How can fleet owners utilize idle FASTag balance for fuel expenses?

by | Jun 26, 2023

Got unused cash parked in your FASTag wallet?  

Here’s what you must do.

Never let your money be idle. Make your FASTag balance manage your end-to-end trip expenses.

If you run a fleet business, you’ve surely endured the misfortune of having idle FASTag balances. Even though the available balance was hefty, the inability to use it would have pushed you to manage trip expenses using random payment methods like cash, card, and UPI.

Now you need to understand that scattered payment modes negatively impact expense tracking, capital allocation, and reconciliation.

How can you resolve the issue?

Simple. By using a centralized digital wallet that allows you to optimally utilize your idle FASTag balance for trip expenses.

In this article, we’d like to focus more on fuel expenses, as a major chunk of the trip cost goes toward fuel consumption. Trucks account for at least 70% of diesel consumption in the country, and commercial vehicles use over 40 liters of diesel for every 100 km. With diesel costs about to hit Rs 100 per liter any day now, it is important that you use idle FASTag balance for fuel.

Before you understand how we enable fuel payments, let’s start off with a quick backstory.

How were fuel expenses handled conventionally?

In the past, fleet operators managed fuel expenses via fuel cards, keys, and standalone card locks. They accessed fuel expense data using the private keys issued by diesel-selling companies. These diesel firms totalized and split fuel expenses monthly or weekly.

Later, the key and card locks were replaced with technological advancements like fuel cards that were flexible, stored a wide range of data, and offered a wide range of benefits to fleet players. These cards were considered a natural fit for fuel payments as they enabled custom controls and spending visibility.

Fuel payment modes

Fleet owners pay for fuel in two primary modes.

  • Fuel co-brand credit/prepaid cards
  • Loyalty programs of the oil and gas companies

Banks collaborate with Oil Manufacture Companies (OMC) to launch fuel-co-branded credit and prepaid cards, providing a new banking layer for convenient fuel payments and strengthening ongoing relationships with fleet operators and businesses. The fleet operators benefit from banking services like contactless payments and accessible financing through a unified transaction management system.

The loyalty programs launched by Oil Manufacture Companies (OMC) like Shell, HPCL, IOCL, Essar Oil, Reliance, etc. work inherently with a Closed User Group (CUG) wallet. The fleet owner can onboard vehicles or get fuel cards and recharge their loyalty account. The money will be transferred to these fuel cards/vehicles and limits will be assigned.

For instance, Hindustan Petroleum offers DriveTrack Plus, which is HPCL’s loyalty program, via a prepaid fleet card on a robust fleet management system. The purchase of fuel and lubricants at all HPCL petrol pumps can be tracked, offering control, simplicity, security, and reward points. Likewise, Indian Oil’s XTRAPOWER, Nayara’s Essar Fleet Plus, and Bharat Petroleum’s smart fleet card programs are popular in the industry.

Transition to cardless fuel payments

As the fleet industry undergoes a digital transformation, fuel expense management programs have progressed to become more advanced, optimal, and efficient. Drivers now make fuel payments using both cardless (OTP-based solution) and fuel cards. Fuel transactions are made using the OTP sent to the registered drivers’ mobile numbers. However, in this OTP method, the vehicle number and drivers’ mobile numbers must be updated in the database to carry out fuel payments seamlessly.

Another prominent cardless payment mode utilizes lending services from NBFCs. In this method, the fleet owner doesn’t have to load the money for transactions; instead, they can obtain unsecured lending from any NBFC. The money will be loaded on behalf of the fleet owners into the loyalty accounts for fuel payments.

Though progressive, these fuel payment modes have their own setbacks. As the trip expenses are carried out from different sources, they pose challenges in fund management and reconciliation. Operational efficiency took a hit in several locations, making it difficult to track business performance. Operational costs became higher as the process required vast resource allocation.

Today’s advancement: Use multi-purpose FASTag wallet for fuel payments  

With the introduction and adoption of FASTag, toll payments became more convenient, fuel consumption was optimized, and waiting times were reduced. But as discussed earlier in the article, unspent money in the FASTag wallet evolved into a major challenge for fleet owners.

The best solution to resolve the issue of an idle FASTag balance is switching to a multi-purpose FASTag wallet.

QuikWallet, India’s first multi-purpose FASTag wallet is here!

QuikWallet helps fleet operators optimally utilize the unspent FASTag balance for all trip expenses.

Especially fuel. By leveraging collaborations with OMC providers and telematics operators, QuikWallet enables seamless fuel payments through a single source of payment.

In addition, this single wallet addresses all fund management challenges and tracks every expense from a centralized place. It opens up opportunities for fleet owners to load money whenever and wherever the drivers need to carry out fuel transactions. The drivers can also make payments via QR code, which is ubiquitously available even where POS machines are scarce.

Now QuikWallet FASTag usage is not limited to just tolls and fuel. It can be used for a whole spectrum of trip payments. The wallet is linked to a RuPay-powered card, enabling the driver to use the FASTag balance as a single source for all trip expenses and simplifying trip expense management for the fleet operators.

Ready to transform your fleet operations with India’s first multi-purpose FASTag?

Get in touch with our team today.