If you’re looking for the best place to buy MTG cards, that is certainly a question that can be answered in a hundred different ways. It will depend a lot on what Magic cards you’re looking to buy, whether you want single cards, packs, boxes or decks. The choices are endless, but I’ll narrow it down a bit for your and give you some ideas on where best to get your Magic The Gathering fix!
WHERE TO BUY SINGLE MAGIC: THE GATHERING CARDS
So let’s start with buying singles. It’s a great idea to search for singles as sometimes buying pack after pack ends up costing a fortune when you really only want a handful of cards from the set.
For example, say you’re building a RED/BLUE deck and you really want one or two SCALDING TARN fetch lands to put the deck over the top. Well, you could certainly start buying boxes of Zendikar Rising at $100+ per box where you MIGHT get one of these coveted fetch lands in the single box topper pack, but the chances of that happening are crazy slim. Every box has just ONE box topper and with 30 possible cards, you have a 1:30 chance of getting the one you want. Not a smart decision unless you have a fat bank account or you just hit the lottery.
In this case, it’s best to search out the SCALDING TARN (currently $60+) and save a ton of cash. So where is the best place to buy MTG Singles?
- eBay – This will be your goto place for buying MTG single cards. The amount of listings on the site for single cards as of the time I’m writing this is over 600,000! If you can’t find what you’re looking for on eBay, you probably won’t find it anywhere else. The downside to eBay…..you have to wait for your singles to ship to you and sometimes you don’t know who you’re dealing with. Make sure you check a seller’s feedback rating and make a judgement call on whether you think they’re a reliable person to buy from based on their feedback.
- Your LGS (Local Game Store for you newbs out there) – If you’re lucky enough to have an LGS somewhere within driving distance, they may have a selection of singles for your to purchase. Call ahead of time and ask for specifics of what you’re looking for. My guess is that most LGS’ won’t have a Black Lotus laying around so if that’s the card you’re looking to purchase, definitely call ahead so you don’t waste your time.
- TCGPlayer.com – another great place to buy Magic single cards. They have a great selection from A/B/U all the way up to current products. Think of it as a card show online where hundreds if not thousands of sellers offer their cards for sale. Prices are competitive, shipping costs are very reasonable and their refund policy is buyer friendly. Don’t like the condition of the SCALDING TARN you just purchased? You have 48-hrs from receipt to request a refund or replacement. Check out TCG Player the next time you look for MTG singles.
- ChannelFireball.com – Another site similar to TCGPlayer and with just as good of a following in Channel Fireball. Not only do they have a really good YouTube Channel, their online store has just about any single you would need for new and older sets. Their site is really easy to navigate and when you click on a single card, it will have tons of information about the card which is better than most other sites. The shipping charges are very reasonable and they offer numerous options from USPS First Class (which is only a few dollars) on up to faster methods via UPS. I don’t personally use them very often but I wouldn’t hesitate to buy from them if I found some singles I really wanted.
- Local, Regional, National Comic Book and Collectible Card Shows – These shows are great places to buy MTG singles. You could spend hours upon hours going through boxes of singles and most likely you’ll find what you want. Not to mention, you’re bound to find a dealer with a glass case full of old Reserved List cards or super expensive MTG singles that you wouldn’t see at your LGS. I’ve seen cases full of Black Lotus’, Mox’s, and just about any super rare expensive card you could think of. Definitely stay tuned with your local show circuit and if it’s not too far of a drive, hit up a Regional or National show too. They’re well worth it!
WHERE TO BUY MAGIC: THE GATHERING SEALED PRODUCTS – PACKS, BOXES, DECKS, etc.
There are a number of places where you can purchase sealed Magic The Gathering products and where you go is really dependent on what you’re looking to buy. The best place to buy MTG cards, packs or boxes is not always the same so I’ll go over a few scenarios below and give you the low down on where I think your best bet is to get the products you want.
Interested in buying individual MTG packs from the newest released sets?
Your best bet for finding individual packs is either your big box retail store (Walmart, Target, etc) or your LGS (Local Game Store.)
Most pack buyers are looking to satisfy that itch to open packs immediately so waiting around for shipments from online stores is not the best option. If you’re like me and you get the urge to crack some packs every so often (well, daily if you’re like me!), visit your local game store and see what they have to offer. In most cases, their prices are slightly better than Walmart or Target and they’ll also have a wider variety of sets to choose from.
It’s also just a way better idea to give your hard earned money to the LGS as we want these local guys to stay in business and the Walmarts of the world will survive without us for sure. The LGS offers so much more than just packs and singles and the knowledge you can get from these stores is many times worth it’s weight in gold. I can’t tell you how many times my local store sat there and just BS’d with me for a while talking Magic, new products, and anything about the game you could think of. You won’t get that from your friendly neighborhood Target!
Interested in buying individual MTG packs from OLDER sets?
