9 Best Collapsible Coolers: Compare, Buy & Save

collapsible cooler

Oftentimes you need a large capacity cooler for your outdoor endeavors, but just don’t have the space to pack a full size, hard-sided cooler.

While soft-sided coolers can be an effective solution, a collapsible cooler that packs slim and compact when not in use can really save you some space.

Our top list has tracked down the best foldable and collapsible coolers both big and small for minimizing the effort of transport and storage while maximizing your carrying capacity.

Igloo Outdoorsman Collapsible Cooler Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Molded cup holders built into the top
  • Antimicrobial lining
  • 50 can capacity
Price: $79.49 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Kelty Folding Cooler Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Integrated molded cup holders
  • Removable liner is easy to clean
  • Bottle opener zipper pull
Price: $69.03 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Coleman 40-Can Collapsible Soft Cooler Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Nice array of external storage for its size
  • Antimicrobial-treated liner
  • Heat-welded seams to prevent leaks
Price: $31.24 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Tailgaterz Collapsible Cooler Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 48 can capacity
  • Molded top and bottom for structure
  • Waterproof, removable liner cleans up easy
Price: $35.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Flip-Box XL Collapsible Iceless Cooler Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 60 can capacity
  • Can be used with or without ice
  • Less than two pounds
Price: $39.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
icemule cooler bag Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Material rolls up and stores or stuffs compact
  • 24 hour ice retention
  • Wears comfortably as a backpack!
Price: $114.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
CleverMade 50 Can Collapsible Cooler Bag Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Profile is less than 3 inches wide collapsed
  • 50 can capacity
  • Integrated bottle opener
Price: $39.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
LUNCIA 33 Liter Leakproof Collapsible Cooler Bag Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 60 can max capacity
  • Slim exterior zippered pocket and mesh pockets
  • Excellent price point
Price: $34.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
WintersAir Collapsible Cooler Bag Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 50 can capacity
  • Comes with two reusable ice packs
  • Awesome price point
Price: $29.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. 1. Igloo Outdoorsman Collapsible Cooler

    Pros:
    • 50 can capacity
    • Antimicrobial lining
    • Molded cup holders built into the top
    • Nice array of external stoarage and attachment points
    • Several sharp color options
    Cons:
    • Strapping is not ideal for supporting particularly heavy loads
    • Leak resistant, but not fully leak proof
    • Long term integrity of the stitching is questionable if you plan on testing the limits of its capacity

    The Igloo Outdoorsman Collapsible Cooler is an excellent value, impressively compact option for it’s deployed size. You can load up 50 cans in this unit despite its fold-flat capabilities.

    While it’s totally effective at keeping food and beverage effectively cold, the real insulating ability of this soft cooler is not terribly impressive – your ice likely won’t last all day long if temps are hot. It’s adequate for regular beach days, picnics and sporting events, but don’t count on this cooler to keep contents cold overnight or in extreme heat.

    Igloo has built four molded cup holders into the lid of the Outdoorsman, a massively underrated feature in my opinion. There is also a nice array of mesh sleeves and an exterior zippered pocket for stashing utensils and other smaller items and accessories. 

    The antimicrobial interior will ensure this cooler doesn’t get moldy or mildewy, and cleans up easily. Collapsing the cooler and deploying it are furthermore a piece of cake.

    The strapping is good, not great, so if you’re seeking a high capacity cooler that can handle heavy loads, look elsewhere in this list – perhaps Kelty’s folding cooler.

    There are several color options to choose from with the Outdoorsman, all of which have a sharp aesthetic that suggests a higher price tag. All in all a solid buy from Igloo that’s well worth the cost.

  2. 2. Kelty Folding Cooler

    Pros:
    • Fair price point
    • Integrated molded cup holders
    • Removable liner is easy to clean
    • Dual carry handles
    • Bottle opener zipper pull
    • Reinforced bottom with feet to ensure longterm durability
    • Several sizes available
    Cons:
    • Lack of exterior storage
    • No color selection
    • Cooler top is a bit thick and bulky if you're seeking a particularly slim option

    Kelty has built this soft cooler with the average joe outdoorsman in mind. The Kelty Folding Cooler is a simple, but highly practical collapsible cooler option that’s great for road trips, campouts, and other outdoor events where you need a highly transportable food and beverage system before or after use.

