Prepaid and Preset Fuel Cards Strategies for Small Business

May 17, 2018 By ,

There is a growing industry of prepaid credit card programs being marketed to fleet operators as a solution to fuel management. The bigger advertisers being Bento for Business and Net Spend providing credit cards running with a Visa or Mastercard and controls to protect the issuer of the cards. These programs can be effective if managed properly. The only catch, your businesses has to pay full retail credit card pricing for your fuel and the opportunity to misuse a credit card is still there.  Wouldn’t it be better to lock purchases down to the specific products a fleet needs?


Star Oilco’s fleet card program provides the same controls as a prepaid Visa or Mastercard but we have additional features. These features being fuel and fleet focused.  Star Oilco has an approach to fielding these cards to secure them and give your Dispatch, HR, and Managers total clarity of what is happening daily with fuel.

Like a Prepaid Visa or Mastercard, Star Oilco’s fuel card programs controls transactions per day, time of day, zip codes and other restrictions for use, as well as e-receipts which provide real time alert every time a card is used.

Unlike a Prepaid Visa or Mastercard though we gear the security features to follow a vehicle not a human being.  We set the controls to match the reality of the vehicle that needs gas, diesel, propane, maintenance, or a hotel.  Instead of a card issued to a human it follows the company vehicle.  Your drivers and employees are held responsible for a secret PIN which will show up in e-Receipts, reports, and invoices by their full name.  The cards follow with the keys of your vehicles controlled by your Dispatcher and other Managers.

Star Oilco’s fleet card offering is focused just on fleet needs.  Realistically all fleets are facing turn over of employees. Hassling with baby sitting a credit card budget daily while still giving an employee a credit card they can spend on anything isn’t a real solution.  We are focused on the fuel need of fleets and have features prepaid credit cards do not.








The biggest difference.  We have prepaid controls without having to tie up your cash in a prepaid program.   As fuel prices change your ability to use a credit card and their terms can move without notice.  Our terms stay the same and for credit worthy businesses we are thinking of you in terms of gallons not a arbitrary dollar number.  The biggest example is the reality of volatile fuel prices.

Fueling a fleet is a gallon game, not a dollar budget.  With a prepaid credit card you will always have to examine your budget for fuel monthly changing your exposure to theft.  The real downside of this occurs when prices spiral above $3 a gallon. Not only do you have to increase your credit exposure (and possibly tie up cash in a deposit dependent on the terms of the card) so does the likelihood theft will occur. A Star Oilco Pacific Pride or CFN fleet card operating on the Fuel Man network sets your limits by the approved products, the gallons per day, and transactions per day.  This limits your exposure to theft not in an arbitrary and ever changing dollar figure but the actual fuel a driver needs.

Another reality about fuel.  Retail fuel sellers hate paying a credit card processing fee. They pass that through with a credit price.  So not only does a prepaid card tie up your operating cashflow in a deposit, you pay a higher than cash price for the fuel you buy.  It is also estimated that moving from a retail gas station and convenience store fueling method to a commercial Pacific Pride or CFN site will save you ten minutes per fueling transaction.  Being a commercial only island there are smaller lines saving you measurably on driver labor.

Pacific Pride and CFN also have stand alone 24-hour/7-day/365-year access commercial fueling sites with high flow diesel.  For operations running all hours commercial access is a profound improvement over retail.  These sites being priced not from a retail credit card price but a wholesale plus basis.  This being a quantifiable and transparent way to negotiate a fair and competitive price for fuel.

If you want to look at Star Oilco’s approach to fuel cards call us or leave a message in the form below.

We look forward to helping you secure your fleet fueling easily while saving money on your total cost of fuel.

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