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Get your hot drinks to-go with our picks for the best travel coffee mugs, including our top pick, the Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Travel Mug.
A dependable, durable, and functional travel coffee mug is an amazing multi-tasker that can get your morning going while you’re on the go. A travel mug can also keep you hydrated on a long hike and be a companion at the beach or walking in the snow.
Not to mention, bringing your coffee and other drinks with you can be a boon to your bottom line, as that daily coffee shop run can start to add up. A travel mug (even if you get it filled up at Starbucks) can also help cut down on plastic and paper waste.
As you’re shopping for the best travel coffee mug for your busy lifestyle, consider this detailed information from our testers. They looked at what it’s like to hold each mug, how each fits in car cup holders, and how hot and cold it keeps drinks.
Our pick for best travel coffee mug overall, the Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Coffee Travel Mug, came in tops for its blend of design and function. Being easy to use, not leaking, and keeping coffee hot earned it a spot on our list.
Read on for more of our favorite mugs that we tested and our tips for how to shop for the best travel coffee mug.
Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Coffee Travel Mug
Why You Should Get It: This mug didn’t leak, and our testers found it fit nicely in a car cup holder.
Keep in Mind: This mug is on the pricier side.
For our best overall coffee mug pick, we were really looking for one that hit all the marks: no leaks, great insulation, easy to hold, and easy to drink from. The Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Coffee Travel Mug excelled in all of these categories and more.
While this mug is a bit larger than some we tested, holding 20 ounces of liquid, it’s easy and comfortable to hold. It has a handle as well as a slight texture for additional grip This mug earned style points from our testers who liked the shape and wide range of colors.
Our testers loved the lid on this mug, which can be sealed completely by twisting it closed. The lid seals very tight and prevents any leakage, no matter how much it is tossed around in your car.
An indicator on the lid allows you to see at a glance if the mug is open or closed. You can open the lid with one hand, but it’s easier to open with two. The opening is wide enough to easily put in ice or pour in a soup. The lid stays on when you drink from it, and the cap is easy to open even with gloves on.
The insulation on this mug is shockingly good, according to our testers who praised the Hydro Flask for maintaining hot temps for 12 hours and staying cold for 24 hours. While the lid is dishwasher safe, it needs to be disassembled completely before cleaning.
Price at time of publish: $35
Product Details: Capacity: 20 ounces | Hot/Cold Duration: Warm for 12 hours; cold for 24 hours | Material: Stainless steel | Lid Style: Sip lid | Dishwasher Safe: Yes
Ello Campy Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Travel Mug
Why You Should Get It: This mug is a bargain with simple, sturdy features like a cork bottom for stability.
Keep in Mind: This mug keeps liquids cold longer than it keeps them hot.
The high quality of the Ello Campy Travel Mug belies its lower price tag, making it one of our testers’ favorites. With an easy-to-open and -close mouth—you can do it with just one hand—and a cork bottom for stability, the Ello Campy is simple, sturdy, and doesn’t slide around in your car cup holder.
We found, to our delight, that this travel coffee mug didn’t leak at all. It was easy to drink from the sliding lid, which holds liquid inside even when it is turned upside down and shaken—nothing dripped, not once.
Our best budget travel coffee mug excelled at keeping liquids cold, holding temperatures below 40ºF for more than 10 hours. The mug held warm liquids at 36ºF for more than four hours, which is a safe temperature for consuming soups and probably enough heat for most coffee drinkers.
Cleaning this travel mug is simple—either put the lid in the dishwasher and hand wash the body of the mug, or clean both by hand. Our testers found this mug didn’t show any stains either.
The Ello Campy is also aesthetically pleasing, coming in eight matte colorways and featuring a cork lined handle for easy use. Between the stylish good looks and functionality, you won’t believe you spent less than $40 on this mug.
Price at time of publish: $19
Product Details: Capacity: 18 ounces | Hot/Cold Duration: Hot for four hours; cold for eight hours | Material: Stainless steel | Lid Style: Sealing slider lid | Dishwasher Safe: Hand wash body, lid is dishwasher safe
Yeti Rambler 20-Oz. Travel Mug
Why You Should Get It: This mug can hold enough coffee to last you all day.
Keep in Mind: The generous size also makes it a bit cumbersome to lug around.
Even with the higher prices, the quality of Yeti usually means their products are a worthwhile investment. That’s the case with our pick for the best travel coffee mug for a splurge.
The Yeti Rambler seals with a twist top and has a slider so you can drink from it without removing the entire lid. The lid is tough to take off one-handed, or with gloves, as it seals pretty tightly. The slider, however, is easy enough to open with one hand—or even with just a finger—and with gloves on.
This mug is very well sealed and doesn’t drip on its side or when upside down. We did find it drips a little bit when shaken, so keep that in mind if you’d want to toss it in your backpack or bag while running around.