    This option simply collapses flat when not in action. The bottom and top of the cooler (with integrated molded cup holders) is hard, so that may limit how packable the Folding Cooler is depending on the context. It “Tetrises” nicely into an already loaded car or pickup, but it’s not stuffable like some other soft-bodied tote options.

    If you drive a sedan and have a hard time transporting a cooler of any real size, this unit should be able to slide right behind one of your front seats when collapsed. 

    This cooler is quite simple and straightforward other than its unique folding design. Kelty has not included any fancy bells and whistles as to keep the cost down. The integrated cup holders set into the top of the cooler and bottle opener zipper pull, however, are wildly underrated features in my opinion.

    The insulating ability of this cooler is good, but not great. It’s absolutely adequate for holding ice through long days boating, beaching or camping, and perhaps even overnight depending on the context, but don’t expect it to have the ice retention of a high-performance (and high-cost) unit.

    The price point on all available sizing is totally reasonable, while the brand has not cut any real corners when it comes to quality. This cooler is everything you need, putting necessity over luxury when it comes to incorporated features.

  3. 3. Coleman 40-Can Collapsible Soft Cooler

    Pros:
    • 40 can capacity
    • Antimicrobial-treated liner is resistant against mold and mildew
    • Front zippered pocket, side mesh sleeves and back bungee for added storage potential
    • Heat-welded seams to prevent leaks
    • Very reasonably priced
    Cons:
    • Long term insulating ability is not terribly impressive
    • No real color selection
    • Long term integrity of the stitching and zippers is questionable if you're hard on your gear

    Coleman’s 40-Can Collapsible Soft Cooler is a great low profile option for more casual outings and events.

    This cooler won’t be able to handle the rough abuses of a truly rugged outdoorsman or beach-goer, but for those seeking a simple cooler for casual use, this unit should be on your radar. Those with a pulse on the outdoor industry know that Coleman makes a solid product, but typically their gear is far from being top-performance.

    This collapsible option has a nice array of external pockets and gear attachment points, an antimicrobial liner and a portal on the lid to access the cooler’s contents. It’s an impressive array of features considering the more than reasonable price tag.

    The 40 can capacity is for many scenarios, the perfect size. This cooler is great for solo days of fishing where you need to pack a BIG lunch and lots of beers or packs a picnic for two beautifully. The external storage capabilities furthermore add to its practicality, allowing you to conveniently pack utensils, napkins, a wine opener or whatever else it is that you need.  

    There are mixed reviews regarding this cooler’s ability to hold ice water once melted, so don’t count on it to be absolutely leak proof. You get what you pay for when it comes to the zippers and hardware.

  4. 4. Tailgaterz Collapsible Cooler

    Pros:
    • 48 can capacity
    • Molded top and bottom for structure
    • Integrated cup holders into the lid
    • Waterproof, removable liner cleans up easy
    • Built in feet add long term durability
    • Fair price point
    Cons:
    • Still over 6 inches thick collapsed - this option is not impressively compact
    • Not fully leak-proof
    • No exterior attachment points for additional gear

    The Tailgaterz Collapsible Cooler is a reasonably priced 48 can collapsible cooler option that’s been built to beat on. 

    This option has a molded top and bottom and also has built-in feet so it’s been designed to be rugged with those who are hard on their gear in mind. The molded top furthermore has four integrated cup holders for placing a drink, but keep in mind the collapsed width of this option is over six inches, so it’s not impressively slim compared to a lot of the competition.

    Tailgaterz has built this cooler option with a waterproof, removable liner so you can easily pop it out and clean it. The cooler is not fully leak proof once your ice begins to melt, but at least you can slide out the interior and give it a wipe easily.

