A well-made thermal coffee mug is a commuter's best friend, while a poorly designed one can wreak havoc on his daily routine. If you're an on-the-go coffee drinker, an insulated coffee mug is a worthwhile investment. Here are a few pointers to help you narrow down the dozens of choices:
Plastic or Stainless?
Stainless insulated coffee mugs cost more than their plastic counterparts, but offer superior heat retention, resistance to stains and odors, and reliable durability. If you opt for fashion over function and opt for a plastic thermal coffee mug, be sure it has a stainless steel liner.
Single or Double Wall Insulation?
If your morning commute is 30 minutes or less, you may be able to forego the added expense of double wall insulation. For those who like to sip for an hour or more, double wall insulation is the best option-these types of coffee mugs not only retain heat better than single-walled varieties, they're also more effective at keeping cold beverages chilled, so this feature may warrant the additional price.
What size do you need?
There's nothing worse than purchasing the perfect thermal coffee mug and later discovering that it doesn't fit in your car's cup holder. Most vehicles will accommodate a travel mug measuring 2 ½" in diameter or less. Be sure to measure your cup holder before purchasing.
What features do you value?
If you absolutely despise leaks, a lid with a shut-off valve may offer the perfect solution. If hassle-free sipping is high on your priority list, a simply designed lid with sipping hole may be a good fit. Look for a thermal mug that delivers the qualities you value.
It's a great idea to read owner reviews before choosing a thermal mug. While reusable mugs are an environmentally friendly alternative to paper and Styrofoam, a poorly designed mug can easily wind up in a landfill after the first leak or lukewarm sip. Here's to finding your perfect travel companion!