No doubt your best bet is still the LGS. We have a few stores near us and between them, I’ll bet I can get packs from just about any Magic set made in the last few years…..many times MUCH older stuff too. Big box retailers usually only carry stuff from the past 1-2 years so unless you get lucky, you won’t find any Weatherlight or Stronghold packs laying around (and if you do, PLEASE CALL ME ASAP! Haha).
If you cannot find what you’re looking for at your LGS, definitely look online. The older, rarer and more expensive packs can be bought individually on sites like eBay and I’ll bet you won’t have an issue finding a pack or two from someone who recently opened a box to resell. Prices for older packs can get up there so shop around, look at completed items to find out what current pack values are and try to get the best price you can.
Many sellers on eBay listen to offers too so if you see the MAKE OFFER button, send an offer and see what they can do on the price. Another eBay tip is to WATCH the item before you buy it. If someone WATCHES an item, the seller will get a general notification that someone is watching the listing and many times they’ll send you a special offer or discount. It’s a great way to get a sweet deal and I’ve used this strategy a LOT over the years. You won’t believe the deals you’ll get from an eBayer looking to make a sale!
(NOTE: Stay tuned to MagicCardInvestor.com as we’ll be tracking the pack and box cost of these older sets going forward.)
Interested in buying sealed MTG booster boxes, Commander decks, etc?
I hate to sound like a broken record but for this one I think eBay is the best place for sealed products. I’ve found that my LGS will most often have sealed boxes for sale but prices tend to be 10-20% more than eBay. I know I just got done pushing making purchases at your LGS and I think you should shop sealed boxes and decks there first, but don’t be afraid to buy boxes online on eBay if the prices are that much better. Here’s a few things to consider if you’re going to buy boxes on eBay:
- Make sure you’re buying the exact MTG box you’re looking for. Too many times I’ve seen boxes listed for what appears to be a great price only to find out that it’s the Japanese, Korean, German or French version. Be careful that you’re buying the one you want (in my case, the ENGLISH version.)
- Check the seller’s feedback ratings on eBay. I tend to buy boxes from a select few guys on eBay as I know they’ll ship on-time and they have a good reputation. If you want a MTG Ikoria Booster box (for example) and you find most listings are around $100/box and then you find one guy that’s selling it for $75/box, double check to ensure the seller is not some fly-by-night guy looking to rip you off. The old saying is true….if it looks too good to be true it probably is. Find people that have 99-100% Positive Feedback Ratings for the last 12-months and see what else they’re selling too. If you find a guy with only 10 positive and 3 negative feedbacks AND he’s showing he has 50 boxes of Ikoria available AND he’s also selling Cheetos in the shape of famous people, you might want to move on. Find someone with a lot of good feedback who also sell other Magic cards and boxes and you’ll be way better off.
- Buy local (well, as near local as you can get.) This is personal preference but I try to buy from guys on the East Coast since I live in Pennsylvania. Sometimes I’ll see the best price on a box is from a guy in California but I know I’ll wait the better part of a week to get the box. When I have a Magic itch, I need to scratch it MUCH sooner than 7-days from now! I tend to choose sellers in PA/NJ/NY/MD/VA/NC area as I know I’ll probably get the box(es) in 2-3 days at most. If you can wait and best price is more important, order from where ever you want. If you’re like me and have the patience of a small child (at least when it comes to Magic), order from sellers closest to you.
One other very good option for buying Booster Boxes is your local card or comic book show. I’m writing this post in the Covid-19 times where most local, regional and national card shows are shut down until we get this health crises under control. But don’t forget these shows when things get back to “normal” as they’re great places to get deals on sealed products.
I love walking into a big mall show or convention center and seeing tables stacked to the ceiling with sealed boxes. It takes all the self-control I can come up with to not pull my credit card out and get in big trouble with my wife! If it’s a weekend show, go late on Sunday as you might find some awesome deals from dealers looking to go home with less inventory. Come ready to buy with cash and ready to negotiate too and I’m sure you’ll walk away with great deals!
HOT TIP: BUY SEALED MAGIC PRODUCTS FROM AMAZON.COM!
Over the last 6-months or so, Amazon has become one of the best places to purchase sealed Magic: The Gathering products. Whether you’re looking for booster boxes, collector boxes or sealed decks, Amazon has a HUGE inventory and their prices are sometimes insanely cheap. Check out the Magic section at Amazon today and I’ll bet you find some sweet deals….and if you have Prime, you’ll save on shipping and get 2-day delivery free!
CONCLUSION – So where is the best place to buy MTG cards?
There are so many places above that between your LGS, card shows, online stores, eBay, Walmart and Amazon you should be able to find what you want. So many places, so many options. Feel free to comment below and let me know where you find the best deals in your area! For now, I’ll leave you with this:
“When everything hangs on a single moment, be sure you choose the right moment.”
ILLUSIONIST’S STRATAGEM, Magic: The Gathering, AETHER REVOLT (2017)