Is a Fuel Card right for Small Businesses?

Fleet cards are fuel cards that help businesses manage the expenses associated with a fleet of vehicles. Specifically, a fleet card provides companies with discounts on gas purchases as well as allows the manager to see where his or her fuel money is going.

Businesses that operate a fleet of motor vehicles – whether they be company cars or freight trucks – often rely on credit cards. Fleet cards are best for business that operate two or more regularly used vehicles and use between 1,000 and 5,000 gallons per month, on average. There are a lot of unique benefits that a fleet card offers over a regular credit card.

When is a Fleet Card Right for Your Business?

Fleet cards can help company fleets of all shapes and sizes. Regardless of whether you run a construction company, delivery service, florist, or bakery, a fleet card account might be beneficial.

Most fleet card providers offer multiple options that provide solutions for fleets of all sizes. Remember: Fleet cards are designed for companies that operate more than two business vehicles and use more than 1,000 gallons per month.

In addition to the three criteria above, make sure you answer the following questions:

  • Are you looking for an alternative to employee gas reimbursements?
  • Do you require more robust data analysis for your fleet usage?
  • Do you have the cash flow to cover bi-monthly or monthly credit card payments?

If you answered “yes” to these questions, your company is a good candidate for a fleet card account.

What are the Benefits of a Fleet Card?

There are three primary benefits of a fleet card:

  • Reporting & Analytics
  • Cost Savings
  • Time Savings

1. Reporting and Analytics with a Fleet Card

The biggest benefit of a corporate fleet card account is the reporting that the account provides. Business owners, officers, and fleet managers are given access to in-depth reporting and analytics that shows credit card transactions in real time. Not all small business gas cards have access to the same data.

Fleet card reporting is powered by fleet telematics, a branch of IT that specializes in the long-distance transmission of information. Fleet card providers have telematics capabilities that allows for real-time fleet monitoring, as well as helps with the efficiency, effectiveness, and safety of fleet vehicles.

Fleet cards make available level III transaction data, which includes such information as item description, item ID, unit price, tax amount, commodity code, and more. Business owners and fleet managers can use a dedicated account portal to see card usage on a per card basis, as well as look at the usage of the overall fleet. This helps businesses get a better grip on fleet spending.

In addition to the transaction data, fleet cards use odometer prompting to help track mileage, cost per mile, and miles per gallon for each of the fleet’s vehicles.

For example, cardholders are assigned a driver ID that they enter at a gas pump prior to filling up. Once a driver’s ID is entered, a prompt appears on the gas pump’s screen asking for the vehicle’s odometer reading. The driver enters the number using the point of sale keypad and then pumps gas as he or she would do normally.

Each time a driver fills up, the odometer is tracked. From the fleet card’s central dashboard, a business owner or fleet manager can see how each vehicle performs in terms of miles per gallon and cost per mile.

2. Cost Savings

Fleet cards only allow authorized purchases at participating gas stations, mechanics, and other repair-related services. These expenses can be limited by the amount or frequency of transactions through the dashboard, saving the company money.

What’s more, restrictions can even be placed on the specific type of fuel. For example, if you manage a fleet of diesel trucks, you can limit gas purchases to diesel only. This mitigates the opportunity for employees to use corporate fleet cards for personal use.

Fleet cards also offer a per gallon discount to each user or card.

3. Time Savings with a Fleet Card

There’s no need for paperwork for reimbursements with a fleet card. Instead, the overall credit card bill is paid by the company each billing cycle. This reduces the amount of time spent on itemizing gas receipts and submitting them for approval.

Additionally, with the provided fleet card app, there’s no time wasted driving around looking for a gas station or repair shop. Instead, drivers can rely on GPS to find all of their vehicle-related needs. Further, most GPS systems show the gas prices of each available station, saving the fleet money, too.

Bottom Line

Fleet cards allow a small businesses to finance their fuel and maintenance expenses while also getting better reporting and controls. Overall, a corporate fleet card account is a good option for businesses with high gas usage, somewhere between 1,000 – 5,000 gallons per month. In addition, anyone who manages a fleet and wants better data and reporting, costs savings, and time savings might find a fleet card beneficial.

Want to find out more about customizable gas cards and how they can benefit your fleet? Get in touchwith Fuelz today at and see what our fleet cards could do for you!