Best Travel Cups in the UK 6


This is one of a few posts I’m in the process of writing about reusable travel mugs and cups, on a mission to discover which are the best and most popular travel cups/mugs within specific categories. In this post I’m focusing on trying to figure out which are the best travel cups in the UK. It’s definitely time to ditch the disposables, I think we should all have our own favourite travel cups – and I’m writing this post to help you decide which might be the best travel cup for you, depending on the circumstances.

Travel cups vs. travel mugs.

I realise that cups and mugs are often used interchangeably, and it’s the same when it comes to travel cups or mugs, but the difference for me is mainly about size and shape.

If it’s 6-12 ounce and it looks like a cup, then I see it as a travel cup. If it’s 14/16 ounce and/or it looks more like a flask, then I think of it as a travel mug. I’d grab one of my small travel cups if I was heading out somewhere where I can easily get a top up, but I’d take a bigger travel mug with better thermal ability if I was heading off-grid somewhere for example.

Ecoffee Bamboo Travel Cups.

Ecoffee Bamboo travel cups.Ecoffee make a range of really striking, individual looking designs of bamboo eco travel cups. I have the Mike & Eric design Ecoffeecup, and I think it’s great.

Bamboo is the world’s fastest growing and most sustainable crop, so making cups from bamboo fibre seems like a very eco friendly approach. Bamboo material is super light, it has a similar feel to cardboard, but it’s fully reusable, so it’s no surprise that Eco organisations such as Surfers Against Sewage have supported Ecoffee cups.

As well as being super light, Bamboo is organic, naturally sterile, completely BPA and phthalate free, and contains no petrochemical plastic – so there’s not much that can beat bamboo fibre when it comes to eco friendliness.

They’re available in 8 ounce, 12 ounce and 14 ounce, that’s 250ml, 340ml and 400ml, and in a huge range of different designs, you can see them all at the ecoffeecup official website.

Blurb:

  • ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY BAMBOO COFFEE CUPS – Travel mugs 100% made from organic materials. Our insulated travel mug will keep your drinks tasty & warm during your commute or drive. Your reusable cup is lovingly made with natural bamboo fibre. It?s time to stop the 100 billion single use coffee cups that end up as landfill. There’s no excuse for single use.
  • OUR REUSABLE COFFEE CUPS SAVE YOU UP TO £0.55 WITH EVERY COFFEE – Disposable coffee cups are out, the latte levy is in!! It’s time to stop the waste & save money today. Add your favourite reusable coffee cup to your basket now and start saving money. If you use your travel mug just twice a day for 30 days you can SAVE £30 on rebates from popular coffee shops.
  • ON THE GO COFFEE TRAVEL CUP – We guarantee our environmentally friendly coffee cups! Unlike many of our competitors, our bamboo travel mug will not split but if they do we will replace the cup Free of Charge (*subject to T&Cs). Avoid some of the cheaper brands that don’t offer this guarantee. The Ecoffee Cup will not leave an unpalatable taste in your mouth, this is because our coffee cups are naturally sterile.
  • SILICON COFFEE CUP HOLDER FOR PERFECT GRIP – Your new leakproof travel mug features a non drip lid resealable lip, stopping any shirt disasters. With a range of awesome designs our lightweight coffee cup only weighs 135g you want even know it’s on your bag. Fully dishwasher safe coffee cup unlike other companies. Our range of insulated coffee cups keep your drink hotter for longer so you can enjoy your coffee even more.
  • BEST TRAVEL MUGS SET – Join the 1000’s of Ecoffee Cup customers that have ordered our reusable coffee travel mugs. Our travel mug is ideal for your morning commute & filling with your favourite coffee from your Starbucks, Costa or local Barista coffee shop. Available in 8oz, 12oz & 14oz coffee cups with secure lid and stopper.

Eco Friendly

My Ecoffee Cup.

My Ecoffee Cup, design by Mike & Eric.

Yeah! I do realise there is some debate about whether bamboo is quite as green as it is often claimed to be, due to the chemical processes used to process it from the raw product, but from what I can see there’s no question that bamboo products are more eco friendly than most other options when it comes to making reusable cups.

In terms of recycling at the end of the life of the travel cup, the cup itself is biodegradable! You can just soak it in boiling water, crush it and chuck it in the compost. The silicone lid and sleeve can be put in standard recycling.

