Pokémon Trading Cards may have started as an extension to the iconic TV show, movies, and video games but now it’s so much more than that. Owning the rarest Pokémon card has become a massive flex factor.

A quick fact before the article: PSA stands for Professional Sports Authenticator, and they grade the condition of Pokémon cards. Let’s take a look at the top 5 rarest and most expensive Pokémon cards out there. 

Pikachu Illustrator

We start with the Holy Grail of them all in our top 5 rarest Pokémon cards. The Pikachu Illustrator is the most expensive card sold till date with a big-name buyer in Logan Paul.

Pokemon rare card
Image courtesy of Game Informer
  • Only one PSA 10 version of the card is believed to exist, and the YouTuber bought it in exchange for his PSA 9 version of the same card plus an additional $4 million. PSA has certified only 23 Illustrator cards so far.
  • Winners of promo contests in 1997 and 1998 by CoroCoro Comic received this card.

  • It is the only Pokémon card to say “Illustrator” instead of “Trainer” at the top of the card. Original Pikachu designer Atsuko Nishida illustrated the fan-favorite Pikachu in this card.

1999 First Edition Shadowless Holographic Charizard #4

Charizard is close to the heart of every Pokémon fan. The Shiny Charizard card has been sought after for decades, but its shadowless variant is even rarer and more valuable.

  • According to Iconic Auctions, the most iconic and important card to both the Pokémon franchise and its die-hard fans happens to be the rare shadowless holographic Charizard.
  • Rapper Logic bought a PSA 10 version of this card for around $220,000.

Blastoise #009/165R Commissioned Galaxy Star Hologram

Third on the list of the top 5 rarest Pokémon cards, the Blastoise Presentation card was created by Wizards of the Coast as a presentation piece for Nintendo. This was part of a successful trade deal for acquiring the English-language card rights.

Pokemon Blastoise rare card
Image courtesy of DiceBreaker
  • This Blastoise Presentation card is two-of-a-kind and therefore, extremely rare. While two of these cards were originally produced, only one has been seen in public. The card sold at an auction in 2021 for a whopping $360,000.

1999 Super Secret Battle No. 1 Trainer

One of the rarest Pokémon cards, the 1999 Super Secret Battle No. 1 Trainer is a no-brainer on our top 5 list. Only seven copies exist.

Pokemon Trainer card
Image courtesy of 7News / Heritage Auctions
  • This card was awarded to finalists in the Secret Super Battle tournament held in 1999. To earn a place in the competition’s secret finals, players had to first win a regional tournament. This card granted them access to the finals.

2006 Pokémon World Championships Promo No. 2 Trainer

The final entry on the list of the top 5 rarest Pokémon cards features Pikachu holding a trophy with a message that reads: “If you won this card at the 2006 Pokémon Trading Card Game World Championships, you may return to battle the best in 2007.”

Pokemon rare card
Image courtesy of DiceBreaker
  • Furthermore, this card was given to finalists of the Pokémon World Championships held in California in 2006. Only three copies of this card are known to exist.

Some Pokémon cards are so rare they hold enough value in the market to make you even a millionaire. So, if you think you’ve got any rare Pokémon cards lying around in your garage, it’s time for you to dust your boxes and find out if you’re lucky.

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SOURCES: PSA (psacard.com), Heritage Auctions, Pokémon TCG Card Database