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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

It is 8a.m. on a Saturday morning and you wake up to the sun shining outside of your window. The feeling of having a productive day is lingering in your head. As you are opening up your laptop and deciding on what to do first, your bed starts calling to you to take a nap. Before you give in, you decide that it is time to leave your apartment and find a coffee shop to enhance your study abilities. You pack your backpack and get into your car, but there’s a problem. You can’t decide where to go.

Well, here’s the article for your dilemma. As a medical student, I experience the above scenario very often. Therefore, courtesy of Yelp, I have been to many different coffee shops. Today, using my criteria for what I look for when studying at a coffee shop, I will rank and tell you all my favorite coffee shops to spend all day at to study. 

Ria’s Criteria:

Bathrooms 

I hope this is a universal experience. Whenever I drink coffee, I have to use the restroom more often than usual. So, I always go back to the ones that have accessible and clean bathrooms.

Hours of Operation:

Once I get into the zone, I can continue to study until closing. Therefore, I tend to gravitate to coffee shops that close later in the day rather than those close during the late afternoon. 

How good is their coffee:

To me, buying an iced lavender latte is the biggest treat I can give myself. Additionally, if I am paying almost 7 dollars for a latte, it better be good and enjoyable. 

How loud the music is:

I never leave my apartment without my noise-canceling headphones, however, there are a few coffee shops I have been to where I can still hear the music even with them on. Sometimes the dull roar of it is weirdly calming and sometimes if it is too loud, the music is distracting. 

Seating Availability:

I already have really bad posture and sometimes some of the chairs in a coffee shop exacerbate my bad posture. So, I like to find chairs where I can somewhat maintain a good posture when studying. Additionally, I like to move around every few hours at a coffee shop and it is nice to find other empty seats. Outlet availability is also a must! 

Parking Situation:

As someone who did not have to learn how to parallel park to earn her license, I am very bad at street parking. Therefore, I appreciate parking lots and street parking spots where I know there is enough room to park my car in. Additionally, living in Kansas City means it is hard to find free parking. 


KC Coffee Shops:

Vested Coffee

Bathrooms: 3.5/5 

Hours of Operation: 2/5  

Coffee: 3.5/5 

Music: 5/5

Seating Availability: 4/5

Parking Situation: 2/5 

Favorite Drink to Order: Iced Pumpkin Butter Latte 

General Comments: For me, Vested Coffee is most convenient as it is located in the lobby of my apartment complex. Therefore, when I do not have the motivation or time to drive to another shop, I will go study at Vested. The Vested Coffee I normally go visit is very small, meaning it is sometimes challenging to find a seat, however, this also means there’s less traffic, which can be distracting. Overall, I enjoy sipping on Vested coffee, but I do wish they had more variety to their seasonal drinks. My major reason why I do not go to Vested to study often is due to the fact that it is usually only open till 2 p.m. and closed on Sundays. I am not a morning person, so I usually will not leave my apartment until around 11 a.m. So, if I am able to go visit, I can only study at Vested for a limited time. 

Filling Station 

Bathrooms: 5/5

Hours of Operation: 3.5/5 

Coffee: 5/5 

Music: 3.5/5 

Seating Availability: 4/5 

Parking Situation: 5/5 

Favorite Drink to Order: Iced Lavender Latte with Oat Milk 

General Comments: The Filling Station was my personal go-to last year because it is only five minutes away from my apartment and they have a public parking lot for customers. The Filling Station serves Messenger’s coffee which  I love. The space is smaller than the Messenger’s downtown location, however, it is pretty easy to find a seat and outlets nearby. On weekends, there may be some difficulty finding a seat, but the space is not that big to be distracted by others. After it quiets down, I can hear the shop music through my headphones, yet it isn’t distracting. The hours of operation are broader than Vested as the Filling Station stays open till 6 p.m., however, I wish they could stay open for longer. 

Messenger’s

Bathrooms: 3.5/5 

Hours of Operation: 3.5/5 

Coffee: 5/5 

Music: 3.5/5

Seating Availability: 3/5 

Parking Situation: 2/5 

Favorite Drink to Order: Iced Latte 

General Comments: Personally, Messenger’s is more of a spot to meet up with someone rather than a study spot. The Messenger’s in Crossroads is three floors tall and there is seating on all levels. However, every time I visit, the coffee shop is very busy. It is very difficult to find a seat, especially one that is close to an outlet. Additionally, there is no specific parking allotted to Messenger’s and you have to street park. Since it is more in the downtown area, it is always hard for me to find a spot. The closest street parking section has a time limit of about two hours. So, if I wanted to spend a whole day there, then I would have to move my car a few times throughout the day. The coffee is great and they also have a great variety of baked goods. The hours of operation are the same as the Filling Station, and so my wish of them staying open for longer can also apply to Messenger’s. 

Rochester’s

Bathrooms: 5/5 

Hours of Operation: 5/5 

Coffee: 5/5 

Music: 3.5/5 

Seating Availability: 4.5/5 

Parking Situation: 3.5/5 

Favorite Drink to Order: Iced Ube Latte 

General Comments: Rochester’s has been where I have been spending most of my time this year. My friends and I joke about taking graduation pictures on their iconic green couch because we spend so much time here. The main reason I enjoy studying at Rochester’s is because of their long hours of operation. During the weekdays, they are open till 9 p.m. and till 10 p.m. on Saturdays. Since Rochester’s is also an event space, they have plenty of spaces to sit down and study. If I spend the entire day at Rochester’s, I will keep moving to different tables every so often. Their coffee selection is very diverse and they have yet to miss their seasonal drinks. My current favorite is the french toast latte.

Thou Mayest

Bathrooms: 4/5 

Hours of Operation: 5/5  

Coffee: 5/5 

Music: 4/5

Seating Availability: 3/5 

Parking Situation: 2/5 

Favorite Drink to Order: Iced Lavender Pollen Latte 

General Comments: Thou Mayest has become a recent favorite. Located in the heart of the River Market district in KC, its interior is very comfy and has really good coffee. Thou Mayest wins in terms of the hours of operation category because it is usually open 11 p.m. However, the downside of studying here is there is a very limited amount of parking. Most of the street parking spots and lots are metered, so you would have to pay for parking. The best time to study here, if you don’t want to pay for parking, includes the weekends, when parking is free. Seating is limited, but you can always grab a chair at the bar until a table opens up. 

Final Ranking:

  1. Rochester’s 
  2. Filling Station
  3. Thou Mayest
  4. Vested
  5. Messenger’s 

According to my scores, the final verdict is…Rochester’s. Regardless of the ranking, please know that I still visit the others frequently as a change of scenery. Additionally, keep in mind that there are many more coffee shops to explore in Kansas City and that I am still taking my time to visit all of them.  I won’t be taking a break from studying any time soon, so I will continue to explore and document my thoughts on future coffee shops to visit. 

Ria Dave

UMKC '26

Hi! I am Ria! I am a year 3 (MS-1) Biology major in the 6-Year B.A/M.D program here at UMKC! I enjoy exploring different coffee shops in KC and watching k-dramas! My hobbies include collecting vinyls and online window shopping!
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