Edenred Essentials Review: Is it the Best Fuel Card Available?

A trucker fills up his truck with a gas pump

Whether you need fuel cards for your truckers or your corporate fleet, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of what the card does before making a final decision. To help you out, we’ve put together this comprehensive article on the Edenred Essentials fuel card.

Read on to find all the details you need on benefits, drawbacks, pricing, and comparison with competitors, so you can decide if Edenred is the right choice for your fleet.

Edenred Essentials: The Key Takeaways

  • The Edenred Essentials fuel card comes in two service tiers: The Fuel Only plan, which provides cards and software for gas and electric vehicles, and the Fuel & More plan, which adds the ability to pay for tolls, maintenance, and other related expenses.
  • You can use Edenred’s fuel card anywhere Visa cards are accepted, and the accompanying software includes real-time spending controls like limit restrictions or increases, as well as automatic reporting.
  • The Edenred Essentials fuel card is available for $3 per card per month, with up to $0.04 back per gallon of gas purchased.
Edenred Essentials logo
Edenred Essentials
Pricing $3 monthly per month
Quick overview

Offering two service tiers, the Edenred Essentials fuel card is a wonderful choice if you're looking for a card that scores highly for security features.

You can spend at any Visa-compatible gas, meaning it has extremely wide acceptance. And while it has lower fuel discounts per gallon than some competitors like Comdata and RTS, it does have more advanced real-time management controls than those options.

Pros

Use for diesel, gasoline, EVs, non-fuel purchases at anywhere that accepts Visa

High security including pin codes and EMV chips

Detailed interactive dashboard showing fuel spend information

Cons

Lower rebate per gallon than some other fuel cards

Foreign transaction fees (3%)

No live chat customer support

Pricing
Card fees Rebate
$3 1¢-4¢ per gallon

What Is Edenred?

Edenred is a popular services and payments platform that helps companies and their employees manage expenses. It currently serves almost a million corporations and 50 million employees.

Through features like fuel cards, mobile apps, and expense management systems, Edenred makes it easier for employees to make company-related purchases and for companies to keep track of these purchases.

The Edenred Essentials Fuel Card Explained: Is It Any Good?

A fuel card is a payment card used by businesses to manage fuel expenses for their fleet. It allows employees to purchase fuel at authorized locations while providing the company with detailed expense tracking, spend controls, and money back per gallon of gas purchased. This simplifies fuel purchasing and helps you monitor and control fuel costs.

In this Edenred review, we examine its fuel card offerings so you can find the perfect option for your business and save the most money possible.

Benefits of the Edenred Essentials fuel card

  • Two service tiers: Edenred offers a Fuel Only plan and a Fuel & More plan. Fuel Only includes cards and spend controls for gas and electric vehicles. Fuel & More provides the same, plus the ability to pay for tolls, maintenance, parking, car washes, and more.
  • Visa compatibility: Since Edenred’s fuel card is under the Visa umbrella, it’s accepted by most gas stations, EV charging stations, and service centers. The card also comes with Visa Roadside Dispatch for towing services and Visa Zero Liability Waiver, which safeguards against financial losses from rogue employees.
  • Real-time controls: Your employees’ spending behavior can be monitored from both mobile and desktop devices, with the ability to restrict spending, increase limits, review declined transactions, and more in real-time.
  • Automatic reports: Whether you want to review all fleet purchases or activity for a single employee, Edenred allows you to export the data to an organized Excel spreadsheet. You can categorize transactions by when they occurred, what items were purchased, which group made the purchases, and more. This makes it much easier to hone in on troublesome employees or identify bad spending patterns.
  • Robust security features: When your drivers receive their new Edenred Essentials fuel cards, they’ll each need to set their own PIN codes, which prevents unauthorized people from using the card. Additionally, the card uses EMV chip technology, which includes advanced encryption to safeguard cardholder information and substantially reduce the risk of skimming and counterfeit fraud.

Drawbacks of the Edenred Essentials fuel card

  • No live chat option: We were disappointed to find only two contact methods for customer service: a phone number and a link to the FAQ page. A live chat option would provide more convenience for those who prefer not to use the phone, particularly for minor issues.
  • Foreign transaction fees: Every foreign transaction with Edenred’s fuel card incurs a 3% transaction fee. For businesses with extensive international operations, these fees can accumulate quite quickly.

Price of the Edenred Essentials Fuel Card

The Edenred Essentials fuel card is available for $3 per month per card, which can get expensive if you have to provide a fuel card to 1,000 employees in your fleet. But as long as the fuel rebates are more than $3 per employee per month, the cost is easily justifiable.

