Restaurants, movie theaters, theatre theaters, the USPS, and now we can add Collectible Trading Cards to the list of industries we “broke” during the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to a VICE piece published last week, when we weren’t busy with our sourdough starters this past year we were digging out our old trading cards and trying to make some cold, hard cash off of them. As the mother of a 10-year-old Pokemon card enthusiast, I can’t say I blame anyone. My most fervent wish is that someday my kid can finance my retirement with his Pokemon and/or LEGO collection.
Right now the three primary companies that appraise collector cards (Pokemon, Yu-gi-oh!, Magic: The Gathering, sports cards, etc …) are facing almost a year’s backlog. In March, the CEO of Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA) reported that they’re receiving upwards of 500,000 cards PER WEEK to appraise for sellers. That’s a LOT of Venusaurs*! Things have gotten so bad for these companies that PSA has stopped accepting cards unless the collector is willing to pay $300 per card for “Super Express” or $600 per card for “Walk Through” service.
Now you may be asking yourself who, in this economy, has that kind of money to spend on collector cards? Maybe if you were in possession of a card that you thought might be worth $300,000, that cost wouldn’t seem like such a hardship.
Better go find those boxes of cards, folks!
* Venusaur is my favorite Pokemon because it looks like a nice critter to take a vacation on.
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