type –city & family


Plastic library cards

Convenient dimensions of a standard bank card. The graphic style consistent with the visual identification of the library. With prints of functional elements compatible with the library system. With a strip for the reader’s signature. With possible protection against counterfeiting. And even with radio tags compatible with library authorization systems – this is what a modern library card might look like.

A small piece of cardboard with your name, surname, and a list of borrowed books – every library started with such library cards. Over time, the cardboard became smaller and smaller; it began to be laminated; and finally, it gave way to modern plastic library cards. The convenience, durability, and functionality of plastic cards have made these types of cards a standard in every library. The only question now is how graphically attractive and functionally advanced such a card should be.

In the basic version, the specification of a plastic library card may look like this:

  • material: white PVC (or other colors),
  • format: 86×54 mm (CR-80), rounded corners,
  • thickness: 0.76 mm (760 microns),
  • offset printing, full color CMYK (or black and white),
  • barcode, QR code, magnetic stripe or RFID tag.

Karta plastikowa biblioteczna

Library cards – personalization

Card personalization – linking the card with the library system and at the same time with the reader is the “heart” of the library card, its most basic function. Card personalization can be done in many ways, depending on the needs and capabilities of the library.

  • Card with a signature strip.
    In the simplest option, a library card may have only a signature strip – one or several stripes. This way, the library can personalize the card itself by entering the number on the card manually. The reader can put his signature on a separate strip. Of course, this is the simplest possible solution, only for the smallest libraries.
  • Cards for individual personalization.
    An interesting solution for a library card is to order cards with an attractive graphic print in full CMYK colors, but to make the necessary personalization prints yourself, using your card printer. The cards we produce are suitable for personalization in thermal transfer card printers – Evolis, Zebra, Datacard and similar. Such a printer can print the necessary personalization elements on the finished card – a barcode, the reader’s name and surname, numbers, and even a photo.
  • Cards with a barcode.
    The bar is the most important element of almost every library management system. A code with a unique number is placed on each book and each reader’s card. Barcode readers are very cheap, and the library system uses these codes to record every movement of a book. The code should be selected depending on the needs of the library – different barcodes have different “capacity”. The database of numbers to be encoded in the code can be provided when ordering cards, or it can be generated during printing. Further information about barcodes.
  • Cards with RFID tag.
    Modern libraries can opt for the latest solutions in library management technology – systems based on RFID technology – microtags placed on cards, that communicate with the system via radio waves. Proximity cards are convenient, have a large memory capacity, and can perform various additional functions. They can open rooms in libraries reserved only for selected readers, provide access to library equipment, or act as a ticket to special library events.
  • Cards with any combination of elements.
    Thanks to modern printing techniques, cards can be made with almost any combination of selected elements. Cards can therefore have a high-quality offset print, a unique barcode on each card, an additional QR code encoded with, e.g. the library’s address, a signature strip for the reader, and a built-in RFID tag appropriately matched to the system in use. Such a card will be visually attractive, while fulfilling many functions – both for the library and the reader.

Plastic card for a library reader

Library cards – decorative options

Reputable libraries may also need prestigious-looking cards. The exclusive and serious look of the card can be achieved using special printing techniques designed for this purpose. Such a library card can have, for example, a convex logo printed with with selective varnish, selected elements made with metallic varnishes, and the entire card can be covered with e.g. matte laminate. Additionally, you can place security elements on the card, e.g. microprint or hologram, which additionally emphasizes the seriousness of the card.

We cordially invite libraries of all sizes to cooperate. We print orders ranging from 200 to many thousands of cards, and thanks to many years of experience in card production, we are able to advise and select appropriate solutions and card elements. Please visit contact page or use quote form to find out the approximate cost of producing such cards.

Additional options

Scratch-off panel
Custom shape and size cards
Laminate of plastic cards
Contact memory chip
Customized plastic snap off card | 3 key chain tags
Coloured PVC material
Print visible in UV / IR
Hole (round, oval, euro hole)
Magnetic HiCo/LoCo stripe
Contactless chip (Unique, Mifare and more)
Other services
laser engraving
Eco-friendly material – recycled and recyclable
Panel for a signature / signature strip
Metallic silkscreen
NFC module
Aroma (e.g. coffee)
Transparent material
Spot / selective varnish, glossy or matte