YETI Hopper Backflip Small Soft-Sided Cooler

Last updated date: September 13, 2021

DWYM Score

8.4

YETI Hopper Backflip Small Soft-Sided Cooler

Why Trust DWYM?

DWYM is your trusted product review source. Along with our in-house experts, our team analyzes thousands of product reviews from the most trusted websites. We then create one easy-to-understand review. Learn more.

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval
Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in the category.
Show Contents

We looked at the top Small Soft-Sided Coolers and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Small Soft-Sided Cooler you should buy.

Update as September 13, 2021:
Checkout The Best Small Soft-Sided Cooler for a detailed review of all the top small soft-sided coolers.

Overall Take

Quality is the best word to describe the YETI Hopper Backflip 24 Soft Sided Cooler/Backpack, which features an FDA-approved food-grade liner that doesn't leak. The outer material also protects against UV rays and has the ability to resist mildew. The ergonomic shoulder straps and the backpack's ability to distribute weight equally protect users from back strain.


In our analysis of 211 expert reviews, the YETI Hopper Backflip Small Soft-Sided Cooler placed 13th when we looked at the top 15 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

YETI Hopper BackFlip 24 The Hopper BackFlip 24 fuses the durability of the Hopper Flip with a new, convenient-to-carry design. It's our first cooler engineered to carry as a backpack, using the best tech of both worlds. Built taller and wider than its Hopper Flip counterparts, Hopper BackFlip is designed to efficiently distribute the weight of your goods, while the ergonomic shoulder straps make the journey more comfortable. Even more, a removable chest strap and waist belt are included for added stability and security. And like the rest of the Hopper family, it promises superior cold-holding, a 100% leakproof zipper, and a tough DryHide Shell. So, go ahead and trek to your favorite faraway fishing destination, because this backpack cooler won’t slow you down.

Expert Reviews

Expert Summarized Score

9.7
26 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.5
927 user reviews

What experts liked

The YETI Hopper BackFlip 24 is a rugged, well-built cooler with lash points on all sides.
- Gear Junkie
January 21, 2019 | Full review
Yeti offers a 3-year warranty on their soft-sided coolers. This is among the longest warranties in the industry for soft cooler and it really shows us that they know that their products will last.
- The Cooler Zone
Its good enough to ensure you have an ample supply of drinks for your trip, no matter where you are going. The zipper is among the toughest in the industry. The zipper is also leakproof and easy to use.
- Best Cooler
May 13, 2019 | Full review
Yeti took their popular soft-sided Hopper series and made it easier to carry with the BackFlip 24.
- Switchback Travel
Having this cooler, you’ll be able to pack 20 cans or 25 lbs of ice and that’s quite an amount for a backpack cooler.
- Coolers World
May 10, 2019 | Full review
The hydrolock zipper is leakproof and the dryhide shell is puncture and mildew resistant.
- Popular Mechanics
June 13, 2018 | Full review
Its Hyrdolock Zipper helps avoid any errant spills, keeping liquids where they belong — inside the cooler.
- Business Insider
The Yeti Hopper Backflip has ergonomic shoulder straps to make carrying it as comfortable as possible.
- Well Traveled Mile
December 12, 2018 | Full review
It holds ice and keeps food and drinks really well and the attention to detail is impressive.
- Globo Turf
Resistant to mildew, punctures and UV rays, it is tough, practical and stays waterproof even when dropped directly into water.
- Outside Pursuits
June 9, 2019 | Full review
Yeti is renowned for their insulating technology and build some of the very best coolers on the market.
- Heavy
The Yeti backpack cooler is only mythical in how popular it is, winning praise from multiple publications for its durability, insulation, and comfort.
- Travel and Leisure
The hardest, most elevated performing waterproof and watertight cooler zipper on the planet.
- A Best Pro
June 4, 2019 | Full review
The thicker surface of the container is waterproof and impermeable to stores, punctures and UV beams.
- Top Portal Review
May 21, 2019 | Full review
The hopper BackFlip 24 Soft Sided Cooler/Backpack from Yeti, Fog Gray is a cooler backpack that has combined the durablity of the Hoper Flip with an altogether new, innovative and extremely easy to carry design.
- Travel Gear Zone
Mildew is a problem, but the BackFlip offers top-class resistant to mildews and UV rays as well.
- Dotbeasts
This Hoper is capacious and nicely insulated.
- Under The Open Sky
YETI is superior when it comes to insulation. The closed-cell rubber foam on the walls provides maximum insulation to keep your ice cooler for a more extended period.
- Best 10 Selling
The Hopper uses a closed cell foam that is denser and more rubbery than most soft coolers. This means longer ice time and colder drinks all day long
- SOutdoors
April 18, 2019 | Full review
This is an outstanding piece of kit, large enough to fit stacks of food and drinks, at the same time being built like a tank with the finest insulation a backpack cooler could offer.
- Independent Wolf
April 8, 2019 | Full review
This cooler backpack is extremely tough and built to take on anywhere.
- Best Coolers Info
The Yeti Backflip is made from tough durable fabric that is waterproof and designed to be resistant to mildew, punctures, and harmful sun rays.
- The Junior Golfer
It’s made with high quality in mind, features just enough straps and attachment points, has a comfortable backpack design, and performed fairly well in our ice tests.
- Men's Journal
They had no problems carrying the beverage through hot temperatures, and the ice can hold for as long as 24 hours before it shows signs of melting.
- Overland Site
April 18, 2019 | Full review
The Backflip 24 actually makes carrying a cooler long distances practical.They actually went to the efforts to make a comfortable backpack. The back is padded making it comfortable for extended forays chasing whatever it is that suits your fancy. The straps are adequately padded and fit my 6′ frame.
- Hunting Fit
May 10, 2018 | Full review

