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Gift cards with magnetic stripe LoCo/HiCo

A gift card with a magnetic stripe compared to a gift card with a bar ode is certainly a safer solution while maintaining similar functionality.

The main difference between these two cards is the way of reading data. On the plastic voucher there is a special tape placed - called a magnetic stripe.

There are two types of magnetic strips: LoCo and HiCo, which seem to be identical, but differ in, among others, data storage durability.


Gift card with LoCo or HiCo magnetic stripe


You can encode more data on a tape than in a barcode, because we have so-called three paths. To make it easier for you to explain it, imagine that these are three lines like in a notebook, which you can fill by writing certain values.


Example of magnetic stripe coding on a gift card


Encoding of a magnetic stripe on a gift card


The data from the gift card is read when the card is pulled through the reader. Then the data is sent to the IT system, and the cashier's monitor displays the status of available funds.

The customer may check on his own how much money he has on the card. To do it there has to be a number overprinted on the plastic gift voucher, because the data from the magnetic stripe are not visible to the ordinary recipient.

However, keep this in mind, that the number from the magnetic stripe and the printed number should not be the same. By this simple procedure the risk of falsify will be minimised.


Before placing an inquiry or order, find out which type of a magnetic stripe you need, what data should be encoded and on which path/track. Maybe your store or service point is already equipped in a system for gift cards and you already have the necessary readers - then we will adapt our gift cards to your requirements.

You can find more information about the technical side of magnetic gift cards here. Although there is something you must know now. A magnetic stripe gift card is susceptible to demagnetisation. In simple terms, it means it will stop working if it is kept close to a cell phone, TV or other electronic devices. This problem can be solved by making a new card / duplicate of a card with the same encoded data.