Fuel prices are skyrocketing and a number of credit card companies are trying to bank on this opportunity by offering reward points, discounts, and cash backs to potential new customers. At a time when petrol and diesel prices are touching all-time high, more and more credit card offers on fuel purchases are flooding the market. In association with fuel companies like BPCL and HP, card companies have launched co-branded credit cards.
This week too, SBI card partnered with Bharat Petroleum to launch the RuPay contactless card, co-branded by BPCL and SBI. The RuPay card promises 13X reward points on every Rs 100 spent on fuel purchases at Bharat Petroleum petrol pumps. And on every transaction of up to Rs. 4,000, it gives a 1 per cent fuel surcharge waiver.
You might come across credit card agents at petrol pumps, who make big promises but before making this decision, you must widen your knowledge horizon on how these cards work.
Fuel cards can prove to be very beneficial and money saver for those who travel a lot usingtheir vehicles. This is because the more fuel these cardholders buy, they would get more rewards, cashbacks, or discounts. But the credit card firms work in association with oil companies and put forth a number of conditions to unlock the rewards or a refund. If your daily or monthly fuel expenditure is high, fuel cards would be rewarding.
Check out these factors before taking up a fuel card –
Consider actual costs and compare
Before purchasing the fuel cards, you must consider the factors including the joining price, overall cost of the card, and annual fee. Generally, credit card companies have fixed annual spend thresholds, and once you cross the said bar, the annual feeis waived off. But if you fail to spend the amount, you will have to pay this fee and it will impact the overall savings you would want to make.
Read the list of petrol pumps
If you are already using a co-branded fuel credit card, you will get rewards only if you use it at specific fuel stations. Hence, before applying for the fuel card, read the list of petrol pumps where you can use it and redeem reward points.
Assess your spending habits
Apply for the fuel card that matches your spending habits. The reward points on fuel credit cards can be redeemed against fuel spends at specific outlets. However, reward points can also be redeemed as gift vouchers.
Make sure that you compare finance charges, which are applicable in case the credit card bill payments are delayed.
If you have bought a fuel card, make sure you keep in mind the expiry date to redeem the reward points. There are some companies that have no expiry date. Hence, it is always important to read all the terms and conditions before making the purchase.