Anyone know if big commercial trucks follow different rules? One of my employees husand is truck driver with his own business as an independent contractor. I told her about the PenFed card and she got really excited. But the skeptic in me always wonders where the catch is with potentially lucrative arrangements like getting 5% cash back on gas when your are spending about $2000 per week filling up your rig with diesel. That;s MASSIVE savings. Maybe too massive.
Any experience with this? I know PenFed says 5% cash back when "paid at the pump". The Visa code that works is 5542. But I wonder if certain pumps made for commercial vehicles at those big truck stops have a different code. After all, if a large chunk of the truck fleet business was using this card with 5% back, it would cost a fortune.
Any truck drivers out there have the skoop on this??
Thats an interesting point. I assume the Amex BCP would work given that it includes all purchases at gas stations. That is at least 3% cash back. Wonder if they would flip out with that kind of purchases.
The BoA 123 Cash Rewards visa caps the 3% gas at the purchase of $1500 quarterly. Discover does the same with that 5% cashback on gas. I would assume that PenFed does something similar.
Both the PenFed and AMEX BCP are uncapped. Haven't read through the details, but possible that there are exclusions in there commercial purchases etc. But rewards are uncapped.
Darn I was hoping we had a crafty truck driver in our midst to shed some light on this.
I think some ambitious trucker should try. Even the 3% of AMEX would be very nice and pretty sure AMEX would work, but the question is how long before they stop it if ever. I know truckers have some kind of fuel discounts. Is the 3% better? Since AMEX's transactions fees are higher, they might not even care.
A lot of the "18" wheelers you see on the road are fleet, and have fuel cards issued by their company (who have no doubt negotiated a discount with some fuel sellers, like Pilot, Flying J etc). I doubt there's any chance of PenFed or AMEX allowing a fleet trucking company to use those discounts (those are usually personal cards and I think both AMEX and PenFed have biz cards they might allow trucking companies to have).
On the other hand, knowing a few drivers, I'd doubt many owner\operators would qualify for PenFed's card (and once listing what they do, they might not be granted the 5% back card) or AMEX's card for those purposes. I remember reading somewhere on AMEX's site that personal cards couldn't be used for business purchases that would grant personal level rewards. Part of the rewards agreements IIRC.
Also, those rewards would throw a monkey wrench of a headache into the mix when it came to taxes for either group.
Just to add to Ry's logic...
Many of those companies do negotiate prices with major truck stops and those prices per gallon go into the thousands of a dollar, instead of hundreds that we pay. That adds up when you think about companies that run thousands of trucks at a time and each truck is taking on over 500 gallons of fuel a week. Now owner operators that lease onto major carriers would most likely get a larger benefit by using the rate of the company they leased on to.
That leaves owner operators that find their own loads or have set contracts. These are the truck drivers that make real money (or get real hungry). The problem is that all truck stops have two fuel rates, one for cash and one for charge. I have not driven tractor trailer in over 5 years, so I am not sure what the price difference is today. When a truck driver pays by ComCheck, they still get the cash rate. The reason is that once the ComCheck is certified it is baiscally a cashiers check. Is the price difference close enough to make a 5% bonus worthwhile?
1 BIG problem with truck stops.....most up-charge .10 cents a gallon for using a cc. Granted diesel fuel is running $3.50 to $5 a gallon, that coud be a .171/2 to .25 cents a gallon discount, minus a 10 cent a gallon up-charge for using a cc. It could be ha huge savings a year, if you had a combination of several cards to pull the deed off.