If you run a vehicle fleet for transportation services, we understand the hassle of reimbursing drivers for various expenses while maintaining a profit. Monitoring a large group of people and satisfying individual needs is challenging enough, let alone conducting vehicle repairs, fulfilling emergency requirements, and tracking fuel consumption. Since you have no idea what drivers might be up to on the open road, it’s best not to give them debit or credit cards for payments.
A safer and more convenient option is issuing fleet cards to get real-time updates, manage expenses, and enjoy additional perks for drivers’ well-being. Today’s guide looks at the extra benefits of fuel cards apart from gas savings.
Why Use Fuel Cards?
Whether you run a small business or own a large fleet of trucks, fuel cards can be the game changer by cutting unnecessary expenditures. Such cards offer exclusive discounts on gallons of diesel and come with other benefits, like greater security when purchasing fuel. Hence, they are used by a vehicle management company to retain profits at the end of the month.
Moreover, fuel cards help in factoring invoices, as commercial trucks and vans can add cash or get advances for the fuel card. But using a fuel card isn’t as simple as pulling into any fuel station, claiming the discount, and driving off.
The fuel card company negotiates the discounts with specific gas stations, depending on your transportation needs, and lets you know which stations will accept the card. We suggest using reputable brands, such as WEX fuel cards, that serve several locations across the United States.
7 Benefits Of Fuel Cards
From this short description, it’s abundantly clear that fuel cards have several advantages, and in this section, we discuss fuel card benefits for your fleet of trucks or cars.
1. Reduced Expenses
A transportation management company mainly uses fleet fuel cards to lower the cost of its services. On some fuel cards, you get discounts worth 40 cents per gallon that can result in savings of several thousand dollars annually, even when the fleet consumes 10,000 gallons monthly.
Moreover, compared to credit cards, vehicles can purchase gas at cash prices without having to pay transaction fees.
2. Greater Convenience
Without a fleet fuel card, trucks and vans are responsible for covering the cost of fuel, maintaining records, providing receipts of transactions, and seeking reimbursements. This is a major hassle, even more so when you have to trust drivers with your debit card.
If you give drivers a debit card, they might misuse it for personal expenses since there’s no way to regulate transactions. But can’t you reimburse them when they get back? This isn’t always possible, especially when trucks or cars ply long distances and have to make multiple stops along the way.
Also, it’s quite a task for the business administration team to keep a manual record of all the bills and tally expenses at the end of the month. But, thanks to fleet fuel cards, you can maintain an online archive of all expenses while fixing the transaction limit of each.
You can thus monitor the cars or drivers spending more money and proving less affordable compared to other vans in the fleet.
3. Additional Benefits
Some fleet cards deliver additional benefits besides reducing fuel expenditure, such as maintenance or repairs. When you sign up for many cards, you can negotiate extra benefits with the company to reduce the annual cost. We have seen top brands offer tire repair, emergency services, and regular maintenance, which makes it easier for drivers to solve problems on the road.
Sometimes to get card advances, fleet management services have no choice but to sign contracts with particular brokers since it reduces the chances of going over the fuel budget. On the flip side, you might find it challenging to send fleets over long distances if the cash advance isn’t sufficient. That’s where fuel cards prove useful, ensuring you can work high-paying loads without paying from your own pocket.
5. Maintaining The Budget
We have touched on this point in passing but let’s discuss it in detail. It’s important to note that depending on the extent of the journey, you must allow drivers to rest and buy refreshments.
Extend the fuel card limit in such instances, and talk to the card company about allowing some non-fuel expenditures. You can also choose which vehicles can make additional purchases, thereby minimizing the need to monitor them constantly.
This ensures you can focus resources on other areas to improve the quality of transportation services.
6. Accurate Data
Particularly impressive about fleet fuel cards is that a card company delivers live data and helps you track individual vehicles. You can even demand expenditure reports which the company makes available in one file containing details about miles traveled, mileage reading at the time of refueling, distance covered until the purchase, cost of repairs, etc.
7. Reduces Fraud
Fuel cards are more transparent and safe than credit or debit cards and cash. Each card comes with a unique PIN and can only be used by the driver they are assigned to. When refueling at the gas station, the driver has to provide a unique ID to complete the transaction, which reduces the chances of theft.
Moreover, trustworthy card companies have a receipt-based system to prevent malpractices like stopping at the gas station but asking a friend to fill the tank. And you can further use the card company app to get notifications related to specific vehicles, even canceling or deactivating lost cards.
The benefits of using a fuel card can’t be underestimated, and you will soon find the company balance sheet showing profits at the end of every month.
They further reduce the challenge of constantly monitoring drivers or spending sleepless nights while trying to satisfy monthly expenses. Plus, with the mobile app, you can reimburse drivers on the go without delaying the delivery and track the available balance through live reports.
Considering the convenience offered by fuel card companies, assigning such cards to your fleet is essential for both small and large businesses to prosper.