Narrow (Bridge) Size verses Wide (Poker) Size
On our website you will see cards being referred to as narrow (bridge) size or wide (poker) size. This is common terminology used to quickly describe the size of the playing card. You didn’t think all playing cards were made the same, did you?
In general a wide (poker) size playing card is 2.5 inches wide by 3.5 inches tall. A narrow (bridge) size playing card is 2.25 inches wide by 3.5 inches tall. So the total difference between the narrow (bridge) size and wide (poker) size playing cards is .25 inches in width only. This equates to about 10 percent of the total card width. This does not sound like much, but to some people it is very important.
Both wide (poker) and narrow (bridge) size playing card sets use a standard deck. So most common games are able to be played with either type of card. The names "Poker" and "Bridge" only refer to the size of the card and do not necessarily mean the card has been made to play only the games of Bridge or Poker. So why complicate matters with those specific names? Your guess is as good as ours.
Over 95 percent of poker rooms in United States casinos use a narrow (bridge) size playing card. To make matters worse, 95 percent of Blackjack games deal a wide (poker) size playing card! So how did the names of the sizes come about as narrow (bridge) and wide (poker)?
Well, we are not sure. But we do know that during an actual Bridge game, players hold many more cards in their hands than players of other card games. Therefore, it is only common to name the narrow size playing card as bridge. Most games that deal from hand use the narrow (bridge) card to assist with professionally manipulating the deck. Most games that are dealt from a shoe use the wide (poker) size, since larger cards are often preferred by players.
On our website we try to call everything wide (poker) or narrow (bridge). However, when you are out in the world discussing the sizes of playing cards (because we are sure you do this on a daily basis) you know have the skinny on card sizes!
The relative size difference: