Travel gear: The SnapBasket is a collapsible cooler with a sturdy side


CleverMade's SnapBasket flattens to fit into a carry-on and is surprisingly sturdy when popped open.

Provided by CleverMade

CleverMade’s SnapBasket flattens to fit into a carry-on and is surprisingly sturdy when popped open.

Think of the really helpful innovations we travelers take for granted these days, but which are relatively recent inventions: wheeled luggage (1968), Ziploc bags (1970).

I have a special soft spot for collapsible fabric food coolers (circa 1980-ish). What a relief to be free of those cumbersome hard plastic and crumble-prone Styrofoam coolers that hogged just as much space empty as full. Their soft-sided descendants made for easy transport by land, sea or air.

Alas, all has not been cool with these travel-friendly pop-ups. Think of zero support for crushable fruits, veggies or sandwiches. And, oh, how they have leaked.

An appreciative shout out, therefore, to the engineers at CleverMade, who fixed those flaws in creating the new SnapBasket Collapsible Cooler.

Thanks to a rigid baseboard and an integrated spring-loaded snap-hinge system hidden within the nylon cooler’s multiple layers of foam insulation, the SnapBasket rises from nearly flat to a sturdy four-walled wonder, with just a strategic tug on the steel-reinforced rim. A well-placed side-poke and push releases the snap-hinges, allowing the cooler to collapse to less than 3 inches thick.



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