Heat Retention

Bamboo material isn’t the best when it comes to insulation so your coffee won’t stay hot for a particularly long time in an Ecoffeecup bamboo travel mug or any other bamboo mug. It’s about the same as single walled plastic, such as the plastic KeepCups, judging by my own experiments, which were highly scientific (a kettle, and a thermometer, and my phone).

If I have an Americano or a pourover or Aeropress coffee in my Ecoffeecup I tend to find it’s good for decent drinking temp for about 20 mins.

If I’m using it for a flat white, I don’t actually know how long it keeps it hot for, as I usually finish my milkies within a few minutes anyway.

From my experiments, from boiling water, I found the following:

After 10 mins: 73c

After 15 mins: 70c

After 20 mins: 68c

After 30 mins: 60c

As you’ll discover shortly, this is almost exactly the same as the plastic Keepcup original.

I don’t think there’s one travel cup or mug for everyone, I think it just depends on the circumstances. I have various different types of travel cups & mugs, and I’ll use this one or my glass “brew” keepcup if I’m having a flat white, because I drink them quickly so staying hot for longer isn’t important. If I’m having an Americano for example, I’d usually take longer drinking it, especially if I’m on a journey somewhere, so in that circumstance, I’d use one of my more insulated travel mugs such as my wife’s stainless steel Bodum travel mugs, or one of the double walled Bodum travel cups.

Leaking

Not much at all with normal use, but keep in mind that “normal use” for a standard travel cup means carrying it around in an upright position, it doesn’t mean putting it on its side. If you have the silicone stopper thing in the sip hole then you can slosh it about quite a bit and you’ll only get the occasional small dribble from the air hole on the lid.

If you don’t have the stopper in, you may get the odd little bit coming out through the sip hole if you’re sloshing it about, but it’s not much. I’ve not experienced any of the dregs leaking when I’ve finished my coffee, so you should be fine to sling it in your bag or wherever once you’ve finished, and not need to worry about coffee or tea dribble on your work or laptop.

Comfort

In terms of being hot to handle, actually they surprised me when I first tried a bamboo travel cup as I expected it to be just as hot as a paper cup, as they basically feel like very hard card, and actually, they’re not as hot to hold as a standard takeaway coffee cup.

Having said that, they are a single walled cup made from a material which conducts the heat fairly well, so they are hot when you have a hot brew in them. I can hold it with or without the silicone with a fresh coffee in, without too much issue – but I do have asbestos hands, I’m a drummer so I tend to have thick skin on my hands, so I do find that I can withstand quite high temperatures with my palms and fingers. If you have more sensitive hands, then you may find them slightly uncomfortable to hold with a hot brew in, although if you’re careful to just hold the silicone it shouldn’t be too bad.

They’re light to carry, you’ll hardly notice the weight of the empty cup in your bag at around 130g.

Dishwasher proof?

Yeah.

Microwave Proof?

Nope.

Car Cup Holders

Yes they will fit most cup holders. The 8 ounce one fits fine in my cup holder, which is one of the smaller diametre cup holders.

Amazon Reviews

There are so many different versions of the cup on Amazon, well – the same cup but different designs and size options, that it’s difficult to say, but most seem to have 4 stars and above. I can see a few negative reviews about the cup splitting, or arriving broken. Ecoffeecup do state that they will replace cracked or broken cups though, and obviously if you recieved it cracked and you’d ordered via Amazon, you’d just click the button to return it and receive a replacement.

Price

From around £8 here on Amazon, from £10.95 at Ecoffeecup.eco

 

KeepCup Brew

Keepcup brew best travel cup uk.KeepCup are one of the biggest brands in the UK at present, when it comes to travel cups, and when it comes to the speciality coffee market, the brew series in particular are extremely popular.

I just think they’ve got the design bang on, for the market they’re aiming for. They’re well made and they work well, but I think it’s the design and marketing where KeepCup have really excelled, producing a travel cup which many people are proud to carry around, and hand to the barista at their favourite coffee shop.

Both the Brew Original and Brew Cork feature lids made from BPA and BPS free plastics, and the cup itself is made of blown tempered soda-lime glass, but the difference with the cork series is that the band, instead of being made from Silicone, it’s a cork band made in Portugal from waste cork produced during wine cork manufacturing.

They’re available in various colour combinations when it comes to the colour of the lid, plug and band – or you can design your own at uk.keepcup.com.

Blurb:

  • Tough; durable; fully-tempered soda-lime glass; recyclable. BPA free; non toxic; lid made from polypropylene. Hand wash. microwave safe.
  • New improved lid with larger drinking hole and inner seal. Meets OS&H standards.
  • Splash proof, sealable lid and plug for sipper hole, meets occupational safety and health standards.
  • Lightweight, colourful and dishwasher safe
  • Fits in car cup holder.

