carelessly taking a swig at 7:30 and boiling my tongue. If I ever retrace the trek to the South Pole and want to celebrate my arrival there with a nice hot cup of java, I know what I will take with me. Just sitting at my desk after plowing thru my emails from last night - it's a little more than I need.

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Old 06-12-2019, 03:11 PM
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I have a couple Yeti products and although both are premium priced they are vastly superior to the non-Yeti equivalent I own. One is the coffee/travel tumbler and honestly that's not exactly an expensive item. Sure, it's more than the $4.99 versions on end-caps at the Dollar Store but you don't have to have a lot of money for it. I have non-Yeti name brand stainless steel tumblers and I have what are clearly Yeti knock-off/look-alike versions with a never-heard-of-brand-name. The Yeti product absolutely keeps drinks hot/cold far longer than the others.

I also have a Yeti cooler (a gift, I didn't spend that much money for one!) and that damn thing... I can set it in the August sun for 10 hours and it's still ice-cold inside with no ice melt or loss in temperature. Sure, my Igloo or other product does a "good enough" job but the Yeti is significantly better. The question as always is "Is the better worth the premium cost when the lower cost is good enough?" As I said, i didn't buy the Yeti cooler (it retails around $400 if I remember) so for me the answer is probably not if I had to spend my own money. But I'm damn glad I have the Yeti and if I was ever camping for multiple days I'd take the Yeti and not the Igloo. It could mean the difference between a cold beer on day 3 from the Yeti vs. a luke-warm beer from the Igloo. :-)
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  #22  
Old 06-12-2019, 03:37 PM
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Originally Posted by madmonk28 View Post
Yeti coolers are really good at what they do, but how often do you need to keep things cold for multiple days? If you are just keeping some orange slices and juice cold for the kids soccer game, you probably dont need a Yeti; if youre guiding an overnight Alaskan fly fishing trip, you probably do.
This is the answer. There are people who get super hung-up on "best quality", even when it's far in excess of their requirements.

For travel mugs and things, I have found the Thermos branded stuff to be a pretty good price point: it's noticeably more solid than the knock-offs, but not so expensive that I'd despair if I left it at a gas station.
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Old 06-12-2019, 03:40 PM
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Yeti coolers and other similar high-priced ones are also substantially more rugged than lower cost coolers. They have better latches, hinges, drains, seals, etc. They can be considered over engineered for most uses and users, but some people need this.
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Old 06-12-2019, 04:11 PM
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What about the weight of these things? I googled and a small Yeti cooler (can't remember the size) weighs something like 15 pounds, empty. That seems like a lot, especially if you have to lug it someplace.
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Old 06-12-2019, 04:29 PM
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Here ya go, science!

General conclusion: If you need to keep things ice cold for 72 hours+, the expensive ones will do that for you. Ice in the inexpensive coolers melted between 48-52 hours.
That's kind of a shit experiment though; they used the most antiquated Coleman design and a cheap-shit styrofoam one as the "inexpensive" control group, and then compared them to Yeti, Orca and Pelican. Of course they're going to lose.

I bet the outcome would have been very different had they compared to the Coleman Xtreme series or the Igloo MaxCool series for example. Cheaper than that 1950s design they used in the test, but from personal experience the Coleman Xtreme coolers will hold ice for 72 hours no problem.

The question isn't really if they insulate better- they don't. They might be more durable than the mid-range mass-market coolers, but in the end, you're paying more for the Yeti branding than anything else. I'd be willing to bet that Igloo and Coleman make comparable coolers for a lot less.
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Old 06-13-2019, 04:49 AM
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One of my kids has a version of these -- I think it's called a Grizzly. Looks like a Yeti knockoff. I used it on a camping trip and I can testify it is far, far better in one aspect. My coolers tend to ride in an open pickup bed, and the wind from 8 hours of highway travel will reduce the ice to cold water each travel day. But the Grizzly lasted 3-4* days. I suspect this is due to the tight seal of the lid.

I still use the cheaper one, because I figure a $300 cooler in a pickup bed would soon grow legs.

As an experiment, I tried to convert a cheap igloo to mimic the Yeti ability. I injected foam insulation into the top (it's hollow) and added 3/4 inch closed cell foam panels to the bottom and sides. On a hot day, on my covered deck, it lasted about an extra day compared to the cheapo. But I lost about a third of the interior space.


*Time increased as we got to cooler temps in the mountains.

Last edited by pullin; 06-13-2019 at 04:50 AM.
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Old 06-13-2019, 05:35 AM
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I have a one gallon Yeti beverage jug that I would consider well worth the price. At the start of the day, I can fill it 3/4 full of ice and then top it off with tea. This gets me to mid afternoon or early evening while it's bouncing around in my summer heated truck. After I finish the tea, there's still plenty of ice so I refill with bottled water, add a couple of Crystal Light packs and, more often than not, finish that off too. The thing shown no real signs of wear after three years of use and I'm thrilled with it.

