Unembossed Visa Cards Coming to a Wallet Near You

What’s a credit or debit card without bumpy account numbers? We’ll soon find out. Visa has announced that unembossed cards are now available in the U.S. following successful testing. The raised account name and numbers on existing credit and debit cards are only necessary for old-school machines that take an imprint of the credit card rather than read the card’s magnetic strip. And when is the last time you saw one of those?

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About David Weliver

David Weliver is the founding editor of Money Under 30. He's a cited authority on personal finance and the unique money issues we face during our first two decades as adults. He lives in Maine with his wife and two children.


  1. Actually I’ve seen them at a number of places, generally out-of-the-way places that either can’t afford the electronic devices, or have no electricity (the example in my mind being Renaissance Faires). Of course this means little to the person who shops in the mainstream stores, but might mean something to folks like me who like the occasional shopping spree… off the beaten path. :)

  2. I used to work at Fry’s Electronics. The computers that processed transactions worked off what I believe was an early version of DOS, later replaced by machines that ran Windows XP and ran the POS in the DOS prompt cmd.exe window.

    Needless to say, the systems went down quite often, sometimes for hours at a time (once for 3 hours on the day after Thanksgiving, black friday, at 5am, when the doors opened!) When that happened, we resorted to the old-fashioned imprinting machines after manually running the transactions through a separate credit card processing machine.

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