What experts didn't like

There aren’t any zipper pockets on the BackFlip except for the main compartment. So if you want to attach your cell phone and keys to the cooler, you probably need to improvise.
- Gear Junkie
January 21, 2019 | Full review
Expensive and lacks external pockets.
- Switchback Travel
No shoulder strap for short trips
- Business Insider
Their products are wildly overpriced
- Heavy
It is somewhat bulky and may not fit a smaller person.
- Under The Open Sky
Hard to open zippers
- Best 10 Selling
Bulky – like carrying a fridge on your back.
- Independent Wolf
April 8, 2019 | Full review
For the price, Yeti was outperformed by several other similar models, including our top pick among backpack coolers.
- New York Times Wirecutter
It might need a bit more shoulder padding
- Overland Site
April 18, 2019 | Full review

An Overview On Small Soft-Sided Coolers

Soft coolers need to keep cold things cold, they need to be easy to use and durable as well. Some small soft coolers might be able to collapse for storage or traveling and it always helps if they have an aesthetically pleasing design since you might have one sitting next to you as you peer out over some otherwise beautiful views. Soft coolers offer plenty of advantages over hard coolers and if you’re in the market for a cooler to hold your cold drinks and food while you’re on the go, a soft cooler might be exactly what you’re looking for.

A soft cooler is usually made from a durable fabric material with flexible insulation on all the sides that give the entire cooler enough flexibility to fit into weird shapes that aren’t exactly square. This flexibility allows them to be packed in with other gear more easily than similarly-sized hard coolers. This construction style means there are seams at the edges though and those seams can be prone to leaking if the cooler isn’t designed to account for that. A cooler that is soft and still leak-proof needs to have some kind of inner lining that is waterproof. An added benefit of having a liner that’s removable is the ability to take it out and thoroughly wash it after you inevitably spill something inside of it.

Soft coolers range in size quite drastically and they are often categorized by how many standard 12-oz cans they can hold. A small soft cooler can sometimes hold 6 or 9 cans and will have an incorporated handle to grab with one hand while walking out the door. These smaller coolers are great for times when you might want a few drinks while you’re out doing something like bird-watching or sitting on the beach, or they can be used as insulated lunch boxes for the frugal and health-minded meal-prepper.

While the internal liner on soft coolers will keep the ice from soaking into the fabric of the cooler, we might sometimes find ourselves in a situation where the outside of the cooler is getting wet the outer material is absorbing all that unwanted water. If you see yourself using this soft cooler while you’re fishing or kayaking, or even if you know you’ll have it out in the rain or snow every once in a while, you might want to look into waterproof coolers. These waterproof coolers will be coated in some kind of vinyl material that is entirely waterproof and the hardware and zipper will be waterproof as well.

A shoulder strap is one accessory that can be a game-changer if you’re concerned with the weight of a completely full cooler. Once you add ice and fill the cooler with drinks or food, it can become pretty heavy. A padded shoulder strap distributes that weight in a place that allows you to carry it more comfortably and it also frees up your hand so you can have more dexterity while carrying the cooler. A common size for a soft cooler is one that can hold a case of 24 cans, so having the added shoulder strap means that this cooler won’t be such a burden when you are carrying it from your car to your campsite.

A soft cooler has a lot of useful functions on its own merit, but sometimes a cooler can be the only thing you take with you when you go somewhere like the beach. To add more utility to the outside of their soft coolers, some companies add bungee straps to the outside so you can conveniently stuff a wind-breaker or a towel in to take with you to your destination. Some designs even have exterior zippered pockets that you can toss your keys or wallet into and know that they will stay securely in place. These small coolers are a great carry-all for those who think they want that benefit, so it’s good to keep in mind when you’re searching for one.

The last major spec to look for in a soft cooler is how much insulation it offers. A thinner cooler will be a little bit easier to break down for flat storage, but it might only keep your ice solid for half a day or so. Generally, the thicker the insulation on a soft cooler is, the longer it will keep your cold items cold. If you are using one for an activity that lasts for just a portion of one day, you can get away with the thinner coolers on the market. If you’re hoping to go camping for the weekend and want to keep your food and drinks cold for a couple of days, you will really want to lean towards finding a thicker cooler that is rated for keeping things cold that long. These thicker coolers are a bit bulkier than the thinner soft coolers, but they still pack into your trunk with a lot more flexibility than a hard cooler while often keeping ice for just as long.

The Small Soft-Sided Cooler Buying Guide

  • Keep your cooler out of direct sunlight if at all possible. This not only helps the contents of the cooler stay colder for a longer time, but it also helps the fabric or material on the outside of the cooler retain its original color and strength since direct sunlight will slowly erode the finish over time.
  • Put your cans in the cooler before your ice. Heat rises, so placing warm beverages on the bottom of the cooler with ice on top of them is the most efficient way to chill the drinks