A Day in the Life of a Truckstop Operator


As industry suppliers, you know that understanding your customers can help you meet their needs. While no two days are ever exactly the same for truckstop and travel plaza operators, Highway Business Matters sat down with Dirk Binnema, owner of Planeview Travel Plaza in Osh Kosh, Wisc., to get a sneak peak into his day. Like many operators, Binnema is overseeing multiple profit centers and is always on the move. Binnema shared the details of a typical day from the week of July 25.

4:00 a.m.: Alarm clock makes an alarming sound. Time to get up!

4:30 a.m.: Leave the house and head over to our hotel that we just opened up two weeks ago.

4:45 a.m.: Setup complimentary breakfast for EAA Airventure guests. This is one of the biggest air shows in the U.S. and it is taking place right across from us.

6:00 a.m.: Go across the street to the travel plaza to help with breakfast; our restaurant is very busy with EAA customers that camp on the EAA grounds plus our regular drivers.

10:30 a.m.: Respond to emails, talk to managers about what needs to get done, their concerns, etc. Check on fuel pricing competition via the web. Check daily reports from store, restaurant and hotel.

1:00 p.m.:Talk to drivers in store; make sure they are not forgotten in all the air show traffic.

3:30 p.m.:Try to catch some of the air show that starts. Since we are across the road we can see it easily from our parking lot.

5:30 p.m.: Traffic picks up again with travelers leaving the air show and professional drivers getting off the road for the day.

7:00 p.m.: Check in at hotel on how many rooms are sold and see if any concerns.

8:00 p.m.: Head home; have dinner with my wonderful family.

{HBMHighway Business Matters is a brief semi-monthly newsletter created exclusively for companies that provide products or services to the truckstop and travel plaza industry. Highway Business Matters will keep you informed on trends, tactics, and tips to help you connect to the $65 billion truckstop and travel plaza industry. 

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Mindy Long's photo

Mindy Long

Before launching a full-time freelance career, Long edited NATSO's Stop Watch magazine. Prior to that Long worked as a staff reporter for Transport Topics, a weekly trade newspaper, covering freight transportation, fuel and environmental issues. In addition to covering the transportation sector, Long has written, reported and edited for a variety of media outlets. She was the Washington correspondent for WCAX-TV (CBS) in Burlington, Vt., a criminal court reporter in Chicago and a freelance copy editor for Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine in Washington D.C. Long hold a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Evanston, Ill., and a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Westminster College in Salt Lake City.More
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Planeview Travel Plaza

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