Mail Bag – Should I Unwrap Coin Rolls I Want to Keep?

Today’s Mail Bag question came in over the weekend and it comes from Asim H.. They asked a great question around collecting coin rolls and how to store them.


I have some new rolls of quarters that I picked up at my bank. I plan on keeping some of them after I’m done searching for W quarters (Editors Note: They are looking for 2019-W Quarters that are part of the Great American Coin Hunt). Should I keep them wrapped in the original paper or open them and put them in plastic tubes? What is best for keeping their value.

Asim H.

Asim, this is a great question and it is largely going to depend on the types of rolls we are discussing. As a general rule, for those coins that you’ve picked up at your local bank, you can open those up and store them in storage tubes. These are generally in generic wrappers from the bank’s vault service. So for your 2019 Quarter rolls, you probably are just fine opening those up.

As for storage, I personally recommend the Whitman/H.E. Harris tubes. You can find them at a variety of online retailers like Wizard Coin Supply or even Amazon (Affiliate Link).

If you have older rolls or rolls that come wrapped from the Mint, it is probably best to keep them in those original wrappers. Those rolls will have a slightly higher value in most cases because they are in their original wrappings or are from the Mint in special paper. For example, if you were to buy any of the roll sets currently on sale from the Mint (like the Kennedy Half Dollars for this year), keep those in those wrappers.

Roll of 2009 Lincoln Cents
Roll of 2009 Lincoln Cents in Mint Wrappings

Ultimately Asim, there is no real right or wrong answer here. You can certainly break open any roll wrapper as you see fit. But generally, if you buy from the Mint, you are paying a premium and getting those special wrappers. You should leave them in them for long term value.

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