ID cards

Your College ID card is your personalised key for everywhere you need to be on campus

Your College ID card is a multi-purpose, personalised identification key for everything you do across campus. 

It grants you acccess to where you need to go, is your library and printing card, and even allows you to get your discount in College catering outlets. Make sure you carry your card with you whenever you are on campus.

Key information

Your responsibilities

Preventing unauthorised access

As outlined in our Access Control Policy, not every area of the College is suitable for every person. When entering controlled areas, be conscious of who is entering behind you. If you're not sure, you can ask to see their ID card. If they don't have one, tell them they're not allowed in without it and that they can speak to Security.

Don't lend your card to anyone else - if someone is found with a card that isn't theirs, it will be confiscated.

If you leave us, you'll need to return your card to the ID card office.

Take care of your card

The chip inside your card can be affected by Oyster cards, magnetic cards and phones - try to keep everything separate. We can also provide replacement lanyards and card holders.

Replacing your card

We understand that sometimes you may need to replace your card. How we do this depends on the reason:


If you've lost your card, you need to report this to the ID office immediately. We'll deactivate it and make sure no one is using it fraudulently. The first time this happens, we can replace it for free. Any time afterwards, you'll be charged £10.


If it's stolen, you need to report it to the ID office and the police immediately. They will provide you with a Crime Reference Number - we need this number to issue you with a new card. Without it, it'll be treated as simply lost and a charge may be needed.


If you've damaged your card, take it to the ID office and we'll replace it (with the same potential charges as lost cards). If the card was deliberately damaged, you'll be charged £10 regardless of whether this is the first replacement.

Making changes

New details

If you need to change any details of your card, you'll need to provide proof of this either from the Registry or from Human Resources.

Amending access

If you need to change the areas of the College you have access to, these will need to be approved from your Head of Department, Departmental Administrator or Building Manager.

Getting an ID card


New students (South Kensington)

Please make sure you have uploaded your picture via My Imperial and had it approved.

Once you have the approval email, you are ready to have your ID card printed. There is no need to book an appointment, we offer a walk-in service. You should bring a digital or printed copy of your signed Day 1 Safety Induction Form. Please note, you cannot have your card printed before your start date.

If you can't upload your picture via My Imperial, your picture can be taken at the ID card office.

Your card will automatically deactivate at the end of your course. Students writing up a thesis at the end of their research can apply to Registry for a 6 month writing-up period and their cards will continue to work until the end of this period.



New staff (South Kensington)

Please bring your Contract of Employment or Casual Hours Agreement and a signed copy of your Day 1 Safety Induction Form to the ID office during our opening hours. These can either be digital or printed copies. 

The picture will be taken at ID office before printing ID card and when your contract ends your card will automatically deactivate.

Without College Identifier

For people without a College Identifier (CID) (eg. contractors, cleaners), a photo ID card will need be issued if they're going to be on campus for more than one week. If you are here for less than 1 week, your Department should issue you with a guest card. 

  • Your Departmental representative should email the ID Card Office to request for the ID card to be set up. The email should include your Name, Surname, Company, End Date (maximum 1 year) and what access is needed.
  • You'll need to have your photo taken at the ID Card Office. 
  • If your Department has not specified an end date, you will be given a card valid for one year. At the end of this period, the Department can extend the card.
  • If you leave before the card expires, your Department should notify us so that the card can be deactivated.

For any other visitors, your Department would need to set up a contingent worker request. Instructions for this can be found on the ICT website.



Departments hold guest cards and will issue them to visitors who will be on campus for less than one week. If a visitor will be on campus for longer than a week, or is working in a sensitive area, they should have a photo ID card (as outlined in the previous section).

  • The Departmental representative should inform the ID card office of the name of the visitor, how long they will be on campus and the areas to which they need access
  • If access is required to any areas outside the remit of the requesting Department, authorisation is required from the appropriate Department
  • If the card is going to be issued for more than 5 days, the authorising Department must carry out a safety induction
  • Guest cards are supplied to an agreed Departmental Representative at a cost of £5 each
  • If a guest card is returned to the authorised holder before the deactivation date requested, please notify the ID Card Office to deactivate the card
  • Loss of guest cards must be reported to Security immediately
  • Audits of guest cards are carried out on a regular basis. All cards which are not accounted for will be cancelled on the access control system.