We studied six of the best camping fridges in Australia, and in our opinion, Dometic CFX3 stood out as the best camping fridge. Though the Kings camping fridge was the cheapest, we felt the best overall value was provided by the Companion Lithium Rechargable Camping Fridge offered a unique advantage with its battery powered setup.
Best Camping Fridge – In-Depth Reviews
Each model is discussed below in more detail along with some overall buying considerations to help you make an informed purchase.
Kings Camping Fridge
This King’s camping fridge was the cheapest amongst the models we compared here. They have dual-zone compartments.
Because of this, you can set the temperature of each of the fridge’s compartments individually. This unique feature makes this camping fridge versatile, especially at that price.
- Generous Storage
- Dual Zone Control
- Two Year Warranty
- Not Ideal For Constant Use
The voltage output on which this portable fridge can operate is 12-volts, 24-volts, and 240-volts. The durable outer steel casing on this camping fridge has an insulating effect on the items, preventing the refrigerator from heating its surroundings.
Its automatic power shutdown feature protects its components from dramatic fluctuations in the power supply. The slick and compact design of this fridge also allows you to set everything inside this fridge conveniently.
You can use this fridge as a freezer because its operational temperature range is 10° celsius to -18° celsius. If you have any budget constraints, this portable fridge is ideal for you given the entry-level price.
Dometic Camping Fridge
This Domestic portable camping fridge came out on top as the best camping fridge in Australia due to its unique design and features.
You get a dual-zone control feature in this fridge, allowing you to control both compartments on this fridge separately as per your requirement.
- VMS Compressor
- H/D Stainless Steel
- 3 Year Warranty
For example, you can use both zones or compartments as freezers if you have extra items that need to be frozen.
The generous 75L size of this portable freezer makes it an ideal camping companion for a family of three to four members. This fridge can hold your entire food items and medicines for up to a week.
The heavy-duty stainless steel construction of this portable fridge will help this fridge to remain free from any sort of damage and be durable for a long time.
The unique steel castings on this fridge will retain the cool air inside the refrigerator for more time.
This portable fridge requires a voltage input of 12 or 24-volts DC, whereas the AC voltage output is 100 or 240-volts. You can maintain the temperature of this fridge between 10° celsius to -22° celsius.
Companion Camping Fridge Freezer
This Companion camping fridge is the best value-for-money portable fridge as it has a lightweight yet sturdy build. This camping fridge has a storage capacity of 45L.
This camping fridge consumes very little power, equal to about 1 ampere per hour. Due to this reason, your car battery will be able to run this fridge without overloading.
- Dual Speed LG Compressor
- LED Lighting
- 3 Year Warranty
The AC and DC voltage input for this portable fridge is 240-volts and 12/24-volts, respectively. This fridge is solid and durable yet lightweight as it is made from high-quality polypropylene.
Due to this portable fridge’s polypropylene construction, you will also experience less heating and higher insulation.
You will find better visibility with this camping fridge as it has LED interior lighting that will help you see things clearly at night.
Companion Lithium Battery Camping Fridge Freezer
This companion fridge for camping is a rechargeable fridge that operates on batteries. The batteries inside this camping fridge are lithium-ion batteries, and these batteries are capable of running this portable fridge for up to 16 hours on a single charge.
For more power, it is equipped with direct solar connections for extended runtime.
This portable fridge has a decent storing capacity of 75 liters. To extend the operational time of this fridge, you also get solar panel connections.
- Battery Operated
- Dual Speed Secop Compressor
- USB Ports
The dual-speed Secop compressors inside this fridge are ergonomic and can maintain a decent temperature range.
One of the unique features of this camping fridge is that, unlike regular camping fridges, this one has dual USB ports so that you can charge necessary appliances while camping. This fridge also has a DC voltage input of either 12-volts or 24-volts, depending on the size output.
It is also equipped with a dual bottle opener, dual Anderson plug outlets/inlets, and dual USB outlets, which are four outlets in total.
Engel Camping Fridge
This Engel camping fridge has a very strong and durable outer covering. The outer casing of this fridge protects it from any potential scratches or bumps.
Due to this feature, this fridge is the perfect camping partner as it will sustain minimal damage even in harsh conditions.
