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Small Business Fuel and Fleet Cards

If your small business uses two or more cars consistently, you may benefit from a fuel and fleet card. These help save you money and stay in control of your employees’ expenses. Learn more about what a fuel card is, the advantages of using it and common features of a gas fleet card.

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What is a fuel and fleet card?

A fuel card, also referred to as a fleet card or a fuel and fleet card, operates like a credit card and is primarily used for purchasing fuel or diesel for your business’ transportation. It’s highly useful for people who need to regularly operate cars for their business. Industries with employees who frequently drive cars for their business include food delivery, plumbing and maintenance or outside sales employees.

As soon as your employee makes a payment with their fuel card, it charges directly to your company, and many cards allow you to easily track these payments and receive rewards when you buy a certain amount of gas.

Advantages of using a fuel card for your company

Having employees use fuel cards for their gas and diesel purchases increases the efficiency of your finances and operations. Here are some main advantages to using a fuel and fleet card:

  • Get detailed information about each fuel purchase.
  • Ensure your employees are only making vehicle-related purchases.
  • Receive volume discounts and rewards for buying gas.
  • Reduce the need for your employees to make cash purchases or keep receipts.

Features of fuel and fleet cards

Common features of fuel and fleet cards include:

Simple use at the pump

The fuel and fleet cards act as basic debit and credit cards. Employees swipe the card at the pump and follow the directions listed on the screen. They’ll type in the unit number, trip number or driver number their employer provides.

Online purchase tracking

When the employee uses the fuel card, you’ll see detailed information regarding the purchase, including:

  • Amount of gas the employee purchased
  • Date, time and location of the purchase
  • Name of the employee who purchased it
  • Odometer reading of the vehicle

This gives you advanced control over who uses the cards and what they purchase. For instance, you can use the tracking feature to ensure they’re not using the card on personal expenses, like snacks or gas station souvenirs.

Rewards for regular usage

Using fuel and fleet cards helps your business save money when you make large gas purchases. Many fleet cards offer volume discounts, so if your business uses several drivers, you’ll save on a majority of their gas purchases. Discount rates often vary depending on the fuel and fleet card company you use, but some even offer an average savings of 12 cents per gallon.

Automatically registers purchases

When employees purchase fuel, you have instant access to the amount spent. This eliminates the need for your employees to collect receipts and receive reimbursements for the purchase. Your financing processes become much more efficient and less tedious, giving your accounting team more time to focus on big picture tasks.

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Frequently asked questions about small business fuel and fleet cards

How do I get a fuel card?

Most fuel card companies have an easy sign-up process where you fill out an online application. You’ll submit personal information, like your name, Social Security number, annual income, phone number and email address. Then you’ll enter your business’ information, like your company’s address, years you’ve been in business and taxpayer ID. Most fuel and fleet websites have a setup fee, monthly card charge fee and a program maintenance charge you must agree to pay when signing up.

What does a fuel card do?

A fuel card helps you save on gas money for your business by allowing employees to quickly and easily pay at the pump. It eliminates the need for your employees to pay with their own money and get reimbursed later on since the money is charged directly to your company.

Do fuel cards save you money?

Yes, fuel cards save your company money, especially if your business uses many cars and a significant amount of gas. Most fuel and fleet cards analyze your business’ assets, expenses and the amount of gas you use. They use this information to provide you with discounts that help your business save money and make gas purchases that fit within your budget.

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