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Pokemon Card Buying Guide

Summarized Tips On Why You Should Buy From An Online Marketplace

The Complete Pokémon TCG Buyer’s Guide!

In the year 2022, you have a multitude of options everytime you look to buy a new product. You have traditional retailers, department stores, online marketplaces, etc. We believe that for your next purchase, you should seriously consider online marketplaces.

Online platforms come with loads of facilities designed to make your entire shopping experience better. They are reputable, well regarded, and provide you with the opportunity to shop from your home and get the best deals.

A very important thing you get when buying from an online platform is flexibility and convenience. In our busy lives, it is quite hard to find the time to visit a physical store. Meanwhile, you can buy anything you want, including pokemon ever card from an online store, while you are taking a break at work or doing your chores.

As it should be clear to you by now, there are a multitude of benefits when you go with an online platform over physical stores. Some of the benefits are summarized below in a few key points:


Rarity Symbols On Pokmon Cards

All Pokémon cards have a symbol that indicates how uncommon they actually are. You can find it in the bottom right corner of the card. The three main rarity symbols are:

  • Circles: This symbol means the card is ordinary.
  • Diamonds: This symbol means the card is pretty uncommon.
  • Stars: This symbol means the card is rare and more valuable.

If your cards collector number is higher than the actual number of cards in the deck, its probably a secret card, which means it will sell for more money.

Top 5 First Edition Pokemon Cards

Any shiny, shadowless 1st Edition Pokémon card will be reasonably valuable, but there are a few which manage to stand out from the crowd.

Buy on eBay

Charizard was the key to the original set and one of the most popular Pokémon from the era. That has continued to the present day, while prices continue to rise for shadowless versions. Rapper Logic bought a copy for $220,574 in October 2020, and the record was soon broken in December 2020, when a Charizard sold for $369,000. A report about the sale noted:

Confirming that the Charizard craze is not slowing down was an additional sale through PWCC on eBay which also broke the $300,000 USD threshold. This card belonged to a collector who bought the card in 2009 for $700 USD, selling it a few days ago for $350,000 USD.


Buy on eBay

One of the few Pokémon that would give Charizard a run for his money in-universe, Blastoise is another of the original starters, in their fully evolved form.

Along with Venasaur, 1999 shadowless versions are always popular, even if they cant match up to the card seen above in terms of pure values

As always, pristine copies are coveted, while its worth noting that Blastoise was the Pokémon Blue cover star. If you cant afford a PSA 10 Charizard, this is definitely the next best thing.

Buy on eBay

Buy on eBay

Chansey? Compared to the others, its not the most important Pokémon to make the list, but its still exceptionally valuable if youre looking for perfect copies.

Buy on eBay

Read Also: How To Get Legendary Pokemon In Pokemon Go

Which Pokemon Booster Box Is The Best To Make Money

The best booster box to buy to make money is the most current box on the market. The most current booster box is a box that you will pay retail price for and on which you stand a chance of making the most profit.


Buying anything other than the most recent booster box means that you will spend more money because that box is less available.

So, you can expect to pay a premium.

What Is the Most Expensive Pokemon Booster Box?

The most expensive Pokémon booster box to date is the 1999 first edition booster box. The very first set of cards on the market.

How much money is a first edition, first Pokémon booster box worth? One sold in November 2020 for more than $150,000!


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What Is A Shadowless Card And How Can I Identify Them

Buy The English version of VMAX Pokemon Go Super Evolved Pokemon Card ...

The early unlimited edition print runs of Base Set that still adheredto the original card design. Shadowless only applies to non-1st Edition, Base Set Cards.

In Base Set, initially the card design was different in that therewas no shadow around the picture of the Pokémon, the date format and fontsize used were different. So initially the unlimited print runs looked different,then were changed.

Early Shadowless Print

Read Also: Cgc Pokemon Card Grading Prices


Best Channels To Buy Pokmon Cards

1. eBay:

The safest online marketplace to buy and sell Pokémon cards. Check sales for a quick look at where cards are at price wise. Check seller reviews and buy with confidence from high rated sellers. eBay is the largest online marketplace and is your best chance to locate inventory. When searching for cards, look at items nearest you, and contact nearby sellers, potentially creating a local network. It saves on shipping and more. Load up your watch list to get faster alerts when cards sell or are pulled.

2. WhatNot:

WhatNot is at the pinnacle of auction sales by live streaming their auctions. Sellers have the ability to add prizes and a multitude of different other ways to entire buyers to participate. They also frequently do large charity box breaks with influencers, bringing additional light to the hobby.

2. Facebook groups & Instagram:


Look for feedback from sellers to check legitimacy, these are great places to score deals and build relationships within the collecting community but beware of scams.

3. COMC:

4. Mercari:

Popular marketplace to buy and sell cards. When hunting for low population cards, its important to utilize all options.

