What are the Dimensions of a Credit Card and Why?

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Generally speaking, credit cards share the same measurements. In short, a credit card is supposed to be 3.37 inches in width, which translates to 85.6 mm underneath the metric system. Meanwhile, a credit card is supposed to be 2.125 inches in height, which translates to 53.98 mm under the metric system. This is something that remains true even when people secure charge cards in other countries because it is not a U.S. standard but rather an international standard.

Why Do Credit Cards Share the Same Dimensions?

Some people may be curious about why credit cards share exactly the same measurements. If so, the answer is pure convenience. To put it simply, having credit cards share exactly the same measurements makes it much easier for the relevant entities to interact together. For example, having credit cards share the same measurements means that business may use a single card reader that may accommodate the standard measurements instead of having to have card readers that may accommodate the full range of measurements that can be found out there. Likewise, having charge cards share the same measurements means that consumers have a much easier time getting a wallet that can be used to store each one of their credit cards. Summed up, while the standardization of the measurements of credit cards can seem trivial, it can have far-reaching consequences which are more than enough to make it a serious issue.

With that said, it should be mentioned that while a credit card has standardized measurements, that is a somewhat incomplete statement from the true situation. Instead, a much better statement would be that ID cards have standardized measurements, although it is interesting to note there are some standardized variations that serve other purposes. For example, there's a bigger set of measurements that is useful for ID cards that should be seen. Likewise, there is a smaller set of measurements that is useful for becoming key cards as well as stored value cards.

Who Decided That Credit Cards Should Share the Same Dimensions?

As for how the standardization of credit cards along with other ID cards came to be, well, suffice to state that its international nature means that it should come as no surprise to learn that it happened because of international cooperation. In a nutshell, a number of international organizations were placed in the wake of World War II, with one excellent example being the International Organization for Standardization. Initially, the International Organization for Standardization had no more than a limited number of states, but in the decades since its founding, it has had a lot of time to grow, and that's why it now has 162 member countries. Granted, some of those member countries are not eligible to vote on the proposed standards, but they are nonetheless area of the organization that is responsible for standards for not just ID cards but also a wide range of other matters.

Of course, it ought to come as no surprise to learn that the International Organization for Standardization isn’t exactly unprecedented anyway. Certainly, it is the first organization of its kind to be so successful, but there have been plenty of organizations before it that sought to standardize various matters for very similar reasons. For example, people who are thinking about that sort of thing can find a fair amount of information about the governments of various countries standardizing everything from the standards of measurement to the measurements of railway tracks over the course of their history, which was essential for the sake of efficacy as well as efficiency.

After all, imagine the horrendous inconvenience of a world in which products on a single shelves might be measured in different units of measurement, that might even be called the same names because the units of measurements the consumers are more familiar with. Likewise, think of the increased challenges of running a railway system that has been cobbled together from a ridiculous patchwork of different measurements, specially when a train would have to cross from one section to another. Summed up, standardization is an extremely critical task for ensuring the graceful functioning of society, which is why the International Organization for Standardization exists for the purpose of helping different countries situated all around the world come up with standards that are acceptable to all of the voting member countries.

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