The Best Fuel Credit Cards in the UK for Businesses
Your business can use fuel credit cards to fill up cars, HGVs and vans at service stations across the UK. It’s super-fast to pay and convenient for your drivers, too.
Read on to learn about the benefits! Plus, you can also consider business fuel cards as an alternative payment method. They’re just as good and have extra perks to consider.
What’s a fuel credit card?
It’s a credit card for fuel, but it works with your diesel and petrol expenses. It makes it easy for you to fill up at any station across the UK. And that includes supermarkets.
However, it also functions like a normal credit card. Your employees can use it to pay for business trips and expenses such as tolls, hotels, food and drink.
Your drivers can also use it to cover repair costs on vehicles.
The best credit card for buying fuel in the UK
So, what’s the best credit card for fuel purchases? Velos is a famous example of a fuel credit card. With this you get:
- A card for spending at 99% of the UK’s fuel stations.
- Payments for hotels, food and drink.
- Payment for vehicle repairs.
- An online account for spending management.
- Real-time driver spending updates.
- Easy invoicing.
And you don’t need to sign a new direct debit. Plus, you won’t have to apply for additional credit, either.
For our money, Velos is the best credit card for fuel in the UK.
Sounds perfect, right? While it’s a great option, no doubt, there are alternatives. And ones that are better suited to business owners and fleet managers wanting total control over their drivers’ fuel spending.
And what’s this ideal payment method? Well, it’s a fuel card! It’s quite similar to a fuel credit card, but with some important distinctions. Let’s take a look at them.
What are fuel cards?
They’re cards you can give your drivers to pay for fuel at service stations in the provider’s network. In most cases, that’s 1,000s of stations to fill up at.
All your driver has to do is fill up, then pay the cashier with the fuel card.
Your transactions accumulate and you pay for them on a fixed weekly basis. That makes it much easier to reclaim VAT from HMRC, as well as monitoring your fleet for fuel spending from your online account.
There are some big-name fuel cards out there, too, from famous providers like Shell, BP and Texaco. It really puts in total control of your spending, which is always handy.
Are fuel cards credit cards?
No, they’re a bit different. Credit cards let you buy fuel from service stations. But you can also use it to buy plenty of other goods and services at other places.
With a fuel credit card (also called a fuel card), you can only really use the card to pay for fuel expenses. It’s easy to do, your driver just fills up and then pays with the card.
You can set a budget on that. And you can keep track of everything from an online account, so it’s easy to keep on top of your budget.
The differences between fuel cards and fuel credit cards
Okay, let’s take a closer look at the key differences between the two types of cards. Let’s start off with fuel cards! With these, you get:
- Discount fuel prices (depending on your provider).
- Better security and prevention of fuel fraud.
- No interest on purchases for up to three weeks.
- Employees can purchase fuel and other items, such as AdBlue.
- No need for receipts!
- Simple HMRC-compliant invoicing with clear VAT separation.
- Card management tools in an online portal.
- Keep track of filling patterns between drivers.
- Fleet efficiency and MPG (miles per gallon) reporting.
- Reduced internal administration costs.
- Some cards offer points/rewards scheme.
But with fuel credit cards, you’ve got these:
- Pay for fuel and other things, such as business trip items (hotels, drinks, food and much more)
- Employees can purchase almost anything they want (so, you’ll need a high level of trust there).
- Get discounts on fuel prices aren’t available.
- Find fuel and non-fuel fraud is harder to spot and stop.
- APR rates vary. Plus, offers can change over time and interest is payable on your fuel purchases.
- You’ll need to keep track of all your receipts.
- Invoicing with VAT is a longer process.
- Some credit card fuel cards have a rewards scheme.
So, yes, basically the main differences? Fuel cards often have discounts on fuel prices, but you can only really use it to buy fuel.
However, that does put you in total control of your fuel expenses. And it makes it much easier to reclaim VAT.
On the flip side, with fuel credit cards your employees can pay for anything. It simplifies your expenses, but at the same times opens up a lot of risky opportunities for fraud and controlling spending.
The best fuel cards in the UK
Okay, then, as you can tell we’re kind of favouring fuel cards over the credit card variety. They’ll genuinely save you money in the long-term.
