Electric Cool Box – Is It Worth the Extra Expense?
I’ve travelled around the UK and Europe in a van with my husband, driving from Greece to the UK and back several times and we usually end up sleeping in the back of the van. If we do use a hotel or B&B, we still mostly use the van to live out of while we’re on the road for a few days. We carry a one ring stove and supplies to make a cup of tea or coffee and when we set off on a journey we usually pack food and drink for along the way.
When we were planning our last return to Greece we decided to replace our cool box which was a bit the worse for wear having been used by my husband as a bait box on a fishing trip! We usually freeze 6 large bottles of water before setting off on a long journey to act as ice packs along the way, but this is messy due to the condensation and they never quite last the distance. We decided to invest in one of the cool boxes that run off the cigarette lighter plug and started looking round online.
Prices varied tremendously, as did functionality. By doing loads of research and comparing prices and features, we managed to get a great deal on eBay. We bought a brand new 24 litre electric cool box with dual function (hot and cold). Food can be heated to 65 degrees or cooled to 15 degrees centigrade lower than the air temperature. Not only does it run off the car battery, but it can also be plugged into the mains which can be really handy – even if you just use it as a beer chiller when you have friends round.
The cool box was a huge bonus on the journey to Greece, keeping our milk, butter and water warm. We also bought fruit and cheese along the way which we popped in there. We travelled with it in the van of the cab (I’ve become adept at making sandwiches on the move) and it became more and more of a godsend the further south we travelled.
By the time we arrived in North Greece after a long ferry ride from Italy our island home was within our sights – just another half day’s driving to go. We pulled up onto a beach not far from Corinth for a last cup of tea and a first paddle in the sea. By the time we arrived at our destination, the last ferry of the day had gone so we parked the van, grabbed the milk from our trusty new cool box, the tea bags, sugar and coffee and caught a water taxi for the 10 minute ride across to the tiny island where we live. We had fresh milk for a cuppa as soon as we got in.