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Buyer's Guide to Customized Drinkware

Drinkware is one of the most well-liked categories of promotional products because the items are so useful and people can find a need for them on a daily basis. Items like reusable water bottles and travel mugs have become increasingly popular as Americans work to reduce the waste of disposable plastic bottles and coffee cups. Buying drinkware with your logo is not only great for branding, but great for showing you care about the environment as well.

With so many options available, the toughest part of shopping for customize drinkware is narrowing them down. As with any promotional product, keeping your target audience and the intended use of the product in mind will help you through this process.

Types of Drinkware

The first step is to establish your budget. Drinkware prices spread over a large span because of all of the different options. One thing to keep in mind when you're working out your budget is the cost of shipping. Heavier items like water bottles and mugs are going to cost more to ship than lightweight items like can coolers and coasters. Once you have a budget in mind, you can start focusing on choosing a category of drinkware.

Water Bottles: These items are good for an on-the-go crowd. Options vary mostly by material (metal or plastic) and top. Sport tops are ideal for athletes and gym-goers. They can be held, opened and closed single-handedly, making them less clumsy when working out. Some water bottles are topped by lids and straws, also good for one-handed use, but less reliable at being leak-proof. These types of water bottles are best for more stationary use. Lastly, screw-tops are great for travel because they are the least likely to leak in a bag or backpack.

Glasses: There are a variety of shapes and sizes when it comes to glassware. These items are ideal for restaurants and bars. Serve your customers drinks with your company name and logo on the glass, offer them for sale or use them as gifts for your high-spenders. Printing your company information on water, wine, beer, champagne and shot glasses improves branding within and beyond your restaurant. These items also make great favors for parties and weddings as well as giveaways for any industry.

Mugs: Traditional mugs are most often ceramic, acrylic or glass and are also great for restaurant branding as well as various other industries. Travel mugs are ideal for people who are on the go a lot. Choose insulated mugs for your customers who will need to use them for hot liquids like tea, coffee, how chocolate and soup. Traditional mugs make great giveaways and gifts because you can fill them with candy or more promotional items and people have a use for them every day.

Cups: Plastic cups can be useful at outdoor events, for samplings, at trade shows and more. Choose from disposable or reusable plastic cups depending on the event. Disposable cups are great for large quantities. If you're serving a beverage in disposable cups, people will be walking around with them, exposing your brand to even more of the crowd. You can reach a lot more people with less spend this way, but the cups will be thrown away and the impression may not be as lasting. With reusable cups, people can take them home and keep them for a long time, reminding them of your brand with every use. The goal and event will help you determine which of these two options is best to for you.

Jugs: Large beverage coolers and jugs are perfect for going to the beach, tailgating, sporting events, picnics, barbeques, and more. They are insulated to keep liquids cool and can help hydrate a lot of people at once. Depending on the size and brand, these items can be more costly than other drinkware so larger items are ideal for raffle prizes, door prizes, etc. while smaller ones can be used as giveaways.

Accessories: Drinkware accessories include a wide variety of products. These are more specific in nature. The smaller, less expensive items are ideal for giveaways at events like trade shows, fundraisers, weddings and corporate parties. Many of these accessories also make good holiday gifts for your high-end executives and top clients and customers.

  • Can Coolers
  • Coasters
  • Corkscrews
  • Decanters / Carafes
  • Drink Trays
  • Flasks
  • Pourers
  • Shakers
  • Stirrers
  • Wine Chillers
  • Wine Globes
  • Wine stoppers

Materials & Imprint Methods

Though there are many imprint methods available, certain ones work better than others depending on the material of the item.

Metal: Screen Print / Silk Screen, or Digital Print

Plastic: Screen Print / Silk Screen, Digital Print, or Pad Print

Ceramic: Screen Print / Silk Screen, or Digital Print

Glass: Screen Print / Silk Screen, or Laser Etch

Screen Printing / Silk Screening is basically when an image is stenciled onto the surface with ink. Each color has to be pressed on separately, allowing drying time in between; however with Digital Printing, the process is similar to an ink printer combining the four basic colors to create thousands of color options for a full-color print. Pad Printing is similar to using a rubber stamp. All of these methods add the print to the surface of the item, while Laser Etching actually prints into the item (like engraving) using an intense beam of light to create a message or image.

Laser etching on a glass can give it a classier look and feel for a sophisticated message. If your company or organization caters to a more upscale audience, this may be a preferred imprint method; however with laser etching you lose the option for color. If your logo is comprised of various different colors that you want to include, digital printing will be the best way to go because it allows you more freedom with color combinations while remaining cost-effective.


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