Eco Friendly

Well, the fact it’s made from glass I think instantly puts this travel cup high up the eco friendly list, given how easily recyclable glass is, and being tempered glass it should have a long life span too, as long as you don’t smash it, which isn’t impossible but shouldn’t be all that easy to do, as it’s a fairly robust tempered glass.

By the way “Soda-lime glass” is really standard glass, it’s used for a lot of bakeware, for windows, I think they’re quite cleverly making the most of the name of this glass to make it sound special given that it’s a term which isn’t often used ;-). Similar to the recent “Cacao vs. Cocoa” phenomena, where marketing firms are using the different but acceptable spelling of the exact same product to help raise the perceived value. But anyway, I’m digressing, this is a post about reusable takeaway travel cups ;-).

If you go for the cork option, you’re using a recycled product as the cork is material which is chucked away in portugal during the wine bottle cork making process. The plastic/silicone parts can be recycled.

Heat Retention

Glass isn’t all that good at retaining heat, and this isn’t double insulated, it’s a single piece of glass, so it doesn’t do the best job when it comes to keeping your coffee hot. I really like my 8 ounce keepcup brew, but as with the Ecoffeecup, I’d usually only use it for a flat white. If I was going for a filter or Americano, I usually drink these over longer periods, and I’d use one of my better insulated travel cups such as one of my Bodum travel cups.

Having said that, there is also a “long play” version (not currently available in cork) which has a heavy duty plastic coating on top of the glass to improve the heat retention and make it a bit more comfortable to hold.

Leaking

Hardly any leaking at all, when full to the brim or the last drops when you’ve finished and chucked the cup in your bag or whatever, very good on this score. I wouldn’t call it leak proof though, like most travel cups, if you lay it down full, it would leak – if you want to do that see my best leak proof travel mugs post.

Comfort

I find that the cork does a good job of protecting your fingers, so it’s comfortable on that score. It’s fairly heavy though, over 200g which is quite something for such a small cup, but I like it.

Dishwasher proof?

No, the cork version isn’t, it’ll bugger up the cork. It’s recommended that you hand wash it and don’t remove the cork. If you want dishwasher proof just go for the standard version with the silicone sleeve instead of rubber.

Microwave Proof?

As above, this is a no as it’ll mess with the cork.

Car Cup Holders

Yup they’ll all fit in most car cup holders, the 8 ounce one fits fine in my small-ish car cup holder no worries.

Amazon Reviews

It does depend on which product you look at, as there are many different KeepCup brew options on Amazon, but if I look at the one with the most reviews, it has 4.3/5 from 115 reviews, only 4 of them are 1 star, 9 are 2 star, 10 are 3 star, 21 are 4 star, and 71 of the reviews are 5 star, so it’s pretty good. Some of the reviews are negative based on the product being too expensive, which I find slightly odd, if it’s too expensive why buy it? ;-). There are a couple of people saying that they leak a bit, but I think most travel cups do, if you’re looking for complete lack of leak see best leak proof travel mugs in the UK.

Price

RRP is listed at £21 for small, £22 for medium – but they’re often on offer on Amazon – click here to see the latest prices.

 

Frank Green Smart Cup

Frank Green Smart Cup.

I also discuss this travel cup in the best leak proof travel mugs post, due to the fact that its leak proof.

By the way, I see quite a few negative reviews for many of the standard travel cups based on the fact that they leak, most standard travel cups will leak, they’re not made to be leak proof even when the lid is closed, they’ll leak a bit – so if you did want a travel cup or mug which doesn’t leak, you’ll need to go for something like this which specifically has a non leak feature.

At first glance the smart cup from Aus based brand Frank Green, doesn’t look like a cup, actually it looks more like a tiny Henry hoover ;-), but no, it’s a travel cup, which by the way is made from all recycled materials.

Available from FrankGreen.com and various UK stockists, there are a range of different smart cup’s available, in different styles, colours and sizes.

