Tracking and controlling fuel expenses though the biggest challenge in the trucking business is a fundamental requirement to ensure smooth cash flow to support the fleet operations. The profit margin of fleeting business is very low, just about 4.8 cents for every dollar spent as the operating cost amounts to 95.2 cents. To sustain the business on such a thin margin is like walking on thin ice and operators must sweat out to save every penny possible to preserve a healthy bottom line. Since fuel is the biggest contributor in fleet operations, it becomes imperative to concentrate fully on controlling fuel costs, especially during buying fuel by using fleet cards for fuel.
Fuel cards have enormous saving potential when buying fuel and other maintenance items for vehicles. Fleet cards work in the line of credit cards that enable buying fuel without paying cash, but that is where the similarity ends. Fleet cards or fuel cards are created to look after the interest of fleet operators by offering various incentives on fuel buying that help to save money. Many kinds of fuel cards are available that offer different types of benefits that go beyond the discounts on fuel purchases. What you get from fuel cards will become clear on going through this article.
Discounts of purchases
Right from the first transaction, fuel card holders enjoy a discount on buying fuel. The discount structure and other incentives vary according to the type of cards, and 2c per gallon is the lowest discount available. Fuel cards attract users with discounts that increase with the volume of purchase and in the process, generate loyalty for the card company that gains by encouraging higher transactions, which is also beneficial for the oil companies. The ability to impose usage limits on fuel cards allow better control on fuel transactions that hold the key to major savings.
Readily available information
Not only the wide choice of different kinds of fuel cards increase its attraction but the feature of accessing real-time information about card usage helps to keep better track of fuel prices across the country. The information helps to plan for purchasing fuel at the lowest price, which adds more savings over the discounts allowed on the card.
Fuel card companies offer discounts not only on fuel but also extend the facility for purchasing other items related to maintenance of vehicles like purchasing tires or some other maintenance item. Also, some fuel cards also allow expenses incurred for repairs and maintenance services as well as other expenses like lodging or any other operation related expenses.
Do some shopping
Discounts on fuel cards and other incentives vary between different fuel card brands, and even there are differences in the structure of discount within the same brand of cards. To get the right kind of fuel card, it is best to do some shopping to match the offers with your fuel usage pattern and volume as well as the total operational costs.
Since fuel consumption is likely to be high, even a minor difference in discount can translate into some thousand dollars saving.