frequentLY asked questions
How do I protect my cards during shipping?
Cards are required to be submitted in both standard-sized penny sleeves and card savers (or card saver equivalent semi-rigid protectors)/toploaders. A $0.25/card processing fee will be applied to each card not submitted this way.
Semi-rigids are preferred for orders not requiring condition checks. Toploaders are preferred for orders requiring condition checks. Do NOT tape toploaders except with painters tape. Card bags are preferred over any type of tape. Pull tabs are only appreciated for toploadered cards and are otherwise not needed. Semi-rigids and toploaders cannot be returned.
How do I ship my cards?
A small box with USPS first class shipping is recommended for packages weighing under a pound. Flat rate boxes provide a fair combination of price, speed, and protection for packages over a pound. Insurance is up to you. USPS insurance is notoriously unreliable. We recommend multi-boxing and using plenty of bubblewrap or paper to prevent the contents from shaking. UPS employees can assist with packaging if you don't have any materials. Shipping materials cannot be returned once received. Don't use packing peanuts.
Can I drop my package off?
Yes! The address given in the grading timeline is our local UPS store. Your cards must be fully packaged as if ready to ship, and must have both a send to and return address. If you choose to drop off, you will not receive a receipt for your package unless you purchase tracking. You also waive UPS of all liability should the package be lost or stolen. Photography is NOT allowed in store, as underage employees work there.
Was my package received?
Refer to your tracking number. All packages are picked up by Polaris employees from a secure location. A package has never gone missing from this location. Packages are typically opened and confirmed via email within 5 business days depending on volume. To inquire about a package, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the tracking number within the title. Please check tracking before sending an email.
What if my address changes before my cards return?
We don't keep addresses on hand. Instead, we always send an address request email when your cards are on their way back so there's never any confusion as to where they're going.
I'm not from the USA, can I still submit?
Absolutely! The process is exactly the same, return shipping will most likely be more expensive. You are responsible for all import fees, tariffs, or taxes.
How often do you ship to PSA/CGC?
We typically ship multiple times a week, but at a minimum weekly. Shipment may be delayed if there are insufficient quantities for a grading tier.
When and how do I pay?
We now allow customers to pre-purchase condition checks and grading services on our store: https://www.polarisgrading.com/store
If you're purchasing condition checks, please wait until after we have condition checked your cards to pay. After confirming exactly what cards are being sent on each service level, you're welcome to purchase through our store and email us the confirmation number or we can provide an invoice for you.
If you don't require condition checks, please make sure you include your store order number in your contact email and package so we can confirm payment and quickly process your cards after arrival.
What's covered by the price?
EVERYTHING involving the grading process. That includes packaging materials, shipping boxes, labor, shipping cost to and from PSA/CGC, and the grading fee. You would otherwise have to purchase a membership with PSA or CGC to receive any sort of meaningful discount on grading fees. Return shipping is not included and will be billed separately at the end of the submission process. Our return shipping rates are far better than direct submission. The only other cost that may occur is an upcharge.
What are upcharges?
PSA & CGC have a maximum card value allowed on each tier. Cards that exceed the value of a
given tier after they have been graded may be reassessed for additional fees by PSA or CGC
and billed to the customer. PSA upcharges take place at the end of the grading process and must be paid in order for the cards to be released. CGC upcharges take place at the beginning of the grading process at CGC. Upcharges are uncommon, but still possible. If you're unsure about whether or not a card may be upcharged it is recommended to submit that card on a higher service tier.
What can I submit to CGC & PSA?
CGC accepts Pokemon, Magic: the Gathering, and Yu-Gi-Oh trading cards, as well as 11 new TCGs, listed here:
They are well known for accepting foreign cards, error, test print, and unreleased cards. Polaris accepts error cards but requires a minimum order quantity of 20. Email us for more information.
Here is a complete list of languages accepted for Pokemon cards:
PSA accepts most major English TCGs, including Pokemon, Magic, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Weiss, and more. If you're unsure, I recommend looking up the name of the TCG + PSA on Google Images or eBay.
How do you make sure cards aren't mixed up?
Cards are kept in exact order and recorded individually. Cards may also be split onto separate submissions to avoid duplicates.
What are condition checks?
Condition checks are a professional assessment of your cards before you pay for the grading process. Each card will receive an estimated grade and short condition description in a clean, concise list sent via email. You then decide which cards to accept or reject for grading. After deciding, rejected cards can be returned with your graded cards at the end of the process or we can ship them back immediately for a flat fee of $10.00.
We currently only perform condition checks on non-sports TCG cards. Condition checks are performed in office after your order has been received and processed. We cannot provide condition checks for photos, videos, or in person meetings. These assessments are a professional opinion and NOT a guarantee.
What are subgrades?
Subgrades are individually assigned for each of four criteria: centering, corners, edges, and surface. These aspects of a card are carefully examined and given a numerical grade alongside the card's overall grade. They appear on the label underneath the card information.
Subgrades are preferred by collectors as a comprehensive, detailed assessment of a card's condition that often increases resale potential. Purchasing subgrades is the only way to receive the "Perfect" 10 designation, only given if all four subgrades receive a 10.
Can I change my order once it has been submitted to PSA or CGC?
Both PSA and CGC have policies stating that orders cannot be changed or cancelled once they have been delivered to their facilities.
Turnaround Estimate Information & Disclaimer
Estimated turnaround times are NOT guaranteed and are subject to change at any time. By submitting with Polaris Grading LLC you recognize that we are not responsible for delayed fulfillment and that CGC and PSA do not provide compensation for late orders or missed turnaround estimates. Polaris Grading LLC is not able to provide compensation for late orders or missed turnaround estimates. Polaris Grading LLC only submits on behalf of the customer on the exact grading tiers requested in exchange for payment.
Factors to keep in mind:
-Front end processing is not included in the estimated turnaround time.
-Orders typically take about one week to reach the grading company and one week to return to Polaris after shipment.
-Estimated turnaround begins when an order is received, opened, processed, and registered at the grading company. Higher service tiers tend to register faster.
-Estimated turnaround times are always in business days.
-Once returned, your cards are manually checked to make sure everything arrived safely and that nothing is missing (nothing has ever gone missing). Large return volume may increase return processing time.