James Stanbury

See other accessory reviews written by James Stanbury

The best travel mug you can buy for your caravan holidays in the UK is the Bodum Travel Mug – read Practical Caravan's expert review and verdict to see why

Overview

Caravan holidays are meant to be economical, aren't they? So where's the sense in spending £20-£50 at the motorway service station on a round of teas, coffees and snacks for all the family, before you even get to your destination? 

One solution which is growing in popularity is to use those handy cup-holders in the tow car to prop up your insulated travel mugs. They come in various colours and styles, so each person can have their own special travel mug, filled with their favourite brew for the journey. Just add your favourite supermarket-bought (or home-made) snacks and the drive to the campsite is sure to be a happy one all round. 

We regularly test camping gear in Practical Caravan magazine and this time we gathered a good selection of useful looking travel mugs together on the Practical Caravan Test Bench. In the running for the top spot were the Aladdin Papillon, at £12, the amazing Bodum Travel Press, costing, £24, but featuring a built-in cafetiere-style filter, the Outwell Vacuum Bamboo Mug at £6.99 and the Brugo at £15.

At first glance they all look pretty good, so you'd be forgiven for choosing on grounds of price and colour alone. To get the best deal, though, we decided to compare them to see how long the drinks stayed hot in each travel mug. We put them through a taste test, to see whether the inner lining was likely to get tainted by every drink it held. Would you have to keep one mug for tea, and another for coffee, and try not to muddle the two up? What if you suddenly want to use it for a cold drink? We found that stainless steel-lined travel cups and those with better plastics or aluminium inside were the best at staying fresh and untainted by the contents. 

Washing up the travel mugs is a task made easy or difficult by the design of the spouts and lids. We checked to see if they came apart for cleaning, and went back together easily.

How easy were the travel mugs to drink out of, we wondered. Does the spout deliver a trickle of tea or a decent amount? Then again, once it's all closed up for the journey, how likely is each mug to leak?

In this review we feature the Bodum Travel Mug, costing £20 at the time of our test, which is one of a range of similar camping accessories from Bodum. 

Let’s get the one whinge over with straight away: thanks to that narrow rim at the top, this is not a mug you’d want to drink from unless the top is in place. Just as well, then, that the lid is easy to open and close, and allows a decent volume of fluid through. Talking of volume, this travel mug holds 0.35ml of liquid.

The simple plug-and-hole design keeps all parts fully accessible for thorough cleaning, which is another strong point with this mug, because it is dishwasher-safe. 

The Bodum Travel Mug's stainless-steel body is tough, smart and leaves the flavour of your drink untainted. It comes in red, purple, lime green, off-white and black lids and grip sleeves made of non-slip silicone.

Finally, it outperforms all others here on the thermal insulation front. 

Technical specs

Capacity0.35 litres
BodyStainless steel
Lid and hand gripSlip-proof silicone
Height0.185m
Width0.095m
Depth0.082m
ColoursRed, purple, lime green, black, off-white

Verdict

The Bodum Travel Mug, priced at £20, is simply the best travel mug to use to keep any drink hot or cold during your journey. It's robust and attractive, practical and easy to clean. The Practical Caravan team awarded it five stars and crowned it the best travel mug on test.

Conclusion

Pros

  • Best thermal insulation of all travel mugs tested
  • Easy to clean
  • Tough stainless-steel body
  • Dishwasher-friendly
  • Attractive colours

Cons

  • Cannot microwave
  • Drink from the spout because the cup lip is thin
Share with friends

Follow us on

Most recent caravan reviews

The Practical Caravan Swift Elegance 530 review – 1 - Its 1661kg MTPLM means the 2017 Swift Elegance 530 isn't light, but it's also heavy on luxury which ups its appeal (© Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Elddis Crusader Zephyr review – 1 - The exterior colour is called 'Champagne', but it is really a heathery brown, differentiating it from the blue of its Compass Camino 660 sister van (© Peter Baber/Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Lunar Lexon 590 review – 1 - Flush-fitting windows, the sunroof, alloy wheels and the cantilever-action gas locker door all add a touch of class to the 590 (© Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Sprite Quattro DD review – 1 - This twin-axle from the 2017 range of Sprite caravans has an MTPLM of 1624kg (© Andy Jenkinson/Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Bailey Pursuit 560-5 review – 1 - The single front window may look budget-style to some, but we like the uncluttered view it provides from inside the van (© Practical Caravan)
The Practical Caravan Compass Capiro 550 review – 1 - The new-for-2017 Compass Capiro 550 has a 1467kg MTPLM (© Practical Caravan)