The only downside though is that getting the lid properly tightened is a bit of a trick. Too loose and it leaks, too tight and it can be near impossible to remove.
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Old 06-13-2019, 07:24 AM
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That's kind of a shit experiment though; they used the most antiquated Coleman design and a cheap-shit styrofoam one as the "inexpensive" control group, and then compared them to Yeti, Orca and Pelican. Of course they're going to lose.

I bet the outcome would have been very different had they compared to the Coleman Xtreme series or the Igloo MaxCool series for example. Cheaper than that 1950s design they used in the test, but from personal experience the Coleman Xtreme coolers will hold ice for 72 hours no problem.

The question isn't really if they insulate better- they don't. They might be more durable than the mid-range mass-market coolers, but in the end, you're paying more for the Yeti branding than anything else. I'd be willing to bet that Igloo and Coleman make comparable coolers for a lot less.
I've certainly never set-up controlled scientific tests but I have both an Igloo Max Cool and a Yeti. I do find the Yeti keeps things colder longer than the Max Cool (we're talking 12+ hours to days vs. over say 4 hours where there is no real difference). As I commented in my earlier post, I would agree that the Igloo Max Cool is probably "good enough" for 99.9% of the consumer market who just needs a cooler with ice and beer for the picnic. The Yeti, in my experience, does do a better job with keeping things cold for a longer period of time than my Max Cool but for 99.9% of my usage which is taking a cooler with ice and beer to the picnic there is no significant difference. The Yeti certainly has heavier duty construction, zippers, latches, etc., vs. the Igloo but no doubt the price is much higher in part to build a brand reputation as "the premium" product in the category.

Another way to look at it is with an Igloo Max Cool I might get 2-3 years of life out of that type of cooler. Wear, tear, abuse (Who spilled red wine on my beer cooler dammit!) and general usage means I end up replacing a cooler of this grade/construction many times over the years. To be honest, I doubt I will ever need to replace the Yeti for the rest of my life unless I decide to go to Everest and drop it off the side of the mountain. So yes, the Yeti costs more but it's the last cooler I'll ever buy. Ever.

Note: If you didn't read my comment above, I do own a Yeti cooler but it was a gift. I'd never pay $400 for a cooler to carry ice and beer but I'm damn happy to have one and I'm a big fan of it. Haha
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Last edited by MeanJoe; 06-13-2019 at 07:27 AM.
  #29  
Old 06-13-2019, 07:41 AM
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If you don't buy a YETI cooler, how are you supposed to get the YETI sticker to put in the back window of your pickup truck so that all fellow motorists are aware of what brand of cooler you own?
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Old 06-13-2019, 08:50 AM
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That's kind of a shit experiment though; they used the most antiquated Coleman design and a cheap-shit styrofoam one as the "inexpensive" control group, and then compared them to Yeti, Orca and Pelican. Of course they're going to lose.
Actually, it was a pretty good experiment for it's intended purpose and for this thread. True, they used opposite ends of the bell curve - cheapest you can buy vs. outrageously expensive - but that was the point. The stated purpose of the experiment was to see if the high end product performed better than the low end, not a gradient of low vs medium vs high. I think few would be surprised that the expensive coolers did keep ice longer. The sub-point of the experiment was "how long, each?". That is where the reader finds that the difference between $15 and $375, at least in this experiment, was that the cheapest kept ice for just over 2 days while the best of the expensive lasted 3.25 days.

This thread asks if Yeti is worth the extra cost. The answer lies in whether one absolutely has to have a cooler that keeps ice solid for a third day. Simple, elegant, informative. But you are welcome to post one that's better.
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Old 06-13-2019, 11:59 AM
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But if your coffee comes out of the French press at the temperature you like it, the Yeti will keep it at/near that temperature for longer than any other travel mug I've found. I just thought it odd that Athena apparently makes very hot coffee, but doesn't like to drink very hot coffee.
Because coffee requires very hot water (hotter than drinking temp) to brew properly.

All I want in a travel mug is something that won't spill and will keep my coffee from getting cold in the stretch of time when I'm interested in drinking coffee, which is about 2 hours in the morning. I don't want coffee with my lunch or in the afternoon, and the volume of a typical travel mug isn't going to last that long anyway, unless you're taking micro-sips throughout the day, probably because it's still too damn hot to drink 4 hours later.

And it's the same with cold beverages. I have a $10 Stanley insulated pint "glass" that will keep a drink cold for a couple hours outside on a hot day. But the only reason I know that is because I forgot about it one day and when I remembered when I left it my drink was still cold. 99% of the time whatever I have in there is gone in less than a half hour, so I'm really not seeing much value in the Yeti version for 2-3x the price.
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Old 06-13-2019, 12:13 PM
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Actually, it was a pretty good experiment for it's intended purpose and for this thread. True, they used opposite ends of the bell curve - cheapest you can buy vs. outrageously expensive - but that was the point. The stated purpose of the experiment was to see if the high end product performed better than the low end, not a gradient of low vs medium vs high. I think few would be surprised that the expensive coolers did keep ice longer. The sub-point of the experiment was "how long, each?". That is where the reader finds that the difference between $15 and $375, at least in this experiment, was that the cheapest kept ice for just over 2 days while the best of the expensive lasted 3.25 days.