Our testers were impressed with how well the Yeti kept liquids cool, staying below 40ºF for about 10 hours. Heat was a little harder to retain as liquids only stayed warm for about four hours. This might be an issue for someone who likes to slowly sip a very hot drink all day.
This mug is dishwasher safe and also easy to clean by hand or with a brush. The lid and slider separate for deep cleaning the nooks and crannies.
Our tester did note, for their use personally, that 20 ounces of liquid was more than they needed to carry with them. However, they also noted that if you drink a lot of coffee or cold drinks, this mug is easy to carry around all day. With reliable cooling insulation and solid heat insulation, the Yeti Rambler is a good looking tumbler and worth the higher price.
Price at time of publish: $38
Product Details: Capacity: 20 ounces | Hot/Cold Duration: Warm for six hours; cold for eight hours | Material: Stainless steel | Lid Style: Magnetic slider lid | Dishwasher Safe: Yes
Kinto Double-Walled Insulated Travel Tumbler
Why You Should Get It: This mug’s performance rivaled its good looks.
Keep in Mind: You can’t sip directly from the lid.
This mug has a modern aesthetic that caught our tester’s attention. Available in seven colorways the mug has a straight body with a slightly textured surface. Not only is it attractive, it’s easy to hold onto.
The twist top lid seals entirely, but you do have to remove the lid to take a drink. If you needed to open this one handed, it wouldn’t be difficult, and our tester noted gloves probably wouldn’t be an issue. The cap was incredibly well-sealed and didn’t drip or leak when we tossed it around and turned it upside down.
The strong seal undoubtedly contributes to the Kinto’s best feature—insulation. It aced our insulation tests, keeping a cool 32ºF for more than 16 hours and only dropping from 200ºF to 160ºF over the course of five hours. If a very cold or consistently warm drink is a priority, this aesthetically pleasing travel coffee mug delivers.
Price at time of publish: $38
Product Details: Capacity: 17 ounces | Hot/Cold Duration: Warm for five hours; cold for 16 hours | Material: Polypropylene, stainless steel, silicone | Lid Style: Twist off | Dishwasher Safe: Hand wash only
S’well Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Traveler Mug
Why You Should Get It: This mug didn’t leak in our tests and was easy to carry.
Keep in Mind: The base may be too wide for some cup holders or backpack pockets.
Marrying form and function, the S’well Stainless Steel Traveler was an easy pick for the most stylish travel coffee mug on our list of best travel coffee mugs.
The S’well fits comfortably in a smaller hand and, while it doesn’t have a handle, our tester noted the texture makes it easy to grip while on a hike.
The lid on this travel mug seals very easily, twisting on and off with a few spins and staying put. Taking the lid off is the only way to drink from this vessel, and the lip of the mug is just the right size for sipping. It’s easy to open with one hand if the mug is somewhere stable, like a cupholder, or between your knees while seated.
You can toss this mug across the room without a single leak. Our testers found zero leaking when they shook it upside down or laid horizontally.
The S’well runs in the middle of the pack in terms of size, holding 16 ounces of liquid. Although it has a wider base, it fits comfortably in a standard car cup holder.
Our testers noted the insulation on this mug is exceptional, keeping liquid hot for more than four hours. They even found that the liquid was still warm the next morning.
Price at time of publish: $35
Product Details: Capacity: 16 ounces | Hot/Cold Duration: Warm for four hours; cold for 24 hours | Material: Stainless steel | Lid Style: Twist off | Dishwasher Safe: Hand wash
Bubba Envy Insulated Stainless Steel Tumbler with Straw
Best with Straw
Why You Should Get It: This mug has a straw for easy drinking.
Keep in Mind: This mug has some leaks, as it doesn’t seal completely.
Some people like sipping through a straw, and we found the best travel coffee mug for straw lovers, the Bubba Straw Envy Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Steel Tumbler.
With a 24-ounce capacity, this is one of the larger travel mugs we tested, but it’s still slim enough to grip comfortably without a handle. The straw is easy to drink from, and our testers liked not having to deal with removing a lid or cap.
Of course, with a straw comes the issue of sealing. Unfortunately, the lid on this mug doesn’t seal completely as the hole for the straw cannot be covered when not in use.
However, even though the tumbler doesn’t have a leak proof lid, it has incredible cold retention. It kept liquid at 34ºF for more than four hours, and the liquid was still cold almost two days later, according to our testing team. It also successfully kept liquid hot for three hours and warm into the following day.
While the mug isn’t totally leak proof, it will prevent major spills thanks to a secure lid. The mug also sits comfortably in your cup holder, ready to offer a cool or warm sip. With vacuum insulation, a convenient straw, and an affordable price, this mug easily earned a spot on our list as the best travel coffee mug with a straw.
