Last November, I started making my Christmas wish list. In the process, I discovered a whole new category of gear that I had never thought about before: credit card sized multi-tools. These are handy little gadgets that can do all manor of things but are small enough to keep in a credit card slot in your wallet.
As a Christmas gift, Josh got me my very first credit card multi-tool, the Financial Tool from Nite Ize. And don’t let the name fool you; this isn’t something that will help you make money (like a financial instrument). Rather, it’s a handy multi-tool that can even function as your wallet in a pinch.
The Functions of the Nite Ize Financial Tool
The packaging suggests 7 functions:
- Flathead Screwdriver
- Wrenches (1/4″, 5/16″, and 3/8″)
- Rulers (standard and metric up to 1″)
- Phillips Driver/Tape Cutter (so far my favorite tool of the bunch)
- Cash Wrap (like an ultra-sturdy rubber band wrapped around the card)
- Bottle Opener (I’ve gotten way more use out of this than I thought I would)
By the way, there are many “bonus” tools not mentioned in the packaging for creative people. For example, the tool features a decent straight edge, and the slits in the metal that keep the card light in weight make pretty good stencils if you’re a doodler and can also fit over other tools to provide greater leverage/torque in a pinch.
My Experience with the Tools so Far
I’ve only had my Nite Ize Financial Tool for a few weeks, and I’m surprised by the number of times I’ve used it. So far, I have:
- Opened many bottles of my home brew cider;
- Opened countless Christmas packages and taped envelopes with the Tape Cutter;
- Opened many packages of Sinus-Max tablets;
- Used it as my “wallet” when I wanted to travel light (with a few bills, a credit card, and a driver’s license);
- Measured a few things with the ruler;
- Opened a battery compartment with the phillips driver;
- Scraped ice off my windshield;
The Financial Tool performed all of these functions admirably. Granted, if a full-sized version of any of these tools had been readily available, I would have used them. But that’s what makes the Financial Tool so valuable: I don’t keep a toolbox on me at all times, but my wallet is ALWAYS close by.
What I Like Best about My Nite Ize Financial Tool
Aside from the basic functionality, here are the things that (for me) set the Nite Ize Financial Tool apart from other credit card tools:
Sturdy and Light. This tool is thicker and feels sturdier than others I’ve seen, which is important. Yet, it doesn’t weigh down my wallet at all. It’s very compact.
It Looks Cool. It’s just a credit card tool, but I feel like a ninja carrying it around; it’s like a grown-up throwing star. To me, the aesthetics are great: sleek yet rugged.
The Cash Wrap. The one thing that makes the Financial Tool stand out of the crowd – for me – is the cash wrap. All the other tools I’ve considered must be kept inside my wallet. I like the ability to use the card AS my wallet. The Financial Tool truly goes with me everywhere now, even when I’m “downsizing” for a night out.
The Size. Somehow, the Financial Tool is small enough to take up a credit card slot in my wallet but is large enough to hold a credit card and driver’s license within the cash wrap. Well done!
If you’re looking for just one credit card multi-tool, I recommend starting with the Nite Ize Financial Tool. There might be credit card tools that can do more, but I doubt you’ll carry them all the time like you will the Financial Tool. And, for a multi-tool, availability is the best ability. That’s why you carry it.