Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores, with headquarters in Oklahoma City, was founded in 1964 when Tom and Judy Love leased a closed filling station. From the first store in Watonga, Okla., Love’s has grown into a family-owned and -operated business with 365 locations in 40 states. The company also operates 175 truck tire-care centers. Love’s growth rate has been approximately 20 stores per year, and it opened about 30 in 2014, its 50th anniversary year.
The chain also is remodeling stores inside and out, with interiors designed with cherry walnut accents. Remodels also include a new frozen-carbonated-beverage and frozen-yogurt station with some special bells and whistles. Love’s also continues to expand its made-to-order burrito program at select stores.
Most sites have Love’s-branded foodservice, and many have accompanying quick-service restaurants, including Subway, Dairy Queen and McDonald’s. Most are situated on east-west interstate highways.
Of the current Love’s locations, the majority are Travel Stops and 60 are Country Stores. Although the offers sometimes overlap, the Country Stores are more typical convenience stores; a Travel Stop caters to truckers and travelers by providing overnight parking, pay phones, driver rest areas, Pegasus Trans-Flo and trucking supplies and many include tire centers.
Love’s newest travel stops offer free Internet, dine-in restaurant and a game room. The chain also opened a compressed-natural-gas fueling station in February 2011 at its Travel Stop on Highway 3 in downtown Kingfisher, Okla., in partnership with Chesapeake Energy Corp. Ten stations have opened in Oklahoma in partnership with Chesapeake. In May 2014 it announced it would open two fast-fill CNG sites at travel stops in New Mexico and Arizona, via an agreement with Seaboard Foods. The agreement will allow Love’s to further expand its fast-fill CNG offerings throughout the United States.
|No. of Stores:||365|
|Average Store Size:||2,500-4,000 sq. ft.|
|Rank Last Year:||27|
|States of Operation:||Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming|