looking for trades
When you find someone to trade with you can click on the envelope icon next to their name to contact them. You are then presented with an easy form with which you can send him or her a message without revealing your e-mail address. The user will be able to reply to you using a similar form that will send you an e-mail to the address you provided when registering.
Together with your message, or after you have negotiated a deal, you can also send a trade offer by using our Tracked Trade system, where you list the cards that you are interested in and those that you are willing to trade for them. There is also the possibility to give or accept money in order to balance an offer, or to buy and sell cards.
The system will match your haves with the other user's wants and your wants with the other user's haves and let you easily select those you want to include in the trade. For this reason, it is important to enter on the web as many of your cards as possible, as you never know which ones may be of interest for the user with whom you want to trade. Furthermore, having your cards listed in Trade Cards Online will let you receive messages and offers from other users, sometimes from multiple ones looking for the same card. In this case you will be able to initiate negotiations with all of them and then choose the best offer you get. This way there will be fewer chances that you end up losing in a trade, as you will be able to estimate how attractive a card is for all the users.
Conversely, if there are several people who have the same card that you want to get, you will be able to contact all of them in parallel and choose to trade with the one that offers you the best deal.
performing the trade
Once the Tracked Trade has been accepted by both parties, the only thing left is to make the exchange itself. The ideal situation is when you live near by each other and can meet in some place you both know (preferably in a specialized shop) to carry out the exchange of cards in person.
But this is precisely the advantage of Trade Cards Online: that it allows you to contact people from all over the world so that your chances to get a good deal are much greater, the only problem being that it is more probable that you won't be able to meet in person. In these cases, you will have to make the exchange by postal mail.
In these latter cases it's very important to check first the other user's references, which are the names of other people with whom they have traded before, and who are witnesses to their behaving honestly. You should check the number of references a user has, and also verify that they have been added along a period of weeks and months and not in a short span of time.
You should also consider the user's Trader Level, which measures the amount of successful trades they have completed on the site, and their Experience Level, which tells you how much time they have invested on our site.
You might also want to contact some of the other party's references if you have never traded with him/her before and if you are exchanging valuable cards. If the references they give you are from Trade Cards Online, then it is easy to send them a message without knowing nor revealing email addresses. To do that you just enter the corresponding user name in the section "look for trades", or visit his public page and use the button to send a message. In either case you just fill in the contact form that you'll be shown.
For the detailed process of completing a Trade in our site, please carefully read and follow our Official Trading Guidelines.
references and trust
After a satisfactory trade is over and you get your wanted cards, you can state this fact in Trade Cards Online by adding a reference for the other user with whom you traded. The other user will also give you a reference when they receive your item. The more references you get, the more reliable you will be for other users who do not know you.
Nevertheless, in the exchanges through the postal mail you encounter the problems derived from trusting a person you don't really know. And though most people behave in good will, there are always those who try to take advantage of these situations, or just those who delay the sending of their cards out of laziness or forgetfulness. In any case, there is never any guarantee that you will receive the cards you requested in exchange for those you are sending.
Being aware of this issue, we have created a system for handling reports about bad traders that helps us remove them altogether from the site so that they do not bother other users. If you have any problems with other users when trading with them, please report the case to us by filing a 'Bad Trader Report'.
Now please read and follow our Official Trading Guidelines.