The 5 steps you need to know to securely send your cards to be graded

Before sending us your cards, let us give you 5 very important tips to ensure that they arrive in perfect condition to our facilities.

Avoid any nasty shocks with these simple steps!

1.  Avoid plain envelopes, they are dangerous!

Collectible cards fit perfectly into an envelope, but don’t push your luck! Sending your cards in an envelope is almost as bad an idea as swallowing a magnet and walking into a knife shop! That’s not a great idea really, is it?

As you can imagine, envelopes do not provide any protection during shipping, so it is highly likely that the contents will be damaged by the time they arrive, and no one wants that.

Our recommendation is, where possible, to use small cardboard boxes (NEVER larger than the following dimensions: 44 x 33 x 30 cm) or special envelopes with inner linings. Remember to secure your cards well so that they do not move around!

2. ALWAYS use sleeves

Sleeves protect cards from bumps and scratches, so, in our humble opinion, it is imperative you use them to ensure a safe trip.

When sending your cards, it is best to put them in a loose-fitting sleeve (for example, Ultrapro penny sleeves) and then put the card (already inside the sleeve) in a toploader (a strong plastic protector).

It is very important NOT to use perfectly fitting sleeves. Cards fit too tightly into these sleeves meaning that they can be damaged when removed. Be careful!

When it comes to toploaders, use a semi-rigid or a rigid toploader. FCA recommends the use of semi-rigid toploaders, as rigid toploaders can sometimes leave a slight mark on the cards (although this is rare). In case of using rigid toploaders, it is very important to stick a post-it on the penny sleeve of the card before putting it into the toploader (the post-it has to stick out a little, as seen in the picture) in order to be able to pull it out and easily remove the card.

3. Correctly identify your order

It is important to print your order information (you will receive it by email) and include it inside the package with your cards. This helps us to confirm that the contents of the package are correct and speeds up the process in our warehouse. If you don’t have a printer, don’t worry, just write down the order number we have assigned you in a visible (external) area of the box, and our goblins will do the rest.

4. Secure your cards

Although not common, any package faces the risk of being damaged or lost along the way. That is why taking out shipping insurance could well be the most important thing you do. This would ensure that the transport company would have to pay you the insured amount if there were any problems. For example, if you are going to send a package valued at 500 euros (and you take out insurance for that amount) if the package is lost or arrives damaged, the transport company will be liable for the insured amount. Whereas, if you have only paid for regular certified shipping, you will only receive around 30 euros as compensation.

If your cards are very valuable to you, why take the risk?

5. Be careful what you send…

For the absent-minded… Check that you have included all of the cards that you have paid to be graded! And make sure you do not include any extra cards! This may seem obvious, but it is a common mistake

At Fantasy Cards Authenticator we will not start the grading process until we have clarified the situation surrounding an erroneous order (we record all the packages received and their openings). So, in case of any unforeseeable event arising, you may have to wait longer than expected to receive your graded cards.

Our advice is to arrange your cards in the same order as on the order form. That makes it much easier to avoid confusion!


Finally, rest assured that once we send the graded cards back to you, our Goblins will take into account each and every one of these 5 key steps. 

We can’t wait to get to work and see your collections!