- Dual Fridge/Freezer Design
- Great Insulation
- Canvas Outer Casing
- Storage Pocket
- Single Compartment
The 45 litre size or storage capacity of this camping fridge is good enough to sustain two or three people for a week or a long weekend.
This fridge has a high-insulating design because of the Canvas outer casing on this fridge. You can use this portable camping fridge as a freezer as well as a refrigerator.
You get efficient temperature control on this fridge to adjust the temperature that suits your needs.
The higher your portable fridge’s insulation, the lower the amount of heat it will release in your surroundings. The higher insulation will also reduce the compressor’s running time, save gas or electricity, and conserve its charge.
With this charging conversation, you will be able to use the fridge for a longer time.
EvaKool TravelMate Fridge Freezer
This Evakool travel mate fridge is an ideal camping portable fridge because it is very easy to clean. You can easily wash off or remove the stains and marks from this fridge’s walls and lid.
You can go camping with this fridge because it’s lightweight yet sturdy. Carrying this fridge along with your other camping gear will not be a difficult task.
- Rigid Construction
- Secop Compressor
- USB Output
- Three Year Warranty
- Lose Space To Divider
This camping fridge also has a fully insulated interior along with the walls and the lid. Due to this feature, the food items kept inside this fridge will retain their cooling effect for a longer time.
This fridge is suitable for camping due to its tough build, and this fridge will not sustain any dent or scratches.
The interior of this fridge will not absorb the scent of your food or change its taste. The powerful Secop compressors inside this fridge maintain a steady cooling effect inside this fridge.
This portable fridge also has a low power consumption. The bright LED lights inside this fridge will help you see inside the refrigerator clearly during the night or inside dark places.
Special dual-zone cooling technology allows you to control the temperature of each zone separately. Due to this feature, you can use one compartment as the freezer, and the other as a standard fridge.
Bushman Camping Fridge
This Bushman camping fridge has three unique cooling zones; you can use all these three cooling zones for different purposes. The top zone has a temperature of 6° celsius, which is useful for storing fruits and veggies.
This fridge’s middle area has a temperature of 2° celsius suitable for storing meat and dairy. The lower zone is ideal for storing frozen items as it has a temperature of -2° celsius.
- Adjustable Size
- Three Cooling Zones
- Secop Compressor
- 5 Year Warranty
This camping fridge also has an adjustable size so that you can change the size of the refrigerator according to your requirements. Initially, this fridge has a capacity of 35 liters that can expand to a capacity of 52liters.
It also has top, side, and bottom ventilation for less power consumption. The operational temperature range for this camping fridge is from 10° celsius to -22° celsius. The tabular condenser on this fridge releases more heat for efficiently cooling the food items.
Camping Fridge Buyers Guide
Size Of The Fridge
Once you decide that you want the best camping fridge, you need to figure out the ideal size of the refrigerator you require.
Camping fridges are available in a wide variety of size options for you to choose from. The size of your camping fridge will majorly depend on your camping requirements.
You must purchase the right-sized camping fridge as a large camping fridge may be challenging to travel with, and it will also have a higher power draw.
Whereas if you purchase a smaller fridge, you may not carry and refrigerate all the necessary items with you.
The size of a portable camping fridge is measured in liters. To give you some perspective about these sizes, we have mentioned some popular sizes below.
25L Fridge: This camping fridge is a small portable cooler. You can fit your lunch or times in this fridge. You should consider buying this size of camping fridge if you are just out for a few hours of camping.
35L Fridge: This camping fridge size is ideal for two people who are out for a weekend.
You can pack their meals and essentials such as medicines in this fridge. You will find this fridge ideal for solo trips, but this camping fridge is not large enough for a family.
40L Fridge: This size of camping fridge is the most popular as they are the standard for camping. You can use these camping fridges for a long weekend or a week for about two or three people.
50L Fridge: This fridge size is perfect for a family if they have an extended weekend camping plan.
Two-way Or Three-way Portable Fridges
You can purchase a two-way or a three-way Portable fridge for camping. The main difference between these two types of portable camping fridges is that a two-way fridge runs on electricity.