Blurb:

  • Clever one handed, push button operation opens and closes the SmartCup’s spill resistant lid
  • The drinking hole is designed for optimum liquid flow
  • Smart double walled thermo outer layer keeps your coffee hotter for longer
  • Made from premium quality materials with a stain and odour resistant inner — taste your coffee and not your cup
  • Signature non-slip grip feels great in your hand
  • Fits in standard cup holders
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Recyclable at end of life
  • Customise your SmartCup base, lid and button colours
  • Australian owned, made and designed
  • Spare Parts (available)

Eco Friendly

It’s recyclable at end of life, and the fact that spare parts are available for it I would think would lengthen the average lifespan (I.e. not everyone will just launch it in the recycling bin at the first problem as it can be repaired) so all things considered I’d think this is a fairly eco friendly travel cup, especially when you consider the thousands of disposable take away cups that a reusable cup like this may prevent the use of, over a fairly long life-span.

Heat Retention

Great heat retention with the Frank Green Smart Cup, a good 3-4 hours I’d say from the various reviews I’ve seen (this isn’t one of the travel cups I’ve used so far, so I’m not speaking from experience with this one).

Leaking

None at all, completely leak proof, and for this reason the Frank Green cup also features in the best leak proof travel mugs post. Just take care when you press the button to release the liquid, if the contents are very hot and still steaming you might get a little bit of a release of steam and a bit of liquid when you press the button, we’re only talking a tiny amount though not a fountain. So this is one that you could lie down or throw in a bag, or keep it upside down, whatever floats your boat, it won’t leak. If it does it’s defective, send it back.

Comfort

Good insulation so it’s not too hot to handle, it’s warm with a hot brew in but it won’t burn your fingers. It’s not particularly heavy at about 160g.

Dishwasher proof?

Yeah.

Microwave Proof?

Check with the exact version you’re buying, but from what I can see the cup part itself is suitable for Microwave, but the lid isn’t, I’m assuming this is to do with the payment chip thingymabob.

Car Cup Holders

Yes, it’s stated that the Frank Green travel cups fit most cup holders.

Not Smart in the UK?

The “Smart” bit relates to a chip in the lid which allows you to scan the lid at your favourite coffee shop, not just to pay for your coffee, but also to remember how you drink your coffee, so literally, all you do is scan the lid and hand the cup to the Barista. The app it works with is CaféPay – which is available in Australia, but not in the UK or Europe as yet.

Youtube Reviews

There’s only one Amazon review, as it looks like it’s a product that was only briefly listed on Amazon. So I’ve found reviews on Youtube instead for the Frank Green Smartcup.

Also this Frank Green Vs Keepcup Review on twosmallfeat.com is worth a read, it rates the Frank Green cups ahead when it comes to being leak proof, but ranks the keepcup ahead when it comes to being able to taste the crema on a coffee, as the design of the lid on the Frank Green cups (and other travel mugs) prevents the crema on the top of the drink from reaching your lips, while the more conventional approach of keep cups allow your lips to come into contact with the crema when you start drinking your coffee.

Price

You can get them from Climpsons and Sons & Foundry coffee roasters online for about £20 – or click here to see more stockists.

 

Keepcup Changemakers Original

Keepcup Original.

This is a very well known travel cup, it’s one of the several travel cups I happen to have in our kitchen cupboards, so as with many of the others on this page, I’m talking from experience having used this cup properly – rather than having just tried it out for a review.

I like the Keepups, I think they’re well designed and well made, and they do their job very well – they also look really cool I think, and the ability to design your own in terms of the colours of the cup, band, lid and plug I think is great.

Blurb:

The world’s first barista standard reusable cup, perfect for coffee on the go. Colourful, durable, and lightweight. Designed to replace the disposable cup.

Introducing our latest colour series, Changemakers. A tribute to the everyday changemakers, empowered by the knowledge of the enormous difference many small acts can make.

  • Perfect for on the go.
  • 12oz / 340ml
  • Made from lightweight non toxic polypropylene. BPA and BPS free plastic.
  • Dishwasher safe on the top shelf.
  • Replacement parts available from KeepCup.

Heat Retention

Almost the same as the Ecoffeecups, from the experiments I’ve done. The following is what the temperature was at various timings, starting out with freshly boiled water from the kettle, using my standard kitchen thermometer.

After 10 mins: 73c

After 15 mins: 70c

After 20 mins: 67c

After 30 mins: 60c

So in my opinion, as with the Ecoffeecups, you have about 20 mins of drinking temp coffee if you start out with a long black coffee such as pour over or Americano.

Comfort

Again very similar to the Ecoffeecup, it’s fairly hot to handle, even with the silicone band, but it’s very lightweight.

Dishwasher proof?

Yup.

Microwave Proof?

Yup.

Car Cup Holders

Yeah should fit most cup holders.

