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Understanding different fuel card specifications
When you’re deciding on which fuel card is right for your business it’s important to understand the differences (and also the similarities) between them. It’ll help you compare cards with confidence and choose the one that delivers the most relevant benefits to your business.
The first thing to think about when comparing cards is the type of vehicles that make up your fleet.
Whether you’re a haulage business, have a team of national salesmen or operate a small mixed fleet, the vehicles you use can help steer your decision-making process.
Haulage presents unique challenges so choosing a card that focuses on HGV-friendly sites can avoid unnecessary logistical issues.
If your fleet is made up primarily of saloon cars then flexibility is key, as drivers in more sales focused roles need the reassurance that their card is accepted everywhere as their travelling schedule can be unpredictable.
If your fleet is made up purely of diesel vehicles working across the country, the versatility of the Allstar Network provides both savings on fuel and an unrivalled network.
The area you work in can affect your fuel card choice. If, for example, your business involves drivers travelling the length and breadth of the country, then a card with extensive motorway coverage would be better.
If you work locally, sites such as Shell and Esso are likely to dominate the area. If you work in a rural location Texaco may be the prevalent station. Therefore you would be better opting for a branded fuel card.
To see which sites are in your working area, take a look at our Station Finder.
The majority of fuel cards are designed for diesel or mixed use but it is becoming more common for companies to have an unleaded-only fleet so this can help you narrow down your options.
You may also need to consider whether you would prefer a pump-price or fixed-price card.
If using a pump-price fuel card, you are charged the price shown at a particular station at that time.
With a fixed-price card you will be issued a new fuel price each week and regardless of what the price is at the petrol station you pay the fixed-price. Fixed-prices are typically 2-3 pence per litre below the national average pump prices.
Every fuel card runs on a specific fuel station network, but as you would expect, branded networks usually only allow access to their own fuel stations.
Some fuel cardholders are brand loyal as they feel they are benefiting from the best quality fuel; even though these could have a higher pump-price, they could result in a better MPG.
However, it’s important to weigh up all the benefits before committing to a brand as you may be missing out on a card that provides more for your business.
Choosing a card that restricts you to specific branded fuel stations can mean drivers have to make unnecessary route diversions which can become costly and inefficient.
To see which brands are most prominent in the area you operate in take a look at our site locator.
By comparing fuel cards you can find the one that offers the best value for your requirements.
Many fuel card features come as standard but they have different benefits and usage restrictions so find the one that’s right for you.
The best way to find the right card for your business is to compare their specific features, then you can choose with confidence.