I had to return this mug because I didn't like that I had to unscrew the lid every time I wanted to have a sip of tea. Also, I like to steep my tea in 8oz of water instead of 12oz, so the basket wasn't deep enough to make contact with the water. I would've had to steep my tea in a separate container. Too much trouble.
Let me just say, there's good and bad with this thermal mug. I gave it 5 stars because it's very attractive, has a non-slip rubber bottom, is easy to hold and keeps tea hot for a long, long, long time. The whole infuser thingy with this mug is a FAIL, it doesn't work at all for me! What I do is, make my tea with the Kati tea ware system and pour it in my travel mug, easy peasy! Personally I've never liked taking wet tea leaves with me on the go, it's too messy and hard to get the correct taste brewed. The flip top compartment is a good place to stash tea bags or sachets to make additional cups of tea and it's WAY less messy. You could also get some of those fillable tea bags for loose tea to mix your own blends of loose tea. The bottom line is, I LOVE this travel mug because the tea tastes perfect even after 5 or more hours.
I bought this for my mom for Christmas. She loves it because it keeps her tea warm for hours. I took off one star because she says she basically has to steep her tea before she leaves home because removing the tea leaves to drink is complicated and there is nowhere to put them. However, I am also planning to buy one for myself because the insulating factor seems to be amazing.
The secret compartment is great for storing tea for the rest of the day. And the tea stays pretty hot. However, in order to fill up your mug there is no line indicating when to stop with the hot water. Therefore, when I insert the tea strainer it could possibly overflow creating a mess. I always want to make sure my tea leaves are submerged so this makes it a little difficult. When I want to change out my tea leaves the process is a little messy to make sure water doesn’t drip all over my desk so I have to get an extra cup on the side to unlock the strainer from the sipping lid and place it so the side to fill up. Also the lid holes are a little big where fine tea goes right through easily. Not sure if I would buy another. Ok for now.