This thread asks if Yeti is worth the extra cost. The answer lies in whether one absolutely has to have a cooler that keeps ice solid for a third day. Simple, elegant, informative. But you are welcome to post one that's better.
Well, the OP specifically mentioned RTIC, which is a Yeti competitor with similar claims to ice retention but at quite a lower price point. So the real question seemed to be whether Yeti is a "good value" when you can buy a similar-performing brand for $100+ less. Not compared to a $10 foam cooler from a gas station.

On the other hand, Alpha Twit's Yeti example seems like a good value to me.
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Old 06-13-2019, 04:20 PM
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Actually, it was a pretty good experiment for it's intended purpose and for this thread. True, they used opposite ends of the bell curve - cheapest you can buy vs. outrageously expensive - but that was the point. The stated purpose of the experiment was to see if the high end product performed better than the low end, not a gradient of low vs medium vs high. I think few would be surprised that the expensive coolers did keep ice longer. The sub-point of the experiment was "how long, each?". That is where the reader finds that the difference between $15 and $375, at least in this experiment, was that the cheapest kept ice for just over 2 days while the best of the expensive lasted 3.25 days.

This thread asks if Yeti is worth the extra cost. The answer lies in whether one absolutely has to have a cooler that keeps ice solid for a third day. Simple, elegant, informative. But you are welcome to post one that's better.
You missed my point- it's that the extremes aren't representative of anything practical. The vast, vast majority of people aren't going to opt for any of those options- they're going to buy coolers in the $20-$100 range. So the question that should have been asked is whether a $350 Yeti keeps ice frozen materially longer than a $60 Coleman Xtreme, for example, which is also marketed to keep ice frozen longer than your garden-variety cooler.

It was a bad choice of control- they're not comparable. Nobody's going to make their Yeti decision based on whether it outperforms a $7 grocery store styrofoam cooler or a 1950s design cooler. It doesn't actually tell them anything useful.
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Old 06-13-2019, 05:14 PM
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Overpriced. IMO
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Old 06-13-2019, 05:58 PM
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A cooler should be judged by more than one metric (does it keep stuff cold). Does it last? Is it easy to use? Does it look good? Is it easy to carry around. Is it the right size?


This one hits the mark for us. So, it's worth the price for me. For someone else, perhaps not.
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Old 06-14-2019, 09:41 AM
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A cooler should be judged by more than one metric (does it keep stuff cold). Does it last? Is it easy to use? Does it look good? Is it easy to carry around. Is it the right size?


This one hits the mark for us. So, it's worth the price for me. For someone else, perhaps not.
I have the Hopper but it is the backpack variant. I freaking love it! Again, it was a gift so I didn't have to cough up $299.99 of my own money.
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Old 06-14-2019, 10:31 AM
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Yeti is high priced. 'Overpriced' to me can mean at least three different things depending who is using the term
1. there's a product that's the same or at least objectively performs as well but costs less. Yeti products are not 'overpriced' by this criterion AFAIK
2. a particular buyer doesn't value the extra capability as being fully worth the extra price. That's a matter of opinion and a reasonable opinion, IMO, about Yeti. But IMO Yeti is worth it, assuming the products last (we bought a big then a smaller Yeti cooler bag, but the oldest is only around a year old, so we'll see)
3. a particular buyer literally can't afford the high priced item. That's not so likely with Yeti, relatively few people could absolutely not afford a few $100 product if they saved up and cut back someplace else, but it is common for example when people say particular car brands or models (which they can't afford) are 'overpriced'.

Last edited by Corry El; 06-14-2019 at 10:32 AM.
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Old 06-14-2019, 01:06 PM
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I wish Yeti would make a gravy boat. Thanksgiving dinner with hot gravy for the entire meal. Or even everyday full place settings. Last forever.
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Old 06-14-2019, 02:23 PM
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For travel mugs and things, I have found the Thermos branded stuff to be a pretty good price point: it's noticeably more solid than the knock-offs, but not so expensive that I'd despair if I left it at a gas station.
Bolding mine. This is a huge factor for me when deciding what to spend on accessory-type items. Travel tumblers, water bottles, umbrellas, pens, earmuffs, sunglassessooner or later I'm going to misplace them.

I have a Yeti insulated tumbler I received as a Christmas gift, and sure, it's amazing and indestructible and so forth. (As noted in this thread, it's almost too good; I want my coffee to cool down to a drinkable temperature eventually.) But there's no way I'd buy something like that for myself, because it might end up forgotten in some highway rest area.
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