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Fuel expense planning as a small fleet

Kim Diggs

February 20, 2024

As a small fleet owner, a large portion of your operational spending goes to fuel, which must be planned for and controlled to maintain profitability and competitiveness.

The Best Way to Plan for Fuel Expenses

The first step toward efficient fuel expense budgeting is understanding the variables affecting fuel consumption. Tonnage must be taken into account; fuel consumption trends must be examined; and effective route planning must be employed to budget fuel costs properly.

How Tonnage Affects Fuel Consumption

Fuel consumption is directly impacted by tonnage, or the weight of your trucks’ cargo. Fuel usage rises when heavier loads need to be transported because they require more engine power. Accurate budgeting requires an understanding of the link between tonnage and fuel consumption.

Calculating Fuel Consumption Based on Tonnage

To accurately budget for fuel costs, determine fuel consumption based on tonnage. Calculate the average fuel economy of your fleet for various load weights. Fuel requirements for specific loads and routes can be estimated using past data and fuel usage trends.

Understanding Lane Density Strategies

Maximize your mileage by choosing lanes with lots of freight traffic. You can minimize empty miles and increase fuel efficiency by choosing loads along the same route. This tactic is beneficial for small fleets trying to cut fuel costs.

What Data Matters for My Fuel Budget?

There can be no fuel budgeting without data. Making educated decisions and identifying areas for improvement in your fuel expense planning is made possible by collecting and evaluating the right data. 

Analyzing Your Fuel Consumption Trends

To develop an accurate fuel budget, you must examine your fuel use trends over time. Examine past data to find trends and variations in fuel consumption. Consider variables including route modifications, seasonal variances, and vehicle upkeep. This analysis will assist you in projecting fuel costs more accurately.

Techniques to Build a Fuel Budget

Forecasting and historical data analysis are needed to build a fuel budget. Establish a baseline using historical data on your fuel consumption. Next, consider upcoming changes and their possible effect on fuel costs, such as fleet additions or route extensions. Incorporate fuel price estimates and industry trends to develop a comprehensive budget that supports your company’s objectives.

Leveraging Trucking Fuel Cards for Better Planning

Fuel cards for truckers can be valuable tools for owner-operators and small fleet owners who want to maximize fuel expense planning. These cards provide several advantages, such as cost tracking, discounts, and effective route planning. Let’s look at how to use fuel cards to get the most deals possible.

Efficient Route Planning for Maximum Savings

Fuel cards have tools for route planning, which assist you in determining the most economical routes for your travels. You can select routes that reduce fuel consumption and expenses by considering fuel pricing, traffic conditions, and tolls. Over time, this degree of efficiency can significantly affect your bottom line.

Don’t let fuel expenses weigh down your budget. Discover how savvy owners are using Triumph for their fuel discount and fast payment needs. To find out how much you could be saving with a Triumph fuel card, click here.