Amazon Reviews

4.2/5 from 229 reviews. There are quite a lot of negative reviews stating that the cup leaks, that it doesn’t keep drinks hot for long enough, and that it’s very hot to hold. There are also mentions of a strong coffee odour once used, that can’t be removed. I’m not sure about the odour thing, I’ve not had an issue with that, but with the leaking and being hot to handle, I think that’s fair comment.

These cups will leak a bit, they’re not completely leak proof travel cups – and they’re single skin plastic, so they’re not thermal mugs, they’ll keep your brew hot enough for about 20 mins I’d say, and yes being single skin plastic, they’re not much cooler to handle than a paper takeaway travel cup. If you’re looking for long heat retention, and high insulation so you can hold the cup with no issue, and complete leak resistance – then you need something a bit different, see my leak proof travel mugs post.

Price

They’re available from £11.49 here on Amazon, with free next delivery if you’re a prime member. You can also get them direct from Keepcup.com from £13.50 including delivery.

 

 

Bodum Travel Mug, Vacuum, Stainless Steel

Another well known brand of travel mugs and cups, Bodum have been around for a long time. The now Switzerland based firm was founded in Denmark in 1944, by Peter Bodum, who invented a vacuum coffee maker called MOCCA, followed by Bodum SANTOS which became one of the best-selling coffee makers internationally throughout the 50s, 60s and 70s.

Still a family owned company despite the huge growth over the past 70 years, Bodum make most of their products now in Portugal, at their main manufacturing BODUM® Portuguesa.

My wife swears by her Bodum stainless steel travel mug. She has this one, the red version, and (she’s not a coffee drinker), she’s always amazed at how long it keeps her tea hot for.

Blurb:

  • 0.35 L, 12 oz
  • Stainless steel with a slip-proof rubber band
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Double wall for heat insulation
  • Please note: This travel mug is not leak-proof due to possible over pressure

The vacuum sealed double wall Travel Mug is made from stainless steel which works to insulate your beverage. Take it on the go and your beverage will remain hot or cold for several hours while maintaining the aroma and flavour of freshly brewed coffee.

The Bodum company got its start in Denmark in 1944, when Peter Bodum started a business wholesaling household products. Today, the Bodum brand, known for its innovative coffee press, as well as its tea makers, is still family-owned.

Besides being known for the aesthetic quality of their products, Bodum is recognised as one the leading makers of French presses, vacuum coffee makers and double-walled beverage glasses made of borosilicate glass. It has registered ‘FrenchPress’ as a trademark in many territories.

Today’s on-the-go lifestyle makes us miss out on our comforting daily routines far too often. Well, enjoying our favourite drink wherever we go is no longer on the list. The Travel Mug Collection goes where you go – in just the right size and just the right colour and material for all your endeavours. The mugs are absolutely spill-proof once the opening is closed all the way. The flow of fluids can be adjusted with an easy turn of the screw within the lid.

Heat Retention

Brilliant travel mugs/cups for heat retention, my wife started out with a plastic keepcup, which she liked, but she didn’t find it kept her tea hot for long enough, as she tends to take a while to drink her cup of tea when she’s busy, so she moved to this Bodum stainless steel travel cup, and she was amazed by it in terms of how hot her tea still is much later on when she gets around to drinking it.

I did some heat retention testing with the Bodum stainless steel travel cup, this isn’t a scientific test 😉 just me and a thermometer. From freshly boiled water:

After 10 mins: 92c

After 15 mins: 92c

After 20 mins: 90c

After 30 mins: 87c

After one hour: 78c

Comfort

Being a very well-insulated travel mug, this is completely cold to the touch with hot coffee or tea in. Not particularly light at about 330g though.

Dishwasher proof?

Cup no, lid yes. Although, my wife does put hers in the dishwasher, I can see that it’s had some kind of an effect of the internal coating of the cup, but it’s not made any noticeable difference to the way the cup performs.

Microwave Proof?

Nope, it’s stainless steel.

Car Cup Holders

Yeah should fit most cup holders.

Amazon Reviews

3.7/5 from 1606 reviews. I’m surprised by the score, based on my experience of this travel cup I would think it would be much higher. Looking at the reviews, 20% of them are 1 star, while 57% are 5 star reviews. From what I can see, it looks like the majority of the 1 star reviews, and the reason for the lower overall score than I expected, is due to two issues – one is an expectation that the mug is completely leak proof – which it isn’t, and the other appears to be an issue with the thread on the lid breaking, and people not being able to screw the lid on.

