Decoder analyzed more than 38,846 reviews to find which coolers under $250 are loved by shoppers, and which ones standout based on the following important qualities:
- Ice Retention
- Ease Of Cleaning
Read more about what factors to consider when shopping for coolers in our buyer's guide.
This cooler is great for small trips and can hold a lot of drinks and food. Ice retention is good but the ice melts quickly.
Rank based on 1,367 reviews
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Perfect for those who need to pack a lot of food and drinks for an outing, with great ice retention to keep things cold.
Rank based on 3,458 reviews
This cooler is perfect for those who need to keep their food and drinks cold for extended periods of time. The top tray is also great for items that don't need to be iced.
Rank based on 4,919 reviews
This cooler is a great choice for larger groups, with excellent ice retention and good insulation. However, a few reviewers found that it didn't keep their drinks as cold as they would have liked.
Rank based on 1,323 reviews
If you're looking for a good-sized cooler that will hold ice well, even in hot weather, this is a great option.
Rank based on 1,304 reviews
A great cooler for those who want something that will retain ice for long periods of time and is easy to carry.
Rank based on 1,244 reviews
This cooler is great for keeping contents cold and is perfect for traveling. The wheels make it easy to transport, and the shoulder strap makes it easy to carry. However, the ice melts quicker than expected and the top can be difficult to close.
Rank based on 561 reviews
This cooler is perfect for days spent in the sun, with great ice retention and top-notch insulation. The capacity is large enough to fit everything you need, but it can feel heavy when full.
Rank based on 1,823 reviews
If you're looking for a large, affordable cooler for short-term use, this is a great option. However, it's not as good as more expensive coolers for long-term use.
Rank based on 1,042 reviews
A good quality, lightweight cooler that is comfortable to wear and does a great job of retaining ice.
Rank based on 382 reviews
This cooler is perfect for fishing trips or camping, with great ice retention and insulation. However, the wheels can be difficult to move around without wheels - especially when it's fully loaded.
Rank based on 1,962 reviews
Perfect for those who need an ice chest that will retain ice for days and is easy to clean. The extendable handle and large wheels make it easy to move around, even when full.
Rank based on 367 reviews
This cooler is perfect for those who need an extra fridge in their kitchen. It's lightweight and durable, with great ice retention. However, the drain plug leaks, so be sure to check that before using it.
Rank based on 1,907 reviews
This cooler is great for packing a lunch or picnic. It has good capacity and wonderful ice retention. However, it can be heavy when filled and isn't the best at keeping things frozen without ice packs.
Rank based on 788 reviews
This cooler is great for keeping things cold for days, but is difficult to move when full.
Rank based on 2,211 reviews
Overall, this is a good cooler for short-term use. It's easy to pack and clean, and has good ice retention. However, the wheels are difficult to transport without wheels and the drain pipe is slightly faulty but fixable.
Rank based on 1,345 reviews
This cooler is a good choice for those looking for a lightweight and roomy option. However, it is not insulated well enough to keep ice for long periods of time in hot weather.
Rank based on 1,289 reviews
This cooler is great for short periods of time and is easy to clean. However, it can be a bit heavy when loaded and isn't the best option for long-term ice retention.
Rank based on 245 reviews
Great for long days in the sun or on the water, this cooler will keep your drinks cold for a long time. The back strap makes it easy to carry, but it may not be long enough for bigger homies.
Rank based on 259 reviews
This is a good cooler for those who need ice retention capabilities, decent insulation, and a manageable size.
Rank based on 227 reviews
This cooler is great for keeping ice all day long. It's roomy and efficient with space, and lightweight and easy to carry with built-in handles. However, the wheels are a bit loose and may fall off after extended use.
Rank based on 37 reviews