From security to networking, something as simple as a piece of plastic with your name on it can be used for so many important purposes. ID cards are essential for all sorts of businesses and organizations.

Of all the different ID cards materials, though, PVC is the most popular - and for good reason. But what is a PVC ID card, and why should you invest in these for your operation? Our beginner’s guide is going to cover everything you need to know.

Learn all about the unique benefits of this material in comparison to others and dive into the most common use cases. We’ll even show you how to make PVC ID cards yourself right here at the #1 choice for custom PVC cards across the web.

Our company brings more than a decade of experience to the table and has earned the trust of more than a million customers, from Nike to Facebook, Netflix, Yelp, and more. Find out what our identification solutions can do for you today!

What is a PVC ID Card?

Let’s not waste any time - what is a PVC ID card, and why are these the most popular choice? We need to take a step back and explain what PVC itself is first.

What is PVC as a Material?

Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is a synthetic plastic polymer that is widely used for its balance of strength and cost-effectiveness. The material is created through the polymerization of vinyl chloride monomers, resulting in a material that is both strong and flexible. 

You don’t really need to know what exactly that means for the sake of this conversation. Just know that the end result is a plastic that’s resistant to moisture, chemicals, and physical wear, making it an ideal choice for products that require long-lasting durability.

PVC's versatility means it can easily be colored, printed on, and molded into different shapes and sizes. These characteristics make it particularly suitable for ID cards, which need to maintain their integrity and legibility over extended periods and through frequent handling.

Why This is the Preferred Material for ID Cards

There are many other options you have at your disposal in creating ID cards, as we discuss in our comparison of PET vs PVC ID card. What makes PVC so special?

  • Durability: These cards are highly resistant to bending, cracking, and breaking. They’re suitable for daily use and will remain functional even in harsh environments.

  • Weather Resistance: PVC does not degrade easily in the presence of moisture, UV light, or temperature changes, making these suitable for both indoor and outdoor use.

  • High-Resolution Printing: They support high-definition printing, allowing for sharp, vibrant images and text. Photos, logos, and other pertinent information are clear and crisp.

  • Long-Lasting Graphics: The material's compatibility with dye-sublimation and thermal transfer printing techniques ensures that printed images and text are resistant to fading and smudging over time.

  • Integration of Security Elements: You can embed advanced security features such as holograms, magnetic stripes, RFID chips, and barcodes. This enhances the security and functionality of the cards, making them suitable for access control and secure identification.

  • Customizable Design: The flexibility of PVC allows for various customizations, including unique colors, shapes, and finishes, which can help prevent counterfeiting and ensure authenticity.

  • Affordable Production: Despite their high quality, PVC cards are relatively inexpensive to produce. This makes them a practical choice for organizations of all sizes.

  • Recyclability: While traditional PVC has environmental concerns, advancements in recycling processes are mitigating some of these issues. Many are now made with recyclable materials, contributing to sustainability efforts.

What are PVC ID Cards Used For?

Now, what is a PVC ID card used for exactly? From identification to event management, access control, and more - the use cases are as versatile as the cards themselves!

Employee Identification

PVC ID cards help visually identify employees, which is essential for security in corporate environments. They typically include the employee’s photo, name, and job title.

But you can take this a step further by embedding RFID chips or magnetic stripes that can be programmed to control access to different areas within a company. This ensures that only authorized personnel can enter sensitive or restricted areas.

You can also use these to ramp up office productivity by integrating time and attendance tracking systems into the cards. They’re a must-have in the modern workplace.

Membership Cards

PVC ID cards are commonly used in gyms and private clubs to grant members access to facilities and services. These cards often include member information, membership level, and expiration dates that can be scanned upon entry.

Beyond fitness facilities, retailers and service providers use PVC membership cards to track customer purchases, offer rewards, and provide personalized discounts, enhancing customer loyalty and engagement.

Event Badges

From conferences to concerts, trade shows, and corporate events, PVC ID cards serve as badges to identify attendees, speakers, and VIPs. This helps manage entry and ensures only registered participants have access to the event.

Security aside, these badges also facilitate networking in many events. They display the attendee’s name, company, and role, supporting efficient networking and interaction among participants.

Educational Institutions

Schools, colleges, and universities use PVC ID cards for students and staff to ensure security and facilitate identification. These cards typically include photos, names, student IDs, and course or department details.

So, how do ID cards work in these scenarios? A common example of this is a library card, enabling students and staff to borrow books and access other library resources. 

The cards can be used to access other campus services as well, from student fitness facilities to meal plans, study areas, and more.

Tips on Creating Your PVC ID Cards in Just a Few Clicks at

The benefits and applications for PVC ID cards are powerful and diverse, making them a great investment for your company or organization if you don’t already use them. The only question is, who makes custom ID cards that can help you harness their full potential?

Look no further than With 27,000 5-star reviews and counting, you can count on us to deliver a world-class product and service from start to finish.

Why Work With Us?

For more than a decade we’ve been the go-to choice for custom ID cards and custom badge holders. We provide exceptional products with a seamless customization and ordering experience, the lowest ID cards cost online, and top-tier customer support.

We always use the best products paired with cutting-edge manufacturing techniques to ensure you’re getting a solution that not only serves your needs but positions your brand in the right light. 

We also work diligently to get your order made and shipped out fast so you can start reaping the benefits PVC ID cards have to offer. But, what is a PVC ID card going to cost you? As little as $0.37 when you buy in bulk!

You gain access to a variety of customizable layouts and templates to effortlessly bring your ID cards to life, eliminating all the guesswork and uncertainty of designing your cards. 

Industry-leading brands like Nike, Google, Yelp, Netflix, and more trust us, and so do small mom-and-pop businesses. You can too. We’ll walk you through how to get started below!

How to Create Your Own ID Cards

So, how can you customize an ID card at It takes just a few clicks. Start by choosing your ID card size and layout, with options ranging from 2.12” x 3.38” all the way up to 6.4” x 4.75”.

Then you can pick from a variety of card styles, from white cards to black cards, transparent cards, holographic effects, and more. You even get to select a card thickness depending on the quality you want, along with a variety of hole styles to support putting an ID card on a lanyard.

From there you can upload your artwork, design your cards through one of our templates, or build a card design from scratch. Pick your delivery date and place your order, we’ll handle the rest!

Complete your purchase with an acrylic badge holder or clear plastic card holder, personalized lanyards, and/or custom wristbands. We are your one-stop shop for all things branded items.

Learn more about how to print on ID cards, the different types of badge holders, laminated ID cards vs not laminated, or how to make badge holders in our blog. Otherwise, bring your cards to life today as we wrap up our beginner’s guide!

Wrapping Up Our Beginner’s Guide to PVC ID Cards

So, what is a PVC ID card? These are simple yet powerful tools for employee identification, membership cards, event badges, access control, loyalty programs, and educational institutions. They offer high print quality, security features, and cost-effectiveness, making them a great investment in your business or organization.

Whether you’re looking for the best badge holder or PVC ID cards, remember that is your one-stop shop. We offer exceptional quality, pricing, and customer service - what more could you ask for?

Don’t just take our word for it, create your own cards and see what keeps our customers coming back for more. Start designing today!