Wondering how many coolers you own and if they’re living up to your expectations? Not satisfied with the cooler or esky you have, but not sure what model to get next? We’ve got some tips for buying a new one.

Here’s the rundown on the top features to check while buying branded esky give-aways.

How Does It Open?

Esky and cooler boxes should be easy to open, keep your drinks cold and typically come with an extra liner for ice that you can replace once the old ice melts. But some models are easier than others when opening and closing them. According to reports, the cooler box market is expected to grow from $5.2 billion in 2020 and reach $8.7 billion by 2028.

Cheaper models can be a pain in the backside, with hinges that snap off or handles that suffer from wear and tear. Better quality coolers have either a self-balancing lid or a ‘hinge-free’ design that lets you close the top by gripping it on both sides without snapping anything.

Is It Leak-proof?

A good esky should keep your drinks cold and everything else inside dry. If you’re taking food in there too, it’s even more essential to find out if they’re going to arrive in one piece.

That means there should be a rubber seal around the lid and a locking mechanism on the clasp. In some cases, manufacturers add an extra ‘dunk proof’ design that lets you close things up even when they’re wet from melted ice or condensation.

How Many Drinks Can It Hold?

Coolers are measured in either litres or quarts. You want one that holds enough drinks for everyone you’re taking with you, plus a few extra beers just in case. Make sure they fit the purpose, too. Go for a large cooler if you plan to use it as an outdoor fridge and need it to hold drinks.

A more practical option is a smaller cooler that you can take with you or a stackable model used as a second fridge.

Does It Have an Extra Liner?

Good quality coolers and eskies often come with an extra liner for ice. Once the old ice melts, you can replace it with the new liner.

Some budget brands don’t include this feature, with extra liners costing up to $20 a pop for some models. If you’re going on a long trip, though, it’s worth spending the money for a model with an extra liner.

How Durable Is It?

Check the hinges on the cooler or esky’s lid and check if they’re up to scratch. Better quality ones are made of metal, so they don’t snap off, with rubber cushioning so your drinks don’t get shaken around while driving.

The bottom of the cooler or esky should also take some wear and tear. Look at the material used to keep it lightweight but strong enough for transport if you look at models with wheels.

If you’re taking your esky out on a boat, check how much weight it can hold so you don’t overload it while out at sea.


Even if you’re buying online, it is essential to check the manufacturer’s warranty or guarantee. If something goes wrong with your accessory or esky during use, you don’t want to be stuck for options.

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