Meaning of “card” in the English Dictionary

"card" in British English

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uk /kɑːd/ us /kɑːrd/

card noun (PERMISSION)

B1 [ C ] a small, rectangular piece of card or plastic, often with your signature, photograph, or other information proving who you are, that allows you to do something, such as make a payment, get money from a bank, or enter a particular place:

I don't have any cash - can I put this on (= pay using) my (credit/charge) card?
A lot of shops won't accept cheques unless you have a cheque card with you.
The bank's closed now, but I can get some money out with my (cash) card.
I don't have any change for the phone but I do have a (phone) card, if that's of any use.
You usually have to show your (membership) card at the door.

More examples

  • This credit card allows you to withdraw up to £200 a day from cash dispensers.
  • Unfortunately, I didn't have my credit card with me or I'd certainly have bought it.
  • Put your plastic card in the slot, and the machine will read it and identify who you are.
  • Entry to the club is only permitted on production of a membership card.
  • The introduction of identity cards has been opposed by the campaign for civil liberties.

card noun (GAME)

A2 [ C ] also playing card one of a set of 52 small rectangular pieces of stiff paper each with a number and one of four signs printed on it, used in games:

After dinner, Ted got out a pack of cards
John shuffled (= mixed up) the cards before he dealt them (out) (= gave them to the players).
Whist is my favourite card game.
a card table
cards A2 [ plural ]

any of a range of games played with cards, such as poker, whist, and bridge:

I've never been much good at cards.
Shall we have a game of/play cards?

More examples

  • We played cards all evening.
  • I bought a new pack of cards.
  • I had really good cards in my hand.
  • I dealt the cards to all the players.
  • She laid all her cards face up on the table.

card noun (GREETINGS)

A2 [ C ] a rectangular piece of stiff paper, folded in half, with a picture on the front and often a message printed inside, sent on a special occasion:

anniversary/get-well cards
It's Steve's birthday on Thursday - I must send him a card.

More examples

  • I've circulated a good luck card for everyone to sign.
  • He's so cheap he didn't even buy me a card for my birthday.
  • I wonder who this card is from.
  • Even if she didn't want to send a present, she could at least have sent a card.
  • I had posted the card two months previously.

card noun (INFORMATION)

B1 [ C ] a small, rectangular piece of stiff paper with information printed on it, especially a person's job title, business address, and phone number:

Here, let me give you my (business) card.

More examples

  • She handed me a business card with her name neatly embossed on it.
  • He has all his friends' names and addresses on a card index.

cardverb [ T ]

uk /kɑːd/ us /kɑːrd/ US

(Definition of “card” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"card" in American English

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cardnoun [ C ]

us /kɑrd/

card noun [ C ] (INFORMATION)

a small, rectangular piece of stiff paper or plastic with information on it that shows who you are or allows you to do something:

I used my credit/debit/charge card to pay for the groceries.

card noun [ C ] (GAME)

also playing card one of a set of 52 small, rectangular pieces of stiff paper, each with a number or letter and one of four symbols printed on it, used in games:

a deck of cards

card noun [ C ] (GREETING)

a rectangular piece of stiff paper, folded in half, usually with a picture on the front and often a message printed inside, sent on a special occasion:

a birthday/anniversary/get-well card

A card is also a postcard.

cardverb [ T ]

us /kɑrd/ infml

card verb [ T ] (GET INFORMATION)

to ask someone to show you a document that shows how old the person is

(Definition of “card” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"card" in Business English

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cardnoun [ C ]

uk /kɑːd/ us

COMMERCE, BANKING a small rectangular piece of plastic given to a customer by a bank or store that allows them to make payments, take money from their account, etc.:

pay with a/use a/pay by card You can pay by credit or debit card.
Most businesses won't accept cheques without a card.
He lost his wallet and had to cancel / all his cards.
Would you rather pay cash or put it on your card?
When she tried to get money from the machine, her card was refused.

WORKPLACE a small piece of plastic or stiff paper with your signature, photograph, and often other electronic information on it that proves who you are, allows you to enter a particular place, etc.:

You have to swipe your card to get into the building.
The new style of driver's licence comes with a photo ID card.

also business card WORKPLACE, MEETINGS a small card that has your name, company name, and the job you do printed on it:

He shook my hand politely and gave me his card.

IT a small electronic object that is part of a computer or can be connected to it, making it able to do a particular thing:

If you have your own computer, you can hire ethernet cards from the college to connect to the network.
An audio interface can be a simple card that plugs into your computer to allow you to route the sound out to your speakers.

(Definition of “card” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)