When you’re going to buy a cooler, you always want to have the best one of all possible options. It can be difficult to know which is which considering there are so many brands available.

So which criteria do you use to choose?

A good place to start is by comparing the best brands to find the pros and cons of each as well as the similarities and differences they might have. Some of the best coolers you can compare are RTIC vs YETI.


RTIC and YETI Coolers Overviews

The product overview is a good way for you to know more about it and to see if it meets your personal criteria. With customer reviews, you can easily identify which is which and eventually take a pick.

YETI is pretty popular in the cooler industry. The coolers of YETI brand can be subdivided into both hard-side and soft-side coolers. The hard-side has two series which are the Roadie and the Tundra series. The difference between them is that the Roadie is designed for smaller trips as it is easier to carry due to the nature of the size.

The Tundra series, on the other hand, provides larger coolers with a range of sizes to choose from. As for the soft-side coolers, they are called Hoppers and are further categorized into two. These are the hopper flip and hopper two.


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Check Price On Amazon

The hopper flip is small and has a flip open entry. The hopper two coolers are much larger in size and have a zip open entry instead. These series are light and convenient to carry and are not made of plastic wall exteriors.

Analyzing any ”hopper two” review, you can notice that the rating of what customers are the most excited about is its stylish look and body type. So, you can fit and shape it in different spaces.

The RTIC also carry both hard-side and soft-side coolers. Their hard-side coolers are called Roto molded coolers which come in five different sizes. The sizes begin from an RTIC 20 to RTIC 145. The sizes are comparable to the YETI series and they have a number of similarities.

With their soft-side coolers, they are called SoftPak and comes in a variety of sizes as well. They are a direct competition to the YETI series as they also have the small compact pack. The design is a little different from YETI but there are still some similarities between them. Their smallest pack is very portable and are also waterproof, intended to hold very small items.

Generally, softside coolers are better for those who prefer a carry option to everything else. Such coolers may lose in technical features compared to others. Still, they are big enough to throw plenty of beverages and some ice in.

Design and Materials


In terms of design, they have designs that are similar to each other which makes them like brothers. Some of their most common features in the hard-side series include an integrated locking system, non-slip feet, marine grade rope handles, big freezer gasket, a draining system, rubber latches, drain spout, traction lid, and a no sweaty exterior since it’s made of high quality plastic and they come in colors that are mostly arctic white and tan.

When it comes to the soft-side coolers, the major difference in design is the lid. The RTIC uses a flip top kind of lid whereas YETI uses a zipper. The exteriors are both made of nylon shell but are still waterproof. The soft-side coolers are not meant for the harsh environment and can easily tear when they are around sharp objects and tools.

Other than that, the design is much easier to carry with the straps provided, they are light as well considering they don’t have hard plastic exterior, and the nylon used is heavy duty, so you don’t have to worry about them tearing easily. When comparing design, materials and cost, reviews by customers can help a lot. For example, many people consider it to be very comfortable when a cooler has a strap. Wearing it on the shoulder is much easier than wearing everything in one hand. Thus, the load is distributed equally through the whole body.

RTIC Soft-SideYETI Soft-Side

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Check Price On Amazon

Analyzing, multiple customer reviews and feedbacks, it is obvious that hard-side coolers are more popular among customers. At the same time, soft-side coolers get more positive marks, being top rated in the online stores.

Ice Retention

It is difficult to judge the overall ice retention without nitpicking at least a comparison between the two sizes from both YETI and RTIC. Ice life is the most important thing to consider when buying a cooler. With the varied sizes available from each company, you want to look at a particular model size that is from the same series as it would be unfair to compare a hard-side cooler from RTIC with a soft-side cooler from YETI.

The sizes may almost be similar but they also have small differences which may prove to be a big deal to the customer who’s buying. For example, RTIC cooler reviews show that the size of a cooler is not a big deal when comparing ice retention abilities in different products. It is not the only feature that can maximize or decrease the cooler’s performance.

Other than size factor, you also have to remember that there are other things that may reduce ice life such as the number of times the cooler is opened as well as external factors like the weather such as during the summer, etc.

Apart from the size, when comparing the RTIC 20 vs YETI 20, look at any other similarities and differences that may make one model better than the other. The YETI Roadie 20 is small meaning it will have a smaller ice life but it’s made with a thick insulation that will still allow it to do well. It can last up to 4 days on the higher end ones.

As for the RTIC 20, it is slightly larger than the YETI Roadie 20 allowing you to have an extra 5 pound of ice, although even with a little bit more ice, the ice retention time is still 4 days in general.

Size Range RTIC vs YETI

They both have a range of sizes with YETI having 10 different sizes. The important thing to consider when it comes to sizes is whether or not they have the ones you both want and need. If two intermediaries are too far apart and you want something that’s in between, then it may not be favorable for you.

You can always check the reviews by customers for ratings and also find out what they have to say about how comfortable they are with a particular size if you’re having any doubts.

Since most of their sizes are almost similar, you may want to consider a YETI vs RTIC model that is almost the same such as an RTIC 20 vs. YETI Roadie 20, RTIC 45 vs. YETI Tundra 45, and RTIC 65 vs. YETI Tundra 65. These models are almost the same in size.

Company Reputation and Warranty


A part of marketing is having a good branding and building reputation. YETI has garnered a good reputation because of the good quality products they carry and it has an added advantage since it has been around much longer than RTIC.

As for RTIC, they are still creating a name for themselves through word of mouth as they haven’t done much advertising for their products. They are instead more focused on manufacturing small box stores. This is definitely going to make them stall a little bit more than if they did more advertising. In this case, giving YETI an advantage is only appropriate.

When it comes to warranty, YETI offers a 5-year warranty on the hard-side coolers and 3 years on their soft-side coolers. Whereas RTIC offers a 1-year warranty on both types of coolers. Over the years, they have kept changing as they previously had a similar warranty like the ones YETI have. This makes them behind YETI and one would opt for the longer warranty instead, giving yet another advantage to YETI.


Money is a very sensitive issue for many people. In our battle RTIC cooler vs YETI artic cooler, this question is not at the low end of the spectrum of possible reasons to get one or another cooler.

Coolers are not exactly cheap so you want to consider which model and company offers fairly better prices that are within your budget. It is obviously an investment as the cooler is expected to last you for several years. With RTIC, their prices are consistent as they are sold directly from their site. With YETI, you may find varying prices in the market since they have several avenues where you can get them from.

It can be challenging to know which is which as the prices do fluctuate from time to time. So it’s best to compare them at the time of purchase. RTIC coolers are much cheaper as compared to YETI. The prices, when compared, are mostly from their website that does not include shipping costs, taxes, and any other additional expenses.

But still, all in all, the difference is quite huge and you can save a lot by buying an RTIC cooler over a YETI. If you’re looking for an affordable cooler, RTIC has the best price.

RTIC cooler vs YETI: the Winner Is…


With all that being said, there must be a winner or one with an added advantage. RTIC gets a win in both ice life and price while YETI gets a win in design, warranty and size ranges. This makes YETI the obvious winner but nonetheless, they are both recommended to say the least and buying either of them still makes a great choice.

When you make a decision to purchase a cooler, you should always build your mind on a few basic aspects: how big your truck/boat/car is, how long you want to use an artic cooler, how many drinks you want to pack in, and how much money you are ready to spend. Answering all these questions and reading our comparison guide will help you to make the right decision.