did_enduro-3e_systemA complete ID card system comes with the basic materials you need to start a new ID card program, but do you know what all those parts are and why you need them? The DiscountID team is here to help!


The ID card printer is the key piece of your new card system – it’s what will print, encode, and laminate your cards. Card printers come in a wide range of styles from manufactures including Magicard, Datacard, or Fargo.

Shop all ID card printers on DiscountID.


Your ID card printer can only print cards – to design cards or manage a database, you’ll need card-specific software. This software is designed for use with ID card printers and blank cards, and allow you to do everything from add cardholder photos and names to encode multifunctional cards.

Shop all software on DiscountID.


You’ll need two main supplies to print your cards, a ribbon and blank cards. In addition, you’ll need a cleaning kit to clean and maintain your printer and prevent dust and dirt from building up and damaging your printer.

Shop all ribbons and blank cards on DiscountID.

did-quick-guide-to-handling-cardsID cards are the blank canvas of your ID card program, but did you know that how you handle them can have a huge impact on your print quality? Our ID experts have some quick tips to help you handle cards.

Card Storage

Keeping your cards protected from dust and other debris is the first step – any dust that’s on a card can potentially smudge or otherwise mess up your design. For best results, store your cards in the box in a clean, dry, air-tight environment.

Handle them ONLY by the Edges

In addition to dust, fingerprints can also cause printing problems – the oils on your fingers make it hard to print, so your fingerprints or smidges may show up! To avoid this, never touch the surface of your cards and only handle them by the edges as you load them into the printer hopper.

Wear Gloves

If you’re worried about getting the cards dirty or smudged, wearing gloves as you handle them is the best way to prevent accidentally touching them.

Shop all cards on DiscountID.

did-58-preprinted-awareness-lanyardOctober is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and DiscountID is proud to be part of this effort with our line of awareness lanyards featuring the distinctive pink ribbon.

Breast cancer is the second most common form of cancer for women in the US with roughly 1 in 8 women developing cancer. Although cancer rates have gone down in recent years, it is still important to be aware of the risks. You can learn more from the American Cancer Society’s Breast Cancer Awareness Resources online.

With so many women as survivors, and the many family members and friends impacted, these awareness lanyards are a great way to show your support. Lanyards are already a popular ID accessory, and the switch to awareness lanyards for the month of October allows your ID card program to be part of the awareness campaign.

Shop awareness lanyards.

alphacard-id-suite-v11AlphaCard ID Suite, a leading card design and database software, recently launched the newest version of their software – get the newest software features, including Windows 10 compatibility!

What’s New in v11?

AlphaCard ID Suite v11 has many new features in addition to its Windows 10 compatibility. These include:
– Improved card design wizard
– Ability to copy, import & export card templates
– More design options including font weights
– Improved language translations
– Additional barcode functionality & ability to print high resolution barcodes
– Enhanced database functionality, including SQLite (Professional & Elite editions)
– Fully supported biometrics (Professional)
– Full Dymo label compatibility (Light)
– MIFARE DESFire improvements (Elite)
– Expanded contactless printer compatibility (Elite)

AlphaCard ID Suite v11 comes in all the editions you’ve come to rely on, from Light to Standard and Elite. In addition, the multi-user Business Server and Print Server editions were also updated with the AlphaCard ID Suite v11 product updates.

If you have a current version of AlphaCard ID Suite v10 your software will continue to work as normal – upgrading to v11 is optional, but takes only minutes and your current database and card designs will carry over to the new software. Contact DiscountID for more information.

Shop AlphaCard ID Suite v11 on DiscountID.

did-chevron-lanyardID card lanyards are a popular, useful tool for card programs – they make it easy to display employee or visitor badges for security, keep cards easily accessible for swiping at security points or access control systems, and can hold more than one badge or keys.

Standard Lanyards

If you need a solid, dependable lanyard that will display your ID cards, choose from these affordable standard lanyard options:
1/8” round braided lanyards
3/8” flat braided lanyards
3/8” flat ribbed lanyards
Lanyard/reel combos
Non-breakaway flat polyester lanyards
Non-breakaway 3/4” flat lanyards

Each of these lanyards comes in a wide variety of colors such as black, red, navy blue, or green.

Fashion Lanyards

If you want to use your lanyard to add some style and fun to the workday, choose an eye-catching fashion lanyards! Options include:
Chevron-print lanyards
Paint splatter print lanyards
Rhinestone lanyards
Neon lanyards

In addition to displaying your ID badge, these lanyards are a great update to a solid colored or black lanyard.