Re the leaking think, I think this is a case of people misunderstanding what kind of a travel cup they’re buying. Nearly all of the travel cups that I’m reviewing here, are normal travel cups with standard seals. The seal is just a standard clip on closing seal, or a rubber stopper. These kind of seals are to resist the liquid from spilling when you’re walking down the street with it, or trying to drink from it, they’re not meant to prevent any leaking when held upside down.

The fully leak proof travel mugs that I talk about in my best leak-proof travel mugs post have special flask-like seals, and they’re meant to sling over your shoulder or put in a bike drinks bottle cage, or throw into a bag.

If you want to be able to put a mug into a bag, or on your passenger seat, and for it to not leak at all, you need more than a travel mug with a simple snap on seal, as that is never going to be completely water tight.

Price

RRP is £20, but currently available here on Amazon (prime, so free next day delivery if you have Amazon Prime) for £12.89

 

Pokito Collapsible Travel Cup

Pokito Travel Cup.

As a concept I do think this collapsible travel cup is a great idea. The Pokito cup squishes down to a small puck that you can easily carry around in your pocket or bag to ensure that you always have a coffee cup with you, which is a great thing for the environment in terms of not adding to the takeaway cup issue, and to save money paying the latte levy when (not if) it’s brought in, and to get the discounts some are offering in the meantime with reusable cups. You can also decide on what size to make it, 8 ounce, 12 ounce and 16 ounce, by squishing it or extending it a bit depending on what drink you’re having.

They’re designed and made in the UK, and although there is some grief in the reviews, mainly about leaking (which is something this travel cup isn’t supposed to do much of) but I can see that they have worked really hard to rectify individual issues, and it looks like they’ve been working on improvements as a result of these reviews.

Blurb:

  • FITS PERFECTLY IN YOUR POCKET: The Pokito is a large, reusable coffee cup (475 ml) that collapses to 4.5cm. Ultra portable, it’s compact and won’t clutter your bag, briefcase or glove compartment. Weighing just 100g, it’s perfect for camping and when you need to travel light
  • SAFE FROM SPILLS DURING TRAVEL: The clip-down, spill-proof lid seals in liquid to prevent leaks. The sturdy polypropylene base ensures the mug won’t topple over when used. Take your favorite beverage to work without the fear of caffeinating the contents of your bag. Ideal for use on your bumpy morning commute
  • USER FRIENDLY DESIGN: The non-slip centre band is firm and comfortable to grip but never hot to the touch. The raised lid is designed for sipping without dripping so your clothes remain stain-free. Dishwasher proof for easy cleaning
  • 3 ADJUSTABLE SIZES TO FIT YOUR FAVORITE BARISTA-MADE BREWS: The Pokito expands into three sizes (grande, medio and espresso) so you can enjoy your coffee just the way you like it! And unlike foldable silicone cups, ours is made from taste-free, odorless thermoplastic elastomer so it won’t affect the taste of your brew
  • SAVE MONEY WHILE YOU SAVE THE PLANET: The UK throws away 3 billion disposable cups a year. When you bring your own mug, some big coffee chains reward you with a discount. Better still, make your own coffee to go and you’ll save hundreds of pounds a year! So every time you reuse your Pokito you’re helping to reduce harmful landfill and put money in your pocket!

Heat Retention

Not too bad from the reviews I’ve seen, a bit better than Ecoffeecup and the Keepcup brew for heat retention, maybe 25-30 mins of drinkable coffee for an Americano or other long coffee. I’ve not tried this cup myself yet though so I can’t tell you exactly – I’ll update this post when I have.

Leaking

While the blurb states that it won’t leak, many users disagree with this and agree that actually leaking is one of the main drawbacks of this travel cup. I’m not sure how many of the complaints about leakage are to do with defective products (and it’s clear that Pokito are very keen to replace units when they think they’re faulty) or possibly just some work needing to be done to improve the thread on the lid, as it could just be down to a tendency for cross-threading.

This could also be partially down to a misinterpretation of what is meant by leaking – as many people seem to think that leak resistance when it comes to travel cups means that you can lie it down or hold it upside down while full and it won’t leak, and this isn’t what the term leak or spill resistant usually implies with travel cups. With standard travel cups, leak resistance refers to while you’re holding it upright, walking with it etc., it doesn’t refer to being able to put it in a bag or lie it down and not leak, if that’s what you’re looking for, see my best leak proof travel mugs post which refers to the fully leak proof flask type travel mugs.

