Yeti Hopper Flip 12 Review

If you’re reading this, we can probably assume that you’ll be spending some days cruising around the lake, sitting at the beach, or taking a small camping trip this summer.


If so, you should continue reading our YETI hopper Flip 12 Review, as this little cooler may just become your new best bud.

It’ll make sure to keep your brews colder than those mountain cans on a Coors commercial.

It’s also at the perfect size, right in-between being large enough for packing a full load of drinks for two, yet small enough so that it isn’t a hassle to carry around with you if you’re rolling solo.

Obviously this is an investment, as there aren’t many other soft-shell coolers that you see at this price point, though read on and we’ll tell you all you need to know so that future hole in your pocket doesn’t hurt so bad.

The Review

Yeti Hopper Flip 12 Cooler


  • ​Outside Dimensions: 10” x 11.5” x 12.6”
  • ​Inside Dimensions: 8” x 9” x 11”
  • ​Empty Weight: 3.1lbs
  • ​Holds 13 Cans of Beer of 16lbs of Ice
  • ​Durable and Puncture-Proof Dry Hide Shell
  • ​Leak-Proof HydroLok Zipper
  • ​Cold Cell Insulation


  • ​Lunchbox Design that is Easy to Transport
  • ​100% Leak-Proof HydroLok Zipper
  • ​Wide Mouth Opening that Is Perfect for Packing and Accessing Contents
  • ​Tough, Puncture-Resistant Dry Hide Shell
  • ​Amazing Ice Retention for Small Size
  • ​HitchPoint Grid to Attach Accessories


  • ​Very High Price Point for Small Cooler

​Why Is the Price So High?

When it comes to buying a YETI cooler, you have to understand that while they are pricey, you’re paying for something that can give you serious performance. At the size, these soft coolers are easily some of the most expensive out there, and there’s no doubt that you could get a small Coleman cooler or Styrofoam cooler to carry around your drinks. This is a long-term investment though, and YETI has put just about everything they can into this cooler.

From the puncture-proof, high-density dry hide shell, to the cold cell insulation that can keep your food and drinks cold for days, to all the other accessories that YETI has put onboard this bad boy, it’s a cooler that will seriously last you for years to come.

Insulation Performance

The YETI Hopper Flip 12 has some of the best insulation properties around. They have been tested meticulously and have been put up against competitor brands again and again, only to take the cake every single time. The few-inch thick cold cell insulation helps to hold in the cold for days at a time. Pair this with the air-tight and leak-proof HydroLok Zipper, and you have an insulating monster. Whether you have cold drinks sitting in your hot car on the way to the beach or you want to take a bunch of perishable food items out to the wilderness for a weekend, the YETI Hopper Flip 12 will keep it cold.

Hopper Flip 12 Cooler
Hopper Flip 12 Cooler
Hopper Flip 12 Cooler
Hopper Flip 12 Cooler

Who Is the Yeti Hopper Flip 12 Perfect For?

Even though it’s shaped like a lunch box, with the very high price point, this can give you something much more. That being said, because the insulation performance is so strong and the design is so portable, it does act as somewhat of a personal “lunchbox”-style cooler that is perfect for keeping refreshments or small perishable items nice and cool. If you’re someone who brings your lunch to work, this cooler will keep it nice and cold all day until it is time to eat. Going camping for the weekend somewhere remote? The YETI Hopper Flip will be your best cooling friend. In all, it’s best for someone who has had bad luck with keeping their food or drinks cold in the past, and wants something that is a step up from an average lunchbox.

Frequently Asked Questions

YETI Hopper Flip 12 vs. Hopper Flip 18

So the most obvious difference between the Hopper Flip 12 and the Hopper Flip 18 is size. The Hopper Flip 18 is still fairly compact, though definitely more suited for longer expeditions, and can hold not only your lunch, but your dinner too. Though the Hopper Flip 12 is just slightly big all around in terms of dimensions, it is rated to hold 20 cans of beer, 7 more than the Hopper Flip 12. The Hopper Flip 18 also comes with a HitchPoint Grid that is slightly larger than the Hopper Flip 12, and has two more slots near the bottom. Beyond that, deciding on which to purchase is only a matter of how much space you need and what you are willing to carry.