5. Card Shows & Stores:


If you can find a show or store with vintage Pokémon cards, go. You get the chance to look at cards in person, check sales online, network and decide whats of value. You never know what you can walk away with.

What Are The Best Pokemon Cards To Collect

As I mentioned earlier, a lot of people collect for both the nostalgia, and the financial side of things.

Being able to enjoy your cards and sell the odd one to fund future purchases is a great position to be in!

So, as a beginner, what are the best Pokemon cards to collect?

Well, you cant look further than the O.G. 1999 Base Set.


This is the set that people grew up with, and that has the nostalgic association for most generation Y collectors.

In fact, any of the following original Wizards of the Coasts sets make a great starting point:

*All links in the bullet points below point to eBay*

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Turning A Profit By Collecting Pokmon Cards

There are three basic ways to turn a profit by collecting Pokémon cards. The first is to grade collectible Pokémon cards.


Grading is the process of rating a card’s condition and encapsulating it in a case. The better the condition, the better the grade. And the better the grade, the higher its value.

There are three companies that are big players when it comes to grading Pokémon cards. These companies are PSA, Beckett, and CGC.

If you find an opportunity to purchase a vintage Pokémon card in good condition, you can send it off to one of these companies. Their specialists will analyze it based on many different factors to determine its grade.

A high-quality graded card sells for significantly more than a non-graded card of the same quality. You can resell the cards you’ve had graded for a higher price than you bought them at. This is where you start to turn a profit.

There are four primary factors that affect the grade of a particular Pokémon card.

The first factor is centering. This refers to how well centered the artwork is on the card. Grading services work off of specific centering ratios to determine the card’s grade.

The second factor is the condition of the corners. Flaws like nicks, whitening, and asymmetrical cutting lowers the grade of a card.

The third factor is the condition of the card’s edges. Nicks, whitening, and general wear all affect the card’s grade.

How To Get Your Tcg Pokmon Cards Graded

How To Buy Pokemon Cards on eBay! *BEGINNER’S GUIDE*

In order for a Pokémon card to be worth a lot of money, the TCG collectible needs to first be scored by a grading company. A card’s value can literally jump up by thousands of dollars depending on its grade. Because it costs money to send Pokémon cards in for grading, players should first determine whether the card is actually worth submitting. The easiest way to do this is to examine the card under a good source of light. The TCG collectible may not be worth submitting if it has scratches on the holographic, whitening on its corners, or the artwork is off-centered.

Related: How To Avoid Pokémon TCG Card Scalpers

Players can use graded Pokémon card databases such as Pokémon Price and Price Charting to get an idea of what the TCG collectible has been selling for graded in past auctions. Fans looking to buy graded TCG collectibles can also take advantage of eBay’s Pokémon cards Authenticated service, which confirms the authenticity of both the Pokémon card and its grading slab. Below are the steps on how to get your Pokémon cards graded.

  • Go to a card grading company such as PSA, Beckett, or CGC and look at the service’s pricing.
  • After choosing a grading company, the website will then give players instructions on how to ship cards to them.
  • Once cards are shipped off, there could be a long wait time due to increased demand in grading.
  • Eventually, the graded Pokémon cards will be sent back with a score.

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Best Pokemon Cards And Binder : Highly Recommended

  • 400 Card Holder Storage – This carrying binder case is preloaded with 50 card sheets that each hold 8 cards for a total of 400 cards – the size of each card is limited to 2.7in x 3.8in. No more choosing between your favorite cards for your next big tournament. It is refillable/expandable and you can arbitrarily increase or reduce the number of internal pages.
  • Ultimate Protection for Trading Cards – Quality zipper locks the card binder so that the inner page or cards does not fall. Water-resistant exterior and waterproof sleeve with exquisite wiring and double suture made of premium PU leather, water or raindrops wont seep through.
  • Protect Everything – Our protective card sleeves fit all standard-sized trading cards, such as Skylanders, Pokemon, football cards, baseball cards, playing cards, mini Polaroid photos, business cards, phone cards, bank cards, and more. Also, support cards are inserted into it with soft sleeves.
  • Perfect Gift for Card Collectors. Designed for dedicated collectors. Must have if you own a bunch of cards. And the extra wristband design makes it easy for both kids and adults to carry around.
  • Shopping Experience – If you meet any questions about the product, please tell us without hesitation. We will make things right.

Rare And Valuable Cards

Some of the older Pokémon cards have reached true collectible status due to their rarity. If youve been collecting since the 1990s, you might be surprised to find that a few of your cards are now worth astronomical amounts.

Check out this famous video below. Gary goes on Pawn Stars and shows off his insane collection of Charizards!

Which cards rank among the most desirable?

