The standard answer for almost every question involving sizes in the printing market is: “It depends.” And this is not different for the size of a business card. The standard business card sizes can vary from country to country and we will talk about the most used ones, and which one is used on Business Cards Maker.
The size of business cards in the US and Canada
Before anything, is important to say. As far as I know, there isn’t any obligation to use the standard sizes, I will also talk about some unusual business card sizes and types in this article, but I personally, always look to use the standard sizes because is something that most people are already used to. Besides that, many people use cases to keep their business cards well protected, and these cases usually have the standard business card size for the respective country.
In the US and Canada, the most common size for a business card is 2” x 3.5” (or 51x89mm if you play for the metric system team). This means the card follows a 1.75 ratio.
But remember another important thing, this is the size of a printed and finished business card, after getting cut down. Because they’re designed with an additional ⅛” bleed zone, which will be cut after the card gets finished. “Why there is a bleed zone?” you might ask, right? That’s because printer machines can’t reach the edges of the paper, and then, if you want to add a background color, shape or illustration which will reach the edges, you will need to design it with a bleed margin.
There’s also a “safe zone” where is safe to put every important information on your card without the risk of being cut down with the bleed margin. That’s why there is a “Display Print Safe Area” option in Business Cards Maker’s editor, all important information must be inside that red dashed line (don’t worry, the line will not be printed).
What sizes are the business card sizes in Europe?
It depends, again. And I’m not kidding. Most countries of western Europe will use 85x55mm (or 3.346” x 2.165” for the imperial system team), which means a 1.545 aspect ratio. This includes the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Italy, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Slovenia, Portugal, and Turkey.
Denmark, Norway, and Sweden use 90x55mm (3.54” x 2.165”), which is also the same size used in Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan, Vietnam, India, and Colombia.
And in most parts of eastern Europe, use 90x50mm (3.545” x 1.968”), which is also used in some Latin-American countries like Argentina, Brazil and Mexico, and several other countries.
In case you are wondering, here’s a complete table of sizes containing different standard business card sizes all over the world, including some ISO standard sizes.
|Country/Standard||Dimensions (inches)||Dimensions (millimeters)||Aspect ratio|
|Canada, United States||3.5” × 2||89mm × 51mm||1.75|
|Japan||3.582” × 2.165”||91mm × 55mm||1.655|
|Ireland, Italy, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Austria, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Slovenia, Portugal, Turkey||3.346” × 2.165”||85mm × 55mm||1.545|
|Australia, Denmark, New Zealand, Norway, Taiwan, Sweden, Vietnam, India, Colombia||3.54” × 2.165”||90mm × 55mm||1.636|
|Hong Kong, China, Singapore, Malaysia||3.543” × 2.125”||90mm × 54mm||1.667|
|Iran||3.346” × 1.889”||85mm × 48mm||1.771|
|Sri Lanka, Argentina, India, Brazil, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Croatia, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Israel, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Montenegro, Slovakia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Bulgaria, Latvia, Mexico, South Korea, and South Africa||3.543” × 1.968”||90mm × 50mm||1.8|
|ISO/IEC 7810 ID-1, (credit card size)||3.370” × 2.125”||85.60mm × 53.98mm||1.586|
|ISO 216, A8 sized||2.913” × 2.047”||74mm × 52mm||1.423|
|ISO 216, C8 sized||3.189” × 2.244”||81mm × 57mm||1.421|
|ISO 216, B8 sized||3.465” × 2.441”||88mm × 62mm||1.419|
Unusual business card sizes
As I said before, there’s no obligation to use the standard sizes, although there are advantages in using them. But if you want to express your creativity, free will, and spirit of rebellion (just kidding!), you can use a business card size distinct from the standard. If you want to use this kind of business cards, I recommend you to hire a good and very creative designer to make the job, so he can use all of his creativity to accomplish something very nice for you.
Here are some ideas of unusual business card sizes and shapes:
I think the squared card is one of the most used of the unusual card sizes. It’s kind of a trending thing. The problem is with the reduced card size, you’ll also need to reduce the information or be very creative with the layout to display every important thing.
The rounded cards are less used than the squared ones, but I’ve been seeing some of them around. However, the layout and information positioning is even more tricky than the squared one. It’s nice to have a context to use the rounded shape too, for example, if you are a tennis instructor, it would be nice to have a business card in the shape of a tennis ball.
In addition to these two, there are lots of possibilities when we are talking about unusual sizes and shapes for a business card. You can make different cuts, folds, and even use another material instead of paper. And if you want to explore these possibilities, remember that this kind of business card is also more expensive to print and harder to design, this is why everyone still prefers to use the standard sizes I said in the first part of this article, and I also recommend you to do it.
Anyway, I will finish this by showing you some inspiration in case you want to make yourself an uncommon business card.