Yeti Hopper Flip 18 vs. Roadie

There are quite a few noticeable differences between the Hopper Flip 18 and the line of Roadie Coolers that YETI offers. The most noticeable, no doubt, is that the Roadie is a soft cooler and the YETI Hopper is a hard cooler. This means that the ice retention on the Roadie is much longer, and can hold ice almost 7 days longer than the Flip. This is because it is made with a few extra design features such as the extra-thick fat wall design, the pressure-injected permafrost insulation, and the single-piece rotomolded construction.

This also means that the Roadie is far more durable and totally bear-proof, something you may consider if you’re going out into bear country for the weekend. On the downside, the Roadie is much heavier than the Hopper Flip 18 at 15bs, almost 10lbs heavier. If you need serious durability, ice retention, or extra room, go for the Roadie.

YETI Hopper Flip 12 Alternative

A very popular alternative to the YETI Hopper Flip 12 is RTIC brand, though we’ve found that the more durable and better-insulated option is the AO Coolers 24 Pack Soft Cooler. This cooler is part of their Canvas Series of coolers and is incredibly lightweight, very sturdy, and is well insulated enough to retain ice for more than 24 hours without any leaks. They share a lot of the same benefits as the YETI coolers, though are less than half the price. That being said, you’ll never get the same quality, durability, and ice retention as a YETI cooler with an alternative, but you can get pretty close if you don’t feel like spending your hard earned cash.

​For their sheer strength, ice retention, and high-quality features, it's no wonder that they're in the running for best cooler for the beach

Does the YETI Hopper Flip 12 come with a warranty?

The Hopper Flip 12 has the same warranty as all of the other soft-shell coolers in YETI’s lineup, which is a three-year limited warranty period. If you find that there is some sort of manufacturer error or defect within your first three years of using your cooler, you can return it to YETI and get a new one for free. There are more conditions to this than we need to mention, but you can find out more about it here.

How is the YETI Hopper 12 in terms of travel?

While a little bigger than the YETI Hopper 8, the Hopper 12 is still one of YETI’s most portable coolers in their lineup. Thanks to the padded shoulder strap, this cooler is very easy to carry, even when it is packed with ice and drinks. You also have two small handles on the side that can allow you to strap your Flip to the bed of your truck, storage space of your kayak, or back rack of your bicycle. Lastly, you have the lunchbox style handle on top. Basically, you have a versatile list of options when it comes to taking your Flip 12 from spot to spot.

Unfortunately, some people may not like the square, lunchbox-style design, especially if they’ve used the thinner profile YETI Hopper Two bags. That being said, the Flip 12 has some advantages like packing ease and cooling performance.

Why do you have to use the Zipper lubricant with this cooler?

While the zipper on the Hopper Flip 12 is incredibly heavy-duty and leak-proof, it does get a little bit sticky after being used for a long time. This means that it’s likely to catch on the corners of the face, leaving you with the annoying task of getting it back on track. Luckily, YETI provides you with zipper lubricant that you simply spread on the circumference of the zipper to help get it back in line.

Can you use dry ice in the YETI Hopper 12?

While YETI encourages the use of dry ice with its hard-shell products, it actually warns against it when it comes to the Hopper line. This is because dry ice melts as CO2 gas, and because the Hopper coolers are sealed tight but soft, it can be far more dangerous to deal with in the case that too much gas is released.

Overall Rating

The YETI Hopper Flip 12 is easily one of the best small, soft-shell coolers on the market, and for it’s incredibly performance and superb durability, we can give it no less than an A+ rating.

While the price may be a lot to swallow, getting a cooler from YETI brand means making an investment that will last you years to come.

should you buy?

Yeti Hopper Flip 12
  • 7.5/10
    Price - 7.5/10
  • 10/10
    Insulation - 10/10
  • 10/10
    Travel-ability - 10/10
User Review
4.77/10 (13 votes)