A road tripper’s guide to motorway service station stereotypes.
The stressed parent
Worn out from constant cries of ‘are we there yet?’ and mediating arguments over who’s turn it is to play Candy Crush on their phone, you’ll spot this service station veteran fuelling up with a much-needed cappuccino before the next leg of their journey.
The dog sitter
While everyone else has strolled inside for snacks, drinks and trips to the loo, the dog sitter has selflessly agreed to remain in the car park to make sure Fido doesn’t consume his weight in half-eaten burgers.
For this fun-loving character, the service station is an oasis of unimaginable pleasure. You’ll see them dashing gleefully between the shops, unable to fathom how such a vibrant retail outlet could exist in the middle of the M4.
The coffee snob
Coffee snobs fall into two categories: the prepared, and the desperate. Prepared coffee snobs sip smugly from their pre-made flasks of single origin espresso, enjoying a high-quality caffeine hit on their own terms.
Desperate ones must resign themselves to whatever the service station café happens to be serving up.
The drill sergeant
This ain’t no holiday camp, private. If you’re with the drill sergeant, you can be sure that your visit to the service station is as thoroughly planned and ruthlessly executed as a military operation.
Toilet breaks will be timed, slow queues will be dodged, and the whole family will be pulling out of the car park before you can say ‘Yes, sarge!’
The bookworm can be found nose-deep in the latest bestseller, oblivious to the fact that they’re hogging valuable table space in the service station café. This precedes a leisurely half hour in the newsagent’s, where they’ll skim read half the magazine rack before leaving without saying a word.