This Deal Saves You 35 Cents Per Gallon on Gas, Comes With a Free Headache

A woman pumps her gas at a gas station.
Geribody/Getty Images

The Shell Fuel Rewards program could save you money at the pump… if you can figure it out.

I looked into it last year and my eyes glazed over, so I quickly went back to browsing my Facebook feed.

But now, Fuel Rewards is offering 35 cents off per gallon after your first fill-up of at least 5 gallons when you pay with Chase Pay.

The deal is only available to people who’ve never used Chase Pay to pay for gas at a Shell station. Since I’m a Chase cardholder and have never used Chase Pay or Fuel Rewards, I decided to give in to the marketing ploy and take another look.

If you have a Chase credit, debit or Liquid card, here’s how to get this deal without pulling your hair out. Because I’ve done that enough for both of us.

1. Register for the Fuel Rewards Program

Head over to the Fuel Rewards website and register for an account. It’s free and doesn’t require a credit or debit card to open. You’ll automatically qualify for Gold Status, which gets you 5 cents off per gallon for up to 20 gallons every day.

When you sign up, you’ll receive a card in the mail in seven to 10 days, but your Alt ID — the number you can use in lieu of your card — will be activated immediately. Your Alt ID is usually just your phone number.

2. Download the Chase Pay App

The Chase Pay app is different from Chase QuickPay and the Chase Mobile app, so you’ll probably have to download it. They do use the same login, though.

3. Add Fuel Rewards to Your Chase Pay Account

When you log in to your Chase account through Chase Pay, your eligible Chase cards will automatically be ready for use.

Within the app, tap the “Wallet” icon and then the “Loyalty Cards” tab. Tap the “+” icon, and then select “Shell” from the merchant list. Spoiler alert: It’s the only option right now. Enter your Fuel Rewards card number or Alt ID, then tap the “Add Card” button.

4. Head to the Nearest Shell Gas Station

As soon as you find your tank empty, locate the nearest participating Shell station. You can find them by tapping the wallet tab, tapping “Shell,” then tapping the “Find nearby locations” link. The nearest participating stations will pop up. Tap the one nearest you, then tap “Get directions” to open your navigation app.

If paying at the pump is an option, open the app, tap “Pay,” then tap “At the pump.” The Chase Pay app will locate you, then you can enter the pump number and approve the transaction. A code will appear on your screen — enter the code at the pump, and fill ‘er up.

5. Repeat Step 4

You’ll notice after your first fill-up that you only got 5 cents off per gallon. You’ll be ticked because you neglected to understand that you only get the 35-cent savings after your first fill-up.

So, you have to drive around until your tank is on “E” again, then repeat step four. There’s no minimum on this fill-up, but you only get to use it once, so choose wisely. The upside is that you can combine it with other rewards, including the standard 5 cents off you get as a Gold member.

This 35-cent reward expires on the last day of the month after you earn it, so this is a good one to try near the beginning of the month.

You can qualify for other rewards by linking a credit or debit card to your Fuel Rewards account and paying with that card at participating retailers and restaurants. Other rewards you can stack on the 35 cents off include:

  • 10 cents off for every $50 you spend at participating restaurants
  • 5 cents off for booking through Priceline
  • Up to 40 cents off for shopping at select retailers

All in all, it’s a lot of work to save less than $10, but if you’re a Shell fan or frequent shopper at one of its retail partners, it might be worth the work.

No need to rush. This deal runs until Dec. 31.

Jen Smith is a junior writer at The Penny Hoarder and gives tips on saving money and paying off debt on Instagram at @savingwithspunk. Chase Pay couldn’t find her location when she tried to pay with it at the pump.