And with plenty of other bonuses, we’re eager to make the below recommendations for you to take a look at.
|Fuel card||Benefits||Stations in network|
|Accepted at over 4,100 stations in the UK, with competitive pricing at a weekly fixed price. You get simplicity in one invoice and an online account, too||4,000+|
|Wholesale fuel prices at Esso and pump prices at partner stations. Payment choices are between fixed weekly prices or pump prices||3,400+|
|Discounts for big spenders. It comes with a clear price calculator, which helps to keep costs down. The more you bulk buy, the more you’ll save||3,000+|
|Use at over 50% of UK motorway stations. You get competitive weekly prices and access to high-efficiency FuelSave Diesel||1,000+|
|This fuel card features supermarket loyalty points, so refuel with this and you’ve got bonuses coming your way at Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and Tesco||1,350+|
There are plenty more on the market, of course, but every business (and fleet) has different needs. That’s why it’s important to compare the market to find the right provider that’ll match what you’re after.
iCompario tip: Got an EV? Then you’ll need a charge card
If you have electric vehicles in your fleet, you may want something other than a credit card to pay for charging the EV. And that’s where business charge cards come in handy. There are 18 charge point brands with one card and you can turn up at a compatible charge point and use the card to pay. Simple as that!
The business benefits of fuel cards
Fuel credit cards have the benefit of more spending flexibility, but it does function very similarly to a real credit card. Which isn’t always ideal for many businesses.
But what about fuel cards? Well, you’ve got a golden chance to make big annual savings.
We have a full guide to the benefits of fuel cards to check out. But if you want a quick fix on the cost-saving perks of these things, check out below.
Increased card security
The cards are much safer to use than cash or credit cards. Fuel cards give you a bit more protection! They’re PIN protected. And, of course, you can only use them to buy fuel from the stations in your network.
That means if it’s lost or stolen, the card can’t be used at other stores (say if the thief wants to buy loads of stuff for Christmas).
Plus, a fuel card allows suspicious purchases to be flagged up instantly, cutting the risk of fuel fraud, which is a huge benefit over cash and credit cards.
Data, data, data (and reporting)
You get an online account with your fuel card. In that, you can keep track of every single card you have in your fleet.
And that means you can easily keep track of every transaction. That saves you a load of time in the future, because you don’t need to tell drivers to track their receipts or keep an eye on how much their spending.
Instead, you track it all from your account. And you can pull data out into reports whenever you need to. Sorted.
Lower your fuel expenses
Fuel cards can give you access to fuel discounts from a fixed commercial price or pump related price. Depending on the provider you go for.
But you may be able to get discounts at the pump. That can really stack up over time!
By the way, if you want more help on lowering those costs then check out our fleet fuel saving tips guide.
You only pay your bill on a fixed term basis, so it’s much easier to manage your cashflow and budget properly. All through one card!
For effective fleet management, that’s really a big deal. It keeps costs down. And you ensure you have a shipshape operation at all times that takes into consideration your overhead.
VAT compliant invoices
Here’s a big one! Because you can easily keep track of receipts, that makes it miles easier to reclaim VAT from HMRC.
All you have to do is send off your data and voilà! That’s taken care of, giving you peace of mind. Plus, it makes it easier to reclaim that money for your budget.
You can set purchase restrictions
If you want to make sure drivers don’t go over a spending limit, you can set a restriction on individual drivers. Pretty handy if you want to stay on budget.
Ultra-convenient for drivers
Don’t forget about your drivers! They’ll love fuel cards. Why?
- No need to carry around (and worry about) loose change.
- No need to keep track of loads of receipts.
- It’s super easy to pay.
It makes life much more convenient for them, allowing them to focus big time on their job.
Do you want a fuel card, then?
Okay, so now you’re all updated on what these things do! All that’s left is to compare the market to find the right provider. It’s free to do! Just follow these quick three steps:
- Enter your business details in our form.
- We’ll search the market.
- You get your recommendations.
You take your pick from there and you’re forwarded to your provider to start the application. So, you’re only a few clicks away from making big savings!
Read more about fuel cards on iCompario
Benefits of Fuel Cards
Best Courier Fuel Cards in the UK and Europe
Best Contractor Fuel Cards in the UK
A Dozen Easy Fuel Saving Tips To Save Money