What Are the Dimensions of a Credit Card?

Carry your credit card inside your wallet for safekeeping.

Today's credit card is made of plastic and carries the credit card issuer's distinct logo and design. The credit card carrying case offers an alternative storage option to the wallet, and can protect your credit cards from demagnification and other damage. While credit cards are durable, they are also bendable, so store appropriately.

Significance

Paying for items with a credit card

According to a March 2010 article in the Think Your Way to Wealth website, "The number of credit and debit cards in circulation today is 2.1 billion." With an estimated U.S. population of 308,500,000 people, this number breaks down to an average of seven cards per person, according to the article.

Dimensions

Stack of credit cards

"Standard-sized credit cards are 54-by-86 mm," states Golden Number's website. This translates to a standard size of 3.38-by-2.13 inches, which is also the size of a driver's license.

Misconceptions

Using computer to log on to credit card account

By most standards, the word "deadbeat" carries with it a negative connotation. But for some in the credit card industry, a consumer who pays his balance in full every month is just that: a deadbeat. According to "The Secret History of Credit Cards," actor and author Ben Stein is labeled a "deadbeat" because he pays off his debt in full each month. Stein's ability to pay off his debt means the industry cannot generate profits from the small fortune he charges every month on his credit cards.

Expert Insight

Woman holding credit card

An estimated 115 million Americans carry monthly credit card debt, according to "The Secret History of Credit Cards." Known as the "revolvers," these Americans generate more than $30 billion dollars in profits for the credit card industry before taxes.

History

A business display indicating accepted credit cards

The credit card was the brainchild of Frank McNamara, who created the Diners Club Card in 1951. Made out of paper and no bigger than the size of a library card, the Diners Club Card introduced the concept of "buy now, pay later," according to an article titled, "A Visual Flashback of the Credit Card," published on The Big Money website. The first bank credit card, the BankAmericard, soon followed the Diners Club Card in 1958 when Bank of America shipped 60,000 unsolicited cards in Fresno, California, alone. Next in line was the American Express Card in 1959, the American Express Executive Card in 1968, and the Master Charge card in 1970, which subsequently became MasterCard in 1979.

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