The first trading cards were issued in the mid to late 1880s and were included free
as a bonus in tobacco or cigarette products, which made them hard for non-smokers
and youngsters to obtain and collect. Hard to believe that this was the only way
to collect baseball cards in the beginning and how far we have come today.
Also, I want to get my 4 year old son started in collecting. What is the best way?
The best way to get started in trading cards is to buy packs of cards from the sport
that you enjoy watching the most. Focus on the teams and players who you cheer for
and start off looking for cards of these players. Collecting takes being a fan to
the next level, as it allows one to actually own a piece of the game and become
closer to the players.
There are many different choices of product to collect, which provides something
for all different levels of collectors. Prices can range from about $1 all the way
up to $100 per pack. The higher the price point generally means the more content
and guarantees of desirable types of cards within the packs. The choice is up to
you, how involved you want to be in this hobby?
Look for cards from manufacturers that are officially licensed by the league(s)
of your favorite sport, as these are the cards that are widely accepted and traded
by collectors worldwide. The officially licensed products contain the legal use
of league logo(s), uniforms, and photos of the players among many other aspects
that collectors want on cards to assure the value of their collections in the future.
Look for officially licensed stickers and indications on the pack or box before
you buy, it's the only way to know that your product is authentic.
Much is made of a trading card's value, and in fact, every card produced has a monetary
value associated to it. That value is based on many factors that include the player's
popularity, the rarity of the card and product that the card is in, the condition
of the card, and the overall demand that other collectors place on that card.
While it is generally assumed that cards are worth money, new collectors are better
off collecting their favorite players and teams, as the value of the cards may rise
and fall with the performance and/or popularity of the player. If you start off
only collecting your favorite player or team, you are more likely to stick with
them through the tough times when all of the band wagon fans jump off.
If you're getting involved in trading cards just for investment purposes, the odds
are long that you are going to be able to make a continued and sustained gain on
your assets. The unpredictable world of sports moves fast and furious, as players
go into slumps or get traded to other teams, and the sports collectibles hobby being
made up of mostly sports fanatics are in tune with the ups and downs and react accordingly.
In fact, it can be said that those in the sports collectibles industry are like
the pulse of public opinion on what is happening in the world of sports.
One key way that parents get their children started in collecting is to take the
time to enjoy the hobby with them. It is a great opportunity to spend quality time
building a collection together and talking about favorite players, teams, and moments.
Trading cards also teach kids the value of collecting and saving things that can
appreciate in value if kept in good condition.
Collect what you enjoy collecting, whether it's rookies or certain players or a
certain team or autographed cards or game used cards. Years ago, collectors used
to just collect "error" cards. Some collectors in the 1960s only collected "food-issue"
cards, meaning cards issued by companies such as Wheaties, Post Cereal and Kellogg's.
Many collectors today only collect Vintage cards, meaning cards prior to the 1970s.
The choices of various cards on the market should not confuse you, as much as they
should offer you opportunity to choose what you prefer to collect.
The production of a trading card product may be anywhere from 3 months to 9 months
long depending on the complexities and elements needed for that product.
Many different factors play into account when selecting the player list. Everything
from rights issues (Can the player be used in a set licensed by the leagues? Does
the company have individual rights to feature the player on special cards such as
autographs and game used jersey cards?) to photo issues (Can the company get photos
of the player in time for production) are considered, but the most important issue
is whether or not collectors want cards of the players in question.
Extensive research is done of industry sources to determine the most popular players
and if those players will still be popular and collectible when the product comes
out in 3 – 9 months. If you think collectors sometimes have a difficult time deciding
which players they want to collect, then think about the manufacturers who must
look into the crystal ball and determine the future “collectibility” of any particular
player as well.
The bottom line is if enough collectors want a player in a set, then we’ll make
Good news! Trading cards are easy to find. The best place to buy cards are in local
hobby card shops, where you have the advantage of viewing a variety of card products
in person. This includes not just trading cards, but collecting supplies such as
card holders, binders and much more. Store owners are there to answer questions
and assist you with your personal collecting needs. You can find a list of dealers
near you on UpperDeck.com by visiting our Store Locator.
Similarly, you can visit a card show. These shows feature a collection of sports
card and memorabilia dealers. It’s a collector’s haven! The shows happen frequently
throughout the year at different locations.
Consult your local newspaper and scan the sports pages and classifieds-upcoming
shows are often listed there. Hobby trade publications like Sports Collectors Digest
also provide show information. UpperDeck.com has a listing of major upcoming shows,
too (See “Tradeshows” under the ABOUT UPPER DECK tab on the home page) or simply
Many retail outlets also carry trading cards. While many products can be found near
checkout stands, some stores devote a section to cards and collectibles. Another
good place to buy cards is through the internet. Try internet auction sites like
eBay and Yahoo! Auctions and conduct a search for your collectibles.
You’re likely to find more than you imagined.
The places to buy cards are almost limitless. In fact, the collectible card you’re
looking for just might be at the garage sale down the block!
To find a wide variety of trading cards, across all sports, players, and teams to
collect, you should visit the all new Upper Deck Collection.
Here you can perform searches to find the perfect cards to get started collecting.
You also can email or print out custom wish-lists, see the diffent card designs
available to collect, and even create you own collection online!