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Best Coolers For Boating [Buyer’s Guide]

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Deciding which boating cooler to get for your next boating adventure? Here are some important pointers to remember purchasing one plus our top picks for the best coolers for boating that we highly recommend.

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Boating has long since been a favorite hobby of many and one of the most popular items to bring along while boating is coolers. Not only does the cooler keep your drinks and food chilled to your liking, but you can also use them to store freshly caught fish along the way. Deciding which cooler to get for your next boating adventure? Here are some important pointers to remember purchasing one, plus our top picks for the best coolers for boating that we highly recommend.

What Are Boating Coolers?

Finding the right cooler for your pontoon boat depends on how you intend to use it. If you are planning to use your cooler for storing fish, you may need a rotomolded cooler, but if you just want a cooler to keep drinks cold and a few snacks, you may not wish to invest in such an expensive cooler. However, even if you only want to keep food in your cooler for boating, it’s important to find a cooler that will adequately withstand the heat.

Coolers for boating have similar qualities to that of the ones we use for hiking, camping, or RVing. These coolers are often called marine coolers and offer extra features that work best on marine set up. 

What Is A Marine Grade Cooler?

Marine-grade coolers are built to withstand the extreme weather conditions that boating entails. Compared to standard coolers, marine-grade coolers offer added features that are perfect for any marine environment and different water activity. These features include rust resistance, UV protection, and non-slip feature.

Best Coolers For Boating Features

When it comes to coolers used for boating, there are extra features included that you won’t typically find on a regular cooler. Here are some features that make a marine cooler for boating different from the rest.

  • More insulation- Marine coolers usually offer thicker and better insulation to keep the contents cold for longer periods. And the greater the insulation means that you can also use them for freezing your fish until docking. 
  • Comes in lighter shades– These coolers are often exposed under the heat of the sun. They are built with lighter colors which are better in reflecting the rays of the sun as well as the heat it produces.
  • Rust-resistant– Coolers are usually built with high-grade plastic but some parts of it can develop rust over time especially when exposed to saltwater. Most Marine coolers use rust-resistant components to keep your coolers in their best shape.
  • Non-Slip– The best Boating coolers are equipped with non-slip feet/ bottom to prevent it from sliding all over the floor when you finally start your boats and get going.
  • UV protection– With constant exposure to the sun’s UV rays your coolers can be damaged over time. To prevent this from happening, manufacturers also included UV protection features in making the best coolers for boating. 

What Are The Best Coolers For Boating?

Although coolers for boating work just the same as any other cooler which is to store and keep the items inside cool, it has extra features that are perfectly fit for life on a boat. Make sure you keep an eye out for these features when choosing the best coolers for boating

To narrow down your search, we’ve made a list of the best-selling and highly rated boating coolers on the market that every boating enthusiast raves about. 

Best Coolers For Boating

Soft Side Coolers For Boating

For shorter and less demanding boat trips, there are some soft-sided coolers out there that can get the job done. Although the best boating coolers are typically the rotomolded coolers, here are two soft sided coolers that are also great as boating coolers.

How Do You Secure A Boat Cooler?

The best boat coolers on the market are usually equipped with a non-skid bottom preventing them from sliding from their place. But for those who want extra security for their coolers, here are some tips to keep your coolers safe in their place.

  • Use damp towels under your coolers to prevent them from moving
  • Placing rubber mats/shelf liners at the bottom of the cooler also works great in keeping them in place
  • Use cooler tie-down strap kits

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