ID cards are a common item that almost everyone uses at some point in their lives. But, if you ask the average person, “What is the standard size of an ID card?” their answer would perhaps be something like “the size of a credit card” or “a few inches”.
In fact, many companies looking to get new ID cards aren’t quite sure which size to choose.
If you’re in the same boat, then you’ve come to the right place. IF you’re interested in ID card dimensions for artwork and layout, check out our page dedicated to that here: ID Card Layout and Artwork Guidelines | InstantCard
Looking to design an identity card but not sure what ID card size to choose? Wondering what is the standard ID card size?
In this blog post, you’ll learn all that you need to know about choosing the right size for your ID card. We’ll explore the ID sizes for different cards, and will also go through what printer should be used to print your ID card.
Standard Credit Card Size
The standard identity card size is about the size of a credit card, which is 2 1/8″ x 3 3/8″ (85.6mm x 54mm). By the international standard definition, it is also called the CR80 card.
It is the most typical ID card size used for photo IDs in offices, student IDs, access control, time and attendance tracking, drivers’ license, bank and ATM cards, library cards, membership cards, reward and loyalty cards, gift cards, and more.
The credit card sized ID card is by far the most commonly used, which is why we at InstantCard specialize exclusively in 2 1/8″ x 3 3/8″ (85.6mm x 54mm) sized cards. You can learn more about how to customize your standard sized ID card here.
What are the Dimensions of a Driver’s License?
A drivers license is 2 1/8″ x 3 3/8″ (85.6mm x 54mm). This is the same size as a standard credit card, conforming to the CR80 card standard.
Oversize ID cards are almost 42% larger than the standard ID card size. The typical ID card dimensions are 2 5/8″ X 3 7/8″. The ID card size in cm would be 6.7 X 9.9. This is also known as a ‘CR100 card’.
These cards were typically used for law enforcement IDs, local government IDs, and other government organizations, particularly in Europe. More recently, however, most organizations have moved towards the standard CR80 size cards. And, even Europe has moved to credit-card style IDs due to their compatibility with most ID card holders and wallets.
Here are some other employee ID badge sizes that are a bit more specialized.
These cards are typically 2″ x 1″ and have a circle punch that allows them to slide onto key rings.
They’re normally used for reward and loyalty cards, such as in gas stations, hotels, fast food restaurants, grocery stores, and more.
However, some magnetic key cards also come in 3 1/2″ x 1 3/4″, which is about 25% narrower than the standard ID card size.
Also known as CR50, these cards are fairly uncommon but may still be in use at some older hotel properties.
Proximity or Technology Cards
Also called CR79, these cards measure 3.303″ x 2.051″ in size with rounded corners.
These kinds of PVC cards are typically used for printing on most direct-to-card printers and are applied to proximity or technology cards.
However, it’s important to note that if you plan to use CR79 cards, then your ID card printer should be capable of printing on them.
At 4″ x 3″, event badges are somewhat larger than standard size.
These cards work best for events because of their larger size, offering better visibility at concerts, sports events, symposiums, conventions, exhibitions, and other events.
Plus, they have more space to accommodate any exclusive design or logo for the event. Learn more about large format event badges here →
Apart from the size of an ID card, another key consideration is the card thickness.
Standard ID cards have a thickness of 30 mil (0.030 inches). This makes them thick enough to be hard-wearing and robust, yet thin enough to fit into access swipe pads.
Thinner cards (such as hotel key cards, visitor ID badges, and business cards) generally have a thickness of 10 mil. This makes them more malleable than a 30 mil standard ID card.
As they are more flexible, they are also more vulnerable to deterioration. But these cards are most suitable for temporary or light use.
On the other hand, thicker clamshell cards are often necessary for IDs that include RFID technology and must encompass embedded antennas and circuitry.
What Printer Should Be Used?
Although almost all card printers are designed to work with standard ID card size, it is vital to check compatibility when using cards of different sizes.
After all, you can’t use a B3 size printer to print on a C50 card, can you?
So use a printer that can handle a certain card size. For example, there are large card printers particularly designed to print on large-sized cards.
If you need help with printing your ID card, we are just a call away. We provide custom template design services to every new client–for free! Get started on your custom ID badge today.
Call us on our toll-free number (888-980-6179). We offer free, unlimited telephone support to any user who needs further assistance.