If you’re finding this is leaking all over the place while you’re holding it upright, and trying to drink from it, though, as some of the reviews appear to suggest, then I would recommend getting onto Pokito, to see what they suggest – and from what I’ve seen, their customer support is great. They’ve replied individually to every negative comment stating that they’ve emailed them directly to try to resolve the problem.

Comfort

Similar to Keepcup brew and Ecoffeecup when it comes to handling, fairly hot but it’s doable, from what I’ve read in other reviews, and it’s nice and light. Again though, this is just what I’ve read from other reviews, I’ll update this post when I’ve used this travel cup.

Dishwasher proof?

Yeah.

Microwave Proof?

Yeah.

Car Cup Holders

Yeah should fit most cup holders.

Amazon Reviews

4.5/5 from 470 reviews, so pretty impressive – click here to read them, also 25 answered questions, there is a fair amount of negative comments in the reviews, which don’t quite coincide with the high score, and I think this is down to a very active support team wading through the comments and individually contacting each customer to try to rectify the issue. I reckon this has resulted in many initially one star reviews becoming three, four or even five stars when they’ve been looked after, including being sent a replacement or a full refund in some circumstances.

To be fair, they’re a fairly new product so they’re probably just having some teething problems with the first version, at the time of writing they may have completely sorted most of these potential problems.

Recurring themes in the negatives are leaking, trouble collapsing the cup, being tricky to clean and the silicone picking up odour very quickly. There are also some gripes about the seal breaking, rendering the cup useless – but it appears that while many customers just put this down to a poor product, the manufacturer is keen to insist that this isn’t how the product should perform, and they’re putting a lot of effort into contacting unhappy customers and putting things right. As a result, there is a lot of praise among the reviews of the company itself, reassuring potential buyers that they don’t have anything to worry about, as the manufacturer will do all they can to ensure they’re happy if there’s an issue, either with a replacement or a refund.

Price

They’re £15.97 here on Amazon – and you can buy them directly from pokito.net

If it works as well as the blurb suggests, then I think it’s well worth it – if it works the way many of the reviews seem to suggest, then I think it’s 15 quid wasted, so personally, I’d only buy this if you’re prepared to put in the effort to rectify any issues such as leaking, which may involve a replacement being sent. If you just want a nice easy transaction, in terms of ordering a product and getting exactly what you were expecting, this might not be the best choice.

 

Thermos ThermoCafé

Thermocafe by Thermos.

No need to introduce Thermos, very well known brand, and this appears to be a very good travel cup, especially when it comes to heat retention and being leak proof.

Blurb:

  • Double walled stainless steel vacuum insulation. Shock and shatter-proof
  • Grip Zone for a secure grip
  • Flip lid closure straps for easy raising and lowering
  • Free from BPA and toxic materials. No inner coating.
  • Suitable for Car Cup Holders

The insulated cup ThermoPro TC by Thermos is the ideal companion for on the go due to a safe grip zone. It is easy to clean and suitable for all customary drinking cup holders in vehicles. Details: Double-walled stainless steel with vacuum insulation, Impact and break-proof, Flip lid, One-hand operation, Safe grip zone, Easy to clean, Suitable for all customary drinking cup holders in vehicles, Without internal coating Filling. Volume: 400 ml Length: 8.5 cm Width: 8.5 cm Height: 18 cm

Heat Retention

While there are a few Amazon reviews stating that the lid lets too much heat out, meaning that this won’t give as good heat retention as a thermos flask, we have to remember, I think, that this is a travel mug/cup and not a flask, and I think the three hours or so that this should keep your brew hot for, is very good for a travel cup. Dailymail did a test with this travel mug, and the temp was still 90C after 20 minutes, in this test the ThermoCafé came joint first for heat retention along side the Bodum travel mugs.

Comfort

Being a well-insulated travel mug, this is fairly cool to the touch with hot coffee or tea in. It’s fairly heavyweight though at just over 260g.

Dishwasher proof?

Cup no, lid yes.

Microwave Proof?

Nope, it’s stainless steel.

Car Cup Holders

Yeah should fit most cup holders.

Amazon Reviews

4.4/5 from 23 reviews, I’m surprised how few reviews it has actually for such a well known brand, and for what I thought was a fairly well-sold travel mug. It hasn’t got any 1 star reviews, there are two 2 star reviews from people who state that it leaks (one which states that the lid pops off so they have to keep it wraped). I would assume that these two users have faulty users, and if they’d contacted Thermos they would have had a replacement or a refund. This certainly shouldn’t leak as these two reviewers have stated theirs does.