Specialized Lanyards

If you need a specific type of lanyard, there are many options for specialty lanyards including:
Sustainable bamboo lanyards
Printed “Safety First” lanyards
Awareness lanyards
Anti-microbial lanyards
100% recycled P.E.T. lanyards
Vinyl lanyards

And many, many more options. Lanyards are available in any style you could want, so shop all lanyards on DiscountID today!

did_fargo-hdp5600-singlesided-lam-mainNew from Fargo, the fifth generation of their HDP line of ID card printers is the Fargo HDP5600! This printer pairs the powerful reverse transfer printing technology with a 600 dpi printhead.

The Benefits of High Definition Printing

An optional upgrade for the HDP5600 is the powerful 600 dpi (dots per inch) printhead. Standard printers use a 300 dpi printhead, so upgrading allows you to print finer details than possible on most other ID card printers.

Some security features, including micro text and highly detailed images, also rely on the clear printing of a powerful printer like the HDP5600.

Please note, the printhead upgrade must be purchased when you order the printer and cannot be installed in the field.

Optional Upgrades

In addition to the 600 dpi printhead, you can also upgrade the printer to include dual-sided printing, lamination, dual-input hoppers, and magnetic stripe encoding.

Shop the Fargo HDP5600.

did_fargo-dtc5500lmx-alt1If you’re looking for a high volume ID capable of printing professional, high-quality dual-sided cards with lamination, try the newest printer from Fargo, the DTC5500LMX ID card printer!

Powerful Lamination Options

The Fargo DTC5500LMX has a unique approach to lamination. It comes standard as a dual-sided lamination printer with no upgrades to go from single to dual-sided. If you are using the same lamination film on both the front and the backs of the cards (for example, both sides use a clear, full-sized lamination), you are good to go with the basic model.

If you want to use two different lamination styles, however, you will need to upgrade to the dual-material lamination option. This allows you to do a full-size film on the front of the card and a magnetic stripe and signature panel film on the back. Or a film with a built-in holographic image on the front, and a standard clear film on the back.

Shop all printing supplies for the DTC5500LMX.

Upgrade Options

This printer has several upgrade options including a WiFi module, locking card hoppers to protect your card system, and magnetic and smart card encoding.

Learn more about the DTC5500LMX.

School ID BadgeIt’s now August, which means teachers and school districts across the country are getting ready for the new school year. Do you have all the supplies and ID accessories you need to start the year?

Complete ID Systems

If your school is looking to update or replace an old ID card system, DiscountID has many great options at low prices. Shop our selection of ID card systems and find the best systems from leading manufacturers including Magicard, Datacard, Fargo, Evolis, and Zebra.

Complete ID card systems are a great option because they contain everything you need to get started: a printer, software, blank cards, and ribbon.

Visitor ID Badges

For security purposes, most schools now require all visitors to check in with the front office and get a visitor badge when they enter the building. These expiring visitor management cards let you know instantly if the visitor is authorized or not – once the card has expired it will show the expiration pattern and students, staff, and security personnel can report anyone in the building with an expired pass.

ID Card Accessories

If your school requires teachers to display ID cards while working, you’ll need an ID card accessory. Lanyards are always popular because the work with any style of clothing from casual to uniforms, and come in a wide range of colors, styles, and patterns.

If you want something that prevents the ID card from hanging down and potentially getting in your way while working, try a badge reel. These easily attach to your clothing using a traditional clip or pocket clip.

Badge Buddy - HorizontalSecurity is a top priority in the healthcare industry – healthcare professionals have access to private patient information, medical supplies, and drugs. Adding Badge Buddies can help you improve security.

What’s a Badge Buddy? These pre-printed cards with titles like Doctor, RN, and NA are bright, eye-catching ID badge accessories. Healthcare workers are already required to display photo ID badges while working, and a Badge Buddy worn behind that photo ID makes it easier to spot works from a distance because of the color-coordinated system.

This is helpful for other healthcare workers looking for a specific person, but also for security guards and patients and their families when looking for help from someone.

Shop Badge Buddies on DiscountID – horizontal and vertical.

DID_Blog_Image_CardStockBlank ID cards come in a wide range of options – do you know what style you need? That will depend on your card printer and how the card is used, but we’ve put together a quick guide to get you started.

PVC Cards

Plain blank ID cards are made from PVC plastic, or sometimes a PVC/Poly plastic combo. This makes the cards flexible and durable. Blank cards come in a wide range of sizes, colors, and styles.

Shop PVC cards.

Encoded Cards

Encoded cards include magnetic stripe cards, smart cards, RFID chip cards, and proximity cards – any sort of card that can store and transmit data.

These types of cards have a wide range of uses including school ID cards for paying for lunch and checking out library books, building key cards, time and attendance tracking cards, mass transit passes for the bus or subway, gift cards, and more.

Shop access control cards, or magnetic stripe cards.

Rewritable Cards

Rewritable cards are designed for specialized use, with specific ID card printers. With these cards you can print (in black or blue monochrome only) an ID card, then erase it and reprint on the same card – up to 500 times per card.

Shop rewritable cards.