Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B), also known simply as Shell, is one of the oldest and most recognizable brands in the world. The company was established in 1897 as the Shell Transport and Trading company and sold kerosene to customers in Asia. The company operates in 70 countries globally and produces more than 3.7 million barrels of oil equivalent daily. Here we look at Shell's credit card and other payment options and the benefits they offer.

Shell Payment Cards

Shell offers credit and payment cards in seven countries: Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Malaysia, Norway, the Philippines and the United States. Below are the card programs available in the U.S.:

  • Shell Fuel Rewards Card. This is a closed loop card, also known as single purpose credit card, that can only be used at Shell stations. Citigroup issues the card.
  • Shell Fuel Rewards MasterCard. This is a Shell-branded credit card that can be used anyplace where MasterCard is accepted. Citigroup issues the card.
  • Shell Saver Card. This card is similar to a debit card and is linked to a checking account. There are no enrollment or annual fees.
  • Shell Refillable Card. This refillable gift card is ideal for young drivers and those on a budget. Users can load as much as $300 onto the card.
  • Shell Fuel Rewards Program. This is not a payment card. It is a customer loyalty card that offers discounts on gas, dining, travel and online shopping.

Shell maintains a website for online applications. Depending on the card or program, required personal information will include name, address, contact phone number, driver's license information, checking account and other information required to perform a credit check.

Shell Payment Card Rewards & Benefits

Below are the benefits each card program offers:

  • Shell Fuel Rewards Card. Introductory savings include a discount of 30 cents per gallon on the first five fuel purchases. Afterwards, cardholders receive a discount of 10 cents per gallon. Other benefits include 10% rebates on the first $1,200 of non-fuel purchases at Shell stations.
  • Shell Fuel Rewards MasterCard. Same as above. In addition, cardholders receive a 2% rebate on the first $10,000 of dining and grocery purchases, and a 1% rebate on other purchases.
  • Shell Saver Card. Users receive a discount of 2 cents per gallon.
  • Shell Refillable Card. No discounts offered.
  • Shell Fuel Rewards Program. Customers receive a discount of 5 cents per gallon at gold status and 3 cents per gallon at silver status. Further fuel discounts are available on dining, online shopping and rental car spending.

Who Should Use a Shell Payment Card

Customers who frequent Shell stations would benefit from any of the company's card offerings, with the exception of the prepaid card. The Shell Fuel Rewards MasterCard would be good for any person who frequently uses a credit card to make purchases and pays off their bill each month. Those who use a car to travel regularly on business or for other reasons might find Shell's cards beneficial.

Alternatives

There are a number of competing card programs that offer discounts on gas purchases. These include:

  • ExxonMobil. The company's "Smart Card" provides an introductory discount of 10 cents per gallon for two months, then 6 cents per gallon thereafter.
  • PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature. This card offers 3x~5x points on gasoline purchases.
  • Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi. Customers can earn 4% rebates on eligible gas purchases at Costco on the first $7,000 per year, then 1% thereafter.

The Fine Print

The Shell Fuel Rewards Card and the Shell Fuel Rewards MasterCard have an annual percentage rate (APR) of 26.74% on purchases and 29.99% on cash advances. Citigroup charges up to $38 for late or returned payments.

Although the Shell Saver Card has no enrollment or annual fees, users could face a non-sufficient funds charge when funds are not available in the user's linked checking account.

The Bottom Line

Shell offers several options for people who want to save on gas purchases. Both of the company's credit cards offer savings at the pump and inside Shell stations. However, you don't need a credit card to accumulate rewards. Customers can also sign up for Shell's loyalty program to receive discounts on gas purchases.