Edenred’s fuel rebates operate on a tiered system, with higher rebates offered for higher monthly fuel usage. Here’s a breakdown of the rates:

Gallons Used per MonthRebate
1–3,999 gallons$0.010
4,000–9,999 gallons$0.015
10,000–14,999 gallons$0.020
15,000–19,999 gallons$0.025
20,000–24,999 gallons$0.030
25,000–29,999 gallons$0.035
30,000–9,999,999 gallons$0.040

A few additional price considerations for the Edenred card:

  • You can choose to be billed weekly, semi-monthly, or monthly
  • Paper invoices cost $10 per invoice
  • Late payments incur a $50 fee
  • Bounced checks incur a $50 fee

Though the per-gallon rebates are quite low, Edenred offers great transparency and simplicity of price structure. Edenred customers can rest assured they’ll never discover unexpected charges.

How Does the Edenred Essentials Fuel Card Compare?

We stack Edenred’s fuel card up against those of its closest competitors, Comdata and RTS, to help you decide which is best suited for your business.

Comdata vs. Edenred

edenred essentials card and a comdata card
An Edenred Essentials card and a Comdata Data Card.

Comdata is a large services and payments platform that offers four types of fuel cards for truckers: the Fleet Card and the Connect Card for small fleets, and the Onroad Card and Comdata Mastercard for large fleets. Each Comdata card has a different specialty:

  • The Fleet Card is the basic fuel card with discounts and its own line of credit
  • The Connect Card also offers fuel discounts but only works with prepaid funds
  • The Onroad Card offers the same benefits of the Fleet Card does, but also gives your drivers access to their personal funds, like salaries and bonuses.
  • The Comdata Mastercard is a more general business credit card that comes with benefits for fuel, maintenance, and other expenses

Comdata’s fuel cards work at more than 8,000 truck stops in the United States. The cards offer $0.10 off per gallon at Pilot Flying J stations, $0.25 off at TA Petro stations, and other discounts for other truck stops.

At first glance, this seems a much better deal than the rebates offered by Edenred, which cap at $0.04 back per gallon. However, Comdata’s monthly rates start at $8 per card—much higher than Edenred’s $3. Additionally, the Edenred Essentials fuel card works at any gas station that accepts a Visa card—this is vastly more than the 8,000 truck stops that are compatible with Comdata’s cards.

In short, choose Comdata over Edenred if you operate a trucking business, prioritize higher fuel discounts per gallon, and have access to the specific truck stops where Comdata’s cards offer significant savings.

Check out our full Comdata review for more information.

RTS vs. Edenred

Edenred Essentials card and RTS card
An RTS Mixed Fleet Fuel Card and a Edenred Essentials Card compared.

Like Comdata, RTS is a services and payments platform geared heavily towards trucking businesses. It offers three fuel cards:

  • The Fleet One Fuel Card is the most basic option, with fuel and maintenance discounts
  • The Self-Funded Fuel Card also offers fuel and maintenance discounts but is prepaid
  • The Mixed Fleet Fuel Card is ideal for large fleets, offering benefits for both diesel and non-diesel fuel purchases.

RTS’ fuel cards work at just over 3,000 truck stops in the United States—less than Comdata’s 8,000, and significantly less than Edenred’s compatibility with the entire Visa network. On the bright side, RTS gives all its users an average of $0.25 off per gallon at all compatible gas stations. However, this can’t be directly compared to Edenred’s maximum of $0.04 back per gallon, since RTS doesn’t provide information on monthly costs per card.

Finally, RTS’ only software offerings are a basic card lock feature and a mobile app that shows cheap gas stations based on your drivers’ routes. This feels quite basic compared to Edenred’s software—which has automated reporting, real-time spending limit restrictions and increases, and declined transaction reviews.

In short, choose RTS over Edenred if your truckers can benefit from the ~3,000 truck stops where RTS cards are accepted, while not requiring advanced software features for fleet management.

Take a look at our full RTS review for more details.

Verdict

The Edenred Essentials fuel card offers two service tiers, wide acceptance at any Visa-compatible gas station, strong security features, and real-time controls through its advanced software.

Compared to Comdata and RTS, it offers many more refueling options and more sophisticated management tools, but lower discounts per gallon and fewer benefits for truckers.

The Edenred Essentials fuel card is ideal for corporate fleets, delivery services, and companies with mixed fuel vehicle fleets needing broad acceptance.

If you want a fuel card but your credit score isn’t optimal, read our article on how to get a business fuel card without a credit check.

FAQs

What is the most accepted fuel card?
WEX, Voyager, and Edenred are among the most widely accepted fuel card providers across gas stations in the United States, with over 90% acceptance rates. However, to get the most out of your fuel card, be sure to balance wide acceptance with high discounts and rebates—it’s rare for a fuel card to have both.
Is it worth getting a fuel card?
For most businesses with a heavy trucking or driving component, fuel cards are absolutely worth it. They provide discounts or rebates for every gallon of gas purchased, as well as spend management software that can summarize spending data and decrease employee fraud.
Written by:
Robbie holds a BSc in Accounting and Finance from Centenary University, New Jersey. He’s worked as a staff accountant at Unity Bank and Kering (Gucci, Balenciaga), focusing on financial reporting, account reconciliation, and complex accrual analysis. In addition to banks and private companies, Robbie also has experience working in the luxury hospitality and construction sectors, giving him a well-rounded understanding of each sector’s unique needs.