A fleet card or fuel card is used for payment of gasoline, diesel, and other fuels at gas stations. Fleet cards are also used to pay for vehicle maintenance and other expenses according to the choice of the fleet owner or manager. The card payment industry is expanding significantly,according to changing customer preferences and technological advancements. Fuel card provides a dynamic view of operations to fleet managers and helps drivers perform cashless payment for fuels or other expenses. Recently, fuel cards have been integrated with telematics to use GPS data along with purchase data to keep track of fleet and driver performance. According to a recent study by Fleetmatics, telematics has helped decrease fuel consumption by 573 million gallons per year, which in turn, has saved nearly US$2.2 Bn. Fleet cards help corporates simplify management as it eradicates the manual task of receipts, audit, and issuance of checks. Metrics, such as driving speed, route taken, refueling, trip schedule, and others, derived by using fuel cards help corporates manage their businesses. Real-time updates enable corporate firms monitor capital requirements and cash flow.
Fuel card helps reducefuel theftby using chip and pin cards and effective fuel monitoring. Moreover, fuel cards market are contributing to achieve merging of fragmented market of cash cards and fuel market.The global fuel card market is expected to face significant growth during the forecast period owing to the rise in demand for cashless fuel transactions and availability of a large number of value added services relatedto fuel cards. Furthermore, various loyalty offerings are used to retain customers with changing market space. All such factors are expected to drive the market during the forecast period.
The fuel card market can be segmented based on vehicle type, type of card, and geography. In terms of vehicle type, the market can be divided into heavy fleets and light fleets. Fuel cards help keep track of fleet expenses such as fuels, replacement vehicle rentals, truck repairs, and maintenance. A wide variety of fuel cards are available in the market; thus, in terms of card type, the market can be segmented into branded fuel cards, universal fuel cards, and merchant branded cards.Universal fuel cards provide universal insights and level 3 data capture. Level 3 data capture refers to the insights related to driver behavior,vehicle cost, and trends related to the agency. Based on geography,the fuel card market can be segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific (APAC), Middle East & Africa (MEA), and South America. The fuel card market in Asia Pacific is expected to expand significantly due to the increase in trend of cashless transactions.
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Certain challenges that hinderthe growth of the fuel card market include lack of consistency and presence of technical challenges caused by changing oil and fuel prices. Moreover, changing legal framework and rising consumer expectations are expected to restrain the market during the forecast period. However, growing competition in the market due to new entrants such as Fleetio, Fuelman, and othersare contributing to the growth of the market. Additionally, value added services provided by fleet cards are expected to drive the market during the forecast period.
Fuel card vendors are leveraging online channels and mobile applications to provide services, thus providing omni channel experience to consumers. To enhance the use of fuel cards, host card emulation is being adopted, which offerin-house payment solutions. Key players operating in the fuel card market are Chevron & Texaco Business, Shell Global, U.S. Bancorp Fuel card, British Petroleum (BP), WEX Inc., Comdata, Valero, FLEETCORRoyal Dutch, and Shell.