Scalpers are turning a profit on McDonalds’ special promotional items, celebrating 25 years of Pokémon.
McDonald’s recently introduced a limited-edition Happy Meal as part of the celebrations. The meal includes a Pikachu-shaped box and 50 Pokémon cards, including special holographic cards.
It didn’t take long for scalpers and Pokémon enthusiasts to jump on the promotion, purchasing the meals in bulk, and reselling the cards on eBay. With each meal costing around £1.80 ($2.49), scalpers might turn a profit with ease should they open a pack with only a few valuable cards.
Scalpers are further incentivised by the recent spike in popularity of Pokémon cards, driven by the YouTube and Twitch community of enthusiasts who open cards on camera. Earlier this year, one enthusiast purchased an original, unopened box set for £297,000.
In Polygon’s initial coverage of the story, fans and enthusiasts on Twitter can be seen commenting on the situation.
@McDonalds @Pokemon I sure hope you do some form of inventory control for your promo Pokémon cards as some of your stock is being sold in sealed boxes which means they’re not even making it to your stores 😳 Though same thing happened with Tim Hortons Hockey too. Retail $1.99 😳 pic.twitter.com/kX8qZyRX2V
— redphoenixsportscards (@redphoenixcards) February 9, 2021
— jimmy bond (@jimmybond613) February 9, 2021
Tonight at 8PM EST we will be opening up some @McDonalds #Pokemon 25th Anniversary packs along side of Rebel Clash packs and the rest of the #MTGKaldheim booster box. Live on #Twitch: https://t.co/Y3miig2LjJ pic.twitter.com/lUFREKdzpa
— LumberJackFrost (@LumberJackFrost) February 9, 2021
While McDonald’s is yet to comment on the situation, Nintendo released a statement earlier today detailing its efforts to reprint affected Pokémon Card Game Expansions at “maximum capacity.”
In other Pokémon related news, the annual Pokémon World Championships were cancelled earlier this week because of health and safety concerns related to COVID.