How to Choose the Right Fishing Cooler

If you’re in the market for a fishing cooler, you’ll have to choose from a dizzying array of different models. Choosing between them can seem complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. Your choice will really come down to your needs: you’ll need to think through how you plan on using your fishing cooler and what kind of budget you’re looking to spend. Once you’ve figured out the basics, read on to find out how to choose the best fishing cooler for your offshore excursions.

fishing cooler
Choosing the right fishing cooler takes a little know-how.

The size of your fishing cooler matters!

One of your biggest considerations is what size fishing cooler you need and this will depend on how you plan to use it. A nine quart cooler will provide enough space to stash a 12-pack surrounded by ice and not much else, while a 28 quart model will hold enough food and beverages for a family of four to go on an overnight trip. If you love going on weekend excursions, you may need something as large as 100 quarts. When making your decision, be sure to go to a store where you can see the coolers in person to get a sense of how they’ll work for you. Keep in mind that during hot weather, about a quarter of the space will be taken up by ice.

Consider construction

A fishing cooler needs to be durable so that it can withstand being bumped around your boat and used as extra seating. When considering different models, test out their weight first. If they are surprisingly light, beware! Insulation and durable materials are fairly heavy, so a light cooler likely won’t  last for a very long time. Keep a close eye on the lid, as it needs to be well-insulated to ensure that your cooler will stay cold for hours–or even days–on end.

Can you handle it?

When making your final decision, be sure to think about whether you will be able to manage your new fishing cooler. If you frequently take solo trips, you don’t want to purchase a cooler that you won’t be able to move by yourself. Also be sure that the cooler you are considering has sturdy handles that will be able to withstand the wear and tear of the weight that you’ll be adding.


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