The Rose Barracks Express is one of many locations to use your Esso card. (Photo by: Payton Porter, USAG Bavaria Public Affairs)

 

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — The Esso card is a convenient way to pay for fuel, but certain policies and procedures for the retail sale of duty-free motor fuel affect authorized personnel in Germany.

 

The Esso card is a form of rationing introduced to help prevent over-purchasing high-demand goods such as gasoline. Because of the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with our host nation, there are still certain items that require a ration card for purchase, according to AE Regulation 600-700.

 

An example of modern day rationing, the transaction and the ability to monitor the transaction prints on the receipt.


 

“The receipt will not only show the remaining dollar balance for the account, but it will also show the remaining ration balance, the vehicle registration expiration date, and the actual card stock expiration date. This may not be the case for ESSO receipts. Some will only have the Euro amount,” said Ruth Wagner, ESSO Fuel Card Program Manager, Retail Operations Europe Region Headquarters.

 

The following information includes tips and procedures provided by the Retail Operations Europe Region Headquarters and supported by Army in Europe Regulation 600-17 on usage of fuels cards:

 

Privately-Owned Vehicle (POV) ESSO fuel card reminders:

 

  • If you receive a new license plate, for any reason, you must get a new ESSO fuel card that matches your new registration document.

 

  • The fuel card is license plate and ID number specific — when your license plate or ID changes, renew your fuel card.

 

  • Names on fuel card and registration must match, and fuel cards can only be issued in the presence of the owner and/or co-owner.

 

  • Fuel card accounts are opened under the sponsor’s social security number.

 

  • Fuel card rations are individual to a vehicle, but money on an account is available for ALL registered vehicles. 

 

  • A Power of Attorney may authorize you to drive someone else’s vehicle, but it does not allow purchasing tax free fuel under the fuel card program.

 

  • When your vehicle registration expires, the fuel card also expires. There is no grace period.  The card is deactivated at midnight on the day the registration expires.

 

STV (Short Term Vehicle) ESSO fuel card reminders:

 

  • The STV registration will expire at midnight on the last day on the registration document. Any refueling after this day will result in paying the full price without the possibility of a refund. Tax free fuel may not be purchased again until the registration is renewed and the fuel card replaced.

 

  • The fuel card is license plate and ID number specific — when your license plate or ID changes, renew your fuel card.

 

  • Fuel card accounts are opened under the sponsor’s social security number only, even if the sponsor’s name is not on the Customs document. Names on the STV registration document must be on the fuel card.

 

  • Fuel card rations are individual to a vehicle, but money on an account is available for ALL registered vehicles. 

 

  • Buying fuel at an ESSO gas station with an expired fuel card or STV document will result in paying the German economy fuel prices.

 

  • Exceeding your ration at an Exchange gas station will result in all liters over your authorized ration being charged at the German economy price.

 

 

Payment options:

 

  • You can access your ration and fuel card balance at https://odin.aafes.com/esso, or by calling the toll-free number at 0800-181-9945. The number is also on the back of your fuel card.

 

  • Add money to your ESSO fuel card using cash, check, Military Star card, debit or credit at AAFES gas stations and Expresses. You can also add money to your card at https://odin.aafes.com/esso or by calling the toll-free number at 08001819945.

 

The ability to fill up for less is great, especially when you want to travel and see Europe. The ESSO fuel card, however, is only good in Germany, according to the Retail Operations Europe Region. Prepare to pay full gas prices when traveling to nearby countries such as Czech Republic, Austria and Italy.

 

For more information, contact the ESSO fuel ration card team at yyeuessofuelcard@aafes.com or visit www.aafes.com/exchange-stores/overseas/germany-fuel-ration/faq.htm.