Price at time of publish: $18
Product Details: Capacity: 24 ounces | Hot/Cold Duration: Warm for four hours; cold for 24+ hours | Material: Stainless steel | Lid Style: Straw | Dishwasher Safe: Yes
The Bottom Line
Testing more than 20 travel coffee mugs led us to find the best travel coffee mug overall, the Hydro Flask Insulated Wide Mouth Bottle. This mug earned our top spot because it marries minimalist design with high function, is easy to use, doesn’t leak, and keeps drinks cool and warm. Our budget pick, the Ello Campy Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Travel Mug, delivered on these qualities as well and has a handle, all at a modest price.
Our Testing Process
There’s nothing worse than a cup of cold coffee, except maybe it spilling on your lap in the car, so testing travel mugs extensively was important to our team. We tested 27 mugs overall before landing on what we feel are the best travel mugs for every type of warm drink lover.
First, our testers looked at the general design, with an eye on function. We took into consideration the mug size, capacity, and weight. We also looked at if mugs would fit in standard cup holders and if the lid could be easily sealed and removed with one hand. We checked to see if the mug was dishwasher safe, because who has the time to hand wash a coffee mug? On top of that, we cleaned each mug to make sure every part of the mug was easy to clean.
The team then got down to the hands-on testing: taking each mug through rounds of shaking and flipping to confirm that lids stayed sealed and measuring the temperature of warm and cold drinks to determine how long the mugs kept them warm and cold.
Lastly, our team always considers if they would buy this product for themselves or recommend it to a friend or family member.
What to Know About Travel Coffee Mugs Before Shopping
When we talk about capacity, we’re talking about how much liquid a container can hold. Most mugs range between 10 and 20 ounces. It’s important to consider how you’ll be using your travel mug when picking out the mug size, whether it’s your daily cup of joe on the way to work or for storing a nice soup for lunch.
Whether you use it for tea or coffee, water or soda, sipping your preferred drink at the right temperature is an important feature in a travel mug. In our testing, we looked at how well the mugs maintained the liquid’s temperature and found that the best mugs held hot temperatures for roughly four to five hours and cool temperatures for roughly eight, with some discrepancies in how fast they cooled and warmed respectively.
The bulk of the travel mugs we looked at and selected are made primarily from stainless steel. Stainless steel doesn’t retain stains or odors and maintains hold and cold temperatures well. Another option is ceramic coated, which is a stainless steel interior coated in ceramic. The ceramic coating prevents the metallic taste you sometimes get from stainless steel.
The style of lids are primarily twist off and some come with a small slider for drinking. Others require removing the entire lid for drinking. If you’re going to be driving with your mug, it’s worth looking at what’s going to suit your sipping. The lid style will also affect the seal—straw lids may have minor leaks—and ease of use—a lid that you can’t drink from directly could be more cumbersome to use on-the-go.
Travel coffee mugs are available in dishwasher-safe and hand-wash only styles. For our tests, we tried the dishwasher and hand-washing methods on all of the mugs. Most mugs aren’t super difficult to hand-wash.
Other Travel Coffee Mugs We Tested
Swig Life 18oz Travel Mug with Handle and Lid
Our testers liked that you could hold this mug like a regular cup of coffee, and noted it would be ideal for someone who liked toting a warm cup of coffee or tea around their house during the day. However, for the price, it didn’t perform as well on leak tests as other mugs.
Ember Temperature Control Travel Mug
This $200 mug has built-in temperature controls that didn’t impress our testers much. When the mug is away from the electronic warmer, it doesn’t hold heat very well.
Brumate Toddy Bundle 32oz. Travel Mug (Set)
We also tested the Brumate Toddy Travel Mug. Unless you can drink 32 ounces of your hot drink in less than an hour, which is how long the coffee we tested was warm and drinkable, save your money and buy any other travel coffee mug.
Your Questions, Answered
Which travel mug stays hot the longest?
In our testing, our pick for best travel coffee mug, the Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Coffee Travel Mug, stayed hot for 12 hours. Outside of that pick, when you’re shopping for a travel mug that stays hot, look for one with a tightly sealed lid without a straw or a sliding opener. The seal will keep your liquid warm longer.
What is the average size of a travel mug?
Most travel mugs are between 16 and 20 ounces, which holds about the same amount of liquid as larger drinking glass. In our testing, the largest size we looked at was 32 ounces, with the smallest being 12 ounces.
How do you pick a travel mug?
Everyone has different needs, so think about how you enjoy drinks at home—from a cup, a glass with a handle, with a straw—and what will work best as you’re out and about. If you’re a hiker, look for something that seals well and won’t spill in your bag. If you need fuel for a commute, make sure it will fit comfortably in your cup holders and is easy to open while driving.
Who We Are
Tanya Edwards is a writer and editor. To make this list of travel coffee mugs, she used research and insights from our lab tests conducted in Birmingham, Alabama.