Types of military medals to sell – a guide

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If you’ve decided to sell a military medal there are probably many questions which will crop up, especially if you don’t have any experience of selling medals.

What is my medal worth? Is this a medal I can sell? Where do I sell medals for the best price? What type of medal do I own?

Often, they can be tough to identify. Once you have identified your medal (or got a professional such as our militaria expert Steve to do so), it is time to work out if it is suitable for sale. In this guide, we’re looking at different types of military medals to sell.

Selling WW1 medals

There are no real restrictions on selling or buying British military medals as long as you aren’t using them to pretend you are a member of the military.

World War 1 medals vary greatly in terms of scarcity and as a rule of thumb, the rarer a medal, the more it tends to be worth. The Victoria Cross medal is one of the most valuable medals issued at this time. If you are sitting on one of these, you could have a big payday coming your way.

Military cross medals have been awarded since 1914, and the earlier medals are relatively rare. In total, Military cross RAF medals and naval medals have only been handed out to 52,000 soldiers, compared to millions for some service medals.

Other medals from WW1 include the British Campaign Medal Sets, The British War Medal and The Allied Victory medal as outlined in this post. These have been issued far more commonly than medals such as the Victoria Cross. This means they are worth far less, though they do still have some value.

Some medals which were handed out for specific campaigns or battalions may have more value.

Selling WWII medals

In truth, medals from World War Two are nowhere near as valuable, on the whole. The exception to this is the Victoria Cross, which continued to be handed out in remarkable cases through WW2.

Often seen as the second highest military decoration was the Distinguished Service Order. These are some of the rare military medals which can be worth thousands.

Medals such as the 1939-1945 Star and the War Medal issued to a huge number of servicemen at the time are relatively common and therefore not hugely valuable.

American military medals such as the Medal of Honor and Distinguished Service Cross (awarded for actions on D-Day) can also be very valuable. However, there are also US Military Cross awards which don’t hold high values. The key is knowing what you have.

Though there are some German military medals from WWII which have sold for large amounts, but the rules on selling these can be complex. Many marketplaces have banned the sale of Nazi militaria. The Knight’s Cross is the highest decoration from the German military in the war and there are less than 8,000 in circulation.

The Victoria Cross and other medals awarded to Cpl. Colin Fraser Barron are shown in this undated handout photo. Passchendaele. More than 500,000 people, including 15,000 Canadians, were killed or wounded at during the prolonged fight, as weeks of rain and shell fire churned the battlefield into a sea of mud. Yet amid the horror that enveloped a small part of Belgium in the summer and fall of 1917, were nine Canadians who would be awarded the Victoria Cross, the British Empire’s highest medal for bravery. Now one of those Victoria Crosses, awarded to 24-year-old Cpl. Colin Barron for his actions exactly 100 years ago Monday, is set to go up for auction on Dec. 5. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO – Spink & Son

Know its worth

It can be incredibly tough to know what a medal is worth even if you know what type of medal it is.

For instance, the condition of the medal also plays a part in its value. Broken medals, missing ribbons or filed off inscriptions are less valuable. Medals in good condition are more valuable. If you have the original papers and presentation box for your medal, it will be worth more than a medal on its own.

Sometimes the story behind a military medal will also influence it’s value. Some collectors will pay more for medals that were awarded to certain soldiers. Or for certain reasons like bravery or valour.

This is why it’s important to know what type of valuation you need and the best place to get it from. Because there is so much that can influence the value of a medal, they will need to be seen to be valued. For this reason you should be wary of any company that gives you a sale price before they’ve seen your medal. Setting a price up front comes with the risk that you’ll get a different sale price when the item arrives. This is usually down to disputes over the condition of the medal.

By looking on auction sites and in auction houses, you can see how much similar medals have sold for in the past or how much future lots are expected to go for. Remember, this isn’t the price you will get for your medal, but it is a sign of its potential worth.

Each war medal is different and two medals that look the same may well sell for different prices. Some of the most common medals in the world have sold for thousands because of who they belonged to. This is why it pays to do your research.

Selling war medals to Vintage Cash Cow

Selling military medals doesn’t have to be difficult. The market may be niche, but our specialist team can help you to sell your war medals with ease, and quickly.

Vintage Cash Cow is intended to be a free and easy way for people to sell their old stuff. We buy from people in the UK. Our process is fast and whether you have British medals or other medals from around the world, we can help you to attain a valuation.

Expert appraisers for all types of military medals

Our team at vintage cash cow can boast many years of vintage and antique appraisal. Our militaria and medal specialist Steve will be happy to value your medals. We can identify your medals, and which of the categories of war medal it fits into before providing you with a valuation. We aim to make people more educated about what they are selling.

If you are interested in selling your medal to Vintage Cash Cow, get in touch today for a free guide or to speak to our team about the medal you’re keeping hold of.

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Our free to use service makes it easy to sell items any condition without haggling and without any hassle.

Sign up to receive our digital info pack today!