Nalgene Review: Best budget water bottle for travel in 2024?

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Nalgene Review: Best budget water bottle for travel in 2024?
In need of a new long-lasting, sustainable, durable water bottle for your next adventure? Then Nalgene could be the brand for you. Explore this article to learn whether this famous water bottle brand meets your travel and lifestyle needs.
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Every traveler, hiker, and runner needs a great water bottle to keep their hydration in check. But it can be difficult and time-consuming to find a high-performance water bottle that's good for the environment. You may have read our other blogs on sustainable gear, such as Norrøna and prAna, and want to continue your sustainable journey with the right water bottle. In that case, it might be worth looking into Nalgene.

This in-depth review looks at Nalgene products, the brand, and their impact. So explore this article to find out if Nalgene water bottles are worth the hype.

nalgene logo
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

Who are Nalgene?

Nalgene is an outdoor company that has science and sustainability in the foreground of its production. They make durable water bottles that are BPA-free, along with handy bottle accessories.

Nalgene dates back to the 1940s. The idea of their water bottles started with a chemist named Emanuel Goldberg, who developed the first plastic pipette jars. Through a little more science and some fantastic technology, Nalgene was born. It has since then grown into a popular brand among travelers with its iconic wide-mouth water bottle that's designed for the great outdoors.

As a company, Nalgene is committed to doing its part for the environment. They're on a mission to reduce waste and offer simple, safe, and sustainable products. Nalgene also makes accessories that accompany your new water bottles, such as sleeves, caps, and stickers.

nalgene water bottle
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

What is Nalgene Bottle

The famous Nalgene water bottle has been used by many people all over the world. But what makes it so special?

Nalgene bottles come in many different styles and sizes for every adventure, the most popular of which is the Nalgene 32oz wide-mouth water bottle. You can choose from a wide range of sizes, from a kids' 12oz bottle all the way up to a 48oz hiking bottle. Not only do they vary in size, but they also come in different shapes, from flasks to storage bottles to steal bottles to ultra lite sports bottles.

They set themselves apart from the rest by making most of their bottles in the U.S. They are also dishwasher safe, BPA-free, and customizable. You can personalize your Nalgene bottle by choosing the color of the bottle and cap lid. You can also add any graphics, texts, or photos to make your bottle unique and easier to find when traveling in a group.

nalgene bottles
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

Where to buy Nalgene

If you're like me and love to try something before you buy, you're in luck. Nalgene bottles are available in huge stores like Target and Walmart, or even Amazon, making it easy to pick up a bottle at your convenience. You can also order online through Nalgene's website. Because they're widely used all over the world, you won't have a hard time getting one at your destination.

But, if you want to get creative and personalize your bottle, you can visit Nalgene's website and get started on your masterpiece. Carry a piece of home with you when you travel and have a graphic or photo printed on your bottle.

nalgene custom bottle design
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

How to clean Nalgene Bottles

Having a clean water bottle is not only good for you, but it's also good for the people around you. Whether you're traveling with friends or hanging out with strangers, no one wants a stinky water bottle.

Nalgene plastic bottles are dishwasher safe, making it easy and quick to get a squeaky clean bottle. However, if you're on a camping trip or don't have access to a dishwasher, Nalgene has created a handy blog to help you clean your bottle step by step.  

What are people saying about Nalgene?

Nalgene has got loads of positive reviews from its customers. The reviews state how great the quality of the water bottles is and how long they last. Some even said they had their bottle for 20 years!

Reviewers say you can knock them around as much as you like, they're very durable and stand the test of time.

There are many reviews that suggest Nalgene water bottles are great value for money! Almost all reviews talk about Nalgene bottles lasting for ages, even when used every day. With their lower price and very high quality, no wonder people are raving about them.

The only a few negative reviews online. They talk about how the lock top and normal lids can develop a funky smell over time. Some mentioned mold growing on their lock-top water bottle. 

