Card Tech ID provides a variety of PVC cards for ID card printers and card embossers. Regardless of the application the PVC cards are available in a variety of materials, size, thickness, color and have many optional features. Check your ID card printer or embosser user manual or ask your Card Tech ID representative for assistance when choosing a PVC card for your application. Learn more about your card options below.


PVC  is the most common used material to make ID cards since it is durable, strong and resists damage structurally for a long time. Composite cards or (Tuff cards), are made of a blend of PET and PVC, which offers added durability, warp resistance (ideal for retransfer ID card printers) and are perfect for lamination applications.

Recycled plastic cards are made of recycled plastics. They tend to not be the vibrant white standard PVC is, but can produce a photo ID card well. Small flecks of color may be displayed throughout the card and cards may have a slight gray hue to the brightness of the card. Because they are recycled plastic, this may vary from card to card.

Biodegradable PVC is made with a 99% PVC that fully biodegrades within 9 months to 5 years dependant on the continual exposure to microorganisms that break down the card, primarily in a landfill environment. Biodegradable PVC also is available with magnetic stripe. They perform the same as standard PVC, but have the added benefit of helping our planet.

rewritable cards feature a rewritable surface, which is needed for use in the Evolis Tattoo Rewrite and Datacard SP25 Plus rewritable card printers. These cards can be erased and re-printed up to 200 times and are often used for visitor cards.

Adhesive back cards are PVC with a mylar backing which peels off to adhere the PVC to another card, often a proximity card.

PVC utility (regular) stress cards are used for card embossing. They are perfect for embossing and imprinting hospital identification cards, trade show cards and other non-printed applications.

PVC super stress cards can be used with an ID card printer and then used in an embosser to complete the card design needed. These work for non-printed applications like embossing and imprinting, but also can be appropriate choices for printed applications.


Most card printers are made to print on CR80 sized cards. This is the card size we carry for our ID card printers. There are many sizes available (CR79, CR100 etc.), however we would have to special order these if available. CR80 is the typical size of a credit card if you are trying to picture this in your head. They are 3.375” x 2.125” if you want to be technical.

Card Thickness

Card thickness can vary from 10 mil to 80 mil. The most commonly used is 30 mil. The card thickness accepted by ID card printers varies drastically, so it’s recommended you check your card printer user manual for card thickness compatibility. 30 mil is often the thickness of your standard credit card.


A variety of colors may be available dependant on the type of material. Photo ID cards are recommended to be printed on white material. Colors available are white, light blue, hospital blue, cranberry, red, black, green, royal blue, pink, gray, orange, metallic silver and metallic golds, fluorescent colors and more.

Optional Features

There are a ton of optional features available. One of the most common is slot punches. We suggest cards are bought plain and then manually punched with any PVC card punch. The wear and tear on your ID card printers print head is greatly reduced when the slot punch is not pre-punched on the card prior to printing with the card. However, we do offer pre-punched slot cards. Other options are signature panels, magnetic stripes (HiCo/Loco and 2-Track/3-Track), hospital holes (which are different from slot punches). Other options are available via special order. If you want to know more about HiCo and LoCo magnetic stripes and what the differences are click here. If you have questions about a product or need further assistance, please contact a Card Tech ID representative


About Card Tech ID

For more than 19 years Card Tech ID has been providing high quality ID card printers, complete digital photo ID systems, ID card software, HID proximity cards and tags, PVC card supplies, ID badge holders and accessories as well as custom printed ID products. We offer a wide array of products as the best prices and can ship most items the same day. Card Tech ID serves customers in many industries including: * Enterprises including fortune 500 companies * State government * Fire Departments * Police Departments * Hospitals * Small and large organizations * Sports teams * Restaurants * Elementary schools, college, universities * Event and conference * Recreation * Religious organizations Card Tech ID has earned the reputation of delivering the highest quality products and superb customer service. We are privately owned and operated in the USA and offer a selection of products made in the USA. We work closely with our customers in order to provide the appropriate products to fit their current and future needs. Your total satisfaction is our goal! We invite you to browse our website and shop our extensive product offers. Prefer to speak to a Customer Service Specialist? Please call us at (603) 736-0005 or email Our office hours are Monday through Friday 9 AM-5 PM EST.

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