Multi-Tool Credit Card: Always with You in a Bind

 In Credit Card Processing

Mobile phones have replaced many of the personal items we used to carry with us on a daily basis. We used to carry watches, money (coins and bills), business cards, dog photos, and maybe even a pocket knife or a pen. But as the functionality of phones has expanded, our pockets are more empty of possessions to help us out in a bind. One thing we are certain to be carrying with us is a little plastic card, something we call the multi-tool credit card.

If you have only used your credit card for payment transactions, you’ve barely scratched the surface of functionality that could be a savior in the right situation. Of course, we know your credit card is first and foremost a payment instrument, designed to complete transactions for fuel for you or your car. Few of us will ever ask more of it. But in a pinch, when other, more suitable tools are nowhere to be found, this 3-3/8ths-by-2-1/8ths-inch wafer of rigid yet flexible PVC laminate can prove a pretty handy stand-in

Credit cards have a number of physical characteristics that make them particularly well-suited to a handful of alternative tasks: they are lightweight, thin, compact, waterproof, and resistant to heat and cold. Physically, they perform well in the midrange where hard materials such as metal and stone are too hard and soft materials such as wood and cardboard are too soft for the given job.

You may never have occasion to put your credit card to any of these 8 creative uses, but isn’t it nice to know it will serve you admirably in a pinch?

Ice scraper
It seems like ice scrapers disappear into the same parallel universe that swallows dryer socks. Fortunately, any credit card in your wallet, though lacking a handle to keep your fingers from freezing, can prove a handy substitute scraper. As a scraper, it features a choice of dual firm (wide) or flexible (narrow) blades that won’t scratch your windshield.This improvisation has proven so useful in northern climates that it spawned a whole industry of wallet-sized scrapers, now with serrated edges (next-gen EMV?). This may not be the fastest way to get the job done, but it sure beats driving with your head out the window and is the perfect lead off for multi-tool credit card uses.

Paint masking
Paint masking tools have the uncanny ability to always come in the wrong size, usually much too long and/or awkwardly designed to do what you need them to do. Even pros have been known to resort to the handy credit card in tight spaces and close quarters for a nice clean trim line without need of a chiropractic adjustment.

Unlock doors
Firm yet flexible, credit cards seem particularly well designed to ease open doorknob wedge bolts and spring lever latches on sliding doors. They’re also a handy way to check if a deadbolt is in place, which will usually scotch any progress you might make on the knob or latch.

Straightedge Bookmark
Granted, true bookmark emergencies are pretty rare. But let’s say for argument’s sake you’re poolside at a clothing-optional resort without a bar napkin in sight. Voila! Your credit card will hold your place nicely without drawing undue attention to itself.

Grout/caulking tool
Do-it-yourselfers will attest to the versatility of a credit card for tight-space maneuvers in kitchen and bath tile projects. Not only is the credit card form factor nearly the perfect tool for extracting old grout in between thinly spaced tiles, its rounded edge also provides a smooth, uniform convex finish to new caulking around sinks, tubs and shower enclosures.

Cake knife
So your dinner hosts find themselves without a proper cake knife to cut and serve the evening birthday cake. Simply remove your card and you’ll find it to be the perfect fill-in for a cake knife. This is a job for a well-scrubbed AmEx Gold Card, the ultimate multi-tool credit card, although one best used in the privacy of the kitchen.

Guitar pick
If you’re a guitar player, chances are you’ve found two emergency substitutes for a flat pick over the years: a credit card and a matchbook. The advantage to the former is, you’re unlikely to set your ax on fire while recreating a Foo Fighters set.

Finger splint
No, this idea did not spring from a recent viewing of “Saw V”. Finger in a jam? Immobilize it with your Discover card. Not only is a credit card the proper length to protect most adult flanges, it’s wide enough to include an adjacent finger or two to further immobilize and protect the damaged digit. Plus, once you reach medical attention, you’ll already have your credit card handy!

This short list is just the beginning of what a credit card can do to help you out in a jam. It’s the perfect perk program – there when you need it most.


Our motto is “Move Forward” and it is our desire to help your business positively grow in many ways whether you are looking for help transitioning to a new credit card processing platform, implementing a complete POS system for your business, or just trying to get a few ideas on how to best use your multi-tool credit card. Get started today by calling us at 608-819-8666 or visit us online anytime at



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