I've never claimed to be a trendsetter. So, naturally, part of me is mystified by the hype surrounding the Stanley Quencher tumbler. The 40-ounce "it cup" is the latest in a long line of trendy tumblers and water bottles that have included Hydro Flask, Yeti and S'well. (What’s next? Maybe Owala. Watch your back, Stanley.)
Don’t get me wrong: Stanley makes a good tumbler. It holds a ton, it fits in your car’s cup holder, and yes, it keeps your drink cold for hours — days if you add ice. But it’s also $45, and it's far from the only big insulated cup out there. Practically every drinkware brand offers a Stanley copycat for less.
One such lookalike I can vouch for: The Hydrapeak Voyager, which goes for $25 on Amazon. That's a cool $20 less than the name brand. (Psst: I snagged my Hydrapeak for even less, $15, at my local T.J. Maxx. I could have bought three for the price of one Stanley, which makes my thrifty heart very happy.)
After a couple of weeks with the Hydrapeak, I’m no closer to understanding why grownups have nearly trampled one another for Stanleys. This thing doesn’t just look like a Stanley, it performs like one: My water stays ice-cold all day, the nonskid base gives the cup an extra measure of sturdiness, and the straw is a lot more enticing than an uncomfortable water bottle spout. It’s become my desktop companion as I make good on a New Year’s resolution to drink more H2O than Diet Coke. (I know, I know. Don’t judge.)
Is it perfect? No. First, it’s not dishwasher-safe like the Stanley. This might be a deal-breaker for some, but not me: It’s easy enough to clean, especially because I’m only using it for water. Second, it takes some force to get the lid off because of the strong suction. Now, the last thing my laptop needs is a bath, so I’m OK with the very secure lid, but it’s worth noting if you have limited hand strength or you don’t want to ruin your expensive manicure.
Hydrapeak has plenty of thrifty fans on Amazon, too. Some are even Stanley converts.
"I own a Stanley similar to this and have found this cup to be the best dupe of it," one reviewer said. "I tried it out and four days in, my water was still cold. My husband has the same cup and says his beverages stay hot all day without using a straw capper to keep the heat/cold in. ... The cup overall is lightweight which was a huge draw for me as others were more on the heavy end."
"It is pretty comparable to my Stanley cup," agreed another buyer. "The handle is different, as it doesn’t connect in the bottom, but that doesn’t bother me. I do like that the lid just lifts off and doesn’t need to be twisted. I also like that the straw has a spot in the middle of the lid, not on the side."
"Great cup that really does the job of keeping my water cold and it fits into my truck’s cup holder," said one road warrior. "This thing is amazing and I didn’t have to pay an arm and a leg for it. Only thing I would like to have seen is the cup to come with an extra straw just in case this one breaks. I have dropped my cup a couple of times and there were no dents, no scratches and the straw didn’t snap. So, it is a pretty sturdy item."
And there you have it: Staying hydrated just got less expensive. Now excuse me while I go get another one to keep my Diet Coke cold too.
The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.