Using The Cart

The Cart is available via the Cart facade - or the app('vanilo.cart') service.

The facade (service) actually returns a CartManager object which exposes the cart API to be used by applications. It encapsulates the Cart eloquent model, that also has CartItem children.

The CartManager was introduced in order to take care of:

  • Relation of carts and the session and/or the user
  • Only create carts in the db if it's necessary (ie. don't pollute DB with a cart for every single visitor/hit)
  • Provide a straightforward API

The reason for CartManager being present, and being above the Cart ActiveRecord is to avoid creating millions of empty carts (for every new session, even for bots).

Using the cart manager can be omitted, just use the Vanilo\Cart\Models\Cart instead of the Cart facade.

Checking Whether A Cart Exists

As written above, the cart manager only creates a cart entry (db) if it's needed. Thus you can check whether a cart exists or not.

A non-existing cart means that the current session has no cart model/db record associated.

Cart::exists() returns whether a cart exists for the current session.

Cart::doesNotExist() is the opposite of exists() 🤯


// false


// true

Item Count

Cart::itemCount() returns the number of items in the cart.

It also returns 0 for non-existing carts.

Is Empty Or Not?

To have a cleaner code, there are two methods to check if cart is empty:

  • Cart::isEmpty()
  • Cart::isNotEmpty()

Their result is based on the itemCount() method.

Adding An Item

You can add product to the cart with the Cart::addItem() method.

The item is a Vanilo product by default, which can be extended.

You aren't limited to using Vanilo products, you can add any Eloquent model to the cart as "product" that implements the Buyable interface from the vanilo/contracts package.


$product = Product::findBySku('B01J4919TI'); //Salmon Fish Sushi Pillow -- check out on amazon :D

Cart::addItem($product); //Adds one product to the cart
echo Cart::itemCount();
// 1

// The second parameter is the quantity
Cart::addItem($product, 2);
echo Cart::itemCount();
// 3

Retrieving The Item's Associated Product

The CartItem defines a polymorphic relationship to the Buyable object named product.

So you have a reference to the item's product:

$product = \App\Product::find(203);
$cartItem = Cart::addItem($product);

echo $cartItem->product->id;
// 203
echo get_class($cartItem->product);
// "App\Product"

$course = \App\Course::findBySku('REACT-001');
$cartItem = Cart::addItem($course);

echo $cartItem->product->sku;
// "REACT-001"
echo get_class($cartItem->product);
// "App\Course"

Buyables (products)

The Buyable interface is located in the Vanilo Contracts package.

You can add any Eloquent model to the cart that implements the Buyable interface.

Buyable classes must implement these methods:

function getId(); // the id of the entry
function name(); // the name to display in the cart
function getPrice(); // the price
function morphTypeName(); // the type name to store in the db

Buyable Morph Maps

In order to decouple the database from the application's internal structure, it is possible to not save the Buyable's full class name in the DB. When the cart associates a product (Buyable) with a cart item, it fetches the type name from the Buyable::morphTypeName() method.

The morphTypeName() method, can either return the full class name (Eloquent's default behavior), or some shorter version like:

Full Class Name Short Version (Saved In DB)
Vanilo\Product\Models\Product product
App\Course course

If you're not using the FQCN, then you have to add the mapping during boot time:

use Illuminate\Database\Eloquent\Relations\Relation;

    'product' => 'Vanilo\Product\Models\Product',
    'course'  => 'App\Course',

For more information refer to the Polymorphic Relation section in the Laravel Documentation.

Removing Items

There are two methods for removing specific items:

  1. Cart::removeProduct($product)
  2. Cart::removeItem($cartItem)

removeProduct() example:

$product = Product::find(12345);

Cart::removeProduct($product); // Finds the item based on the product, and removes it

removeItem() example:

//Remove the first item from the cart
$item = Cart::model()->items->first();


Associating With Users

The cart can be assigned to user automatically and/or manually.

The cart's user model is not bound to any specific class (like App\User), but to Laravel's authentication system.

See the auth.providers.users.model config value for more details.

Manual Association

use Vanilo\Cart\Facades\Cart;

// Assign the currently logged in user:

// Assign an arbitrary user:
$user = \App\User::find(1);

// User id can be passed as well:

// Retrieve the cart's assigned user:
$user = Cart::getUser();

// Remove the user association:

Automatic Association

The cart (by default) automatically handles cart+user associations in the following cases:

Event State Action
User login/authentication Cart exists Associate cart with user
User logout & lockout Cart exists Dissociate cart from user
New cart gets created User is logged in Associate cart with user

To prevent this behavior, set the vanilo.cart.auto_assign_user config value to false:

// config/vanilo.php
return [
    'cart' => [
        'auto_assign_user' => false


The item total can be accessed with the total() method or the total property.

The cart total can be accessed with the Cart::total() method:

use Vanilo\Cart\Facades\Cart;
use App\Product;

$productX = Product::create(['name' => 'X', 'price' => 100]);
$productY = Product::create(['name' => 'Y', 'price' => 70]);

$item1 = Cart::addItem($productX, 3);

echo $item1->total();
// 300
echo $item1->total;
// 300

$item2 = Cart::addItem($productY, 2);
echo $item2->total();
// 140

echo Cart::total();
// 440

Clearing The Cart

The Cart::clear() method removes everything from the cart, but it doesn't destroy it, unless the vanilo.cart.auto_destroy config option is true.

So the entry in the cart table will remain, and it will be assigned to the current session later on.

Destroying The Cart

In case you want to get rid of the cart use the Cart::destroy() method.

It clears the cart, removes the record from the carts table, and unsets the association with the current session.

Thus using destroy, you'll have a non-existent cart.