Wawa vs. QuickChek: Monmouth Poll says Wawa is big winner — and it’s not close

We’ll admit it, we think QuickChek coffee is the best there is — and miss it every time we leave the state, or even North Jersey.

Apparently, there aren’t many people who share that opinion.

The latest Monmouth University Poll, released Tuesday, asked state residents which convenience store is their favorite — and Wawa won in a landslide.

Half those polled (50%) chose Wawa, which marks its 60th anniversary Tuesday. Stunningly, even 7-Eleven (15%) outpolled QuickChek (14%) and other stores (10%) in the hearts and minds of New Jerseyans.

To be clear, the poll wasn’t just about coffee. And, to be fair, Wawa and 7-Eleven have at least twice as many locations in New Jersey as QuickChek.

But any belief that Wawa ruled the South and QuickChek owned the North just isn’t true.

Yes, Wawa was easily the favorite convenience stop in the southern part of the state, where it has had a foothold since its earliest days, with 8 in 10 South Jersey residents (79%) choosing it as their favorite.

But Wawa also is the top convenience store pick of a majority of Central Jersey (61%) and North Jersey residents. Despite being a relative newcomer in the North, Wawa (31%) edged out 7-Eleven (24%) and QuickChek (19%).

The close results in North Jersey were actually driven by a large split in urban and suburban opinion there. In the northern region’s cities and urban centers, 7-Eleven actually emerged as the top spot for convenience purchases (38%), followed by Wawa (25%) and QuickChek (19%). In suburban North Jersey, though, Wawa (34%) had the edge over QuickChek (20%) and 7-Eleven (15%).

Patrick Murray, the director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute — and someone who worked at Wawa as a college student in Pennsylvania — said the results are telling.

“It wasn’t that long ago when you wouldn’t even have heard of Wawa north of the Raritan River,” he said. “It appears to be taking over the entire state, although 7-Eleven is holding its own in New Jersey’s cities.”

All that being said, we’re still going to QuickChek for coffee.

The Monmouth University Poll was conducted by telephone from Feb. 29-March 4, including 801 New Jersey adults. The question results have a margin of error of +/-4.2 percentage points for the full sample.