Plastic Card Types

 

Custom Card Co. provides one stop plastic card production services. Besides the basic PVC card printing, we provide a series of finishing and card customization services.

Plastic Card Embossing

You can personalize your PVC cards with the embossing of unique or variable data which includes: name, identification number and or expiration date embossed on the card surface to help verify your card holders identity as well as enhance the appearance of the card.

Thermal Printing & Barcodes

What is a barcode?

A barcode is an optical machine-readable representation of data. The most common formats for barcodes are 3 of 9, 128, and UPC.

How do barcodes typically work on a gift card?

Each gift card is printed with a unique serial number barcode with or without human readable characters. When a customer purchases a gift card, the barcode is scanned or its human readable characters are keyed into a point of sale (POS) system. The point of sales system recognizes the gift card’s unique serial number and prompts the cashier for a value to be assigned to it. For this example, the customer wishes to put $50.00 on the gift card. The cashier takes the customer’s $50.00 and keys in this amount. The point of sales system then assigns this value to the gift cards serial number. The value of the gift card is not stored on the card but within the point of sale system.

When the customer returns with the card, the barcode is scanned or the human readable characters are entered. The point of sale system then displays the stored value assigned to its serial number. The customer may add additional funds to the card or use its value to make a purchase. The history of the transaction and remaining balance amount is stored within the point of sale system for reference and future transactions.

How do I know what type of barcode my Point of Sales system needs? How can you ensure the barcode will work?

We have the ability to print many barcode formats onto our products. If you are not sure what type of barcode your system requires, please contact your point of sale system provider. They can assist you with which type of barcode will work and the necessary characters for your particular system.

Please ask your point of sale (POS) system provider the following questions:

  • What barcode format or formats work best with your system?
  • Are there any specific characters or number of characters necessary to be used in a barcode serial number?

In addition to embossing, Custom Card Co. can have unique type and BARCODES thermally printed on the plastic card surface. Thermal printing provides a large variety of fonts and styles and allows for the personalization of each card.

Signature Panel

What is a signature panel?

A signature panel is a solid (white) or translucent writable surface that is applied to a specific area or areas that is typically used for a signature. When using a signature panel, the only area that will accept writing is confined to the applied surface.

What is a matte finish?

A matte finish is a writable translucent finish that allows an entire surface to be writable. Because a matte finish is translucent, it works well for designs that require one or many specific writable areas that are defined in the artwork.

What about thermal printing?

Thermal printing is done with a special printer that uses a heated print head and pressure to transfer type and/or an image onto a plastic card. A special thermal laminate must be applied during the manufacturing process to allow this method of printing.

For security and aesthetic purposes, signature panels can be added to the PVC card. The card owner’s identity can then be validated by his/her own signature. The user-defined size and position of the panel would not affect the design of the card.

Magnetic Stripe

What is a magnetic stripe?

A magnetic stripe is short strip of magnetic tape attached to a plastic card that is encoded with data, which may be read by “swiping” the card in a reading device.

How do magnetic stripes typically work on a gift card?

Each gift card has a magnetic stripe that is encoded with a unique serial number. This serial number may also be printed in human readable characters under the magnetic stripe. When a customer purchases a gift card, the magnetic stripe is “swiped” using a card reading devise connected to a point of sale (POS) system. The point of sales system recognizes the gift card’s unique serial number and prompts the cashier for a value to be assigned to it. For this example, the customer wishes to put $50.00 on the gift card. The cashier takes the customer’s $50.00 and keys in this amount. The point of sales system then assigns this value to the gift cards serial number. The value of the gift card is not stored on the card but within the point of sale system.

When the customer returns with the card, the magnetic stripe is “swiped” or the human readable characters are entered. The point of sale system then displays the stored value assigned to its serial number. The customer may add additional funds to the card or use its value to make a purchase. The history of the transaction and remaining balance amount is stored within the point of sale system for reference and future transactions.

What about lock systems?

Magnetic stripes are also used with lock systems such as hotel or institutional. The magnetic stripe is embedded in the back of a key card and the lock system encodes each card with the unique code to gain access.

How do I know what type of magnetic stripe or encoding my Point of Sale system or Lock system requires? How can you ensure a magnetic stripe will work?

If you are not sure what type of magnetic stripe or encoding your system requires, please contact your point of sale system or lock system provider. They can assist you with which type of magnetic stripe will work best and the necessary characters to be encoded for your particular system.

Please ask your point of sale (POS) system or lock system provider the following questions:

  • What magnetic stripe coercivity is required for my system? Hi-co or lo-co?
  • What track or tracks should be used to encode the data? 1, 2 and/or 3?
  • Are there any specific characters or number of characters necessary to be used in the encoded data?

Custom Card Co.’s additional Magnetic Stripe Encoding service combines PVC cards with information technology. Magnetic swipe cards are commonly used as electronic key cards, identity card, gift cards, membership cards and credit cards utilizing one or more tracks of the magnetic stripe. Encoding can be carried out on tracks 1,2 & 3 of High Coercivity and Low Coercivity magnetic stripes.

Hole/Slot Punch

Custom Card Co. can punch holes of different shapes on the PVC cards, making them clip-on identification, luggage tags or even key rings.

Other Security Features

  • Holograms
  • Guilloche Patterns – An ornamental border or pattern created with two or more curved bands that interlace to repeat a circular design.
  • Scratch Off Panels

Additional Card Features & Options

  • Frosted, Clear and Translucent Cards
  • Metallic
  • RFID-contactless proximity cards
  • Duo Prox
  • Materials-PVC, Teslin, Styrene
  • Snap off key tags and hanging cards
  • Full Customization
  • Color Matching
  • Foil Stamping
  • Holograms
  • Die Custom (custom)
  • Signature Panels
  • Bar Codes
  • Encoded Magnetic Stripes
  • Serial Numbers and Personalization
  • Scratch OFF
  • Slot Punch

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