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What Is a Bank Card?

A bank card is a plastic card given by the bank to an account holder. It is also called an ATM card and looks just like a credit card. Other financial institutions such as credit unions and bank societies also issue bank cards. The typical size of a bank card is 86 x 54 mm.

In general, bank cards are issued for savings accounts and current accounts. The restrictions and limitations of use will depend on the issuing bank and the nature of the account. Bank cards issued by a specific bank can be used on other banks’ machines if they belong to the same network.

There are different types of bank cards, depending on the features and possible transactions. The regular ATM card can only be used on cash machines to withdraw and deposit money. Depositing money can be done via cash machines which are designed for that purpose. Then there is the debit card which functions as a regular ATM card, and on top of that, can also function similar to a credit card. A debit card can be used at stores to make purchases without cash. The amount is debited directly from the account linked to the card. Alternatively, some debit cards can also be used to make online purchases, provided that the merchant offers this mode of payment. For some debit cards, users are required to input the personal identification number, or PIN, before the transaction can go through. Other debit cards do not require this step, though.

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