When it comes to road trips, finding a good gas station is gold. We discovered Buc-ee’s in 2018 and it immediately became our favorite gas station! Honestly, though, calling Buc-ee’s a gas station or convenience store is an understatement. It really is so much more.
At Buc-ee’s you’ll find a huge bank of gas pumps, the best bathrooms I’ve ever seen, more food and drink options than you can imagine and great shopping. Seriously, this place has it all!
Buc-ee’s first opened in Texas. In recent years, they have begun expanding into Florida, Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina. Hopefully, this is just the beginning of the expansion!
You’ll know you are near a Buc-ee’s when you start seeing billboards with their beaver mascot announcing clean bathrooms, tasty snacks and fuel pumps ahead. And, you’ll find the beaver mascot on many items around the store.
So, what is it we love about Buc-ee’s? Read on for all the things that make Buc-ee’s so much more than just a gas station, convenience store or truck stop.
You know the saying… everything is bigger in Texas. Buc-ee’s certainly lives up to this, especially with it’s fuel pumps. Seriously, the fuel pumps often just seem to go on forever. Even at it’s busiest, it’s rare that you’ll have to wait for a pump at Buc-ee’s.
Additionally, the pumps are typically spaced apart enough to make navigating them easy, even when towing a camper.
Some locations offer diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) or Ethanol-free fuel. You can even search Buc-ee’s store locator using filters for these options.
You can probably already tell that there’s a lot we love about Buc-ee’s. If I’m being honest, the bathrooms are probably the best thing. It really is difficult to claim just one thing is the best, though!
In 2012, Buc-ee’s was voted the cleanest restrooms in the country. Don’t let the “age” on that award fool you. Every Buc-ee’s we’ve ever been to has had amazing bathrooms. I’m pretty sure that every time I go in, I find someone cleaning. And, it’s not just about the bathrooms being clean.
Instead of flimsy stalls separating the toilets, you’ll find spacious floor-to-ceiling walls with actual doors. Even better – the lock indicates if the toilet is vacant or occupied. In the men’s bathroom, you’ll even find floor-to-ceiling dividers between each of the urinals.
And there are TONS of toilets. Truly, I never had to wait in a line to get a toilet at a Buc-ee’s. At the store in New Braunfels, TX, you’ll find a whopping 83 toilets! Granted, that is the chain’s largest store. But, we’ve been to some fairly small Buc-ee’s and we were still impressed by the size of the bathroom.
Additionally, you’ll find hand sanitizer with every toilet and urinal. Of course, there are also plenty of sinks with soap and paper towels within easy reach.
Finally, the bathrooms are nicely decorated! I mean, really, going to the bathroom at Buc-ee’s is truly a great experience.
Many times when stopping on a road trip, the goal is to get in and out as quickly as possible. At least, that’s usually how it is for us. Get gas, hit the bathroom, grab a snack and get back on the road. We generally aim to be in and out in 5-10 minutes, maximum. Throw that goal out the window at Buc-ee’s.
For one, stopping at Buc-ee’s is just an experience that you want to enjoy. That’s especially true if you don’t get to stop there often. But, the shopping at Buc-ee’s is some of the best out there. Whether you want a souvenir for yourself or a gift for someone else, Buc-ee’s has it all.
You’ll generally find a wide variety of home decor and t-shirts at even the smallest stores. Some of the larger stores sell jewelry, specialty toiletries and soaps and outdoor gear. Some stores even sell deer stands and feeders.
And these are not “gas station” quality items. Everything we’ve seen has been high-quality, just like you would find at a boutique or department store.
If you’re looking to share your love of Buc-ee’s, you’ll find plenty of souvenirs. I picked up a large insulated tumbler on our last trip. Other items include shirts, hats, stickers and more.
While the fuel stations, bathrooms and shopping are all fantastic at Buc-ee’s, the food options are also some of our favorite. You’ll find a wide variety of typical convenience store snacks and drinks. But, it’s the specialty Buc-ee’s food items that really shine. With fresh food available to order or grab-and-go, there are plenty of reasons to stop at Buc-ee’s for a snack or meal.
Seriously, we always do what we can to time our stop at Buc-ee’s to be around lunch or dinner so that we can enjoy some of the fabulous food offerings! If it isn’t mealtime, we grab several snacks to add to the cooler or snack bag.
Here are a few of our favorite Buc-ee’s food items:
Brisket Sandwich – What Texas-based store would be complete without brisket? Grant found the sliced brisket sandwich to be tender with just the right balance of BBQ sauce, pickles and onions. Even Food and Wine magazine did an article on Buc-ee’s brisket sandwich!
Pulled Pork Sandwich – The pulled-pork sandwich was a great option for something easy to eat in the car. I can’t say that it was the best pulled pork I’ve ever had, but I enjoyed it and would certainly get it again.
