Truck drivers deserve some perks here and there, and where better than at truck stops. After all, a truck driver will stop at dozens of truck stops throughout the week, either for fuel, trucker showers or for trucker parking. Oh, and food, don’t forget about food.
Truck stop restaurants, buffets and fast food establishments are all good reasons to stop at a truck stop. So in the mix of all of this are truck stop reward programs. Truck driver loyalty to particular truck stop brands is rewarded with points and freebies. But not all truck stop rewards programs are worth the effort. Here is a look at the best rewards programs at truck stops and why they are winners.
My Love’s Rewards
Love’s Travel Stops is one of the biggest national truck stop chains in North America. So how does the My Love’s Rewards program measure up?
- You earn points based on your level, ranging from Base status to Gold status. The higher your status, the more you benefit.
- To be a Base status you have to buy up to 499 gallons of fuel in a month; at the Diamond status you are buying at least 1,500 gallons of fuel a month. You have to maintain the purchasing amount in order to keep your status.
- You earn a free shower and free fountain drink refill with a minimum of 50 gallons of fuel purchased. However, you have to use this within 7 days if you are at Base status; you have 10 days to use it at the Gold status.
- You get points per gallon fueled or per dollar spent on merchandise that qualifies. One point for Base status, two points for Gold status, three points for Platinum status, and four points for Diamond status. Each point is worth one cent. So you would need 100 points to earn buck.
- You have to have 500 points, which is the equivalent of $5, in order to redeem your rewards. The points expire if you haven’t used them in a year.
Pilot Flying J My Rewards
The My Rewards program at Pilot Flying J is very similar to the My Love’s Rewards program. However, the Pilot Flying J program offers some extra perks including:
- You can get an extended shower credit in which you gain extra showering time for free.
- Points can be used for Wi-Fi service at the Pilot Flying J truck stops.
- On your birthday you get Birthday Rewards during that entire month.
- Dumping fees are decreased to $7, compared to $10, for professional drivers in the My Rewards program.
- You can print off a coupon for 10 percent off at Denny’s or a Rolling Strong Discount.
When comparing the Love’s rewards program with the Pilot Flying J program, the latter has Love’s beat by a long shot.
Petro and TravelCenters of America’s Ultra One Rewards
Petro and TAs (TravelCenters of America) utilize the super fancy sounding rewards program called Ultra One. That is the base level, whereas there is also Ultra One Expediter and Ultra One Coach.
- For Ultra One cardholders the benefits are geared at professional drivers.
- Ultra One Expediter is aimed at expeditors, such as FedEx drivers or regional truck drivers.
- Ultra One Coach is for professional passenger haulers.
The main differences for commercial truck drivers is with the amount of fuel that must be purchased for free shower credits. With the Expediter card drivers get a free shower if they buy 50 gallons of fuel within 5 days. Drivers with the Ultra One are required to buy at least 50 gallons at once in order to get a shower.
As for the reviews of the perks, the Ultra One Rewards program doesn’t’ offer as many perks as the My Rewards program at Pilot Flying J. While the points aren’t supposed to expire from the Ultra One program, truck drivers have reported that their points have been removed due to inactivity within a few months’ span. Sounds a little fishy to remove points if they don’t expire, and drivers note this as a reason not to bother with this rewards program.
Choosing the Best Truck Stop Rewards Program
In reality you aren’t going to drive out of your way and off your route in order to get points on your truck stop rewards card. It’s not worth it in the long run. Truck drivers are going to stop at truck stops along their way, choosing among those with the best fuel rates and with amenities they prefer. Cleanliness is always an overarching factor, and ample trucker parking is another plus. So rather than choosing a single rewards program to participate in, get a rewards card at every truck stop you stop at. That way you are able to gain rewards and perks simply for stopping at the truck stops you would have chosen anyway.