Pokémon Trading Card Grading: A Deep Dive

Pokémon Trading Card Grading: A Deep Dive

Pokémon trading cards are highly collectible items that have been gaining popularity in recent years. Due to the high demand and value of these cards, many collectors are turning to card grading services to authenticate and preserve their precious collections.

What is Card Grading?

Card grading is the process of evaluating the condition of a trading card and assigning it a numerical grade based on its overall appearance. The higher the grade, the closer the card is to its original, mint condition. Grading services use a variety of factors to determine a card's grade, including centering, corners, edges, surface, and color the scale.

General information
All Grading Companies use a scale between 1-10 (10 is the highest grade and the most valuable) 
Grading companies will look at things like centering, edges, corners & surface to determine the grade.

Why Grade Pokémon Cards?

There are many reasons why collectors choose to grade their Pokémon cards. Grading can provide several benefits, including:

  • Authentication: Grading services authenticate cards to ensure that they are genuine and not counterfeits. This can be especially important for rare and valuable cards.
  • Preservation: Grading services encapsulate cards in protective cases to help prevent damage and preserve their condition.
  • Value: Graded cards typically command higher prices than ungraded cards. This is because grading provides collectors with a reliable and objective assessment of a card's condition.

Top Card Grading Companies

There are several reputable card grading companies that specialize in grading Pokémon cards. The two most popular companies are Beckett Grading Services (BGS) and Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA).

  • Beckett Grading Services (BGS): BGS is known for its strict grading standards and its use of black labels for cards that receive a perfect 10 grade. BGS graded cards typically sell for a premium.
    Beckett Black Label is still the highest selling graded cards in the industry, These are extremely hard to get due to the card needing to be 100% perfect.

  • Professional Sports Authenticator (PSA): PSA is another reputable grading company that is widely respected in the collectibles industry. PSA graded cards are also highly sought after by collectors and are the industry standard when it comes to grading.

Other Card Grading Companies

In addition to BGS and PSA, there are a few other companies that offer Pokémon card grading services. These companies include in Australia include: TCG  & CGA 

Cost of Grading Pokémon Cards

The cost of grading Pokémon cards varies depending on the grading company and the value of the card. However, in general, grading fees can range from around $15AUD and up per card, companies such as PSA base the grading price from the value of the card.

How to Get Your Pokémon Cards Graded

There are two main ways to get your Pokémon cards graded:

  • Submit your cards directly to a grading company: This is the most common way to get your cards graded. You can submit your cards online or in person.
  • Use a third-party submission service: There are a number of third-party companies that specialize in submitting cards to grading companies. These companies can handle the entire submission process for you, including packaging, shipping, and tracking your cards, The down side of this is it is very easy to swap out a card if the person is sending multiple cards if one card gets a 9 & another a 10 so be sure to read the companies reviews before submitting your cards to a middle man. 

Tips for Grading Pokémon Cards

Here are a few tips for grading Pokémon cards:

  • Choose a reputable grading company: There are several reputable grading companies to choose from. Do your research and choose a company that you trust.
  • Handle your cards carefully: Cards can be easily damaged, so it is important to handle them with care. Use clean hands and gloves when handling your cards.
  • Protect your cards: When shipping your cards to a grading company, be sure to package them carefully to prevent damage.
  • Consider the cost: Grading can be expensive, so it is important to consider the cost before submitting your cards.


Tip: Generally a card graded 8 or lower will sell for the same price as a card ungraded so keep this in mind when thinking of grading.
For cards under $200 AUD we will normally grade our cards locally, for cards over we will send them to PSA or BGS.


Pokémon card grading can be a great way to authenticate, preserve, and increase the value of your valuable collection. By choosing a reputable grading company and taking care of your cards, you can ensure that your Pokémon cards will be well-protected and worth a significant amount of money in the future.