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)