I left North Carolina sadly yesterday morning to begin the drive home. I’ve decided North is NOT my favorite direction and it probably never will be! I’m amazed and horrified at the difference in gas prices. From over $3 a gallon where I live in NY to $2.45 in North Carolina and $2.40 in Georgia/South Carolina. I expect it to be higher on the interstate but these were local prices!
Incidentally if anyone is planning a drive along i95 through Virginia and North Carolina, the cheapest gas in either state is always at the Skippers exit which is the last/first in Virginia depending on whether you’re heading North or South. It’s four miles up from the VA /NC state line and there’s a Loves!
So far this year I’ve driven from NY to NC eight times. I’ve driven to New Jersey and back once. Maryland and back once and Georgia and back once. I’ve also driven to Toronto and back twice, The Adirondacks etc – but for the purposes of this story that doesn’t count!
Loves are one of my favorite places to stop on journeys. They have very reasonable prices on everything and the bathrooms are unfailingly immaculate. I will try as far as possible to make all of my stops at Loves because they’re so consistent. The staff are attentive and polite and it’s always a smooth trip. I love their soda machines too! I am an ice cube connoisseur. I know it’s a bad habit but I’m a shocking ice cube cruncher and they have those little balls of ice. I’ve got to tell you, when I win the lottery I’m having one of those machines!! It’s the little things!
Then there’s Sheetz. As the saying goes, there’s nothing as underestimated as a good Sheetz.. or something like that. Sheetz are way more expensive than Loves so that’s a big ol downside for a start. Some are great and have a big selection of drinks etc but more aren’t in my experience. The bathrooms aren’t attended so well and everything is pricy. They never have enough staff so it’s always a long wait to be served which when you just want to get your journey done and dusted is a big no no. I only stop at these out of desperation now because I’m fed up of the sloppiness.
The stops we have to make are potentially one of the most pleasant or stressful parts of any journey. They can either have you setting off driving again feeling great or pissed off. A snarky driver heading into busy traffic is not a good thing so I can’t overstate how valuable a great service station is. I’d recommend Loves to anyone travelling as I’ve never had a bad experience with one.