Like most Americans, you probably demand — nay, need — your morning cup of joe to get you going. Once that cuppa is done, though, you’ll probably also want to take some more with you. A mid-afternoon macchiato or a post-lunch pour over pick-me-up is almost always a good idea. The thing is, if you put it in any old coffee mug, it’s going to get cold (or warm if it’s cold brew) by the time you want it. If you want your Americano or latte to last long enough for you to enjoy, it’s time to step up your coffee game with a legit travel mug that is insulated and won’t spill.
Whether you want your coffee while you’re on the subway or after the dreaded weekly check-in meeting, these portable commuter mugs are the best for on the go. They’ll keep your coffee hot (or cold) and will help you not spill all over yourself. You can thank us later with a double shot (of espresso).
The Ember Travel Mug is touted as “The World’s First Temperature-Controlled Mug.” Time magazine recognized it as one of “the best inventions of the year” and, as far we’re concerned, it should win a Nobel Prize. Ember’s mugs look like any other traditional travel mug, but the ace up its sleeve is a built-in dial in the base allowing coffee drinkers to fine-tune their beverage to just the right temperature (between 120 and 145 degrees Fahrenheit). The Bluetooth-connected Ember app even allows drinkers to name their mugs and remotely adjust the temperature setting. The embedded battery will maintain the desired temp for up to two hours or all day with the included charging coaster.
The Kickstarter-born Goat Mug from Goat Story taps a certain primal chord. Sure, it’s a mug that’s practical (you can easily bike to work and not worry about spillage), sustainable (it’s made of BPA-free polypropylene), and easy to use (remove the leather holder and use it as a stand to keep your cup level on your desk). More importantly, it’s a bad-ass, Viking-inspired fashion accessory and conversation piece. Pick between four colors: Brown, hemp, marsala, or jet black, plus a real or faux leather strap.
Yes, the king of extreme coolers makes equally extreme travel coffee mugs. The Yeti Rambler 20-Ounce Tumbler will keep your morning java piping hot from the moment you drudge out of bed all the way through the end of your day. It’s over-engineered with double-wall vacuum insulation and kitchen-grade stainless steel. These mugs are dishwasher safe and come with the Yeti MagSlider lid that uses magnets to keep your beverage on lockdown. Plus, it’s available in nine sizes, from 10 ounces to one gallon, so take that, Trentas.
Using a French press is one of the easiest ways to brew coffee with rich flavor. If you’re into French press coffee rather than drip coffee and you’re traveling for an extended period of time, a French press travel mug is the perfect gift to yourself. The Espro P1 is your portable mobile cafe. It’s a stainless steel design and can brew your coffee in just four minutes.
Insulated stainless steel is perfect for keeping hot things hot and cold things cold. But it’s less than ideal for anyone prone to dropping things. For clumsy commuters, the Autoseal Transit is here to help. Contigo takes the basic stainless steel mug, wraps it in an ultra-grippy, rubberized sleeve, then adds a spout cover that automatically locks to prevent spillage. Plus it’ll keep your beverage piping hot for up to five hours or your iced coffee icy for up to 12.
For coffee drinkers who appreciate thoughtful design in everything they own, including their lowly commuter mug, S’well has you covered. It comes in different colors and designs — from plain to teakwood to patterned — and boasts a handsome, perfectly contoured exterior to fit your hand. The wide mouth means it’s versatile enough to accommodate hot beverages or a chilled cold brew with ice.
If your mind drifts toward the outdoors no matter where you are, Ello’s Campy Travel Mug promises to add a bit of campfire chic to your desktop. The stainless steel travel mug features a backcountry-inspired, blue-and-white flecked ceramic design and a soft, comfortable cork-inlaid handle. The vacuum-insulated shell promises to keep your joe hot for six hours and your cold drinks chilled for a full 24 hours. Bonus: It’s also one of the most affordable travel mugs on this list.
Last but not least is the environmentally conscious Klean Kanteen. Their Insulated Wide Mouth 16-ounce coffee thermos is the definition of solid. The rigorously tested double-wall vacuum insulation boasts a 10-hour heating timeline. If iced coffee is your jam, this thermos keeps it cool for 30 hours, and the wide mouth makes it easy to fill with ice. A leakproof Café Cap 2.0 comes with the mug, and although it requires hand-washing, the electropolished interior doesn’t retain or impart flavors. So get wild with the vanilla! Or an Irish Coffee if it’s that kind of day.
Article originally published by Jahla Seppanen on October 16, 2017. Last updated March 2021.
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