    All in all, a totally adequate collapsible cooler option if you’re not willing to spend the big bucks!

  5. 5. Flip-Box XL Collapsible Iceless Cooler

    Pros:
    • Can maintain hot food within 10 degrees of starting temperature for up to 4 hours
    • Insulates with interwoven Polypropylene cells
    • Can be used with or without ice
    • Weighs less than two pounds but can support up to a 55 pound load
    • Great for use as a grocery tote
    • 60 can capacity
    Cons:
    • Is still over four inches thick collapsed, so this is not a super compact option
    • No color options
    • This cooler is not leakproof if used with ice

    The Flip-Box XL Insulation Box is a unique, high-capacity collapsible cooler option that can be utilized with or without ice.

    This 60 can capacity hard plastic unit is perfect for tailgating, cookouts and days out fishing, but it’s not the ideal option for long term cold-retention – especially if you’re using it without ice. Flip Box claims this foldable cooler can keep food and beverages cold for up to 10 hours, not terribly impressive, but maybe all the insulating ability you need depending on what you’re up to.

    Where this collapsible cooler really excels is its heat retention. The brand claims that the Flip Box can maintain hot food within 10 degrees of its starting temperature for up to 4 hours – not too shabby! You can even place piping hot dishes right out of the oven into this unit making it a perfect food transport for cookouts and parties!

    This cooler option is super durable and weighs just two pounds, able to support 100 times its own weight! The Flip Box folds up in seconds down to about four inches in thickness, so it’s very easily deployable and packs up and away in a jiff when it’s time to load back up.

    For the right applications, this hard-bodied, origami-style collapsible cooler is an awesome affordable option!

  6. 6. Icemule Pro Insulated Backpack Cooler Bag

    Pros:
    • Material rolls up and stores or stuffs compact
    • 24 hour ice retention
    • Wears comfortably as a backpack!
    • Roll-top design is totally leakproof and will last longer than most zippered systems
    • Totally waterproof and will even float in the water
    • Features some convenient bungee storage on the pack exterior
    • Several sizes and colors available
    Cons:
    • Some might not like the roll-top, zipperless design
    • No real organization potential
    • Strapping is not terribly impressive and may be a bit uncomfortable when carrying particularly heavy loads

    This is an impressively comfortable to wear, rugged-built cooler backpack. The Icemule Pro Insulated Backpack Cooler Bag is a different approach to the collapsible cooler that allows you to wear this option on your person if you’re the type of outdoorsman that likes to pack your food and beverage along for the adventure.

    Insulated backpacks are a brilliant solution to carrying your picnic hands-free, but not many of them collapse for streamlined storage and transport. This option by Icemule not only can be worn virtually anywhere, but it can be packed virtually anywhere as well due to its rollable design once emptied.

    It features a surprisingly long ice-retention time of 24 hours considering it’s a soft-bodied option. It’s furthermore totally waterproof, and can even be utilized as a dry bag or life preserver considering the fact that it floats.

    An exterior bungee-storage system is also present for securing a picnic blanket, utensils or other gear. 

    The price tag may be a bit steep on this one, but it’s a well-built, versatile cooler option you’ll use for all sorts of contexts for many years to come.

  7. 7. CleverMade 50 Can Collapsible Cooler Bag

    Pros:
    • Impressive 50 can capacity for the cost
    • Profile is less than 3 inches wide collapsed
    • Integrated bottle opener
    • Effectively leak proof
    • Front zippered pocket and rear mesh pocket for added storage
    • Awesome price point
    Cons:
    • Long term durability of the polyester blend is questionable
    • Strapping is not ideal for toting heavy loads by yourself
    • This cooler will sweat in certain conditions

    The CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag is an unsung hero in the collapsible cooler world that sports impressive ice retention, overall capacity and integrated features for the cost!

    If you’re looking for something that’s fairly high capacity without the steep price tag, this one should definitely be on your radar! It can pack up to 50 cans and then collapses down to less than three inches.

