Drink Carrier Buying Guide

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With so many foodservice establishments focusing more on delivery and pick up, finding ways to avoid spilling drinks during transport are as important as ever. The last thing customers want is for their long-awaited smoothie or power juice to not arrive in full. In order to prevent this, restaurants use drink carriers to keep drinks balanced and for easy carrying. However, not all drink carriers are equal. For instance, a plastic drink carrier may only be able to contain two drinks, while a paper carrier can hold up to six cups. To find the one that best suits you, we have put together this guide for drink carriers so you can make an informed decision when purchasing holders for your business.

What Are Drink Carriers Called?

Drink carriers are also known as cup holders, beverage carriers, and cup carriers. Cup holders are designed with indentations that securely hold one cup or numerous cups at the same time. They make it easier to hand out beverages to patrons at your restaurant or transport large drink orders to customers' homes.

Drink Carriers

There are many types of beverage carriers made out of different materials. Most are disposable such as plastic carrier bags, paper carrier trays, and kraft carriers. However, reusable drink carrier bags are becoming increasingly popular among delivery drivers. Keep reading below to learn more about each type of cup holder.

Carrier Bags

The latest in drink carrier technology, carrier bags are made from high-quality polyethylene which won’t easily tear or rip. Carrier bags are also built to keep liquids from seeping out of the bag in case there are any accidental spills. Typically designed for one or two drinks, they include handles that make it easy to carry cups of different sizes. Restaurateurs prefer these plastic drink bags because they are recyclable and allow you to create a clean beverage presentation when handing out orders. 

Carrier Bag Benefits

  • Tear-resistant
  • Leak-resistant
  • Recyclable

If you want to know more about these single-use drink bags, check out the video below:


Carrier Trays

The most common type of drink holder is the carrier tray. Drink trays are typically used by fast food restaurants to package take out orders. These trays usually carry a maximum of four drinks and can hold cups of different sizes. Crafted from pulp fiber, these lightweight beverage trays are biodegradable and can be recycled. Despite their light design, beverage trays are tear-resistant and some can hold up to 32 ounces of drinks.

Carrier Tray Benefits

  • Lightweight
  • Tear-resistant
  • Biodegradable

Kraft Carriers

Similar to plastic carrier bags, kraft paper carriers have a handle, but the difference is that kraft carriers have compartments or openings where cups can be placed. Kraft carriers are available in numerous designs and can hold cups differently. They are a favorite among coffee shops because customers don't have to hold hot drinks in their hands while on the go. Kraft paper is known to resist moisture and avoid becoming soggy when exposed to liquid. After use, they can be conveniently recycled to help minimize carbon footprint.

Kraft Carrier Benefits

  • Built-in handle
  • Moisture-resistant
  • Recyclable

Reusable Drink Carrier Bag

Reusable drink carriers are typically crafted from insulating materials and feature a zipper or velcro for sealing in your drinks. These drink bags either come with a built-in handle or strap for easily taking drinks to your patrons' home. If you frequently deliver orders, these bags are more economical than disposable drink carriers because you don't need to constantly restock on single-use cup holders. To keep each cup from spilling, these reusable drink bags come with dividers to separate and keep them upright.

Reusable Drink Carrier Bag Benefits

  • Insulating
  • Easy to carry
  • Reusable

How Do You Prevent Spilling Drinks During Delivery?

As great as many drink carriers are at preventing spills, it is still possible if they are not used correctly. The most important thing to remember while using any drink carrier is to double-check that cups are securely sealed and placed appropriately in their compartment or bag. Sometimes employees might not notice that the beverage isn't sealed in and packaged correctly, which can create messes during transport. Lastly, inform delivery drivers to drive slowly to avoid accidents and let them know to contact you if drinks spill. This way, you can start making a replacement order and inform your customers ahead of time that their drink might be a little late.

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