Contigo SnapSeal Travel Mug Review

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DIMENSIONS: 8.00″ h x 3.25″ w x 3.25″ l

Contigo Snapseal Byron Vacuum-Insulated Stainless Steel Travel Mug, 20 Oz, Gunmetal

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In today’s review, we take a look at the pros and cons of the Contigo SnapSeal Travel Mug.  

According to the following video advertisement by Contigo, we can clearly see that man’s best friend is not some hairy four-legged beast, but actually a vacuum-insulated, stainless steel travel mug that you can take with you anywhere which comes in a variety of colors and is available in 16 oz or 20 oz, btw. 


We’ve all been there. Trapped in a workplace with no proper coffee and only the drink machine of doom, dispensing boiled-sock-juice to keep you caffeinated until home time.  

Meanwhile, sitting at home is your new espresso maker. Memories of that morning’s pre-work Americano come flooding back and nearly brings you to tears.  If only there was some type of…oh, let’s say some sort of travel mug / tumbler that would allow you to bring your hot beverage with you.

After all, what is the point of having a great espresso maker and shit hot grinder at home, if you can’t take it with you when you’re out and about?  Right – you need a travel mug!

If you are deprived of decent coffee all day and your only respite is the nearest over priced Starbucks, having a travel mug can not only help you bring the good stuff to work with you, but you can bring it on trips – anywhere you go!  And it will save you big bucks in the long run as well.


contigo snapseal travel mug

Welcome to the world of travel mugs, which have become the must have item of the twenty first century and no longer the sole preserve of teachers or drivers (although these are clearly still a handy item for drivers).

Being able to have a hot, spill proof drink in the car, which fits neatly into the cup holder and stays warm for the duration of even a very long journey is certainly appealing.

But perhaps you have a long commute by train every morning. Don’t risk third degree burns and the ire of your fellow travelers by chancing it with a foam cup.  With a vacuum-sealed travel mug you can safely imbibe the beverage of your choice, then throw it into your bag, without fear of it leaking.


Visually pleasing, this is smart and sleek with an elegant stainless steel design.  Designed to be used single handed, this is not overly cumbersome and won’t prove problematic for those with smaller hands or who are not as dexterous as they once were!

Available in two other colors to  gunmetal (a shade of gray), which are Vivacious (a cherry red color) and greyed Jade (a sort of muted green). This can also come in a smaller size if you prefer (16 oz).  The Snapseal comes with a no leak guarantee as well.

Autoseal VS. Snapseal

contigo autoseal lid

There is something we should get out of the way which we get asked about a lot, and that is the difference between the Contigo Autoseal, and the Contigo Snapseal we are talking about mainly in this review.  

Basically, the Autoseal has been designed to make for a one-handed drinking experience, allowing the lid to close between sips.  It is an ingenious system, and the product has caught on like wildfire on Amazon, with many glowing customer reviews for this great product.

contigo snapseal lid review

The Snapseal, on the other hand, is just about as popular, but the difference is that there’s no auto-sealing going on here.  

The lid on the Snapseal is easy to snap shut, but you will have to snap it closed yourself, and that means if you’re driving the seal will be open until you snap it closed yourself.  This is a minor niggle, but it is a distinct design difference and we thought we should mention it.  We should say though, once you snap it shut, you can turn this thing upside and shake it, nothing gets out.

Contigo Snapseal VS. The Rest


Compared to some travel mugs, the Contigo Snapseal is easier to use for sure.  There is less messing around than some of the more laborious lid designs.

It has been designed for use on the go and with only one hand and compared to some other models, this has fewer parts that are required to move, to make drinking from it more straightforward.

Easy To Clean

The dead simple design also makes it easier to clean than some of its fiddlier counterparts and the lid is safe for dishwasher use (although not the mug itself).

The patented SnapSeal is the hidden gem of this mug, it really is simple to use and reseals with a reassuring ‘click’ each time, so you can be certain that your drink is secure and will not spill out everywhere.

So what, if any, are the hitches with this product?

Any Issues?

Contigo SnapSeal vs autoseal

Although the majority of reviews are quite favorable, not everyone is totally tickled pink by this coffee travel mug.

There have been a few complaints.  Like what?  Well, there have been reports that it is uncomfortable to drink out of or difficult to use. 

Put bluntly, some people have found it hard to get their mouths around – literally. Tales of scalding hot contents burning people’s top lip have been heard and it is apparently difficult to get a really long deep drink out of, according to some customers.

Perhaps these things can be gotten around by simply waiting for the contents to cool a little before pouring in and learning to sip, rather than gulp your drink.  In any case, some of these obstacles to a perfect travel seem rather preventable, rather than labeling them as design flaws.  

What Reviewers Have Said

contigo auto seal travel mug review

“This works great keeping my beer cool in the 90 degree heat of summer. I can be out all day and still sip ice cool beer. Sometimes when you’re out and about it’s handy not to be swigging on an open can – as well as if you get stopped by law enforcement. This is unlikely to arouse suspicion AND keeps your beer cool without spilling any. Win Win.”

“Nice and easy to clean and perfect when operated correctly. This new SnapSeal lock has saved us a ton of spills and mess in our new car. Also, unlike some of the other travel mugs out there, I can operate this one just fine single handed and I don’t have very big or strong hands.”