What drives the high prices of these and other super-valuable Pokémon cards? In a word: Rarity. The one factor uniting all of these cards is that they only exist in limited quantities.

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Why I Like Collecting Pokemon Cards

For me personally, as a kid the only set I ever completed in its entirety was the 2000 Team Rocket Set.

So, it was of great satisfaction to me when I rebuilt my binder 20 years later.

I didnt care about graded cards or values, I simply just wanted to flip through the pages and see that complete set again.

Tip: Theres a very handy resource called Pokellector, which shows you the full list of cards for each set. You can even log which ones you have, and which you still need to collect.

I then went on eBay and found listings of the individual cards I wanted.

I decided I wanted a minimum card condition of Near Mint, but for your collection this is up to you, and then I simply purchased the cards I was happy with.

And Ill tell you, opening up those parcels and seeing that old-school epic artwork again, was the closest thing to a time-machine Ive ever experienced!

The Original Pokmon Base Set

Top 10 Best Pokemon Packs To Get in 2021 (Buying Guide)

Where it all began, the original English base set collection was release in 1999 and consists of 102 cards. 16 of which are holos.

Now at this point its worth mentioning 1st Edition and Shadowless cards. These are considerably more valuable.

1st Edition is pretty self-explanatory they are the first ever print-run of the cards.

Shadowless cards, you guess it, dont have a shadow!

Specifically, youre looking to see if theres a shadow around the rectangle box containing the Pokémon illustration.

But there are also some other clues like a lighter HP font at the top of the card and the date including 99 at the bottom.

Now to throw something else in the mix, its also worth pointing out that graded cards are more valuable too if the grading is good of course.

The top two graders are PSA and Beckett.

PSA tend to get the majority of the Pokémon grading market and are most commonly use by collectors.

However, because its generally harder to achieve GEM MINT 10 status from Beckett, if you do, your cards will be worth more.

At this stage though, all of this is very hypothetical for a beginner collector.

GEM MINT 10 Base Set Cards go for hundreds of dollars on eBay, and if theyre 1st Edition or Shadowless, were talking thousands sometimes tens of thousands!

For example a 1st Edition Base Set GEM MINT 10 Charizard can expect to sell for upwards of $50,000. Maybe even in the $60k-70k range.

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What Are The Things You Should Avoid When Buying Mega Ex Pokemon Card

There are several things you should avoid when you are making a purchase of mega ex pokemon card.

  • Dont buy anything you dont need:
  • This is an important tip when youre buying anything. You need to make sure that youre not buying something you dont need. That can be expensive, and can also be a waste of time.

  • Check the reviews:
  • Reviews are an important part of buying anything, especially online. Make sure you check the reviews before you buy. You can do this by reading through the comments on the product or service youre thinking of buying.

  • Check the return policy:
  • If youre buying something online, you should always read the return policy. You might not have any problems with the item you bought, but you still want to know what your rights are in case you do.

  • Do your research:
  • Once youve checked the reviews and the return policy, its time to do your research. You should do some online research to find out more about the company youre going to be buying from. You can also find out more about the product or service youre thinking about buying.

    If youre buying something online, make sure you get a receipt. You should keep this for your records, so you can refer back to it if theres a problem with your purchase.

    Wheres Best To Track Your Pokmon Card Collection

    Theres only one resource that Id recommend for tracking which Pokémon cards youve acquired

    Pokellector What a great website! Not only can you create an account and tick which cards you have, but theyve also got a great bank of images too.

    Furthermore, theyre very clued up on which new sets are coming out and when if youre into the new sets of course.

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    Grade Vintage Pokemon Cards

    Like anything in business, if you add value, theres potential to turn a profit. The same goes with Pokemon Cards.

    Grading Pokemon cards is the process of rating their condition and encapsulating them in a case. The better the grade, the higher its value.

    If you can spot an opportunity to purchase a vintage card in good condition and get it graded, then theres the potential to make money.

    A few caveats though:

    You must educate yourself first on how cards are graded.

    The two big players in the Pokemon grading market are PSA and Beckett.

    This is how PSA decides upon grades:

    This is how Beckett does it:

    You can then try to assess what the card youre looking to buy might get.

    Tip: If buying from eBay, always ask for more images if their photos dont clearly show the card:

    • Holographic under light

    Once youve judged the condition yourself, then visit Pokemon Price. You can drill down into each individual set and see the purchase history on eBay for graded cards.

    This step is vital to understand what your potential profit margin might be.

    For example:

    Ungraded Card Purchase Price: £10

    Grading Cost: £9

    PSA 10 Recent Sale Price: £150

    PSA 9 Recent Sale Price: £50

    PSA 8 Recent Sale Price : £20

    This example aims to highlight exactly why being able to judge card condition yourself is so important. Theres no shortcut here, it comes with experience.

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