Due to the pandemic, public transport went haywire last year. Daily commuters were left in a dilemma with the uncertainty of availing buses and cabs. Some went for a permanent solution—owning a car. Sure enough, cars can provide you with an unmatched power of movement at your will.
However, the fuel price hike became a major issue, and people had to regret or rethink their decision. There is absolutely no reason for such deliberation because you can slash fuel prices with your fuel credit card. All the major Indian banks and financial institutions have their specialized fuel credit cards, e.g. the Bajaj Finserv RBL Bank SuperCard, so that you can wade through these times of crisis with ease.
Still, the question arises, how to choose the best credit card? There are a plethora of options when it comes to fuel credit cards. The best way to sift through all these cards is to look at the specs of the cards you like.
Try to interpret the cashback points, the instant discount, the annual fee, the surcharge waiver etc. to select the best card. It can be fulfilling to go for the cards that are more versatile. For instance, wouldn’t it be better if the cashback/reward points from the fuel credit card could be used for grocery shopping? The more a fuel credit card comes close to hitting this sweet spot of versatility, the better it is.
Factors that Should Influence Your Choice of Fuel Credit Card
These are the factors you should pay attention to while applying for a fuel credit card.
Travel Partners: Your fuel credit card might not give you the freedom to avail cashback and discount by shopping at any petrol pump. Make sure you refill only at pumps that endorse the companies favoured by your bank.
Savings: Make a rough calculation of how much you will save if you opt for the card. Invest in the card if it seems good enough of a deal.
Surcharge Waivers: The best credit card gives you reasonable discounts whenever a surcharge is applied to fuel prices.
Spend Limit: It does not benefit the customer if the spending limit required to access the cashback is too high. It makes no sense if you have to spend unnecessarily to attain the benefits of a credit card.
Annual Fee: Before you invest in a fuel credit card, make sure that the annual fee is reasonable. Opt for the card only if you are confident that your savings can easily break even with the fee.
Redemption Process: Make sure that the redemption process of the rewards is simple enough. You should be able to redeem the rewards the next time you spend at a fuel station.
Compare a Few Fuel Credit Cards
Let us now compare cards in terms of their reward and cashback policy.
The Bajaj Finserv RBL Bank SuperCard extends a 1-3% fuel surcharge waiver on any fuel purchase between 400 INR and 4000 INR. Additionally, you can also avail cashbacks and reward points on your fuel expenses.
The HDFC Bharat Cashback Card allows you 5% off on fuel and bill payment. This discount also applies when you book a ticket on IRCTC. You do not need to make a minimum transaction to avail of this offer. However, the maximum monthly cashback is limited to 150 INR.
The ICICI Bank HPCL Coral Visa/MasterCard offers you a flat 2.5% off on purchases above 500 INR, with a maximum cashback of 100 INR per month. By this comparison, the HDFC card has quite an edge over the ICICI card.
The Standard Chartered Titanium Credit Card cuts you a better deal with a maximum cashback of 250 INR. The minimum spend, however, is higher than that of the HDFC card, at 750 INR.
The BPCL SBI Card gets you a 4.25% cashback which is equivalent to 13x reward points, redeemable with your next purchase. The reward points can be redeemed not only at fuel stations, but at movies, restaurants or grocery shopping. Among the mentioned cards, the ICICI card has the least annual fee at 199 INR.
Some fuel credit cards have tie-ups with the major oil retailers. This advantage gives them the scope to provide more benefits to their customers. The Indian Oil Axis Bank Credit Card or the Citibank Indian Oil Credit Card (Platinum) gives you bonus points redeemable during the next purchase.
The Citibank card waives off its annual fee of 250 INR if your annual spending exceeds the 30,000 INR limit. The Indian Oil HDFC Credit Card lets you use 100 reward points every month on bill payments and grocery shopping. You are also entitled to 1 fuel point on every spending of 150 INR, which is a lucrative deal for many consumers.
Apply for a Fuel Card
You can easily apply for a fuel credit card online by logging on to the relevant bank website. You will only need to fill in a few simple details and you are good to go.
You need to take into account a few important factors like savings, spend limits, surcharge waivers and the annual fee when you choose the perfect fuel card. Compare the major credit cards and their benefits, and apply online for the one that suits you the best.