We visited convenience-store rivals Wawa and Sheetz to see which does it better — and the winner is clear

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  • Wawa and Sheetz are both convenience store chains with a cult following. 
  • We visited both to see which was better.
  • After the face-off, Wawa reigned supreme for offering food that’s worth a trip in itself.

The Capulets versus the Montagues.

Harvard versus Yale.

Britney versus Christina.

Among history’s fabled rivalries, perhaps none is more fiercely contested than Wawa versus Sheetz.

In Pennsylvania and the surrounding states where these premium gas stations dominate highway pit stops, everyone has an opinion as to which is the convenience chain of choice.

To definitively settle this schism, we took it upon ourselves to journey to the heartland of the two rivals — the borderlands of Pennsylvania and New Jersey — and see which chain reigns supreme.

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Our quest begins in the parking lot of a Wawa in south Phillipsburg, New Jersey, off Route 22. The gas pumps are plentiful and bustling with activity, but we’re more interested in what’s inside.

Wawa, with more than 720 locations in six states on the East Coast, is renowned for its high-quality yet inexpensive food. Walking inside, we find the vibe to be clean and professional yet unassuming. Muted yellows and browns are the key colors, leading to a relaxed but often bland visual landscape.

It takes a few minutes to even comprehend the array of food options available at Wawa. The well-stocked prepackaged section is ambitious and diverse in scope. Even packaged food appears fresh — not as though it has been abandoned on the shelf for untold lengths.

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