In contrast, the three-way camping fridge can run on electricity or gas.
A two-way portable fridge operates on a similar compressor that you have inside your refrigerators at home.
This portable camping fridge works on a 12-volt battery; many people prefer to use these types of fridges as they are designed to operate without drawing excess power from your car’s electrical system.
These fridges have an efficient performing design, and you can increase their power capacity up to 240 volts at a campsite or your home.
A three-way camping fridge can operate on LPG gas and a 12 to 240- volts electrical output. Unlike the two-way portable fridges, you will not need to recharge the battery of your fridge repetitively.
A three-way camping fridge uses heat gas exchangers instead of a compressor. Fridge compressors are better than heat exchangers in terms of the cooling effect.
You should also make sure that you keep the camping fridge level to let it work efficiently.
Camping Fridges With And Without Freezer
You should also consider whether you would require a freezing compartment in your fridge along with the standard cooling compartment.
A portable fridge that also has a freezer would be more significant and would also be more expensive.
If you camp with your family or in groups, you might need the freezer to store the perishables or if your camping trip’s duration is long.
Portable camping fridges with a freezer will draw out more power from your vehicle, so you should also consider this factor before buying them.
Ideally, you should pick a portable fridge for camping with a low current draw or draw power. A 12-volt current draw is the standard power output of a camping fridge.
You should not choose camping fridges with a higher current draw as the amount of current drawn is inversely proportional to the fridge’s battery life.
A power outage of one ampere is pretty low, whereas a power outage of five amperes is relatively high for a camping fridge. Try not to park your vehicle with the portable fridge in direct sunlight.
You may escalate the risk of rapidly increasing the vehicle’s temperature as the fridge also emits hot air into the atmosphere.
Buying a portable camping bridge with additional accessories is essential so that you can conveniently enjoy your camping trips.
A portable camping fridge that runs in a car needs a sturdy frame or base so that it does not tip or fall while you take sharp turns while driving.
If your fridge does not have a strong base, you can purchase additional mounting hardware that will keep your fridge upright at all times.
While buying the perfect mounting kit for your portable camping fridge, you have to consider the size and dimensions of your car, along with the dimensions of your fridge. Buying a refrigerator with thick insulating walls is also ideal.
The thick insulating walls of the fridge would prevent it from heating. Similarly, your fridge’s outer material or casing also plays a vital role in maintaining its temperature.
Metal camping fridges get heated more quickly than plastic fridges, for instance.
The perfect camping portable fridge should also be highly portable so that you can easily travel with that fridge from one place to another.
Traveling and carrying heavy and bulky fridges might be very difficult, and due to this reason, some people prefer to take cooling containers while camping.
A refrigerator is better for the long run if you will stay at your camp for some time.
Camping Fridge FAQs
Do camping fridges have freezers?
Some camping fridges only have the ability to refrigerate, while others also have the ability to freeze. In single-compartment devices, this means you need to choose which one you want (fridge or freezer), or if your fridge has two compartments (dual zone), you can set the two compartments differently and have one as a fridge and one as a freezer.
Why are camping fridges so expensive?
Camping fridges are complicated units needing specialised electrical and gas components. These are not cheap and require a significant investment.
Can you get battery power fridges?
The majority of camping fridges require some form of power input, whether it be a 12v/24v or 240 power source. However, some newer models (Companion Lithium Camping Fridge), have fridges built into the unit.
Do you need a camping fridge or icebox?
Camping Fridge Tips
Keep Your Camping Fridge In The Shade
Where possible minimise the exposure of your camping fridge to sunlight to maximise its performance. Regardless of the insulation and refrigeration mechanism, your fridge’s performance will be enhanced by protection from direct sunlight. This will make it much more efficient and use less battery power.
Be Energy Conscious
Once you start utilising 12v camping gear you need to be energy conscious. This means always paying attention to how much energy you are getting (through sunlight/solar) and how many devices and gadgets you have hooked up. Most battery boxes and portable power stations have easy-to-read 12v indicators so it is easy to see how much voltage is left at any time.
Open As Little As Possible
Every time you open your fridge, cool air escapes, which will require energy to replenish. This is a further drain on your battery and energy reserves.