How to Start Collecting Antique Bank Cards

article by ron bowen

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Wednesday, Aug 04

Being a collector of anything is a lot of fun, but most people think of common collectible items when they’re interested in becoming a collector, such as coins, thimbles, antique jewelry, or movie props. Other people, however, are interested in collecting less common items, and this includes antique bank cards. In fact, collecting credit cards and other types of bank cards is easier than you think, and since each of these cards has a history and tells a story, it’s a lot of fun to look at them and picture what they were like in their previous lives.

More Than Just Cards

Old credit cards, pay-as-you-go cards, gift cards, and even debit cards all have a certain amount of ambiance associated with them. Imagine holding one of these cards in your hand and not knowing where it came from. You can imagine just about anything about the card’s former owner that you like what that person looked like, where they lived, what types of things they purchased with the card, and even how long they used the card. It also gives you a great visual representation of how these cards have changed through the years and all of the designs they’ve enjoyed.

Antique credit cards give you a glimpse into another point in history and what it must’ve been like to live in that time frame. They are just plain interesting to collect, and if you are interested in how to get started, simply ask as many friends and family members as possible to give you their old and expired bank cards. As long as their account has been closed or the card is expired and they can no longer use it, it shouldn’t be difficult to convince them to give the cards to you because after all, they’ll have to think of something to do with them!

Getting Started

Believe it or not, you can get started collecting antique bank cards by visiting certain sites on the Internet. For instance, eBay is a great place to start because when it comes to collectibles, there is no end to the items they have. A recent look at what cards are available on eBay found cards such as:

$500 Honda Paragon debit card. $143.00

A MasterCard World Elite, very rare. $250

Bank card of Kazakhstan. $15.00

Barnett Bank Gold Visa card. $30.00

CSB Instant Cash Wisconsin (expired in 2001). $30.00

Disney Cruise Line, Captain Mickey debit card. $24.00

Florida Gold money market account. $41.00

New Blank metal credit/debit card. $29.99

Vintage R.H. Macy credit/debit card. $29.99

If you’re wondering what makes a bank card so sought-after, it’s really simple. Cards that have been expired for 10 years or more, cards that are difficult to find, and cards that have a special logo or picture on the front of them are all worth more than just standard expired cards. Some of these vintage bank cards sell for as little as $2.50, while others sell for hundreds of dollars. While most of them are not terribly expensive, just remember that they grow in value as the years go by, so keeping your old bank cards in great condition is always highly recommended.

Complementary Items and More

In addition to the bank cards themselves, collectors of these cards also look for items that complement them. For instance, signs that say “Sinclair Cards Accepted Here,” credit card ads from old magazines, and even credit card board games have been found by lucky collectors, and these items make collecting bank cards even more fun.

For instance, you can occasionally find an expired bank card that once belonged to a celebrity, and if there is a real signature on the back of the card, that is quite a find! A credit card that once belonged to The King, Elvis Presley, complete with his signature on the back of the card, once sold for $41,400. Henry Fonda’s Texaco credit card sold for $95.60, and the reason for the reasonable price is likely the fact that he had not signed the back of the card at some point, which made it less valuable.

It is especially exciting to find bank cards for companies that no longer exist or cards that were used by people who lived in other countries. This increases the value of those cards, but they aren’t ridiculously expensive, either. That being said, if you buy antique bank cards then sit on them for a while, they will gain in value through the years and you might be able to sell them to another collector at some point.

The American Credit Card Collectors Society (ACCCS) has a small membership of 75 to 150 members, yet they provide a lot of valuable information for would-be collectors. This website is a great place to start if you’re interested in collecting old and expired bank cards of all types. In addition to eBay, you can also find old bank cards in places such as Facebook, Delcampe, and Colnect, to name a few. If you do your due diligence online, it’s easier than you think to come up with even more places to check out.

Conclusion

Collecting vintage bank cards can be thought of as an offshoot of coin collecting because after all, credit cards came after coins of all types. You can find them in various places online, and you can occasionally find them in local thrift stores or garage sales as well. Once you’ve decided this is what you want to collect, you should look everywhere you can think of, which won’t be difficult. The older the card is, the more valuable it will become if you just hold onto it for a while, and you can even find really unique cards with rare logos or even ones owned by celebrities.

Collecting old bank cards is an easy, fun, and inexpensive hobby for the most part. While they aren’t exactly found everywhere, you can more easily find them if you know where to look, and the best part is, there are tons of resources that help you do just that. It’s also a great hobby if you love history and the past, and it is certain never to disappoint.

 

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