How to increase fuel efficiency? This question remains on top of every fleet manager’s mind. Fuel cards are payment cards that help truck owners and fleet managers obtain discounts on fuel or diesel purchases from a large network of fuel stations. Fuel cards for truckers have been gaining popularity for quite some time now and are also commonly known as saving cards. Do you know why?
The reason why fuel cards for truckers have become prevalent in the market is that there is a constant hike in fuel prices. Secondly, it’s difficult for any trucking business to survive without proper fuel management plans. In fact, using fuel cards is one of the best fuel management strategies.
When a massive portion of your budget, irrespective of your fleet’s size, is constantly going into fuel purchases, truck owners and fleet managers need to optimally use it to maximize their profit margin. It is recommended to use a fuel card from a reputable company having a vast network of fuel stations.
You can also integrate fuel data into fleet management systems and reap tons of benefits. In this blog post, we will briefly discuss fuel cards, how a fuel card for owner-operators works, and some best fuel cards for truckers to consider in 2023.
What are Fuel Cards for Truckers?
Fuel cards are essential for truck owners to manage their cash flow. They work like credit cards, allowing the purchase of fuel through the card and offering an extended payment period of 60-90 days.
Whether you manage a small fleet or are an owner-operator, a fuel card is a key tool to keep your business running smoothly.
Based on their pricing, fuel cards can be categorized into two types: fixed-price fuel cards and pump-price fuel cards.
With fixed-price fuel cards, the fuel rate for the entire week is set in advance and you are informed of the rate a week ahead. This allows you to refuel at a lower price if you anticipate an increase in fuel prices.
On the other hand, pump-price fuel cards charge you based on the price displayed at the pump. One of the main benefits of using this type of fuel card is that it is widely accepted at major fueling stations.
Fuel cards are the best way to pay for all your fuel purchases at the fuel stations. It serves as the best alternative to cash, debit, or credit cards, allowing you to purchase fuel at current fuel prices.
Besides fuels, some fuel card companies also allow you to purchase additional items such as lubricants, car washes, toll payments, etc. Fuel cards for truckers can be used to monitor and control the fuel consumption in your fleet.
At the same time, they can help you streamline several operations such as fuel purchase tracking in real-time, auditing expenses, automated IFTA reports, setting spending limits, etc.
Regardless of fleet size, fuel cards are beneficial for everyone. Whether you’re a fleet manager managing 1000 vehicles, an owner-operator, or an individual truck driver, you can use fuel cards to increase your bottom line.
In other words, fuel cards work best for those who want to save money on significant fuel expenses.
How Does A Fuel Card for a Trucking Company Work?
The working of a fuel card for a trucking company is quite simple. Fuel cards function similar to credit or debit cards, but are restricted to use only for fuel or trucking-related products and services.
Using a fuel card for purchasing fuel is pretty straightforward—all you need to do is simply swipe the card at the pump, follow the prompts, fill your tank, and take your receipt. The cost associated with using a fuel card for a trucking company varies depending on the fuel card provider and type of card.
Some providers offer point-of-sale pricing, while others offer rebates. Though the rebate model may appear complex and not valuable, both methods are equally efficient.
Best Fuel Card for Truckers
While choosing the best fuel card for truckers to feature in this blog post, we looked for fuel cards that offered the best possible fuel discounts. We also wanted to feature fuel cards that came with a strong network and national coverage and were equipped with robust expense management features.
Let’s discuss some good options for the fuel card for truckers and which ones would work best for them. Please note the fuel cards for truckers are not listed in any particular order.
EFS Fuel Card
EFS fuel card for truckers works best for both large and small-scale trucking businesses or owner-operators working in a specific region in the country. Unlike its competitors, this fuel card for truckers does not provide national coverage. Despite that, it does offer something that makes it considerable.
EFS fuel card helps you potentially save at least 15 cents or more per gallon by utilizing discounts available at over 2200 EDGE stores. On the other hand, there are no monthly charges or transaction fees on the fuel purchased using this fuel card.
Comdata Fleet Card
If you’re looking for fuel discounts, expense management features, compliance, and many more—all in one place - then the Comdata fleet card is for you. Whether you’re a fleet manager managing a hundred vehicles or an owner-operator, this fuel card provider makes things easier for you.
Some of its prominent features include zero transaction fees, nationwide acceptance at over 15,000 locations, additional rebates on different locations, 24/7 driver support and online account management, etc. With this fuel card, you can get around a whopping 65 percent discount on tires and retreads at over 3,000 locations.
