What are fuel charges?
Fuel charges are made at a gas pump; a customer typically swipes or taps their card, and then gets as much gas as they need. Ramp uses the VISA network, which processes fuel charges in a very specific way.
Why are these charges different?
The final purchase amount is uncertain at the time the card is swiped because the card swipe occurs before the gas fill-up. This means that an authorization hold (a pending charge) is temporarily put on your card, which is later changed to the amount actually spent on the gas purchase (note that if the temporary authorization exceeds your card limit, your card will be declined).
Here's an example of how a fuel transaction works:
- I swipe my card at the gas pump
- A pending charge between $100-$300 is immediately put onto my card
- I fill up my tank with $35 worth of gas, and leave the gas station
- The pending charge is later changed to $35, and clears
What are the limitations of using a Ramp card for fuel purchases?
The maximum allowed authorization amount may vary based on the gas station. Different stations may have lower caps for the maximum amount you can spend on fuel.
To pay for gas, you may do so at the pump and at the store. If you are paying at the store, then you may add additional items that will be still categorized as a gas purchase as long as it's below $100. We may add more granular restrictions upon request.
Note: Cards restricted to gas stations will also work for in-store purchases.
How can I get more than the merchant is authorizing per swipe?
We understand that this limitation is frustrating, and we're working on a solution for our customers. In the meantime, there are two things you can do to get more gas per swipe:
- Pay inside. When you pay at the cash register, you are not limited to their authorization amount.
- Pay multiple times. Although you can only get a certain amount of gas in a single charge, you can immediately run the card again, and fill up with more gas.
What are some best practices for using Ramp as a fuel card?
- Set up a category restriction to only allow fuel purchases
- Give fuel cards a high limit, to account for the temporary authorization holds that will be added by the gas station
- Create a specific submission policy for fuel cards