Where To Print Eco Friendly Business Cards in UAE?

Printing business cards is not really eco-friendly, but unfortunately, we still don’t have a professional culture in UAE where people are comfortable sharing only digital business cards yet. Digital business cards is a great way of reducing your carbon footprint and saving resources which are otherwise consumed in printing business cards like paper (trees), ink, printing process, storing.

Statistics Brain Research Institute based in US has gathered a statistics that 88% of business cards are thrown away within a week. Now how many people are actually recycling the cards they receive and how many cards are going to landfill is a big question. We are definitely looking at a huge landfill waste created through business cards here.

Digital Business Cards

Digital Business Card on Haystack

Here are few popular apps which you can use for digital business cards.

  1. Camcard – It’s one the best digital card app available. It can read cards in 15 languages and it’s free as well as paid versions.
  2. Haystack– It’s an application available on most devices including android, with free basic digital card and paid versions. I have my business card on Haystack but can rarely get to share it.
  3. One Card– It’s not an app, has a basic free version and paid versions. Can be used on most devices.
  4. Know.ee – It works on both android as well as iOS. It has basic & premium versions
  5. Snapdat– It’s a free application which can easily integrate with iPhone address book.


I think, talking about UAE’s local market the trend of digital business cards is still limited to people in the tech industry or technology savvy people. I have seen few Apple users in UAE using the apps for digital business cards.

Plantable Seed Paper Business Cards

But when you are advocating a cause and raising awareness, reaching out to people through every mean becomes so important. Plus I meet people from varied industries and different walks of life as the topic of sustainability touches everyone in the society so I had no other option but to print business cards for now. So then I decided to print business cards on plantable paper. This is basically a paper made out of recycled paper with seeds embedded in it. So basically instead of throwing the business card you can plant them in garden or a pot.

But I couldn’t find such printing business in UAE who provide service of printing on seed paper. I explored many printing services and most of them claim to be ‘green’, offer recycled paper and FSC papers almost at same price and when asked about certification they hesitated. One of the printing service even denied to talk about it saying that is not their company policy to share information. But on the contrary as consumer we have full rights to ask question and expect satisfying answers. Consumers are generally curious when it comes to services related to health, wellbeing and food but sadly residents in UAE are still not asking much questions when some business claims they are ‘Green’.

I didn’t want to get my business cards printed somewhere far, especially in case of plantable business cards which you can order online and get in printed from US, Europe or even India. But looking at carbon footprint of those business cards traveling from somewhere else to Dubai, I felt like nullifying Earth friendly-ness of those business cards. After filtering numerous so called ‘green printing’ options available in UAE, I came across Print Central, who offer printing of plantable business cards. After bombarding them with lot of questions about paper, ink and even seeds their patient staff gave me satisfactory answers. So I decided to get my business card job done by Print central.

But unfortunately the price of plantable business cards is much higher than regular business card printing. Of course it has to do with very low demand and need of special printing facility. But when I was told the seeds embedded in paper are not even local plant seeds so it didn’t make sense to me to invest such amount to get plants which are not native. The seeds paper business cards in UAE can be sustainable only when the seeds of local plants are embedded in paper. But again we have different local flora and fauna in desert & in coastal area that complicates it even further. So I simply dropped the idea of plantable business cards and chose an alternative Eco-friendly business cards.

Recycled Paper Business Cards Printed with Vegetable Based Ink

I opted to go for 100% recycled paper and vegetable based ink to print my business cards from Print Central. The result is amazing non-toxic, easy to recycle business cards.

100% Recycled Paper, Soy Ink


They used soy ink to print my cards, which is a chemical free and very low VOC ink. My business cards and branding doesn’t have much of colors but soy ink often provides more accurate colors. Their staff told me the 100% recycled paper doesn’t give a very smooth finish. That is true, if you compare these eco-friendly cards with those plastic laminated paper cards, you can see a big difference. But let me confess, I totally loved my cards, I didn’t really find my cards aesthetically less appealing. They even informed me before printing that the background color will not be completely white, it will be bit of off-white and might affect my branding color scheme. But I really didn’t consider it as an issue. I couldn’t have better cards than these, my business cards have a sustainability story in itself. What could be a better way of showing your sustainability commitment in first impression when you are sharing your business card with a complete stranger?

Plastic Free Packaging

I would specially like to mention Print Central’s commitment in going green. My cards were delivered to my place in a paper packaging. I was so happy to see the plastic free delivery, otherwise delivery of anything is big concern for me since I started my zero waste lifestyle. The cards are packed in small paper boxes and were wrapped in a paper. I am still reusing my old business card plastic cases so it was a breath of fresh air for me.


Ecofriendly Business Card Holders

Recycled Denim Business Card Holder

Printing an eco-friendly business card is not enough to go green. We also need to choose an eco-friendly business card holder. Those personalized leather business card cases are popular and might look great but let’s face it, are not sustainable. Let’s not increase the demand of leather goods, that industry is poisoning rivers somewhere else.

There are many Earth-friendly options of business card cases and best part is you can be as creative as you like. I use this denim case to store my business card. You can find many cloth and metal cases. You can even reuse those USB tin cases to store your business cards. For desk business card holders you can find many wooden designs. I love these beautiful hand crafted wooden hands to hold business cards, which I bought from a local craft market in Bali few years back.

Handmade Wooden Desk Business Card Holder

Reusing old Business Cards

I had some old business cards left which are of no use now as the blog’s branding is changed and so are my contact details. So some time back I asked our tribe on social media to suggest some creative reuse of my old business cards.  Our tribe happily came up with many suggestions. Some of the readers said, use it for bookmark, gift card which I did but sadly still left with a big number. The cards are printed on both sides so using them to make to do list was out of question. I decided to use the suggestion of paper mache craft as last resort. But then one reader gave me a fabulous idea of ‘pay it forward for doing something green’. So then I modified idea into #passonsustainablethoughts.

Passing on Sustainable Thoughts with my old business cards

Last month I was invited at various places to talk about sustainability and raise awareness, so after every talk I distributed my old cards in audience and asked them to write their sustainable thought and pass it forward to someone who didn’t attend the talk might be their family member or a friend. The next person is asked to do the same and so on. So when a person will receive the card with sustainable thought written on it will get aware and be inspired to take sustainable actions. By now I have distributed my last 300+ cards to ‘Pass on Sustainable Thoughts’. I would love to get a card back with lots of sustainable thoughts written on it by different people.

I hope you got many ideas about a green business card and even reusing it through this article. If I missed something here, would love to get your feedback.

Sustainability Tribe’s Eco Friendly Business Cards

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1 Comment on "Where To Print Eco Friendly Business Cards in UAE?"

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Plantable Seed Paper Business Cards, what a brilliant idea, especially if they are native seeds. I haven’t ever printed cards but this post has given me loads of ideas if and when I make a decision to do so.


Meet Amruta

Hi, I am Amruta, Thank you for visiting my blog!

I am a Sustainability Professional. I have worked on many green building projects in the


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