Best Fuel Cards for Self-Employed & Sole Traders

Explore the benefits of fuel cards and the best fuel cards for the self-employed and sole trader business owners.

Updated: May 21, 2024
Matt Crabtree

Written By

Matt Crabtree

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Running your own business comes with numerous business costs and responsibilities. So, when a product comes along to make your working life slightly easier, you need to grab it with both hands!

Fuel cards help you manage your fuel expenses fully, recording your transactions and ensuring your admin tasks are simple. You could also save money on your fuel costs.

But, which fuel cards are best for self-employed and sole trader business owners? In this article, we will explore the benefits of fuel cards and the best fuel cards for the self-employed and sole trader business owners.

1. Fuel Genie★★★★★Click Here
2. Shell★★★★★Click Here
3. Texaco Fastfuel★★★★★Click Here
4. BP★★★★Click Here
5. Esso★★★★Click Here

What Is a Fuel Card?

A fuel card is a method of payment for fuel. You could receive a plastic fuel card or a digital fuel card to save inside the digital wallet of your mobile phone. 

A fuel card works to make fuel purchases simple. When paying for fuel at a fuel station, log into the app and make the payment at the pump. Or, if you have a plastic fuel card, beep your card with the fuel station cashier to make a payment.

As well as making your fuel payments faster to complete, you can also receive discounts for cheaper fuel and pick up reward or loyalty points with each purchase.

As a business owner, completing admin tasks can be a chore. When using a fuel card, you can easily download data related to fuel purchases within minutes, ready to use in your HMRC and accounting documents.

Are Fuel Cards Popular in Business?

The fuel card market in the US is currently over $497 billion and predicted to grow to almost $775 billion by 2032.

Fuel Card Market
Image: Market Research Future

The use of fuel cards grew significantly during the COVID pandemic as individuals switched to contactless and app payment methods in all areas of their lives. 

However, due to the benefits a fuel card can provide to your business, this is definitely a product that is here to stay.

At a Glance, Fuel Card Pros and Cons

For a clear look at the pros and cons of using a fuel card for the self-employed and sole traders, look no further than this section as we compare fuel cards:


✔️ Manage cash flow: Fuel cards for sole traders ensure you know how much your fuel costs total. It can be easy to forget about some occasions when you purchase fuel, omitting the fuel-spend from your accounts. Fuel cards help you to manage your cash flow and business fuel costs.

✔️ Save money: Some fuel cards for sole traders offer discounts of 5p or 10p per litre of diesel, saving you a substantial amount of money over time. In addition, there is no minimum spend for your fuel purchase.

✔️ Numerous fuel sites: With thousands of fuel sites located across the UK, there will always be fuel nearby so you can use your fuel card. Check with the fuel card provider so you know you are gaining excellent nationwide coverage.

✔️ Fast payments: Whether you beep a contactless fuel card or purchase fuel through the appropriate app, you can save time with faster payments, avoiding queues.


❌️ Limited fuel sites: Depending on the fuel card provider you use, you could be limited to certain fuel sites and their set prices. To gain the best value and the best network coverage, do your research first by reading our fuel card reviews below.

❌️ Fuel prices: If the card you are using prohibits some fuel stations, you might not be able to pay the best fuel price available.

❌️ Limited purchases: You can only buy fuel with a fuel card, stopping you from making purchases inside of the store, or requiring two separate purchases.

❌️ Fraud vulnerabilities: As with other payment cards, digital cards and digital wallets, your fuel card could be vulnerable to theft and fraud.

Best Fuel Cards for Self-Employed and Sole Traders — Reviews

Here are the best fuel cards for self-employed and sole traders.

1. Fuel Genie Fuel Card — Best for Low Fuel Prices

  • Use at big name supermarkets.
  • Receive some of the lowest available fuel prices.
  • Fuel sites at 1,350 locations.
  • Receive supermarket reward points.
  • HMRC-approved invoices.

The Fuel Genie Fuel Card is a great choice if you are looking for the cheapest supermarket fuel prices.

You need to watch every penny when you are self-employed or a sole trader and with Fuel Genie you can source the biggest bargains.

Use your Fuel Genie card at over 1,350 locations across the UK, finding fuel sites at big name supermarkets such as Tesco, Morrisons, and Sainsbury’s. You can also capitalise on collecting supermarket rewards points every time you top up your fuel.

You can also save time when completing your business admin tasks, using HMRC-approved invoices so you spend less time on paperwork.

2. Shell Multi-Network Fuel Card — Best for Toll Payments

  • Pay your M6 toll charge with your fuel card.
  • Competitive fixed fuel prices.
  • Fuel sites at 3,500 locations.
  • Additional security features.

The Shell Multi-Network Fuel Card is widely accepted across 3,500 fuel sites so you know there is always fuel close by. Prices are competitively fixed by Shell yet regularly reviewed to give you the best deal.

Shell also creates their own fuel options, some of which are the best fuel choices on the market. For example, Shell FuelSave Diesel is renowned for increasing your vehicle efficiency and can only be purchased from Shell fuel sites.

The Shell Multi-Network card provides your account with additional security features so you know your money is safe and protected from fraud. You can also connect your fuel card to the Velocity app for on-the-go convenience.

3. Texaco Fastfuel Fuel Card — Best for Zero Advance Payments

  • Use at over 3,800 fuel stations.
  • Save up to 10p per litre on diesel.
  • No hidden costs or advance payments.
  • View fuel analysis reports online 24/7.

The Texaco Fastfuel Fuel Card is a good choice if you are looking for zero advance payments as a self-employed business owner or sole trader.

You can use your fuel card at over 3,800 fuel stations nationwide, with no hidden costs or advance payments applicable. If diesel is your fuel of choice, you can secure a discount of 10p per litre, helping you with your daily business costs.

The Texaco Fastfuel card will also provide you with online reports anytime of the day, any day of the week. Simply log into your account to view the fuel analysis report you need.

4. BP Plus Fuel Card — Best for App Payments

  • Use at over 3,400 fuel stations.
  • BP fuel sites are common nationwide.
  • Use the BPme payment app to pay for fuel.
  • View fuel analysis reports online 24/7.

The BP Plus Fuel Card will save you time and prevent queueing when using the BPme payment app. Make your fuel payments quick and easy so you can get back on the road.

Use the BP Plus card at over 3,400 fuel sites, providing you with confidence so you know there is always fuel nearby. 90% of people in the UK live within 5 miles of a BP fuel station so you can have peace of mind and know you are covered.

Use the online fuel analysis reports enhancing your use of the BP Plus card, allowing you to see your fuel purchases visually at any time of the day or night.

5. Esso National Fuel Card — Best for Coverage

  • Use at over 3,400 fuel stations.
  • Choose a fixed weekly price card.
  • Opt for pump prices or fixed prices.
  • Pay using the Esso app.
  • HMRC-approved invoices.

The Esso National Fuel Card encompasses a vast UK network with over 3,400 fuel sites to choose from when opting for sole trader fuel cards.

Choose a fuel card that suits your needs and your circumstances, opting to pay either pump prices or fixed weekly prices, whichever you prefer. You can make payments using the Esso app, ensuring you never need to wait in a queue to pay for fuel again.

You can also make your admin tasks faster and more straightforward with HMRC-approved invoices.

Leading Fuel Cards for Self-Employed & Sole Trades: The Verdict

If keeping prices as low as possible is your dominant concern, choose the Fuel Genie fuel card and take advantage of the low fuel prices offered at leading supermarket fuel sites. 

You can enjoy numerous benefits as well as the lower prices, such as gaining reward or loyalty points with each fuel purchase.

However, if premium fuel is what you are looking for when topping up your vehicle, look no further than the Shell Multi-Network card. You can purchase premium fuel at thousands of fuel sites and charge your M6 toll fee to your card.

Related Guides:


Can I purchase other items with a fuel card?

Will I pay more tax when using a fuel card?

Can I purchase cheaper fuel with a fuel card?

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