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How to Choose the Best Trucking Fuel Cards

Man holding credit card and worker with fuel nozzle at gas station

Fuel prices have a significant impact on trucking operations and profit margins. Using a fleet card for purchasing fuel at gas stations can give owner-operators and trucking companies access to a discount network and an array of online management tools to track spending.

Diesel fuel cards are specialized payment cards designed to streamline the fueling process for commercial truck drivers and fleet operators. These cards offer various benefits, financial controls, and reporting features tailored to the needs of the trucking industry.

Why Use Fleet Fuel Cards?

Using fuel cards can help save money, improve purchase controls, and simplify administrative processes. However, it’s essential for truckers and fleet operators to carefully evaluate the terms, transaction fees, and features of different fuel card programs to choose the one that best meets their specific requirements.

Here are key aspects of fuel cards for commercial truckers:

Can Fuel Cards for Truckers Save You Money?

A fleet card can help save money in several ways, making it a valuable tool for trucking companies, fleet operators, and commercial truck drivers. Many fuel cards offer discounts or fuel rebates in network fuel stations. These discounts can lead to significant savings over time, especially for fleets with high fuel consumption.

How Much Can You Save Using a Fleet Card for Trucking?

The average savings vary based on the specific circumstances of each trucking business. Small trucking companies and owner-operators may still benefit from fuel card programs, especially if the program offers discounts, controls for managing expenses, and reporting features. Large trucking fleets with higher fuel volumes have the potential for more substantial savings. Additionally, monitoring and adjusting fuel management strategies based on fuel card data can further optimize savings over time.

Man holding credit card and worker with fuel nozzle at gas station

What are the Benefits of Fuel Cards for Truckers?

How to Maximize Fuel Discounts

Saving money with a fuel card tailored to your specific needs and requirements can help you manage cash flow, ensure fair costs, get access to cheap fuel, and keep fuel transactions in check. Here’s how to make the most of fuel discounts as a trucking company or owner-operator:

  • Larger fleets often qualify for volume discounts through fuel card programs. These discounts are based on the total volume of fuel purchased by the fleet and can result in more favorable pricing.
  • Some fuel card programs have loyalty programs that reward users for consistent fuel purchases. These rewards may include additional discounts, cashback, or other perks that contribute to overall cost savings.
  • Larger fleets often qualify for volume discounts through fuel card programs. These discounts are based on the total volume of fuel purchased by the fleet and can result in more favorable pricing.

When selecting a fuel card for truckers, it’s important to consider factors such as the card’s acceptance network, fuel discounts, reporting capabilities, fees, and additional features. Reading the terms and conditions of each card is crucial to understanding any potential fees or limitations. In addition, choosing a card that aligns with the fueling patterns and operational needs of the trucking business will help you maximize the benefits of the fuel card program.

How to Choose the Best Card for Fuel Savings

Choosing the best fuel card is crucial for owner-operators as it can impact fuel costs, convenience, and overall efficiency. Here are steps to choose the right fuel card for your needs:


By following these steps and conducting thorough research, owner-operators can choose the best fuel card that meets their unique needs, helps control costs, and provides additional benefits that contribute to the efficiency of their operations. Choosing the right fuel card for truckers will help you avoid hidden fees, monitor diesel purchases, and manage operating costs.

Refueling and pouring oil quality into the engine motor car

Are there any fuel cards for truckers with bad credit?

Fuel cards for truckers typically require a credit check, and having bad credit may limit the options available. However, some fuel card companies may offer options that are more lenient when it comes to credit requirements.

  • Secured Credit Cards: While not traditional fuel cards, secured credit cards may be an option for individuals with bad credit. These cards require a security deposit, and the credit limit is typically determined by the deposit amount. Secured credit cards can be used for fuel purchases at locations that accept credit cards.
  • Local or Regional Fuel Cards: Some local or regional fuel card programs may have less stringent credit requirements compared to national programs. Local providers may be more familiar with the specific needs of truckers in the area.
  • Prepaid Fuel Cards: Prepaid fuel cards allow users to load a specific amount onto the card in advance. While these may not offer traditional credit, they can be used for fuel purchases. However, prepaid cards may not provide the same benefits as traditional fuel cards.
  • Company-Sponsored Fuel Cards: Some trucking companies offer fuel cards to their drivers as part of their benefits package. In these cases, the creditworthiness of the individual driver may be less of a factor.

It’s important to note that options for fuel cards with bad credit may be limited, and individuals with poor credit may face higher fees or less favorable terms. Additionally, improving credit over time may open up more options for obtaining traditional fuel cards with better terms.

How to Apply for a Trucking Fuel Card

Applying for a trucking fuel card involves a straightforward process, and it typically includes the following steps:

  • Research and Compare: Before applying for a trucking fuel card, research different providers and compare their offerings. Consider factors such as fuel discounts, acceptance network, fees, reporting features, and any additional benefits.
  • Choose a Suitable Fuel Card: Select a fuel card that aligns with the specific needs and preferences of your trucking business. Some fuel cards are designed for small businesses, while others cater to larger fleets. Choose a card that fits your operational requirements.
  • Visit the Provider’s Website: Go to the official website of the chosen fuel card provider. Navigate to the section for trucking or fleet services to find information about their fuel card program.
  • Review Eligibility Criteria: Check the eligibility criteria for the fuel card program. Providers may have specific requirements related to the size of the fleet, the creditworthiness of the applicant, and other factors.
  • Complete the Online Application: Many fuel card providers offer online applications. Locate the application form on the provider’s website and complete all required fields. You may need to provide information about your business, fleet size, and contact details.
  • Provide Business Information: Be prepared to provide information about your trucking business, including your business name, address, Tax ID or EIN (Employer Identification Number), and the number of vehicles in your fleet.
  • Submit Financial Information: Some applications may require financial information, such as annual revenue or average monthly fuel spending. This information helps the provider assess your eligibility and tailor the card’s features to your business.
  • Consent to a Credit Check: In many cases, fuel card providers conduct a credit check as part of the application process. Be prepared to consent to a credit check, and understand that your credit history may impact the terms of the fuel card.
  • Wait for Approval: After submitting your application, wait for the provider to review and approve it. The approval process duration can vary, but many providers aim to process applications quickly.
  • Receive and Activate the Card: If approved, the fuel card will be mailed to the address provided during the application process. Upon receiving the card, follow any instructions provided to activate it.
  • Start Using the Fuel Card: Once activated, you can start using the fuel card at designated fueling locations. Familiarize yourself with the features of the card, such as discounts, reporting tools, and any spending controls.

The Road to More Savings and Control

CTI specializes in comprehensive insurance policies for truck companies and owner-operators. Contact our TRS-certified insurance agents for a truck insurance quote today. With a network of over 30 carriers, we will help secure incredible deals in commercial trucking insurance. Our customer service team provides continual support for any questions you may have regarding your policy.