We started hearing about Buc-ees a few years ago when we were on our way to Canaveral National Seashore in 2022. There were Buc-ees signs along the interstate for miles on either side of the new Buc-ees. We did not stop – we didn’t need gas – but I did look up what it was.
Buc-ees is a gas station on steroids. It is not a truck stop. No semitrucks allowed. RVs and cars are welcome. There are a hundred gas pumps and so much parking space it looks like a mall. Inside the “convenience store” is a whole different dimension. There are clothes, souvenirs, groceries, and fast food items, all with the unique Buc-ees stamp.
Buc-ees started in Texas in 1982 and has slowly spread into other states. The saying “everything is bigger in Texas” really applies to Buc-ees, but it isn’t just the size. Everything is over the top. They boast the world’s longest car wash and the world’s largest convenience store. They also advertise the world’s cleanest restrooms and the restrooms are notable. Huge and spotlessly clean.
Tom and I stopped at a Buc-ees for the first time near Richmond, Virginia. This Buc-ees looks new and has its own exit off I-75. The sheer size is a little overwhelming. After getting gas at one of the many pumps, we wandered through the store. There were so many choices. I’ve never been in a gas station convenience store before that had grocery carts.
There are a ton of employees all whooping it up and having a great time. You don’t just get a brisket sandwich. You pick one out from a huge pile of sandwiches. There is a bakery and other specialty areas. Tom and I got a brisket sandwich to share and some cold pop. We managed to avoid getting one of the omnipresent Buc-ees shirts that so many people favor.
Although the brisket was good, it wasn’t the best we have ever had and I wasn’t keen on the whole “Buc-ees experience” vibe. Everything is made just for them and you pay a price for that. The gas is less expensive because they make their money inside the store.
That being said, a few weeks later we found ourselves at the Crossville, Tennessee Buc-ees. Again, we needed gas and it was the least expensive around. We also needed some supper and the store had plenty of choices. We got some veggies, fruit, and cookies and it cost us close to $20. Although everything was fresh and good, it wasn’t anything special.
I’m not sure I will ever be a Buc-ees convert. It is a little too over-the-top for me. But it is a fun place to stop for a bit when you are on the road. I read recently there is one being built in Huber Heights, near Dayton, Ohio. So the Buc-ees experience will soon be coming to us in Ohio.