Pilot Fleet Card
Also commonly known as the Axle fleet card, the Pilot fleet card is poles apart from its competitors. Unlike other fuel cards for truckers, this fuel card does not provide any direct savings per gallon of gas. Instead, it offers 3 percent of cashback. Besides, you can also receive extensive loyalty programs at select fuel stations.
Using the Pilot fleet card, you can also get reasonable discounts on lodging, maintenance, document scanning, tax services, etc. This fuel card is accepted by more than 2,000 fuel stations, including Pilot Flying J, Sapp Bros, Casey’s, etc. Those using the card will not face issues with the contract or any annual card fee.
Also sold under the EFS brand name, the Fleet One Edge card can be obtained through various means. With its participation in the WEX network, Fleet One offers access to thousands of fuel stations within its network and provides additional discounts on services such as vehicle maintenance plans.
This fuel card for truckers offers an ideal balance between its acceptability at a significant number of fueling stations and the per-gallon savings it provides, making it highly appealing to many trucking companies. It is advisable to evaluate the savings offered by each option rather than making assumptions, and even if you believe another card is superior, the Fleet One Edge card is still worth considering.
Fuelman Fuel Card
Fuelman fuel card is considered a smart choice made by most owner-operators and fleet managers as it offers freedom, flexibility, and maximum control over your trucking business. The best thing about this fuel card is that it helps you avoid fraud and abuse of customizable fuel controls.
This fuel card for truckers offers fuel rebates at several fuel stations across the US. Apart from that, it also offers a maintenance manager that helps you schedule, track, approve, and pay for maintenance. This fuel card company has some of the best options to offer as per your business model. Whether you are a small trucking company or a fleet manager managing thousands of vehicles, you can rely on this fuel card.
BVD Fuel Card
The BVD fuel card is a Canadian-based fuel card, providing you access to the largest fuel network of over 850 locations and most efficient routes across North America. This fuel card for truckers offers perks to help you operate your business smoothly and make long drives comfortable and sustainable.
Using this fuel card, you can have full control over how much money is being spent on fuel, convenience stores, or where purchases are made. You can also receive regular reports about all fuel transactions. With its advanced-reporting systems, you can access real-time transaction viewing for optimal tracking efficiency.
Drivers in a fleet require a secure method to make purchases while on the move. The QuikQ fuel card offers a combination of control and reporting, as well as user-friendly features for drivers. Fleet owners have the ability to tailor their purchase policies and set limits for individual drivers using this fuel card.
With a range of product codes and real-time authentication, fleet owners can effectively manage driver purchases. Additionally, the QuikQ fuel card can be loaded into virtual wallets for fuel and scale purchases.
Some of the amazing features include purchase controls by driver, truck, and location, intuitive real-time reporting, Q-checks for incidental payments, mobile app, online account management, nationwide fueling network, compliance, and round-the-clock customer support.
TransConnect Services (TCS), typically abbreviated as TCS, provides fleet owners with an average fuel savings of 63 cents per gallon, which is exceptional in an industry where many fuel cards offer less than 10 cents per gallon.
This unique feature makes TCS stand out from its competitors. However, it's essential to note that these savings are only available at participating fueling stations, which are limited in number. Despite its limited fuel station coverage, TCS fleet card provides valuable services such as dashboard snapshots, fuel station locators, and customized account management.
It's worth considering TCS for the potential savings it offers, but before making a decision, it's crucial to check if it aligns with your planned routes.
TMS Solution and Fuel Cards
Some of the leading transportation management systems including LoadStop provide fuel card integrations to help increase fleet efficiency for the trucking companies.
LoadStop TMS solution provides a platform that integrates with the fuel card system to provide real-time information and reporting on fuel usage, expenses, and other data relevant to the management of transportation operations.
With fuel card integration, TMS users can access up-to-date information about fuel purchases, costs, and vehicle fuel efficiency. This helps organizations to monitor fuel expenses, improve vehicle performance, and reduce costs associated with transportation operations.
Fuel cards for truckers are the smartest and most efficient way to optimize and control your fuel costs. When fuel prices are frequently going up, it is recommended to make a wise decision by opting for the best fuel card for your fleet.
About the Author: Sara Naveed
Sara Naveed is a creative and digital content writer who uses her creative skills to develop and edit professional web content. Being a writer has always been her dream. She earnestly hopes people appreciate her writing—an asset she deeply covets. Using her 8+ years of working experience, she writes for trucking industry experts who are always looking for better technological solutions to their problems.