However, reviewers suggest that if you clean it thoroughly by hand or in the dishwasher and leave it to dry, this smell clears. So, if you don't mind washing your bottle, then you have a bargain that can last many years of travel.

Nalgene best-sellers

Are you excited to buy your first Nalgene bottle? Well, hold your horses. Let's check out their best sellers to make sure you get the perfect bottle for your next trip!

32oz Wide Mouth Sustain Water Bottle

The 32oz Wide Mouth Sustain Water Bottle is a clever water bottle powered by new recycling technology. This technology transforms plastic designed for landfill into BPA-free water bottles. The material of this bottle is made from 50% waste plastic. 

This wide-mouth water bottle comes in a huge range of colors, is guaranteed to be leak-proof, and fits in ice cubes and water filtration devices. 

Not only is this water bottle good for the planet, but it's also great for your next adventure into the unknown.

nalgene 32oz wide mouth water bottle
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

Nalgene Water Fund Exclusive Bottle

Giving back and getting a new water bottle at the same time? It's a no-brainer! The Nalgene Water Fund Exclusive Bottle is a fantastic initiative set up to support American communities that struggle for clean water. They partner with grassroots nonprofits to create awareness and raise funds. Nalgene donates $5 from every purchase of this bottle.

The Nalgene Water Fund Exclusive Bottle has all the great features of Nalgene that you know and love, including being sturdy, BPA-free, and leak-proof.

This limited edition bottle has a great lock top lid that can be switched out for the wide mouth cap for an extra cost.

nalgenes water bottles made in usa
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

38oz Wide Mouth Steel Backpacker

The 38oz Wide Mouth Steel Backpacker is made from surgical grade 316 (18/10) non-insulated stainless steel that is designed to hold boiling water. Ideal for camping and adventures, it is made with Nalgene durable technology. 

With their leak-proof guarantee on this bottle, you can be sure to pop it in your backpack, ready for your hiking trip.

This bottle can use a range of filtration devices to keep your water fresh and clean. Want to use it for cold drinks? This bottle also can fit ice cubes in for those hot summer days.

One thing to note about this product it is made in China, not like the other American-made bottles on their website.

nalgene 38oz wide mouth steelbackpacker
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

Custom Nalgene

Now that you've decided which bottle suits your travel needs, why not customize it? Nalgene offers to customize many of its best-selling bottles. There is no limit to how many you can customize, making it a thoughtful gift for Christmas, a hen party, family gatherings, or just for yourself.

If you like to personalize your travel gears, you can start by selecting your bottle, cap type, and color. From there, it's time to get creative with text, graphics, and photos. There is no limit to your creativity!

custom nalgene water bottles
Image Courtesy of Nalgene

Is Nalgene worth it?

Simply put, yes, Nalgene is worth it. With great low prices and high-quality materials, they're perfect for staying hydrated on your adventures or just sipping a cold drink for when you're back in the office.

Not only can you give back to local communities, but you can also select a bottle that uses science to tackle the world's plastic problem. That's thirsty work!

If you can look past some of the smelly reviews mentioning the funky scent in the cap, then you're sure onto a winner. So grab yourself a bottle and the intention to wash it, and keep hydrated.

Our Rating: 4.1/5 


  • Helps reduce plastic waste
  • High-quality materials
  • Long-lasting
  • BPA-free
  • Most products made in the U.S.


  • Reports of funky smells
  • Some products are made in China
  • Not all bottles are made out of recycled plastic

Ready for your next adventure?

Now that you've decided on the perfect water bottle for your travels, you need a new adventure to use it on! That's where Pilot comes in. 

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Collaborate stress-free with your travel companions and have all the features you need all in one place with Pilot. It’s completely free and ready for you to try it out now!

Disclosure: Pilot is supported by our community. We may earn a small commission fee with affiliate links on our website. All reviews and recommendations are independent and do not reflect the official view of Pilot.

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Grace Reveley
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