    This cooler is effectively leak-proof, includes both zippered and mesh external pockets, and features an integrated bottle opener. Considering its capacity and its versatility, the price is staggeringly low on this one. 

    Collapse this soft cooler and pack it into a suitcase on your next vacation, or stash it out of sight, out of mind during the off-season. The portability and storability of this option is not to be overlooked when you really consider how much space a cooler of this capacity would otherwise occupy.

    This option despite its soft-bodied build can hold ice overnight and keep drinks ice cold for up to 36 hours. Once again, pretty impressive stats for a collapsible cooler at this price point.

    The polyester blend that makes up the exterior of this option is not nearly as tough as some of the nylon and PVC alternatives you see on the market, but if you’re not too hard on it, this cooler should none the less hold up for at least a few seasons. It all depends on how hard you are on your gear.

  8. 8. LUNCIA 33 Liter Collapsible Cooler Bag

    Pros:
    • Up to a 60 can capacity without ice
    • Slim exterior zippered pocket and mesh pockets
    • Three ways to carry (shoulder strap, dual handles and tote handle)
    • PEVA material of the interior ensures the cooler won't leak if upright
    • Excellent price point
    Cons:
    • Zipper is not leakproof
    • Insulating time is not very impressive at 5-6 hours
    • No color selection

    LUNCIA’s 33 Liter Collapsible Cooler Bag is another awesome budget option for those seeking an affordable, but reliable collapsible cooler companion.

    This budget choice of soft-bodied cooler has up to a 60 can capacity (without ice) and features two exterior mesh pockets and one slim zippered pocket. LUNCIA has also built this option with three different ways to carry – over the shoulder, as a tote or like a traditional hard-bodied cooler from either side. 

    This bag won’t insulate for much more than six hours, so those seeking a collapsible cooler option for all-day or overnight ice-retention should look elsewhere. 

    The long-term integrity of this cooler tote might not be the most promising, but if you’re not too hard on your gear this option will likely hold up just fine for you. The main downfall of this cooler bag is that the zipper is not totally leak proof. When standing upright there’s no issue with leaking, but if tipped over with water inside then this soft cooler will spill. 

    All things considered, this collapsible cooler option is a great buy for the cost, but don’t expect it to perform like a top-quality brand would!

  9. 9. WintersAir Collapsible Cooler Bag with Reusable Ice Packs

    Pros:
    • 50 can capacity
    • Comes with two reusable ice packs
    • Exterior pockets are ideal for storing utensils and other small items
    • Lifetime guarantee
    • Awesome price point - you get more than you pay for with this one
    Cons:
    • Shoulder strapping is not great for carrying particularly heavy loads on your own
    • Longterm durability of the stitching is questionable if you're hard on your gear
    • Only one color option

    Here’s one more high capacity, budget collapsible cooler option that’s perfect for larger groups with big thirsts and appetites. This collapsible soft cooler from WintersAir is a stellar choice if portability and low cost are what you’re looking for.

    This cooler purchase includes two reusable ice packs, making it a solid value right off the bat considering the low cost. It’s certainly not rated for extreme ice retention times, but this cooler should keep drinks cold utilizing ice or artificial ice packs for at least eight hours.

    The size, insulating ability and cost of this unit make it one of our favorite budget options of the ‘tote-bag’ style.

    The soft-body design collapses down to just a few inches wide, so it’s a great choice for stuffing into an already full suitcase or trunk. Considering it can hold up to 50 cans, the portability of this option is not to be overlooked. 

    The long term integrity of the zippers and stitching of the carry handles are definitely questionable if you’re the type of outdoorsman or woman who’s hard on their gear, so you’ll likely want to consider a different option if you need something rugged. Check out the Foldable cooler by Kelty or the insulated backpack by Icemule listed above for some tougher options. 

    WintersAir does, however, cover this product with a lifetime guarantee, so you can give this one a go confidence.

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