GasBuddy reveals 2019’s top-rated and top-visited gas station brands

(February 12, 2020) BOSTON — No longer a last-resort for roller dogs and snacks, today's top gas stations are more likely to offer gourmet coffee or fresh salads. The $654 billion fuel and convenience retailing industry has transformed into a "one stop shop" for fuel, snacks, and yes — even meals.

GasBuddy, the travel and navigation app, has issued its 2019 Top Gas Station Brands in the U.S. report, revealing which gas station convenience store brands offer the best-of-the-best experience based on more than 94 million consumer visits and 8.3 million ratings submitted through the GasBuddy app.

The report also features exclusive interviews with executives at brands that are redefining the meaning of "gas station food."

“Americans are passionate about their favorite gas stations,” says Frank Beard, convenience store and retail trends analyst at GasBuddy. “Across the United States, it’s common to have debates about which brands have the best coffee or cleanest restrooms. At GasBuddy, we decided to see who generated the best results throughout 2019. It’s telling that all of the brands which made our list have invested heavily in fresh food, friendly customer service, and state-of-the-art facilities.”

Highlights Include:

Buc-ee’s is America’s Top-Rated Gas Station Brand

Texas-based Buc-ee’s claimed the title of America’s Top-Rated Gas Station Brand, based on performance in the “overall” ratings category. In second place is Tennessee-based Twice Daily, followed in third by Wisconsin-based Kwik Trip. Rounding out the top five are Oklahoma-based QuikTrip and Iowa-based Hy-Vee.

Costco is the Busiest

Washington-based Costco captured the most foot traffic per station of any brand in 2019 — more than four times the industry average with a score of 4.24. It was a close call, however,  as Kentucky-based Thorntons followed with a score of 3.87 and Buc-ee’s with a score of 3.77.

Beyond Fuel

During 2019, more than half of visits (55%) at gas stations and convenience stores lasted longer than five minutes — far more than the average two-to-three minutes it takes to refuel a vehicle. This reflects a continued trend of convenience stores transforming into foodservice destinations for time-starved, on-the-go Americans.

Friday is the Busiest Day

While convenience stores serve customers 24 hours a day, seven days each week, foot traffic increases at the end of the week. Friday was the busiest day of 2019 with 16.36% of all visits. Friday at 5 pm was the single busiest hour of the year, followed by Friday at both 4 pm and 12 noon.

Clean Stores Drive More Visits

Today’s retailers have invested heavily in quality customer experiences — and it’s paying off. Retailers with above-average cleanliness ratings generated 14.14% more visits than competitors with below-average ratings.