Are Pokémon Trainer Cards Worth Anything? 


Are Pokémon Trainer Cards Worth Anything? 

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While we know that Pokémon cards have value and can sell for hundreds or even thousands of dollars, what about the trainer cards? In the Pokémon world, the trainers may not be “as cool” as evolving Pokémon, but they are still a big part of the world. 

Since the trainers are responsible for collecting and training Pokémon, are their cards worth anything like Pokémon cards? 

Pokemon Trainer cards can be just as valuable as normal Pokémon cards. One of the most valuable training cards was awarded to winners of the regional Battle Road Spring tournament in Japan in 2002. 

The No. 1 Trainer card was produced just for those few winners. This makes them the rarest Pokémon cards in existence. To make this card even rarer, it was customized with the winner’s names. 

A copy of one of these winner’s cards sold for $31,200 in April of 2021. 

Although $30,000 isn’t a record for Pokemon cards it is still really good. Because of the Pokemon craze virtually all Pokemon cards have at least some value so head over to eBay and type in your card info to see how much you can get for it! 

To see the most popular Pokemon cards just click here. 

Why Are Pokémon Cards Selling Out And So Expensive? 

Back in 2016, a new mobile app was introduced, Pokémon Go. This is when the world of Pokémon regained popularity and was introduced to a new generation. There were people everywhere hunting down and collecting their own Pokémon. 

Fast forward to 2020 when everyone was stuck inside, many creators took to the internet and ramped up the hype of buying and collecting cards. 

There are so many people trying to collect cards as their new hobby and passion. Production was shut down for a while in 2020, but purchasing cards were still happening online. Since then, there has been a “shortage” of Pokémon cards which is why they are always selling out. 

The reason the cards may feel more expensive depends on where you purchase them. If you are buying your cards from a box store, the price might be a little higher but not by much. If you purchase your cards on eBay, your price might be a lot higher. 

It’s all about the law of supply and demand. If someone has a card you want/need and they know that, the price will go up. There are many rare Pokemon cards that have sold for tens of thousands of dollars so many people are snatching up the boxes or card lots in hopes of pulling one of those rare valuable cards. 

How Do I Know If My Pokémon Cards Are Valuable? 

If you collect Pokémon, chances are that you have either a shoebox full or a binder with plastic sleeves protecting your cards. Valuable Pokémon cards have been known to sell for quite a few hundred dollars and some even in the thousands. 

With all of the cards you own, it would be great to see if you have any valuable Pokémon cards. How can you tell if some cards in your Pokémon collection are valuable? 

The easiest way to know if you have a valuable Pokémon card is to head over to eBay and look at the sold listings for each of your cards. This can be time consuming but it is the best method to value each one. 

These are also a few things that you can check for when going through your collection

Rarity

On every Pokémon card there are black symbols in the bottom right corner. These symbols are either circles, diamonds, or stars. 

If the symbol is a circle, then the card is pretty common. If the symbol is a diamond, your card is uncommon. If you have the star symbol, then your card is rare. 

While the star symbol is almost always black, there are a few that have color. If your star has color, then your card is ultra-rare.  

Edition

A card that was printed as a first edition will be more valuable. A first edition card will no longer be printed and therefore makes your first edition card valuable. 

You can find the edition mark on the side of your card. Additionally, if a card is limited edition, it can be valuable as well. 

Holographic

Typically, if your card is holographic, it can be worth even more. Especially if it has any of the above-mentioned qualities.

 If you have a star symbol and it’s holographic, your card just increased in value. Similarly, if you have a first edition holographic card, your card is rather valuable. 

Condition

Even if you have a first edition card, but the corners are all bent and you can tell the card has been used frequently, it might not be valuable. 

Your card may have all the components, first edition, star symbol, and holographic, but if your card has not been protected well, its value immediately decreases. 

Any “flaws” in the card would be considered as tears, scratches, and bends. The best way to avoid these is to store your cards properly. 

How Should You Store Your Pokémon Cards?

With Pokémon increasing in popularity, there have been many new cards printed and packs to be purchased. It might be easy to just leave them in the packs, but then you will never know what cards you have. 

You need a place to properly store your cards to ensure they don’t get bends, tears, and scratches. How exactly should you store your Pokémon cards? 

Your first thought may be to put on protective gloves, a hazmat suit, and go the whole nine yards when handling your new Pokémon cards. The truth is that overprotection can do just as much harm as good. 

It is important to be very careful with the cards, but just being cautious with handling your cards is good enough. Also, there may already be some damage to your cards that cannot be controlled. 

For example, the cards could have shifted during transit to the store, the box of cards was squished at the bottom of the pile, or the box itself may have been damaged on its way. 

Whatever the case, if your card is damaged upon arrival, just be sure it does not become further damaged.

Here are a few additional suggestions on how to keep your Pokémon cards in mint condition. 

Penny Sleeves

These plastics are a must in keeping your collection safe. As soon as you remove a card you would like to keep in mint condition, place it in the sleeve. 

Your first reaction may be to examine the card, that’s great, but do it after it’s in the plastic sleeve. 

Toploader

These are a thicker version of penny sleeves. If you want maximum protection, you can place the card with the penny sleeve in the Toploader. 

You can also skip the penny sleeve step and place your Pokémon cards straight into the Toploaders. 

Storage

Though the first two steps are important, probably the most important is where to store your protected Pokémon cards. There are a few different popular options. 

You can store your protected cards in a binder. There are binders designed specifically for card collecting and can be great to house your protected cards. 

You can also store your cards in tins. Pokémon has even created collector tins that you can store your protected cards in. 

If you plan on storing your cards in a box, like a shoebox or a collector tin lunch box; make sure your cards don’t have room to move around. If your cards move around too much, even protected, it may still cause damage. 

Final Thoughts 

Trainer cards have the same possibility of being just as valuable as normal character cards. If you have started collecting, make sure you take great care of your cards and store them properly. 

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