Opinion: No contest between On the Fly and City Co.

It’s clearly human nature to stir up a debate on every possible topic. We are constantly arguing over one thing or another- Coke vs. Pepsi, Edward vs. Jacob, Upper vs. Newton- and now a new competition can be added to the list… On the Fly vs. City Convenience.

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City Co's fully stocked shelves and Chobani selection. Photo Courtesy of Katie Carsky/Gavel Media

For those of you who haven’t been to both of these fine establishments, it becomes quite obvious upon the first visit that the clear choice is City Convenience. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a regular at On the Fly and it has definitely made my life a lot easier on many occasions. I’m simply saying that if I was living closer to City Convenience and my purchases at On the Fly weren’t prepaid for by my DiningBucks, I would choose City Convenience hands down.

At City Convenience, the name just about says it all. On the Fly, on the other hand, doesn’t really live up to the name. When you walk into a place called “On the Fly”, you would expect quick service. Not so fast though. At On the Fly the lines build up, and you often end up waiting behind quite a few people. It takes the convenience right out of the term “convenience store.”

The hours at On the Fly are also lacking. Because it's open from 10AM to 10PM, you can forget about stopping in for anything you need before your morning class. On the Fly’s hours do not compare to City’s hours of 6:30AM-1:00AM Monday to Friday and 7:00AM-1:00AM Saturday and Sunday. The fact that the employees at City are still waiting for us while the weekday employees of Late Night are packing up to leave is a sign of true commitment.

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City Co. fulfills my Gatorade dreams! Photo Courtesy of Katie Carsky/Gavel Media

City goes above and beyond with its product line. It’s always fulfilling to find everything you need all in one place. From clothes hangers to winter gear and from birthday cards to cleaning products, it’s easy to put faith in City having what you are looking for because it is rare to find something out of stock.

There is also a wide range of drinks and snacks, with just about any Gatorade or Arizona flavor you can dream of. In my personal experience, the customer service at City also exceeds expectations.

For a while around the end of the summer and the beginning of the school year, I had a thing for vanilla Chobani. I was disappointed to find that On the Fly didn’t sell my favorite flavor and there were no plans to ever get it in stock. After a walk to City, I found out that they didn’t have vanilla either. I called and asked City if it was just temporarily out of stock or if they just never sold it. They asked me to give them two days and they have been selling vanilla Chobani ever since.

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Empty shelves at On the Fly. Photo Courtesy of Katie Carsky/Gavel Media

At On the Fly, if it isn’t food, they don’t sell it. If it is food, there’s a chance they sell it, but there’s also a pretty good chance they don’t… or they’re sold out. Oh by the way, don’t walk into On the Fly with the intention of buying Goldfish crackers- you’ll be disappointed. If you’re looking for a specific yogurt or cereal, you better cross your fingers and hope they recently restocked.

There are a few things you can count on On the Fly to have in stock, though. These include a few of the less popular items such as canned tuna, pickles, uncooked rice and tapioca pudding. You also don’t have to worry if you are looking for Diet Coke or any one of about fourteen different flavors of Pringles.

Maybe it’s just me, but walking into City Convenience (with my bag, which, believe it or not, does not have to be left in a cubby outside) is usually a much more pleasant experience than a trip to On the Fly. The small journey off campus is worth it. An actual cereal assortment, fresh fruits and veggies, and a candy selection that doesn’t cost $7.99 for one cup seems worth it to me.

Either way, both of these stores have made my life easier in one way or another on more than one occasion, so definitely make use of them both. Hopefully, they can help you too.

 

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