Not all credit cards are “plastic” in the traditional sense. Here are a few cards comprised of alternate materials.
American Express Centurion Card
Amex is tight-lipped on the terms and conditions surrounding its ultra-exclusive Centurion card, reserved for high net worth consumers, but it is widely known that the card is made of anodized titanium. The use of titanium gives the card a decisive plunk factor and helps its live up to its slogan: “Rarely seen, always recognized.”
J.P. Morgan Palladium Card
Chase’s invitation-only card, reserved largely for private wealth clients and investors, is made of the precious metals palladium and gold. A Bloomberg article estimates the value of the raw materials used to make the card at around $1,000. Both the cardholder’s signature and account information are etched into each card, which is also outfitted with Visa smart chip technology.
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Chase couldn’t disclose the specific components of its popular travel rewards card since it doesn’t own the patent on the unique design, but a spokeswoman did confirm there’s metal in its mix. The card also sports the account information on the back. The design certainly helps the product stand out amongst competitors. Though not invitation-only, the card is only available to those with great credit scores.
Barclays Visa Black Card
Barclays answer to the Centurion, the Visa Black Card, is made from carbon, which, though lighter than titanium, still allows for a certain visibility when handed to a store clerk or placed down next to a cash register.
Biodegradable Discover Card
OK, technically Discover’s green version of its popular credit cards still are made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC). But it’s a biodegradable type which will begin to break down when exposed to landfill conditions and is designed to fully degrade within five years. The card can be identified by the three-leaf insignia on its front.
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At publishing time, Chase Sapphire Preferred and the Visa Black Card are offered through Credit.com product pages and Credit.com may be compensated if our users apply for and ultimately sign up for these cards. However, this relationship does not result in any preferential editorial treatment.
Image: Clemson, via Flickr