“Really didn’t like this lid as burning hot liquid kept spilling on to my top lip. When I contacted Contigo customer service, they were helpful and sent me another lid, which does work better, but doesn’t cool the coffee down! I guess I can’t complain too much about a flask that keeps a drink TOO hot.”

“This really keeps liquids super hot for hours. If you have put boiling hot coffee in it four hours beforehand, boiling hot coffee will come out! I have started to allow my coffee pot to stand a while before pouring into the mug because it was just too hot! This is the best steel travel mug I have found so far.”

Final Word

When all is said and done, this is a pretty darn good mug. It looks nice and it is robust as well being dishwasher safe (the lid) and is easy to clean.

contigo spill proof mugShould anything go wrong, Contigo customer service are reportedly very good and honor the lifetime guarantee fairly assiduously.

There are cheaper mugs available, sure, but they might not all be as reliably leak proof or have the practicality that the SnapSeal has. We give it 4.5 out of five and says it is worth it for the money.

22 thoughts on “Contigo SnapSeal Travel Mug Review”

  1. I bought my Contigo cup from Costco in Westbury, Long Island 2 years ago. A little under 2 years ago, just a few months after purchasing the cup, I made herbal tea and placed it in my car counsel cup holder. I then leaned over the cup to get my cell out my pocketbook which was in the passenger seat. As my body leaned on the cup, the lock released and poured scalding hot water on my side and leg. i received second degree burns and carry the scars til this day. I didn’t report it because I considered it, though too easy to happen, a freak accident

    Today, I made a cup of tea in the same cup and asI turned to put in in my lunch pail it sprayed boiling water on my hand, I now have a burn on my hand which looks like it may scar as well.

    This cup is dangerous and may cause serious harm to someone. I plan to pursue this matter immediately.

  2. I have had my contigo mug for several years. I have had absolutely no issues whatsoever with this mug. I work construction and I needed something tough that could take the abuse of the field. This cup has been through it all. I have dropped it from heights, dropped it off of my bulldozer and forgot it on the bumper of my work truck. It was found later in the day by a coworker after I assume being ran over. Sure enough it still had ice and the snap lid remained secure. I love this cup!!! It is my security blanket. My coworkers have sense purchased their own seeing how tough mine was.

  3. just bought my contigo mug for work after my old one gave up on me, I must say it has been the biggest wast of money,
    it will not stay hot, its all show and no go as they say. if you have money to burn and like tepid tea/coffee its the one for you, if not save your time, sanity and hard earned cash.

  4. I got this mug as a birthday present from my sister. I mainly use it to drink tap water out of. Especially on a hot summer’s day it kept the water cool as if i just poured it in. I really love it, though 12oz. is a bit on the small size for me. I will look for a larger mug of this brand in the future.

  5. The taste of plastic is disgusting & still stays after cleaning the mug >20 times. I put coffee in and won’t drink it just to cover the plastic taste of the lid – without any success. I find it so bad that the smell of the lid already makes me wanna throw up. Shame, because I like the design & it stays hot for very long. The taste & smell however is too much to handle. I will throw it away.

    • It’s a shame that you’ll throw the entire mug away over the lid. It seems like others have contacted the company to get replacements, and they were quite responsive. That might be an option for you if you haven’t already tossed it out.

  6. i bought my cup and it leaked before a month and the company wouldn’t reply to my emails. i mean its not worth the cost. It is a useless cup and wastage of money. people should not buy it.

  7. I purchased the Contigo Snap Lid over a year ago. It keeps my hot tea hot for several hours and my cold drinks cold for 24 hours when full of ice. I love my purchase. For weeks I was only rinsing my cup instead of washing it or putting it in the dishwasher. What I noticed a black build up around the inside of the lid and on the inside of the sipping hole that looked like black coal. I used q-tips to clean the majority of it out and then rinsed it well until I didn’t see any more residue. But other than that, it is a great cup and the lid fits tightly. Even with my cup not sitting up right in my bag several times, I never had a spill with the lid snapped. So thank you Contigo!

    • That really sounds like mold from not having washed it thoroughly. That’s really dangerous. If you haven’t yet, make sure you have sanitized the cup and lid.

      A run through the dishwasher can sanitize it.

  8. The Contigo Mug does not leak and my coffee remain hot for hours, but a couples days after using it the mug begins to have a metallic taste (Not pleasing). I thoroughly washed the mug and top when I purchased it and after each usage. I remove the top and begin to drink it…the coffee actually take better. I wonder is it the lid of the mug

    • I’ve had that happen occasionally with spoons. Isn’t that strange? I wonder if it’s reacting to the minerals in your water.

      As an experiment, try washing with different water (bottled?). I’d be curious if that helps.

  9. I loved it at first but after a few months the seal stopped functioning and it leaks every time to get a drink and my friends seal fell out. The cup seems over priced considering the seal only lasts a couple months. It is a shame since I actually is t working right

  10. My snapdeal model 2021608 does not work. Cold water gets normal within minutes. It does not leak but still I can’t use it did not maintain temperature. It is new and hardly used

  11. My snapdeal model 2021608 does not work. Cold water gets normal within minutes. It does not leak but still I can’t use it did not maintain temperature. It is new and hardly used


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