1. Welcome to UKBF! Check out our FAQ guide.

Is there a standard size for business cards?

Discussion in 'General Business Forum' started by Brian McIntosh, Mar 31, 2008.

  1. Brian McIntosh

    Brian McIntosh UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 486 Likes: 43
    I need to have another batch of business cards printed and I have a design in mind. I can do the design work myself but I don't know the standard business card size. My current ones are 49mm x 87mm. I've measured some of the other business cards I have collected over the years and they all vary quite considerably in size. Before I can start to design my own one it would be beneficial for me to know the standard size, if there is one, or is it down to personal preference of the printer I use?
  2. neildigital

    neildigital UKBF Regular Full Member

    Posts: 2,112 Likes: 290
    Our standard size is 85mm x 55mm with 3mm bleed on each edge.

  3. Brian McIntosh

    Brian McIntosh UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 486 Likes: 43
    I take it then that there is not really a standard size? What do you mean by bleed?
  4. Philip Hoyle

    Philip Hoyle UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 1,936 Likes: 985
    I'd advise you to measure the maximum size of card that would fit into the average card holder. I find it quite irritating when someone gives me a business card that is either too thick or too large to put in my card holder file - rather than trying to cut it to size, I am far more likely simply to bin it.
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  5. Brian McIntosh

    Brian McIntosh UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 486 Likes: 43
    Good point Philip. I'll need to investigate further.

    Moving on from that point, what's the best file format to save my design in so that I can get it printed?
  6. reggiemental

    reggiemental UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 740 Likes: 186
    Hi Brian

    As Neil pointed out, a standard size is 85mm x 55mm. However, cards can come in a multitude of sizes - 88 x 55, 90 x 50, 85 x 45 etc. If you're looking for a standard wallet size, then stick with 85 x 55.

    File format. If you're having a full-colour card (CMYK) then a .tiff is ideal, providing it is 300dpi. As you're a photographer, I presume you're using Photoshop so just make sure 'mode' is set to CMYK, and the workspace is set to 300dpi, at actual size.

    If the artwork extends over the card, (bleed), then you need to add 3mm to all sides of the card. e.g. If using an 85 x 55 size, set the workspace to 91 x 61. Then put guides in 3mm from each edge. The area inside the guides is your artwork. The area over the guides will be trimmed off at the cutting stage, leaving you with a final 85 x 55 card.

    Hope this helps.

  7. 30two Design

    30two Design UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 166 Likes: 64
    Hi there. From design point of view - we always set business cards to 85mm x 55mm as someone mentioned above. This is the same as a standard credit card size. I do know of some people who design to 88 x 55mm though so it doesn't matter too much - as long as it fits in a card holder or wallet then it'll be fine!


    EDIT...Seems Paul was typing at the same time as me...he's pretty much covered it all! With regards to file formats - if you have lots of small text on your card it is better to keep this as vector data so that it prints nice and clear - so if you can, save the file as a pdf.
  8. Brian McIntosh

    Brian McIntosh UKBF Regular Free Member

    Posts: 486 Likes: 43
    Thank you all for your replies.
  9. DanMartin

    DanMartin Editor Staff Member

    Posts: 2,425 Likes: 154
    According to Wikipedia, the standard size in the UK is 85x55 mm, 3.346x2.165 inches.
  10. ARKHIbuild

    ARKHIbuild UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 12 Likes: 0
    Does anyone know of a good place to print business cards, letter heads, etc
  11. pixelbob

    pixelbob UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 10 Likes: 1
    I think now a days there is really no standard size for business card. I think it will depend on the style and how you want to deliver your business information to your potential client.
  12. jules12345

    jules12345 UKBF Contributor Free Member

    Posts: 1,073 Likes: 119

  13. heroes_46

    heroes_46 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 2 Likes: 0
    Hi Brian,

    The standard size of a business card is 3.5"x2".[FONT=Verdana,Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]

    <<Message edited by mod to remove advertising>>
  14. -Cal-

    -Cal- UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 2 Likes: 0
    In the US and Canada yes.

    I've always wondered why our British Standard business card is 85mm x 55mm (considering that standard ID Cards, Credit Cards, Driving Licenses, etc are all 86mm x 54mm) but still haven't found out. Can anyone tell me please?

    (I'd hazard a guess that someone on the continent [seeing they use centimetres as opposed to our millimetres here in the UK] thought the standard ID Card was a good size and rounded the dimensions to the nearest half centimetre.)

    Here's a (DIY) link to a table of International Business Card Dimensions:
    en.wikipedia DOT org/wiki/Business_card#Dimensions
    for any other detail freaks around. :D
  15. GraemeL

    GraemeL Pain in the neck? Full Member - Verified Business

    Posts: 3,206 Likes: 620
    Cal, this thread is really old.

  16. -Cal-

    -Cal- UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    Posts: 2 Likes: 0
    I did notice that Graeme.

    I just wondered if anyone would be able to answer my question.