• Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024

North East Connected

Hopping Across The North East From Hub To Hub

How Fuel Cards Help Businesses to Manage Travel Expenses

ByDave Stopher

Dec 24, 2021

Running a large fleet is no child’s play. You need to ensure your drivers, customers, and HRMC are all happy. Fuel cards save your business time and money by helping your company to increase its efficiency and profitability.  

Improving your vehicle expenses can save you thousands of pounds every year. Also, a fuel card, lets business owners save on taxes, target inefficient vehicles for replacement, and set fuel-efficiency goals. In this article, we tell you how to maximize the gains of your fuel card. Read on to learn more. 

Separate your Personal Finances from Business Finances

Although it is convenient when you use one calendar, credit card, or email address, we recommend having work-specific accounts and finances to enable you seamlessly track expenses. 

Discourage employees from using company fuel cards to pay for fuel for their cars. Also, all work appointments and meetings should be booked on the work calendar. It is a lot easier to track down car or travel expenses when you keep all records of client engagements in a central place. 

Separating business and personal mileage is sure to keep your finances more organized. Sorting out your mileage expenses rebates on income taxes becomes effortlessly. It also reduces wear and tear on company vehicles.

Prioritize Documenting and Managing Car Expenses

Keeping records of vehicle expenses enables you to accurately document the total expenses of your company vehicles. It also reduces guesswork and make tracking and paying for expenses a lot simpler. It will also be easier for you to tell that a vehicle is more expensive to repair than to replace. 

Keeping these records manually can be a tough task. It’s common for fleets to accumulate large amounts of small receipts from paying the toll with cash, fueling, or repairs. One solution is to put an accordion folder in every vehicle to store the receipts. However, you have to collect the receipts regularly, sort them, and then hold them for the accountant. You also have to deal with refunding employees and also reconciling expenses with payments and bills. Losing these crucial documents is equivalent to losing cash.  

And in terms of loss, how are you paying for your fuel? Are you using traditional cards or fuel cards? Electronic RFID tags and fuel cards help put expenses together and eliminate the need to keep troves of paperwork in managing a fleet. If you get the right fuel card, you won’t have to save those receipts. This is undoubtedly the simplest option for most businesses. It also eliminates employee expense report processing, as well as substantially, reducing the chances of fuel fraud and unauthorized spending. Additionally, most fuel card programs have detailed reporting and controls to allow you to switch on or off fuel card access. 

Better tracking of the expenses of your fleet will help give you a more accurate view of your travel costs, in addition to saving you money. 

Document mileage and maintainance of car-specific records.

Fleet managers should track expenses and mileage by vehicle. This has several benefits:

Expense tracking uncovers poor driving practices, poor choices about fuel locations, and maintenance that’s being neglected or delayed. You can then take appropriate action. 

When you track vehicle-specific maintenance and fuel expenses separately, you can pin each expense to the specific vehicle. This enables you to not only track maintenance and fuel costs, but also keep tabs on the vehicles that are proving too expensive to run and need to be replaced. 

Vehicle mileage and operating costs can be a crucial tax deduction for certain businesses. While it may not be realistic to maintain daily logs of mileage for some company owners, you can still better your travel expenses management practices. This also boosts your income-tax deductions. During tax computation, your accountant finds it easy to compare your client meeting mileage to figure out the total number of miles you drove for business purposes for the year. 

The right fuel card for your fleet will come in handy for you here again. Make sure each of your drivers or cars have a separate card. 

Take advantage of fuel discounts and rebates.

Whether your business has a handful of cars for staff, or you depend on a large fleet with tens of cars, you get to enjoy one kind of rebate or another on diesel or gasoline with a fuel card. The savings may be in terms of cents per gallon discount in some cases. This is especially true when you fill up at locations that belong to a proprietary network.  Volume-based plans, on the other hand, pay you back in terms of rebates that are tiered to appreciate heavy users.

Automate your payments.

Gone are the days when only multi-national corporations took advantage of today’s automated payment technology and invoicing. Even newly established companies can enjoy the advantages of plans for tracking and paying for fuel. Automating payments and lowering risks help you save time and money. This way, you won’t have to miss one due date. Also, you benefit from timely and accurate expense reports that make compiling tax reports and P&L statements a breeze. 

Conclusion

Ultimately, proper tracking and record-keeping of mileage and fleet expenses will not just save you money on your travels, but also makes your taxes less cumbersome and cheaper to do. Also, it puts a trove of high-quality and accurate data at your fingertips that you can use to streamline your business operations. With fleet fuel cards, this needs not to be stressful or difficult. It eliminates a lot of legwork and frees you to focus on your core business. 

Does your fuel card program give you convenience and detailed reporting that let you measure your vehicle performance? If not, then you may want to speak with a specialist today to understand what you can do to maximize the advantages of your fleet card. These experts will assist you and ensure your fuel card gives you the benefits you deserve.