There are two 3 star reviews, two great four star reviews from people who appear to be a bit tight when it comes to reviews, as they’ve both given this travel mug a great text review which would look 5 star reviews to me, but they’ve then given 4 stars without revealing what detracted from the product having a full 5 star review. The other 17 reviews that it has at the time of writing, are all 5 star.

Price

They’re £13.58 here on Amazon, for the black one, and £19.15 for the natural stainless steel silver version.

 

Bodum Joy

Bodum Joy Travel Cup.

Bodum, offer this travel cup which I can’t help but notice looks similar to KeepCup Brew series, although looks can be deceiving – as this is actually made of double-walled plastic.

It’s a 10 ounce travel cup which puts it right in the middle of the Keepcup & Ecoffeecup size options of 8 & 12 ounce, which I think is quite a clever.

This is a much cheaper travel mug than the Keep Cup Brew, which it looks similar to – but as I’ve mentioned, this may look like a glass travel mug as Keep Cup Brew, but it’s actually plastic, which probably accounts for the reason that it’s so much cheaper, as I would imagine it’s cheaper to make a cup from a BPA free plastic than it is to make it from blown glass.

One thing I do notice, though, about the design in comparison to Keepcup, is heat resistant sleeve, which appears to be taller than with KeepCup – some people have had a little moan in the Amazon reviews for keepcup that the sleeve isn’t big enough which can lead to “ouchy” moments.

Blurb:

  • Made from BPA-Free plastic
  • Double wall construction
  • Silicone band for secure grip
  • Dishwasher Safe

Heat Retention

Not bad at all for a plastic cup, due mainly to the double-walled insulation, I’ve seen claims that it will keep your brew at a fairly enjoyable drinking temp for up to about 45 mins to an hour. Unlike some of the others, though, I don’t use this travel cup myself, so I’m not talking from experience.

Leaking

A bit of leakage when full, but nothing too serious.

Comfort

Good insulation so it’s not too hot to handle, and it’s nice and light.

Dishwasher proof?

Yeah.

Microwave Proof?

Yeah.

Car Cup Holders

Should fit the larger cup holders, but you might struggle if you have the smaller cup holder in your car, as I do.

Amazon Reviews

It has surprisingly few reviews for a travel cup that has been sold on Amazon for just over 8 months, only 4 reviews (unless there’s another listing which has more activity and I’m looking at the wrong one?) there are four reviews, one is 5 star and sings the praises of the Bodum Joy, it praises the 10 ounce size based on Keepcup options being either slightly too small or slightly too large, and the Bodum Joy being the perfect size for Goldilocks ;-).

There’s one which is 4 stars, and is very positive about the cup, I think this reviewer dropped a star based on it not being glass as expected, although they do appreciate that they had read it wrong (having said that – it’s they do have some blurb also on the page about Bodum making Glass products, and it does look glass in the image, so I’m not surprised people have assumed this is a glass travel cup).

There’s three star review where it looks like points have been lost because it doesn’t fit in this person’s cup holder, and they’re asking for it to be taller and slimmer. There is one 1 star review stating that the reviewer dropped it onto a wood floor empty, and it cracked almost in half. There’s a 5 star review on John Lewis too, where a reviewer has rated it very well in terms of insulation, looks, and spill resistance.

I’ve also found a really critical review on a website in New Zealand which complains that the opening in the lid is set too far back, making it awkward to drink from, and that the lid requires too much force to properly secure it, and that the cup feels on the cheap side. I’ll have to get one and review it properly myself I think.

Price

They’re a tenner here on Amazon. Also a tenner at John Lewis, and they have them in blue and red as well as black.

Life is like a box of chocolates, so follow me on Twitter, and that’s all I have to say about that.

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6 thoughts on “Best Travel Cups in the UK

  • JayB

    Hi, nice post and some helpful info here, I wasn’t sure which one to go for tbh and you have made my decision more clear thx

  • Jenny

    I have the Bodum metal one also, it is a good cup as you say. Keeps coffee hot for ages, but I’m going to get a keepcup too I think just to have a smaller one for when I’m drinking it straight away and just need a small cup in my bag

  • Alex

    The Frank Green Smart Cup does NOT fit in BMW cup holders – It’s about a millimetre to big. Every other storage place in the car is carefully designed to be a fraction too small too. Grrr.