Cherry Kolache – The bakery at Buc-ee’s has some pretty great pastry options. A kolache is a Czechoslovakian dessert made with a sweet yeast bun, filled with fruit or even meat. It is especially popular in Texas. We opted for the Cherry Kolache, which was a yummy sweet treat after our BBQ sandwiches.
Sausage and Cheese – One of our favorite Buc-ee’s food items is the grab-and-go sausage and cheese cup, which also comes with pretzels. You can also find smoked turkey or dried venison as an option. Pick up a cup for a snack or a tray for a meal.
Yogurt-Covered Pretzels – We find yogurt-covered pretzels to be a great sweet and salty snack or dessert. This has quickly become one of our favorite Buc-ee’s food options to keep in the car for any road trip.
Beef Jerky – If you know Grant, you know how much he loves jerky of all forms! At Buc-ee’s, you can find a wide variety of packaged beef jerky. You can also pick up fresh jerky from the deli, though it does cost more.
Fried Pecans – We always love trying interesting foods, so Grant picked up a bag of Buc-ee’s Cajun Fried Pecans. For Grant, this was a unique snack that had just enough seasoning to provide a hint of spiciness without being overwhelming.
Beaver Nuggets – Perhaps one of Buc-ee’s most unique and most-loved snacks is Beaver Nuggets. The original puffy, crunchy corn nuggets are topped with a brown sugar caramel coating. You can find other flavors or get them in a snack mix.
Wine – Again proving that you can buy just about anything at Buc-ee’s, we even picked up a bottle of an interesting bourbon barrel-aged Cabernet Sauvignon. While we haven’t opened the bottle yet, we are eager to try it out!
There are plenty of other sandwiches, burritos, snacks and other items that we haven’t tried yet. We look forward to stopping at Buc-ee’s in the future to try more of their tasty food options!
Final Thoughts on Buc-ee’s
Whether you are looking for clean bathrooms, good food or just a place to stretch your legs, Buc-ee’s makes a great stop on any road trip. As you can see, it really is much more than just a gas station or convenience store.
Buc-ee’s is a travel center, but not actually a truck stop. In fact, semi-trucks aren’t allowed in the parking lot. This really is a stop for “normal” drivers to fill the gas tank, empty their bladder, replenish the snack bag and stretch their legs while shopping.
Currently, you’ll find Buc-ee’s mostly in Central and East Texas. We stopped at our first Buc-ee’s on the way to Big Bend National Park. I’m not ashamed to say that we’ve chosen itineraries through Texas just to be able to stop at Buc-ee’s (and Whataburger).
Thankfully, they recently began expanding across the Southeast. We now have one a couple of hours south of Atlanta, on I-75, and a couple of hours west, on I-20. There’s another location being built that’s less than an hour north of us on I-75. To say we are excited is an understatement!
If you haven’t been to a Buc-ee’s yet, we hope you’ll get to one soon. Seriously, we suggest you plan a trip to Texas and add a stop at Buc-ee’s to your itinerary!
What do you use to find a flight?
We use Skyscanner to find deals on flights. Skyscanner has a great interface and compares tons of airlines for the best pricing and routing. That said, it does not always have every airline and some airlines will have better deals on their website. Still, Skyscanner is a great place to start.
Click here to search for a flight.
What do you use to find a hotel?
We typically stay at Hilton properties, so we use the Hilton website. You can find good Hilton Honors discounts or AAA discounts for a hotel there. We make great use of our free night certificates from our Hilton Honors American Express.
Click here to book a Hilton property.
We recently partnered with Stay22 to add interactive maps to each of our destination posts. This will allow you to see a plethora of hotels and vacation rentals all in one responsive map of the area.
What if I need more space than I can get at a hotel?
We use Vrbo for the times when we have rented a cabin for a weekend getaway, like this cabin in Townsend, TN, or needed to rent a house for a large family vacation. We had a great experience with them in terms of refunding deposits when COVID hit and will continue to use them.
Click here to search for a vacation rental.
Who do you use for rental cars?
How about booking a cruise?
What if I want to rent an RV?
We highly recommend Outdoorsy for RV rentals. We rented a camper van for a week to visit Rocky Mountain National Park for the elk rut and Custer State Park for the Buffalo Round-Up and had a blast. The program was easy to use and we really enjoyed the freedom of having a camper van for that trip.
Click here to rent an RV.
What do you use for booking tours?
Do you use anything to get discounts on the road?
We make extensive use of both Good Sam and AAA on the road. Good Sam is normally regarded as a discount card for RVers at campgrounds and Camping World but anyone can use the 5 cents off a gallon at the pump at both Pilot and Flying J.
Click here to get a Good Sam membership.
We have had AAA as long as we have been married and it has more than paid for itself in discounts at hotels, aside from the peace of mind of having roadside assistance. Add in paper maps and the ability to get an international driver’s license and it is more than worth it for any traveler out there.
Click here to get a AAA membership.