The best collapsible water bottle for camping

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A collapsible water bottle can save you endless amounts of space and extra weight on your next camping trip. Not only do collapsible water bottles make it easier to carry large amounts of water on the trail, but they give you one less thing to have to squeeze into your bag. Some collapsible water bottles are good for hot liquids as well, or are even freezable.

One such option is the Platypus Platy 2-Liter. Of all reviewed water bottles, this one converted into the smallest shape when emptied and was the most convenient to use. Its antibacterial and freezable qualities set it apart from its competitors.

What to know before you buy a collapsible water bottle for camping

What are collapsible water bottles made out of?

Collapsible water bottles are usually made out of silicone so they can easily bend and fold. The quality of the material also makes it lightweight, durable and easy to clean. It also prevents it from cracking or breaking as it repeatedly expands and collapses. Before buying, make sure the silicone is food grade and BPA-free. There are also bottles made out of polyethylene lining, such as the Platypus Platy.

How heavy are collapsible water bottles?

Because they fold up so small, most collapsible water bottles are incredibly lightweight, which makes them perfect for hiking and camping. Even the heaviest ones will be more convenient than regular reusable water bottles. Silicone ones will be heavier than polyethylene-lined ones. Additional features, such as carabiners and leak-proof caps, will minimally increase the weight.

Can collapsible water bottles stand on their own?

When full, most collapsible water bottles will stand up on their own. However, the issue comes about more as the bottle is emptied. Collapsible water bottles made of high-quality silicone will usually stand up on their own. While the material is one factor, stability usually comes down to the shape. Bottles that are wider and thicker at the bottom will stand up better than ones with a small base.

Are collapsible water bottles safe for hot drinks?

Some, but not all, collapsible water bottles are safe for hot drinks. It mainly depends on the quality of the material and the type of cap it has. If you plan to use your collapsible water bottle for both water and coffee, make sure the bottle has a quality leak-proof cap and is insulated enough to keep your hands safe.

Collapsible water bottle for camping features

Are collapsible water bottles leak-proof?

Before putting any type of water bottle in a bag with important items, always make sure it isn’t leaking. A leaky water bottle can ruin your camping trip by wasting your water supply and destroying your stuff. That’s why it’s important to choose a vessel that fully closes and features a leak-proof cap.

Easy or difficult to clean?

There are more hygienic considerations to make with a collapsible water bottle than a regular reusable one because most have ridges bacteria can build up in. Luckily, they usually are made out of food-grade or antibacterial material, so cleaning them doesn’t take long. Many collapsible water bottles can be easily cleaned in the dishwasher. The ones that can’t can usually be left overnight to soak in soap, hot water and lemon.

How small can collapsible water bottles get?

It depends on the collapsible water bottle, but most can fit in a small bag or purse. Some, like the Platypus, can even roll up to fit inside of your pocket. Consider the size of your camping bag or backpack when choosing a collapsible water bottle. If you’re still concerned about having enough space, you can pick one with a carabiner to attach to the outside of your pack.

Collapsible water bottle for camping cost

Collapsible water bottles are pretty inexpensive, especially for the amount of use you can get out of them. Most cost about $13, but ones made of higher-quality materials can run you up to $25.

Collapsible water bottle for camping FAQ

Do collapsible water bottles keep their shape well? 

A. Some collapsible water bottles keep their shape better than others. Ones made out of thinner, lower-quality materials will flop over when not full, but denser ones will stay the same shape when empty.

Are collapsible water bottles dishwasher-safe?

A. This is another factor that varies between products. Silicone water bottles can usually be cleaned in the dishwasher. Always check the label before putting your new bottle through a cycle. If you’re unsure, it’s best to hand-wash or soak it overnight.

Which collapsible water bottle for camping should I get?

Best of the best collapsible water bottle 

Platypus Platy 2-Liter: available at Amazon

Our take: Versatile, lightweight and perfect for carrying large amounts of water in a small space. Can be frozen for ice water or even to use as an ice pack.

What we like: Folds up small enough to fit in your pocket when empty, carries up to 2 liters, freezable and antibacterial.

What we dislike: Doesn’t work well for hot beverages, can be easily punctured.

Best bang for your buck collapsible water bottle 

Neefko Collapsible Water Bottle: available at Amazon

Our take: An affordable, quality option for lightweight water lugging.

What we like: Durable, easy to grip, wide mouth for ice and leakproof.

What we dislike: Some customers found it was too thin and floppy to drink out of without spilling everywhere. Others say it doesn’t keep its shape well.

Hydaway Collapsible Water Bottle: available at Amazon

Our take: This water bottle has a unique disk design, which makes it the easiest and most fun to use on this list. The high-quality material it’s made out of makes it durable and long-lasting.

What we like: Dishwasher safe, fold-out straw, good for hot or cold liquids and comes with a carabiner.

What we dislike: Leaves water tasting slightly rubbery and is known to leak in bags. It may be best to attach this water bottle outside of your backpack.

Anabelle Weissinger is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.



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