There’s no arguing how vital the trucking industry is to the shipping and supply chain worlds, especially in these recent demanding and hectic times. And, when the rubber hits the road, drivers are dealing with greater demands, which can cause greater stress. So, what’s more, important than a place along the way that can provide a chance to unwind, relax and rejuvenate? America’s truck stops have constantly adapted to provide drivers with all the needed necessities. Truckers vote on the best truck stops in America, in both the independent and chain categories, each year. Trucker Path tabulated those votes. The top 20 are determined by using ratings, reviews, feedback, and votes by the more than 1 million users of the app. From there, the top five are chosen and then put to the vote on the app to determine the best home away from home in the United States.
Top Places Where Truckers Want to Refuel
There are more than 2,000 travel plazas and truck stops in America, according to the Northeast Association of State Transportation Officials (NASTO), the only national trade association representing the travel plaza and truck stop industry. But when you consider the NATSO definition of a “truck stop” as a location with at least one shower, 15 parking spaces, and diesel available for sale, the total number of truck stops in the United States and Canada tops 40,000. So, without further ado, let’s look at the best independent and chain stops by the blacktop.
Independent Truck Stops
First place — Bert's Travel Plaza, Wellsville, Kansas
For a truck stop that only opened in May 2020, this family-owned facility has already shifted into high gear. This Kansas stop outside Kansas City has wide-open areas to walk around, a large driver’s lounge, and private showers to relieve the physical and mental strains of truck driving. If you are in a hurry, there is grab-and-go food and two areas to check out. If you are not in a rush to get back on Interstate 35, there are three restaurants offering Mexican food, chicken, and pizza. Other key features include a large concrete parking area, a two-bay truck wash, laundry machines, and clean restrooms. “Exactly what I needed,” says one reviewer. Another said: “Great place. Laundry is the best, less expensive than the others. They have a nice lounge and great showers. Will return.”
Second — Big Apple Travel Center, Joplin, Missouri
How many truck stops can you get tandoori fish, chicken biryani, or a veggie samosa? This truck stop off Interstate 44 in Western Missouri has an Indian restaurant among its many outstanding features. There are showers, a CAT scale, and even a dog park at this stop, which landed in the top five for the second year in a row. Not bad for a facility that just opened in 2020. Earlier this year, they showed the Super Bowl in their spacious lounge. One traveler called it “an amazing travel center to pit stop at while traveling cross country.” Another reviewer said: “It has plenty of parking. Clean store and bathrooms. Reasonable prices.”
Third — Boise Stage Stop, Boise, Idaho
This stop off I-84, southeast of Boise, Idaho, calls itself “one of the oldest ongoing businesses in Idaho.” Long before 18-wheelers passed, it was a stage stop that distributed mail. But today, drivers can rest their weary bones in the theater room after cleaning off in shower rooms, complete with separate tubs and showers. Food choices include Mexican dishes for breakfast and dinner, Italian pasta offerings, and homemade pizza. Here are some rave reviews: “Food is top-notch for the price.” “The portions are huge, and the workers are friendly!” “This is a great place to stop! Everything you need is all here. friendly staff and people, sit-down restaurant. A million stars from me.”
Fourth — Russell's Endee Truck and Travel Center, Glenrio, New Mexico
Just off Interstate 40 near the New Mexico-Texas border, Russell’s is also on historical Route 66. For truckers, there is a tire shop, showers, and a CAT scale. There’s a Route 66-inspired cafe with all the down-home fixings, such as classic chicken fry and an all-you-can-eat catfish platter. In need of a quiet space, there is a chapel for silent meditation and Sunday services. To top it all off, this truck stop has a free car and collectible museum that is deemed “one heck of a museum” by one of its visitors. But the plaudits aren’t limited to the museum; one reviewer called it “a welcome break from the usual” truck centers and added this: “Great landscaping, well-appointed facilities, large convenience store, clean restrooms.”
Fifth — Truck World Truck Stop, Hubbard, Ohio
Serving customers since 1971, this truck stop off Interstate 80 near the Ohio-Pennsylvania border has more than 500 free parking spots. It has showers, four game rooms, a state-certified scale, and laundry facilities. The Globe Restaurant, which recently expanded its hours — it’s now open seven days a week from 5:30 a.m. to midnight — has daily specials like homemade lasagna and slow-smoked St. Louis ribs and burgers, seafood, and pasta. One reviewer pointed out that it has “a shop that sells actual trucking stuff.” Another called the truck stop “way superior” to other truck stops and “nice and clean.”
Truck Stop Chains
First place — Pilot Travel Center No. 1, Mill Hall, Pennsylvania
This stop off Interstate 80 in central Pennsylvania has five showers and eight fuel lanes. It also has a Subway and a Cinnabon. It has 70 parking spaces and Prime Parking for trucks for an additional charge. Other amenities include laundry, a CAT scale, a game room, and showers. One reviewer lauded the “easy in and out, clean restrooms, and a good selection of snack foods.” Another said: “Very clean and convenient location. They offer many items to eat and buy.”
Second — Love's Travel Stop No. 812, Bliss, Idaho
It’s in a place called Bliss, so it should please truckers. Services at this stop on Interstate 84 between Boise and Pocatello include showers, CAT scales, tire services, laundry, and 115 parking spots. There is also a Subway and McDonald’s. “This Love's was a lucky find” and “a perfect stop for truckers, with lots of parking space and a shop for maintenance,” said a reviewer.
Third — Rocky Mountain Truck Centers of Little America, Green River, Wyoming
Off Interstate 80 in southwest Wyoming. Rocky Mountain Truck Centers offers truck service repair with 24/7 emergency roadside service, a full-service engine shop, new commercial truck tires, and commercial truck refrigeration technicians on duty. The travel center’s grill and deli, serving customers for 60 years, offers burgers, sandwiches, veggie options, and its iconic 75-cent ice cream cone. Little America also runs an adjacent hotel with 128 rooms. One traveler called it a “one-stop shop for everything you need.”
Fourth — TravelCenters of America Oakley No. 91, Oakley, Kansas
This stop, off Interstate 70 in northwest Kansas, offers various services, including urgent care and walk-in clinic. There is also a driver lounge, CAT scales, truck maintenance facility, laundry room, game room, and pet area. Restaurants include IHOP, Sonic, and Subway. One reviewer gave it the ultimate trucker compliment: “This truck stop seems to have all the stuff a trucker needs.”
Fifth — Love's Travel Stop No. 814, Hamilton, Alabama
This northern Alabama truck stop just off Interstate 22 has private showers, a CAT scale, a laundry, and other amenities. One traveler praised it highly: “Clean, clean and clean: showers, bathrooms, and store. … The staff is SUPER nice. … I mean, everyone could stop here for a rest. You know you could use one, and this is the best place for miles on either side.”
Truck Stops That Shine Brighter Than the Rest
What sets these best truck stops in America apart from all the others? It’s clear that quality service and cleanliness are extremely important. Amenities, some of them one of a kind to certain truck stops, also speak to the high praise from truckers. As a common courtesy, some truckers flash their trailer lights as a “thank you” during certain situations on the road. Considering how well these 10 truck stops have been rated for taking care of those moving America’s freight, flashing the trailer lights while leaving would be a fitting way to say goodbye.