While you might get lucky and find some at a large card show or hobby shop, the best bet to find the widest selection of golf trading cards for sale is a larger marketplace. While the sport’s popularity has ebbed and flowed over the years, the centuries-old sport hasn’t produced quite the same legacy in North America as baseball, football, basketball, hockey or even soccer cards. A new era in collecting, however, has meant a much bigger spotlight on a sector of the hobby that could be a bit of a sleeping giant. All it takes is a look at current golf trading card auctions to see it in real time.
While golf cards have a much larger and older international profile, most of the popular sets in this part of the world have been issued in the late 20th and 21st centuries. The extensive growth of all sports cards in recent years, though, has put a spotlight on the earliest cards of iconic players from all eras. Whether you prefer an original 1930s Bobby Jones card, a 1968 Mira Tutto Sport Arnold Palmer, a Jack Nicklaus from his prime years on tour or a Tiger Woods rookie card, eBay is probably the first place to look.
Sets have been scarce in recent years but with Upper Deck getting back into the game in 2021 through its deals with the PGA and LPGA Tours, we can once again say that yes, they do still make golf cards. It means we’ll see rookie cards of a fresh generation of stars. That’s exciting for collectors.
The 1981 and 1982 Donruss Golf sets gave us widely distributed, licensed cards of players from that era, including Nicklaus and his contemporaries (who knew he’d have another major in him a few years down the road?).
Those rookie cards of Tiger and autographs from Upper Deck’s early 21st century products are among the most valuable golf cards in the secondary market now. His 1996 Sports Illustrated For Kids card, issued as part of a perforated trading card sheet inside the magazine and his 1997-98 Grand Slam Ventures cards pre-date those and also carry significant value in high grade.
With the sports card market drawing increased interest around the world, the eBay auction market for golf cards is a good way to check out which cards are attracting the most interest from collectors and investors.