Credit cards are a common financial tool used by individuals around the world for various transactions. They come in different shapes and sizes, but have you ever wondered how thick a credit card actually is? In this article, we will explore the thickness of credit cards and the materials used to make them.
The Standard Thickness of Credit Cards
The standard thickness of a credit card is approximately 0.76 millimeters (mm). This measurement is consistent across most credit cards issued by banks and financial institutions. The reason for this standardized thickness is to ensure compatibility with card readers and other devices used for processing payments.
The 0.76mm thickness is often referred to as “CR80” in the industry. It is the same thickness as many other cards, such as identification cards, access cards, and gift cards. This standardization allows for easy handling and compatibility with card readers and wallets.
Credit cards are typically made from a combination of materials to achieve the desired thickness and durability. The most common materials used include:
1. PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride): PVC is a widely used plastic material known for its durability and flexibility. It is the primary material used for the body of credit cards. PVC provides the necessary strength and rigidity while allowing for customization through printing and embossing.
2. PETG (Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol): PETG is often used as the overlay for credit cards. It is a clear, glossy material that protects the printed information on the card and enhances its visual appeal. PETG overlays also provide additional durability and resistance to wear and tear.
3. Magnetic Stripe: Some credit cards have a magnetic stripe on the back, which contains encoded information. The magnetic stripe is typically made of a thin layer of iron particles mixed with a plastic binder. While the magnetic stripe does not significantly contribute to the overall thickness of the card, it is an essential component for card readers.
Variations in Thickness
While the standard thickness of credit cards is 0.76mm, there can be slight variations depending on the specific card issuer or type of card. Some cards may be slightly thicker or thinner, but these differences are usually minimal and do not affect their functionality.
It is worth noting that certain types of cards, such as metal credit cards or premium cards made from alternative materials, may have a different thickness. Metal credit cards, for example, are often thicker and heavier due to the metal used in their construction. These variations are usually intentional design choices made by issuers to create a unique and premium feel for their cardholders.
In conclusion, the standard thickness of a credit card is approximately 0.76mm. This measurement ensures compatibility with card readers and other payment processing devices. Credit cards are primarily made from PVC and PETG, which provide the necessary strength, durability, and customization options. While there may be slight variations in thickness among different card issuers or types of cards, these differences are generally minimal and do not affect the functionality of the cards.