How Does a Fuel Card Work?
by Mario Tarradell | May 11, 2022
How Does a Fuel Card Work?
We all know credit and debit cards. They are part of our daily lives. In fact, some of us rarely use cash for any purchases anymore. But what is a fuel card? Well, a fuel card is a payment card primarily used to buy diesel fuel. You can also use a fuel card to access cash and pay for other trucking-related products and services, according to the controls set by the fleet owner.
But wait a minute, is a fuel card the same thing as a gas credit card? No. While you could certainly use a regular gas credit card to purchase diesel fuel, you would be missing out on two key benefits of having a fuel card – savings per gallon of diesel and security controls. So, we’re about to walk you through the features and benefits of having a fuel card built for truckers and trucking companies.
Benefits of Having a Fuel Card
Why get a fuel card, and what does a fuel card do?
The answers to these two questions go together. The reason to get a fuel card is because of what it does. Check out this list of the features of a diesel fuel card:
- Security and control – You control who can use the fuel card, what it can buy, how much it can buy, and where it can buy. That minimizes fraud and increases security.
- Savings – A fuel card allows you to get diesel savings at truckstop partners that have struck a deal with the card provider.
- IFTA and documentation – Having a fuel card provides you with important information and documentation that can help you with your quarterly International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) reports.
- Visibility and transparency – You can see every transaction associated with that fuel card; nothing is hidden. That’s a huge reason why security and control are so beneficial.
- Ease – Fuel cards function just like credit cards, so there’s little to no learning curve. Most importantly, the trucker doesn’t have to carry hundreds of dollars for fuel.
How Does a Company Fuel Card Work?
If you’re at the pump, swipe the card, follow the directions (you may need to enter unit number, mileage, driver number, or trip number – any combination or all of it), fuel, then take your receipt. Or if you want to go inside to the fuel desk, give the attendant your card, tell the attendant how much fuel you will purchase, give them those numbers mentioned above, and sign the receipt.
The TCS Fuel Card is about saving you money. Check out the savings:
- Fuel – We have over 1,500 in-network locations where you can enjoy TCS card savings. These locations include Speedway, TA®, TA Express®, Petro Stopping Centers®, Petroleum Wholesale, Ambest, Kwik Trip, Kwik Star, Sapp Bros., Fuel City, Road Ranger, and more. You can use the card anywhere EFS and Comdata are accepted, but go to an in-network location to get great discounts.
- Transaction fees – With the TCS Fuel Card, in-network locations have no trucking fuel card fees.
- Fuel finder – With TCS Fuel Finder, via the TCS website or mobile app, you can easily find fuel for the best price conveniently along your route.
- Tires and maintenance – Get discounts on tires and maintenance when you use your TCS Fuel Card at TA Truck Service® Centers. Simply provide your DOT number and the discounts are automatically applied.
- Roadside Rescue – The TCS Roadside Rescue program, with service provided by RoadSquad®, is another perk of the TCS Fuel Card that offers round-the-clock roadside rescue assistance. Enrollment is free and automatic for all TCS clients.
“I save so much money,” says TCS Fuel Card client Don Gumfory of Gumfory Holdings in Burleson, Texas.
“On a bad day, I would save 22 cents a gallon. And I’ve saved as much as 58 cents a gallon. I use my app every day and I can use the Fuel Finder. It doesn’t necessarily just show you big truck stops, like the TA and the Petro locations, it will also show you some of the mom-and-pop smaller operations.”
The Power of Fuel Card Customization
Customize, customize and customize some more!
With a great fuel card, you should always be able to customize it to fit your business needs. Your fuel card provider should work with you to develop a program that compliments your business. You should be able to customize your:
- Payment options – You have control over how and when you pay using your card.
- Security – Set extra security controls for when a driver purchases fuel or service.
- Additional cards, cash advances – Both should be easy for the fuel card client to obtain.
“The fuel card is great,” says TCS Fuel Card client Phillip Scherer of Phillip’s Roadway Services in Henderson, Nevada.
“I’ve been able to establish the credit that I need. I’m able to use all the options available. I can offer a cash advance for a driver. Adding a driver is very, very easy. I have a fuel card for each driver, and I have one myself.”
How do you put money on a fuel card?
There are a variety of ways to put money on your fuel card — some are initiated by the client (you), while others are initiated by the fuel card company, or even by a factoring company. In each case, fees will vary. Here are the methods:
- Zelle® powered by blynk™ – blynk™ is a proprietary digital payment system that allows TCS to receive funds 24/7/365 through Zelle®. With Zelle®, you can send money quickly to a variety of U.S. bank accounts.
- ACH Credit (bank to bank transfer) – Client initiated, during banking hours, funds received by next business day (except holidays).
- Bank wire – Client initiated, during banking hours, funds received typically within 2 hours.
- Western Union – Client initiated, 24/7/365, funds received within one hour.
- Third-party checks (Comchek, EFS check, or T-Chek) – Client initiated, 24/7/365, funds received usually within one hour.
- Factoring company – Factoring companies such as our friends at Apex Capital can direct funds from invoices or a factoring reserve account into your fuel card.
How to Get a Fuel Card
There are numerous fuel cards out there, many of which require you to have a certain sized business or other stipulations. Getting a TCS Fuel Card is simple. When you apply, the application portal will take you through the process with step-by-step instructions. As you move through it, you’ll get email and text updates to make sure you’re completely understanding the process.
You can easily fund your TCS Fuel Card through a number of banks and credit services. This ensures the TCS Fuel Card works for you and doesn’t hinder your business in any way.
Why Is the TCS Fuel Card the Best Card for Truckers?
The TCS Fuel Card offers everything we have mentioned above — from savings to security, options to transparency. Don’t forget that with the TCS Fuel Card you can save big at the pump and avoid transaction fees at more than 1,000 in-network locations across the country.
The TCS Fuel Card is beneficial for owner-operators, small trucking companies and fleets:
- Owner-operators: The TCS Fuel Card is unique in that owner-operators can get one as opposed to just trucking companies with multiple trucks. A TCS Fuel card gives owner-operators peace of mind, offers higher efficiency, and helps you build your business.
- Small trucking companies: We want to make smaller trucking companies level with larger fleets through the TCS Fuel Card. The TCS Fuel Card saves you the hassle of recordkeeping, as all drivers’ expenses will be kept in a single account.
- Fleets: Running a fleet of trucks is hard work and keeps you busy. The TCS Fuel Card provides your fleet with big-time discounts on one of the major expenses you face when organizing a fleet.
Getting a TCS Fuel Card will benefit you beyond a fuel discount:
- Easy funding: It’s easy to load your TCS Fuel Card through a number of banking and credit options.
- Security: We want to ensure your money is kept safe and secure, which is why our clients have access to a free account management platform that works on all kinds of devices. This system also allows clients to set limits on transactions.
- Easy application: Applying for a TCS Fuel Card is easy and straightforward. We walk you through the process with step-by-step instructions and constant updates so you know exactly how our fuel cards work.
- Cardless funding: The TCS Fuel Card offers cardless funding so you can begin saving money before a physical card even arrives. This also protects you should you lose the physical card.
Get the TCS Fuel Card Today
Are you ready to apply for a great fuel card? Apply here for your TCS Fuel Card or give us a call at 844-827-7705.